Why now is not the time to put your retirement plans on hold
While planning your retirement right now may feel a little ‘pie in the sky’, do not be put off. An enforced lockdown is the perfect time to do all the research you will ever need to establish how you want your future to map out.
You have time to give the years ahead your proper attention. And, as you’ve found our website, we take it that a retirement community lifestyle may be something already in your thought process.
If that’s the case, use this and future articles in this series, to help you fully understand this lifestyle; get a feel for the principles of what community living is all about, and the ethos of what we are creating for our communities and our residents.
Start your research right now with a little navel gazing and asking yourself a few home truths.….
What are your personal motivations?
Forget the practicalities for a moment, what are your own personal motivations and aspirations for the future? Do you resonate with any of the hypothetical statements here? Ask yourself, what is it that really drives you and how do you envisage the years ahead shaping up for you.
I want to:
- have more time to do what I really want to do, not what I have to do
- feel ‘future-proofed’ so I’m not a worry to anyone
- be busy and have fulfilling days - the thought of being idle doesn’t appeal
- guarantee, if it’s possible, some real purpose in my life
- laugh a little more – like everyone, I’m getting older, but I still want to be happy and feel joy
- be in control of and shape my own future
Now for the more practical bits
You know what you want for your future – let’s now apply some of the practicalities to your thinking:
The cost of the lifestyle you want to maintain will be key. Factoring in pensions and any other investments and savings, will shape your next step. You will no doubt have the support of an independent financial advisor to guide you through this but if you want to do some research yourself, follow an authoritative and impartial online resource such as Which? It even has a pension calculator to help you build a financial picture of yourself.
Are you staying put, in the same location, or will you be looking further afield? Residents arrive in our communities via far flung parts of the UK, some from overseas, and some from two streets away. One of the influencing factors is very often family and wanting to be closer to a son or daughter and the grandkids. If this doesn’t govern you though, then the world (in this case, the UK) is your oyster! Check out The Times' latest Best Places to Live report and start thinking seriously about where you want your next home to be.
Are you fit and healthy and, if you have a partner, are they fit and healthy too? If so, congratulations and keep doing what you’re doing! If you have underlying health concerns or any emerging ailments you think are going to become troublesome, you may want to factor this into your next steps. Open your horizons to all eventualities – if you really want to make the next decision a long lasting one, think through realistically and make sure you research accordingly.
As a nation of homeowners, we tend to think of property equity as a rite of passage but don’t dismiss renting. It has taken off across our communities over the last 18 months as people want flexibility and access to their equity. This piece by The Telegraph is an interesting read (unfortunately, you will need to subscribe to read it from start to finish but it gives you plenty of insight into why renting is the new owning for many people today).
Should Covid-19 change my thinking?
We started this article saying now is the perfect time to research your future and we strongly believe that. If anything, Covid-19 makes a community lifestyle more relevant and sustainable – and potentially safer - than ever before. We will be touching upon this further in future articles.
Likewise, we have only skimmed the surface today on some major topics that you will want to dig much deeper into. So, make sure to revisit us here as we provide on-going articles that answer your most pressing questions. And, if you have any subjects you want us to cover or ask about, don’t hesitate to get in touch here: firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 01372 383950.
In the meantime, why not join our community on Facebook. Simply click here or search for Retirement Villages Group on Facebook.