There’s No Place Like Home: “Aging in Place” in America
Aging in place — living in a familiar, comfortable residence of your choice for as long as you can without sacrificing quality of life — sounds simple enough. Add a few grab bars and you’re all set, right? But keep in mind, successfully aging in place also means having access to certain services, professionals and funds to maintain a well-rounded life.
A recent AARP study found that three of four adults age 50 and over want to remain in their homes through retirement. And nearly half say they will never move. But is this realistic? If you start planning now, it can be.
Determining what matters most
When you visualize retirement living, think about what comes to mind.
- What type of environment do you see yourself in — Individual? Community? Assisted?
- Do you plan to drive?
- What activities might you participate in?
- Who or what types of services do you want to be close to?
And some tougher questions to ask yourself:
- What special health care do you think or know you’ll need?
- What types of supplementary home and healthcare services might you require?
- How will you pay for whatever insurance may not cover?
- Who will care for you when you can’t care for yourself?
Deciding on your future wants, needs or requirements can be challenging (and often overwhelming), but it’s a necessary step to make staying in your home a realistic goal to achieve.
Preparing for life post-retirement
Staying in your home can be less expensive than moving to an assisted-living community. From moving costs to monthly fees, there are many financial reasons why aging in place may be a win. Plus, think of the social connections you may lose if you relocate. That’s why it’s no surprise that many adults age 50 and older are willing to consider alternatives such as home sharing (32%), building an accessory dwelling unit (31%) and villages that provide services that enable aging in place (56%).
Wherever you decide to age in place, ensure that your residence and the surrounding community are accommodating:
Conduct a home safety check. From steep stairwells to pull-down attics, you may be living among potential hazards that go unnoticed right now. Run a complete safety inspection, checking for loose railings, unsecured area rugs, obstructed pathways and more. Making improvements or modifications now can help you avoid painful trips and falls later.
Put together a support network. Find ways to stay in contact with friends, family and neighbors. The good news is 90% of adults have either family or friends they could call on day or night if they’re in trouble. So, create a list of the people you know you can call anytime. You’ll also want to put together a list of people who can help run errands, accompany you to medical appointments, meet up for socializing and more.
Develop a housing strategy that serves your needs and your budget. No matter where you live, you need to be comfortable with the financial commitment. If you plan to stay in your home — or buy something more suited to your needs — you can use the home equity you’ve built to help fund your plans now and into the future. That’s where a reverse mortgage can help.
Growing old at home — with a reverse mortgage
Created for homeowners and homebuyers age 62 and older, a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage, commonly known as a reverse mortgage, allows you to borrow against the equity in your home. In doing so, it provides funds that you can use today, or a line of credit that will be there when you need it, all while you continue to live in and own your home. And it gives you the flexibility to decide whether or not you want to make monthly mortgage payments. As with any mortgage, you must meet your loan obligations, keeping current with property taxes, insurance and maintenance.
From home modification costs to medical expenses or in-home care, a reverse mortgage loan can be a powerful financial tool for aging in place — and funding an active, rewarding retirement. And if you determine that your existing home or its location is no longer suitable, you can even use a reverse mortgage to buy a new home. To set up a convenient phone appointment with an experienced loan specialist from Reverse Mortgage Funding, call (888) 277-1567.
SEE WHAT FUNDS YOU MAY HAVE AVAILABLE
If you have equity in your home and believe you meet the eligibility requirements, a HECM may be the option that could help you retire smart.
This content is sponsored by RMF, one of the nation’s leading reverse mortgage lenders. We are dedicated to helping older Americans live the retirement lifestyle that they imagined and deserve, in the comfort of their own home. As a result of our commitment to providing an extraordinary and positive customer experience, we have earned a 98% customer satisfaction rating; a 5-star / Excellent score on Trustpilot; 4.8 out of 5 stars on LendingTree; and an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Call (888) 277-1567 to speak with a licensed reverse mortgage specialist to learn about our retirement financing products and solutions.