Wednesday, June 16, 2021 / by Jay Lesko
A post-pandemic retirement for some vaccinated boomers may look a lot different than what they imagined a few years ago. The recent increase in demand for real estate in some of the most popular retirement cities has now washed over into smaller towns and cities. All around the US, retirees are sweeping up sweet deals on newly renovated homes, as mortgage interest rates are still at nearly a record low.
While the US documented more than 3 million people stepping into retirement in 2020 according to a recent article - some of these so-called retirees are changing the trend of traditional retirement homes and villas. While some states and larger cities remain popular among recent retirees, other factors such as climate change, remote working, better health care systems and similar are all playing a large part in the decision-making process.
Although finding the right place to call home for the next part of your life isn’t the easiest thing to do, we’ve looked at some of the newest and best places to consider when planning your retirement.
North or South - Where do you go?
Rehoboth Beach, DE
For years federal employees from Washington D.C. made Rehoboth Beach their summer destination. In 2020, while most of the country and the world were restricted to their homes, many pre-retirees saw this as an opportunity to make Rehoboth Beach their permanent home.
Today the small and quaint town, where Cape Henlopen State Park meets the Delaware Bay and the Atlantic Ocean saw an increase of people aged 60 and over increased by more than 15% since 2015. Jay Lesko, Owner and Realtor of Iron Valley at the Beach mentioned that ‘it’s home of the 46th President Joe Biden, and the community of North Shores - situated between Cape Henlopen State Park, and the Atlantic Ocean offers magnificent views.’
Florida has been the #1 place to retire for years. But the devastating and lasting effects caused by climate change have many people changing their minds. Although the big city of Clearwater on the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay offers some of the best year-round weather, retirees remain hesitant over hurricanes and other natural disasters.
Although Clearwater has now state income or estate tax, many feel that they’re saving in the long run. A recent review of Clearwater revealed that doctors are abundant, and the area offers some beautiful natural attractions and cultural activities for those retirees.
What can you expect?
As Rehoboth beach real estate demand surges, the median house price starts at $650,000, above the national average. The small population of 1,600 residents has a median age of 64, and the average cost of living is 50.8% higher than the US national average. This small Delaware community has some of the best living conditions, outdoor recreation, but is impacted by seasonal weather. Although home prices and cost of living are above average, retirees are finding an improved lifestyle and better living conditions than in larger cities down south.
Home prices might be 20% below the national average, starting at $260,000, but high crime rates in the city are becoming an increasing issue. A younger community, with a median age of 44 might make it a pleasant place for the whole family to move to. With low unemployment rates (4.4%), and a median income of $43,000, the Clearwater community might be a great fit for some new retirees.
FEMA's natural hazards risk lies at a moderate level, with yearly threats of hurricanes, and other stormy conditions. Although it’s larger than Rehoboth, with a population of over 100,000 some retirees might still find it too big of a city, and less relaxing than other smaller towns or cities.
It can be difficult to decide, or perhaps even start planning your retirement. Although both Rehoboth and Clearwater have something attractive to offer retirees - it partly boils down to the comfortability and affordability thereof. With an increasing number of new retirees stepping out of the workforce each year, real estate in quieter, and more remote places such as Rehoboth will become the best places to call your new permanent home.