Home Buying Considerations for Your Senior Years

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When looking at homes for sale, the listings often tout features that make the home well suited for kids and pets, such as “top-rated school system” and “fenced yard”. But if you are planning on making that home the last home you buy, paying attention to other features will save you trouble and money as you enter your senior years or find your mobility limited.

Walking Distance to Shops, Restaurants and Entertainment

Keeping active and saving money are two good reasons to live within walking proximity of places you visit frequently. But having a short, well-known commute, whether it’s walking, biking or driving, also helps you stay safe. And should you find yourself in a wheelchair or scooter, you will be able to have more independence if you can manage your errands and entertainment yourself.

One Story / Open Floor Plan

Keeping everything on one level can help you avoid falls at any age, but especially in your senior years when falls can cause more complicated health issues. Having an open floor plan with wide doors can make your home more walker and wheelchair accessible, even if it’s short term use after a surgery.

In-Law Suite

Buying a home with an in-law suite would allow for a live-in caretaker or family member, or you could move into the suite and have your children live in the main part of the house. This would give you the added security of not being alone in the house in case of emergency, having someone to help you as needed, or simply having the enjoyment of your family.

Finished Basement Suite

A finished basement suite can give you the same benefits as an in-law suite, but perhaps much more privacy. This arrangement can almost seem like a duplex, allowing you freedom and privacy while still having someone close by. In such an arrangement, the level of the house with easiest access is most appropriate for the senior.

Whether you are nearing retirement age, or just getting the babies into kindergarten, if you are planning on a long-term commitment with a new home (or looking for resale features) consider the list above. These features can be of benefit at every stage of life and make your home more attractive to buyers should you ever decide to sell.

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About christinahammondhomes

Christina Hammond is currently a real estate agent for Keller Williams Greater Athens in Athens, Georgia. Her interests in real estate began when she was an undergraduate at Arizona State University, where she studied business and psychology. During her years at ASU, she apprenticed with one of the top producing real estate brokers in the area, learning the details of real estate sales in a large metropolitan area. This practical experience, combined with her university studies, further increased her interest in real estate as a career. Christina excels in developing close working relationships with clients that often grow into long term friendships. She has 15 years of real estate experience, the last 8 in the Athens area. As in Phoenix, she has fostered many connections with her clients and finds this part of her work more satisfying in this smaller venue. As Christina says, “It is enormously rewarding to help a client find a home that is right for them. Homes are the physical manifestation of many people’s dreams, and it is hard to express the satisfaction of helping someone find a home that they love.” Of course, selling real estate requires shrewd understanding of the market and competing forces. Such skills were honed through her academic experience, understanding legal contracts, business negotiations, market competition, etcetera. But from Christina’s perspective, real estate is fundamentally about the people, rather than just buying and selling. When she is contracted, her obligation to her client is paramount, and she will represent them as assertively as is necessary. Christina states, “You learn quickly that in a big city, as well as a smaller community, a great agent must be thorough and aggressive, so that the client can know that their interests are being managed effectively, and it allows them to relax and focus on the big picture.”
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