A successful retirement requires several elements. Where you live is vitally important.
Once settled into life with your family, there are not likely to be many times when you’ll actively consider moving house or location. However, as you approach retirement or during the early phase of retirement, the perfect opportunity presents itself to reconsider your location and whether it is going to fit in with this new phase of your life.
Here are some signs that your current location might not be ideal for your retirement.
Your family is too far away
My parents lived a three-and-a-half hours’ drive away before they retired, but they couldn’t move any closer as they felt they would be unlikely to find employment at their age. As soon as they retired, however, they took the opportunity to move closer to their grandkids. Even if you are comfortable in your current location and don’t mind catching up with your family intermittently, think about the fact that one day your children or other family members may need to take an active role in your care.
Limited public transportation
When you first retire, public transport might not be front of mind because you are probably still comfortable using your car to get around to most places. However, as you age, your eyesight will deteriorate and you may feel less comfortable driving at night. The independence and freedom of driving everywhere rarely lasts forever, and it can be good to have a back-up plan available.
Entertainment options are limited
You now have a lot of free time, so make sure the place where you live has lots of things that you want to do. If you like walking and you live in the city, you might want to consider a tree-change. If you like swimming, you might want to consider a coastal move, or at least a shift to an area that has a good local swimming pool. Does your local area have a cinema or a theatre close by? Make sure you live close to what you want to do as you are unlikely to feel like taking a trip every day to the nearest city to stay active.
The area doesn’t fit your age profile
How many people in your age cohort are living nearby? If you are looking in a place with a lot of university students, you might have to deal with some late-night noise, and nobody wants to be that person! If you live in a community or area with a higher age profile, those areas will generally be better catered for in terms of facilities and infrastructure to meet your needs.
Have you moved house since you retired? How did you make the choice for your new location? What advice would you have for others?