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Senior Housing Costs: How To Save Thousands!

27 September 2014
  Lee Amble

Saving money, living comfortably. 

There are a number of reasons why many seniors are really stretched out on their income while trying to live comfortably during their retirement years; this article is written especially for those people. Other seniors may not be in the same position, but you may pass this information along to the others that have a need for these ideas.

Many reasons for this retirement dilemma exist, which I mainly call the H & H costs; housing and health costs which have both increased dramatically over the years. Savers no longer make any significant amounts on their savings mostly less than one percent, if that. We now need to look at other ways of saving. This article will look at some very simple, logical ways to save a lot of money and, in many cases, increase your quality of life.

These simple saving ideas can be achieved nationwide and are written from my 36+ years of real estate sales in Prescott, Az. The only difference will be prices, square footage and the different type of housing. I hope this writing will help other realtors as well as retirees and others.

Smart Sizing:

This would be down-sizing, in most cases, or just buying or renting in a different local area. Moving out of state to areas of lower taxes and cost of housing would be another option. It brings to mind areas like Nevada, Florida, South Dakota and others with low or no state income taxes. We in Arizona also have a nice low tax rate. Many of us have much more house than we need in retirement and, in many cases, could reduce the size and price nearly in half if we wish. I have seen smart sizing help get rid of a loan completely and eliminate the loan payment; this is a great way to save costs.

Savings in a smaller home will also help reduce taxes, heating/cooling costs, along with maintenance of both the home and the yard. Those items alone could save you a few thousand a year depending on where you live and how you down-size.

Reverse Mortgage: 

If you were able to pay cash while reducing down in size, you may want to look at all the facts of a reverse mortgage. You could get a lump sum of money or a monthly income for life or a combination of both. If this sounds too good to be true, in many cases, it's a good idea. Check it out on your own. Imagine a mortgage that pays you! WOW! No, I do not sell them so don't call me! It's just a simple idea.

Types of Homes for Smart-Sizing: 

Again, this would be for the area of Prescott, Az. but, it would be similar in most areas nationwide so, let's look.

Smaller Home: 

Pretty simple! Get a home with what you need and use and not what you want. This often reduces yard and square footage from 35% to 50% or more, which is a huge overall savings.

Townhomes, Condos, Patio Homes:

They are a great idea for people who want a more carefree life; maintenance of outside of the units and yard work are taken care of by your association. Many other amenities may be available which you may want, but, if you do not want them, find an area with less amenities. Do not buy in a golf course area or a tennis area if you do not have a need for either of them. There's no need to pay for others who do enjoy and use them and you don't.

Duplex Or Triplex:

You can buy with the extra money from your home sale and live in one unit and rent the other unit/units out for extra income. Simple again!

Rent: 

A smaller home, townhome, condo, patio home or an apartment rental; normally there will be enough choices for you. It's not a bad idea for someone who likes to travel, have a fixed yearly cost or does not want the obligations of a homeowner, which are many.

This may be a great idea for older seniors, but not necessarily for younger seniors. You make your choices that will work for you. There are not real estate taxes, home maintenance, yard maintenance, etc. No unexpected costs. You will want to have an insurance policy for your personal belongings. It's not all bad and will make it much easier to set up a budget.

Conclusion: 

These are what I call very simple, realistic choices on how to smart size and extend your retirement income. You will enjoy those years even much more. The time to start is when you are ready, but my experience is that many wait way too long and then it sometimes becomes seemingly impossible as age has crept up. Don't wait until it's too late. Enjoy your retirement to the fullest with some very simple choices.

Thought For The Day!

"Life Does Not Always Go As Planned, But God Will Always Help You Through!" Lee Amble. 

And, my favorites: "Remember Experience Isn't Expensive, It's Priceless!!"

"Selling A Home Is Easy; Doing It Right Is The Key!"

Lee Amble, Realtor/Consultant

NATIONAL REALTY OF PRESCOTT

Lee's cell: 928 533-4455

Jan's cell: 928 533-4488

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