Where we live affects so much of how we live – after all, homes aren’t just where we sleep they’re where we relax, where we socialise and where we create cherished memories. With so much to consider, making a choice about where we want to settle can be overwhelming and unfortunately, it isn’t something that gets any easier with age. So, with that in mind, we’ve pulled together tips for how to choose the ideal retirement property for you.
How do I choose a retirement home?
When choosing where to spend your retirement, it is a good idea to try to reference everything back to three simple questions: what do you need, what lifestyle do you want and what can you afford?
What do you need?
These days there are retirement properties to suit all preferences and needs. If you don’t drive and still want to travel for leisure or to see family you might consider proximity to public transport a priority. Likewise, if you have mobility issues then perhaps a ground floor property is a must-have. Maybe you don’t feel comfortable cooking your own meals and would prefer a catered service. Whatever it might be it’s important to think about what things will be most important to you both now and in the years to come.
What lifestyle do you want?
One of the most important things to consider when choosing a retirement property is what sort of lifestyle you want to lead. If you’re someone who enjoys long walks and quiet nights in with a good book you may well fall in love with a rural spot away from neighbours and noise. On the other hand, if you’re the sort of person who thrives in a social environment and craves the buzz of a big city you might choose something completely different. Similarly, if you have a close-knit social group and see family regularly then perhaps staying as close to them as possible might be the most important factor. There is no one size fits all but just be sure to consider what your day-to-day life will look like once you’ve moved in.
What does it cost?
For anyone choosing a new home, budget is going to be a significant consideration, and this is especially true in retirement when most people aren’t likely to be growing their income as time goes on. As a result, it is important to consider the ongoing cost of your chosen property as well as the initial outlay. This links back to considering the lifestyle you want to get out of your property, be sure to take into account how much money you would like to be left with after moving to spend on hobbies, holidays or family. As well as the traditional options there has been a recent rise in the availability of part buy/part rent schemes which allow you to purchase a share of a home and pay rent on the part you don’t own which can help add some extra flexibility to your budgeting.
Types of retirement properties
Once you’ve decided what it is you’re looking for in retirement and what kind of budget you have to work with then you’ll want to start looking at the different residential options available to you.
Independent living in a retirement community can be a great option for many retirees who want to retain the freedom of living on their own terms but with the added benefit of living in a community of other retirees and all the social opportunities that brings. Independent living is something that Chapelton is very familiar with thanks to the range of options provided by our very own Brio retirement village.
Assisted living bridges the gap between independent living and making the move to a residential care home or nursing home. Essentially this option allows for residents to come and go as they please while having the security of knowing that there are wardens on-site to help with things such as cooking and cleaning if required.
Residential home care
In a residential home, residents are provided with non-medical personal care. This often covers things such as assistance with meals, washing, dressing and taking medication. These types of homes typically offer cleaning and meal services too which for some people might be a high priority.
Nursing homes offer a very high level of care from qualified and experienced medical professionals. Some homes may even specialise in certain types of disability or conditions, such as dementia. While this level of care won’t be appropriate for everyone, they provide a brilliant service for those who need it and offer peace of mind to residents and families alike.