Should You Retire Close to Home or Move Away?21 September 2021
Where you choose to live in retirement is a big financial decision - as well as an emotional one.
Some retirees opt to leave the rat race behind entirely, heading to the regions and coastal areas of New Zealand in search of better weather, affordable real estate and a slower pace of life. Others decide to retire in place, choosing to spend their golden years in the communities they know and love.
As one of the leading providers of world-class retirement homes in New Zealand, we know first-hand how difficult it can be to choose a place to retire. To help make the process a little easier, we’ve put together some tips to consider when deciding whether to move in retirement.
4 questions to ask yourself before moving
1. Why do I want to move?
For many people the decision to move is financially motivated, but it’s also important to think about other lifestyle factors that can impact your quality of life. Do you want to live somewhere with warmer weather? Are you tired with the hustle and bustle of city life? Do you want to live closer to family? Being mindful of your “why” will inform many of your decisions further down the track.
2. Will it be difficult to visit family?
Moving to the regions often means spending less time with your family, and scheduling visits can be tricky - especially if you’ve moved inter-island. Conversely, if you’re moving to be closer to your grandkids, it’s important to consider the likelihood of them moving in the future. After all, you don’t want to settle into your new home only to have your family relocate for a new job offer!
3. Will I have access to medical care?
Access to quality healthcare becomes increasingly important as we age. Moving to a remote coastal village may sound amazing, but the two-hour drive to see a medical specialist might be less than ideal. Consider your current and possible future healthcare requirements and ensure the place you decide to call home offers easy access to the appropriate facilities.
4. What’s wrong with the place I currently call home?
Last but not least, it’s important to remember that you’re not obligated to relocate. Have a good think about where you currently live and what - if anything - is missing. If you already feel healthy, fulfilled and financially stable where you live, you may feel more inclined to retire in place. On the other hand, if you feel like something’s missing - or you simply want a change of scenery as you enter the next chapter in life - retirement could be the perfect opportunity to explore new opportunities.
Rebuilding your social circle
Moving to a new area can be a jolting experience if it takes you far away from your family and friends, and you’ll need to think about ways to forge relationships in your new community. Moving into a retirement village is an excellent way to instantly surround yourself with like-minded individuals and become part of a larger community.
Compare the cost of living
It goes without saying that you’ll need to consider your finances carefully when planning for retirement. Historically, the cost of living in regional New Zealand is lower than in metro areas, but you’ll need to do some research (both online and in person) to get a better idea of what your expenses will look like.
Below are some expenses to consider when comparing the cost of living:
- House prices
- Community memberships
- Grocery costs
Test the waters before jumping in
Taking a weekend trip somewhere and loving it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll enjoy living there long term. Before moving anywhere, do a trial run to get a sense of what life there is really like.
If possible, move to the area for a few weeks and try to soak up as much information as you can. Look past the area’s obvious attractions and pay attention to the details of daily life. Are the locals friendly? What’s the traffic like? How are the restaurants and cafes? The look and feel of New Zealand towns can change dramatically with the seasons, so try to visit potential retirement spots in both summer and winter if you can.
The freedom to choose where you live
Having the freedom to choose where you live is one of the most exciting aspects of retirement.
Here at Generus Living Group, we’re committed to creating leading retirement villages that offer the very best in care, comfort and community. For more information about our services, contact us today on +64 (03) 961 9820 or email email@example.com.