4 Things to think about when you’re nearing retirement

If you are nearing retirement, deciding to actually retire is a big step. And perhaps the biggest consideration is where to retire to. For some retirees, staying in their own home is the most appealing option. While others might consider moving in with family or relocating to a retirement village. Here are a few things to consider if you’re thinking about your future retirement options.
1. Do I have to move at all?
Just because you’re retiring, doesn’t mean you have to leave your home. Many retirees choose to remain in their current homes, close to the comforts and familiar surroundings they’re used to. Keep in mind however that as you grow older, you may no longer be able to keep up with all the home maintenance and daily household chores required to take care of your property. There may also come a time when you need to be closer to medical care or no longer able to drive. In these situations, moving closer to family or considering a retirement living facility may be a good option.
2. Should I rent or buy?
If you decide to move when retiring, it may be a good idea to rent before committing to a purchase. This gives you the freedom to change your mind should you decide that the living arrangements aren’t actually to your liking. Renting also frees you from the stress of home maintenance, as your landlord will be responsible for fixing issues and repairs around the property. Once you’ve settled in and feel at home, you might consider purchasing the property depending on your financial situation.
3. Can I afford to move in retirement?
There are many factors to consider when it comes to financing your retirement accommodation. If you decide to stay in your existing home, you need to consider any bond repayments, housekeeping and maintenance costs, groceries, electricity, water, home security and other daily expenditures. Most of these costs will also need to be considered when renting, although maintenance and rates will not be at your own expense. Many retirement villages offer all-inclusive packages where the cost of accommodation, meals, social activities, transport and security are all covered in the monthly fee. Knowing what your fixed monthly cost of living will enable you to budget better and plan for the future.
4. How will retirement affect my health?
While some consider retirement to be a permanent holiday free from the stress of work and the daily grind, recent research has linked retirement to poorer health and cognitive decline. It turns out that when we retire, we fall out of routine and our brains are no longer stimulated by work and regular activities. While this isn’t true for everyone, there’s enough of a pattern to take it into serious consideration. The best way around this is to not think of retirement as a never-ending weekend, but rather as an opportunity to invest in the things that truly matter. Take up a new passion or rekindle a lost hobby. Volunteer or engage with friends and family in a new way. The key is to find a purpose in life and create new experiences that challenge and excite you.
At Totalcare, we offer seven Assisted Living and Frail Care Centres with an all-inclusive offering designed around the needs and comforts of our residents. Located across South Africa, residents can choose an area that suits their needs, while nutritious meals, professional medical care, social activities, landscaped gardens and a range of sophisticated amenities encourage a healthy and purpose-filled lifestyle.
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After building your career and leading a certain lifestyle for years, making the decision to retire can seem like a big step. You may need to move, your daily routine will be different, and your financial situation will be affected too. If you’re nearing retirement age, consider the following questions to help get an idea of what to expect and where to go next.