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How to Choose the Right Retirement Destination

Florida BeachesWhen it's time to retire, you enter a very exciting chapter in your life. For some people, retirement presents them with an opportunity to spend more time with their grandkids, take year-long trips around the world, or return to their old hobbies. 

Even so, with retirement comes the overarching issue of choosing the right retirement destination to live out your golden years. Ideally, most people would prefer to retire in a lush tropical location with all the quiet and splendor, but truthfully not everyone can afford this dream. 

Therefore, deciding where to live after retirement is a key life decision that requires careful thought and proper planning. You have to consider a few things. Do you have enough savings to last you a few decades comfortably? Or will you need a part-time venture or job to supplement and keep you afloat? Such important considerations can help you determine the best place to live out your retirement dream.

Here are a few factors to consider when choosing the right retirement destination:

Tax Advantages

As a prospective home buyer, you need to be aware of the various tax benefits different retirement destinations have to offer. Florida, for example, is one of the most tax-friendly states in the U.S. for retirees. Property taxes are quite low, and there's no income tax on retirement income. Tax planning is key to maximizing your retirement savings, but don't be too hung up on tax savings, also consider the overall cost of living since these two things go hand in hand.

The Climate

Some areas have warm and temperate climates year-round. Others have both warm and cold extremes. If you are not used to a particular extreme, adjusting to your new location can be difficult and stressful. So choose a comfortable location with the best weather, especially if you're planning to do some outdoor activities. Aside from temperature, pay attention to other climate factors like humidity and consider how they affect your health and lifestyle. 

Availability of Medical Coverage & Services

Access to quality healthcare is a necessity since you're at an age when you’re probably going to need it the most. Therefore, when deciding on where to retire, take some time and research the medical coverage options available in your potential area, as well as accessibility to healthcare services. In some cases, you may need to purchase an additional private insurance policy. In others, you could benefit from government-sponsored health programs. All the same, it's important to know your options early to avoid issues down the road.

Leisure Activities

Some retirees prefer to live an active lifestyle. Others prefer to take things at their own pace in a more relaxed manner. If you're one for the outdoors, finding a location with plenty of hiking and biking trails might be a better fit for you than a busy, crowded city. By thinking through what leisure activities you would love to engage in your pastime, you can make the best decision on where to buy your retirement home.

Social Amenities

When evaluating the right retirement destination, you should consider the surrounding amenities. After retirement, many individuals feel compelled to retreat to a quiet secluded life, but end up forgetting they still have to keep up everyday activities, run errands, and pursue their interests and hobbies. In that case, if you wish to lead an engaged lifestyle, find a locale with fitness centers and other types of recreational activities to keep your body and mind active.

There isn't a one-size-fits-all locale that is ideal for all retirees. Everyone has their unique wants and needs when it comes to choosing the perfect retirement destination, and that's okay because we all have different lifestyles and financial capabilities. If you’d like more information about buying a home on the beautiful Sanibel or Captiva Islands, contact Phaidra McDermott, an established real estate agent and lifelong resident of Sanibel Island.

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