For the most part of our lives we are busy with the day to day matters, going back and forth from work and putting in countless labor hours. We take time off here and there to enjoy a short break and then get back into the routine. This cycle goes on for many years. Eventually a day comes when you leave all this behind and simply relax. This happens when it is time to retire and retirement means a long deserved holiday.
Retirement will take some careful thought in order to do it right. You will face yourself with decisions such as when to retire and where to retire to and selecting the right answers may be quite challenging with so many options around.
VERY IMPORTANT THINGS TO CONSIDER PRIOR TO RETIRING
Unfortunately retiring does not mean entirely disconnecting from your life leading up to this day. You may still have family and responsibilities to attend to and these have to be considered before you pick the place. It all also depends on how well you are prepared at the time since if you are intending to retire in a high end location, you should have been preparing for it a long time ago. In this section we are going to look at some of the things that you must consider before you proceed and pick out the ultimate retirement location.
As everything else does in life, retirement costs money. We all have some savings hidden away for this day, but is it enough? You need to sit down and prepare a budget in order to answer this question. Make sure you plan for several years in advance to ensure that you are covered. Take into consideration your pension fund as well as any accumulated savings that you may have. Once the figures are ready, you can proceed with browsing for retirement options based on what you can afford.
This is going to be a very tough subject to approach. If you are thinking of retirement, you most probably already have children, grandchildren and maybe even great grandchildren who all love their granddad or grandmother. We all dream of retiring in warm and exotic locations that could be miles away from home but are you going to be able to leave the family behind? If the answer is yes, then given the right budget the world is at your feet and your options are endless in terms of retirement locations. If however the answer is No, you will need to find a place to retire, which is close to home and your options will be slightly limited.
No matter how tired you may be after all these years, work may be difficult to let go of as having done it for so long it becomes a part of you. You may also be a little bit tight on the budget, and continuing work will be necessary to sustain your retirement. Alternatively you could simply wish to remain more active if you are not the quiet type. If you have to do this, consider part time jobs and other light paid activities. By the retirement age you are probably an expert in some kind of a profession or area of work so look out for one of projects where you can apply those skills rather than carrying on with full time employment.
Retirement will hopefully last for years so you need to plan ahead. You need to take your future needs into consideration. Sit down with you partner or by yourself and be realistic to determine where and what your needs are going to be 5, 10 or 20 years from today as well as what support if any you are going to require. This will play an important role in choosing the location.
Unless you have an absolutely spot clean medical/health record, have a chat with your doctor. She/he will certainly advise you of what is good and what is not advisable for you. Hot, sunny and exotic locations may not be an ideal place for you if your health doesn’t permit the heat. At the same time if your health isn’t at its best you may require medical support and thus retirement homes and other facilities that could provide that would be the options to consider as well.
Friends – we all have friends and we all need friends in good times and in bad. Retirement if not planned accordingly could turn out to be a very lonely process. This is not something that you want to do in the right company. Of course if you are a social star, this may not be a problem as you can always make new friends wherever you go. If that is not the case, have a chat with your best friends if they are retiring as well and consider doing it together and at the same location. Otherwise stay close to them when retiring.
CHOOSING THE LOCATION FOR YOUR RETIREMENT
Assuming that you have gone through the suggested considerations in the first part of this article, you should now be quiet aware of what your allowances and limitations are in regards to choosing the place to retire. The next step in the process will be to search and browse the locations that suit your profile. Is it going to be an exotic island? Or is it going to be a quiet urban area not too far away from the City? This will require detailed research and possibly some traveling before you settle. Some things to consider also apply:
- Population, economy, attractions and general information: Do some reading online about each of these. See if the area is crowded or not and if the economy is doing well. Have a look at what activities are available and if you will be able to do the things that you like.
- Climate: Do some reading on the annual climate patterns if you intend to retire in a different country. See if the high and low season temperature is within you comfort levels. If you have lived in a place where it rains constantly you will probably be looking for a warm and sunny climate. It could also be the other way round but in either case, climate seems to be the most important factor for those seeking to retire.
- Cost of Living: Do some research online for the general cost of living in each of the locations that you are considering. If your budget seems solid in your current country and you intend to move to another it does not necessarily mean that it will be enough as prices vary. This is especially important if you will not be earning any additional income as you must ensure that you can sustain yourself and your basic living needs.
- Crime Rates: if you are retiring, you probably want to do that in a safe place. Whether it is a country or a neighborhood, have a general look at the crime statistics in the areas.
- Health Care: this could mean the costs as well as availability. Have a look at both as it is very important to ensure that there is medical support nearby that is affordable.
The variety of locations that one may select to retire is endless so we are going to look at the three most common general areas where people chose to spend their retirement and the benefits of each:
Warm Sunny Beach – it is quiet common that retirement associates with a warm and sunny beach in an exotic location such as an island and this is certainly not the worst choice if you can afford it. Islands generally consist of small sized communities, where the lifestyle is laid back, making it an ideal place for relaxation that retirement is meant to give you. Spending days and days on beach, under a warm sun sipping on exotic cocktails is certainly a way to reward yourself. If you have grandchildren this will also be an ideal location for them to visit during school breaks so visiting grandma and grandpa will be on the top of their wish list. A lot of people chose this as their retirement spot, so you are also bound to find others like you and make new friends along the way.
Rural Areas & Nature – especially if you spent most of your life in a busy city, quietness and nature are the two greatest things that you are going to appreciate. Retiring to a small rural community will allow you to escape from the loud and noisy streets, cars, alarms and of course the crime rates as well as the routine that you were used to for so many years. If you chose the place right, you will have plenty of one on one experience with nature, whose beauty you may have forgotten by living in a concrete jungle. One can easily find a small dream house in such locations that will ensure that you get the long deserved peace and tranquility throughout your retirement.
City – urban areas are also a commonly selected location for retirement, whether it is a city that you have lived in or another that you select to move to. Some of us prefer the busy and active lifestyle that a city offers and may find it difficult to change that. This is also true for those who are not willing to adapt to a different lifestyle. By retiring in a city you will always have access to all kinds of facilities such as hospitals, restaurants, recreational activities and more. You will also more easily find some additional income if it becomes necessary as the job selection will most certainly be greater than that of the rural areas.
When doing the research try to also remember that besides all the responsibilities that you had up until now it’s also time to rest and relax. After all you deserve this. Therefore don’t be too hard on yourselves and give yourself a little treat by retiring the way you really wanted to if such an option exists.