6 important considerations when choosing where to retire
Do you want to relocate when you retire — perhaps to enjoy a warmer climate, be closer to loved ones or just have a fresh start and new possibilities? There are so many factors involved in choosing where you want to retire. Looking closely at all of those factors can help you choose a place that fits your needs and feels like home. Here are some key items to research as you compare your options.
1. Cost of living. You want to make sure your new location fits into your budget, especially when you’re living on a fixed income. If you’re moving to a senior living community, compare the costs and what’s included at each community. Often a community will have a worksheet to use in order to help you with that. Make sure you are taking into consideration all of the services that are included in the monthly fee. Also consider the relative cost of living in different regions — how does the price of gas, food, shopping and entertainment compare to where you live now?
2. Taxes. Some states offer breaks to retirees, such as excluding Social Security retirement benefits from state income taxes. Look up the general state tax, sales tax, property taxes, personal income tax and retirement income tax of the destinations you are considering. Taxes and deductions vary from state to state.
3. Weather. Perhaps you’re ready to ditch harsh winters for a warmer climate where you can be more active outdoors. It’s a good idea to visit the destination you’re considering at different times of year to make sure the weather will be acceptable year-round.
4. Recreation. Retirement should be a time to reward yourself with some fun and opportunities to be active. Will there be plenty to do in your new location, and will favorite activities be affordable? Check out golf courses and fees, state park proximity and admission, restaurants that serve dishes you can’t live without, the arts and entertainment scene, and more.
5. Health care. Getting older can lead to more visits to the doctor, and health care could be a frequent and large expense. Find out if there is a reputable medical community nearby that is easy to get to and will accept your insurance. When considering a senior living community, be sure to understand what health care services are offered and the cost.
6. People. Moving away from old friends and neighbors can be an emotional decision, but joining a senior living community can open the door to new social opportunities. You might choose a retirement location that allows you to move closer to children and grandchildren or an elderly relative who needs your help. Or, you could move to the perfect vacation spot for loved ones to come visit.
Choosing to relocate in retirement is a big decision, but one that can be exciting and enhance your life once you’ve determined the place that’s right for you. Learn more about planning your future with Presbyterian Communities of South Carolina or visit www.prescommunities.org.