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5 Tips for Senior Home Buying

Moving is never an easy decision, even if it is for a good reason such as moving to be closer to family or downsizing. Leaving the home you’ve grown accustomed to and made memories in is hard, but purchasing your next home shouldn’t be. Take at look at these five tips to make this transition as seamless as possible.

Hire a realtor

Although this might sound obvious, there is a big difference between a realtor and a reliable realtor. You’ve likely seen ads for real estate agents just about everywhere you turn via yard signs, online ads, and those glaring sponsored public benches, so how do you weed out the bad eggs?

Start by asking the agent in question for their credentials. Consider it a bonus if they are a Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES), meaning they completed training to help senior homebuyers and sellers in the 50 plus age range. Ask the realtor to provide contact information for past clients, especially for properties that are similar to yours. Don’t forget to ask how long they’ve been in business.

Consider aging in place

Even if age isn’t on your mind at the moment, wouldn’t it be nice if your next home aged with you? Aging in place, or living in your home for as long as you are able, requires a little bit of planning. For example, if you purchase a two-story home, make sure there is a bedroom on the first floor should stairs eventually become an issue. Consider making home modifications such as shower grab bars or wider hallways.

As you shop for your next home, don’t forget about the outside of the house. Are there wide sidewalks and a level walking grade? Is there quick access to public transportation? What is the crime rate like? These are all important factors to consider.

Make the government work for you

There are realtors and movers to help you get from point A to point B, but there may also be home buying programs sponsored by your state and local government such as assistance programs, homeownership vouchers, and housing counseling agencies.

In addition, the government has set in place certain laws, regulations, and programs for disabled home-buyers that you may not be aware of. As with any purchase, you should exhaust all of your resources, especially those that were created with your needs in mind.

Explore your financing options

Unless you plan on selling your current home and paying with cash, you will need to figure out how you are going to finance your home. Will you go the conventional mortgage route or explore the possibility of a reverse mortgage? If you or your spouse are a veteran, you may quality for a VA loan.

Talk with your bank or lender about what financing options are best for you. Every situation is different, and what works for some may not be the most feasible option for others.

Determine how you will move

After you’ve found a home, the work isn’t done yet – you’ve still got to move. It is possible to move on your own, but hiring a professional mover ensures that your items will arrive at your new home safe and sound. Movers have the tools, power, and expertise necessary to load and unload heavy items, maximize packing space, and transport items in as few trips as possible.

Perhaps you’d like to move your smaller, keepsake items on your own, but the heavy lifting is best left to a professional to not only reduce injury to yourself, but your items as well.

Moving can seem like a daunting task, and it can be overwhelming. By following these quick tips, you’ll minimize the stress and get settled into your new home before you know it.

If you're thinking about buying or selling in Raleigh, NC don't make the decision alone. As a Senior Transition Specialist, Kelly Smith can help you create a personalized senior living game plan that takes all your needs and goals into account. Kelly specializes in guiding retirees through this transition, and can provide expert guidance to help you make the best decision for your retirement lifestyle. Contact Kelly now to schedule a consultation and take the next step in your retirement planning journey.

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