HOUSING OPTIONS AS WE AGE
The Saturday Weekly Review

5 Housing Options To Consider As We Age – The Saturday Weekend Review #170

HOUSING OPTIONS AS WE AGE

THERE IS NO HARM IN PREPARING FOR FUTURE HOUSING ARRANGEMENTS

 

 

No matter what generation you were born in eventually you will age and with that comes options especially housing needs to fit your lifestyle and budget.

When we first bought our house in 2009 we were practically the youngest couple on the street with no kids. We looked high and low for the perfect house for us which meant we let house prices influence our real estate budget. We were fortunate to have so many houses to choose from at the time as prices took a steep dive.

It was imperative for us to buy the least expensive house we could find in the most expensive neighbourhood. We knew eventually that this housing decision would come back in our favour and it has although we’re not quite sure we are ready to take the plunge and move just yet.

Since then housing prices in our neighbourhood are through the roof with multiple offers over asking price that would shock any seller (in a good way). Some of our friends have had huge celebrations after the sale of their house as they scored big. This kind of housing windfall doesn’t happen to everyone.

These days many retired baby boomers have packed up house and moved on filling our once quiet street with children at play and their Gen X and Gen Y parents rushing to work at all hours. We kind of blend in now especially since we have an almost 2 year-old running around causing additional noise on the streets. Honestly, it’s nice to have more families around us with children for our son to play with.

My wife and I talked about selling our current home just after we paid off the mortgage in 2013 only 5 years after purchasing the house. At that point we did not have our Gen Z son and we were still hanging on to life in the 30’s.

These days we have graduated into the big 40 age group which means housing options for these        Gen Xers have come back to the discussion table. Life has far from slowed down although what we want from housing sure has changed.

Gone are the days dreaming of the large modern house with all the bells and whistles, pool, hot-tub etc. We don’t want to clean it or maintain it, full-stop. We want to live comfortably and enjoy the rest of our lives as a family. Exploring the world is something that is on our bucket list and we’d like to start travelling more once my career takes on a steady path.

Related: Should we buy a bigger house?

Just about all of our neighbourhood friends are gone or are leaving and all for different reasons which I’ll talk about shortly. I never quite understood how someone could stay in the same house from day 1 until they are no longer on this earth but it may end up being a new-age special the way house prices are skyrocketing. It all makes sense to me now from a financial stand-point to stay in one spot forgoing real estate costs and other costs of moving.

The minute mortgage rates dropped so did the financial guard for those who wanted to jump into the housing market. We were that 30’s couple and I’ll tell you that it was one of the best investments we’ve made to date. However, can we sustain living in this house forever?

Of course things happen over the course of a life-time such as job change, location change for job and other personal reasons but if none of this applies staying put in one house might make sense. At least that’s what the wife and I had considered. Since sitting down and brainstorming we’ve come up with other housing options that may apply to us.

There is no right or wrong time to move in my opinion especially since house prices are all relative in the city you live. Interest rates may go up and your finances may change but this is where you need to understand the mechanics behind your financial situation. Otherwise, unless you plan to move out to a city where housing is cheaper you either stay put OR consider some of the housing options we’ve come up with below. The list is not exclusive but they are housing options that we felt would possibly suit our needs.

Although we aren’t sure where we are headed with our housing decisions the one thing we do know is that we won’t be left out in the cold without a roof over our heads. Having no mortgage has certainly freed up time and opened up doors but whether we decide to step through them means possible financial change.

Are we ready for that?

Well, we’re not sure yet however it’s best to lay down your options while you have time to soak them up and think about them rather than be faced with a rushed decision down the road. I find it’s easier to explore a subject when I’m not pressured for answers.

Let’s have a look at what housing options we came up with.

 

Upgrade or Downsize

 

The wife and I know that living in this house certainly may be a long-term option as it’s not too big and the property is easy to maintain. Not only that but it’s minutes from a major city and the highway in a sought-after neighbourhood. Couple that with a short drive to work and a school up the street and we’re a happy family.

What we don’t know is how our health will progress into the future. Friends of ours who lived in our neighbourhood recently sold their house for this reason. They could no longer stay in the two-story home that they brought their children up in and needed a bungalow. Unfortunately they are in their 50’s and with one full-time income and disability income it was near impossible to find a bungalow in our area without an additional chunk of mortgage added on.

When you are in your 50’s the last thing you want is add years to your mortgage. It made more sense for them to move across town where houses were up and coming and cheaper as they were still building in the area. Although we will miss our friends we’re happy they found a house they hope to retire in even if it meant a move and downsize.

Other neighbours of ours sold their house last year to upgrade the size of their home to accommodate their growing family. With that came a bigger mortgage (they told us), budget changes and more responsibility or at least time to maintain their almost double the size home. Doubling your square footage is costly around here but for them it was worth it.

 

Renovations

 

This is the housing option that the wife and I are currently at because it makes the most sense for us financially. Sure, we could buy a bigger house but to live mortgage free we’d have to dump our entire savings into a mortgage and likely still get one from the bank. Just to get a few extra hundred square feet in our neighbourhood with a bit more property will run us about $200,000 more. No thanks.

One of our neighbours who has a lovely house and lot decided to add to their home as it was too small for the family of 4. That means they put a huge addition onto the back of the house which likely cost them 6 figures to do. This kept them in the neighbourhood on a lot that was large while increasing their square footage. They could easily retire in this home if it meets their housing needs.

 

Location Change

 

As we age we may consider a location change whether it’s in the city our outside of the city remains a mystery. This means we could pack up and move to Europe since we both still have valid EU passports. My wife has her dual-citizenship as she is also born in raised in Canada. (Another blog post perhaps.)

The other housing option for us is to move closer to the water which my wife loves but in a smaller community where housing prices won’t financially disable us for many years to come. Either way this has to be a thought out process especially if I were to commute to work as the option of working from home 100% of the time is not possible. I can only do paperwork at home the rest of my work is hands on and professional based in the field. That means I have to go to work. Sucks but someone has to do it!!

 

Additional Purchase/Income Property

 

Since our mortgage is paid although much sooner than most as we age debt should start to disappear including the mortgage. Once that is gone you can really start to sock away cash which means your housing options are opened up again.

You may want to buy a second-home to rent out or buy a cottage on the lake to enjoy in the summer. During the winter months you may want to jet off to your home away from home in Florida although keep in mind the costs of travel insurance should something happen to you. Don’t let that stop you from living your life though.

My parents bought housing investments as they aged and have not once said that they were a bad investment. They are fully paid now so any money that comes in goes to maintaining the rentals and to in part fund their retirement which is a good thing since they travel so much.

 

Retirement Living

 

Not everyone is comfortable talking about moving out of the family home or having to sell their home because they are no longer able to take care of themselves. Retirement living is not only for the frail many seniors are finding retirement communities a safer place to live with others who complement their age group.

Moving into a retirement living facility becomes the final home for many seniors like my wife’s grandmother. Her husband passed away over 25 years ago and their family home was sold shortly after she was put in the facility.

She has been in a retirement facility with long-term care for the past 20 years or so. The cost of this living arrangement is well over $2000 a month and thankfully she was prepared financially for this even though she has Alzheimer’s and relies on her children to guide her finances.

Hopefully, there will be money left in the end to support retirement living that will provide for us the care we need that goes above and beyond what is offered from the government through assistance programs. We’ve seen how important the care is for my wife’s grandmother and in the event we follow this path that we are looked after with care and compassion.

Related: How To Pay For Senior Housing In Canada

To conclude we are currently happy where we are living and have both said that if we want to move into a bigger house we would certainly move out of the city where costs are lower. All of the above 5 housing options are important for us to consider and plan for so we aren’t left in the dark if the time comes and we need to make a split decision about where our life is headed.

In the meantime we will invest our money into renovating our house and enjoy life to suit our budgeting, debt-free life-style. If and when our son moves out and heads to University/College (unless he goes to the local schools) then we may consider moving location or downsizing to suit our housing needs. Alternatively we can sail away into the sunset and live happily ever after. Decisions, Decisions life is full of so many of them wouldn’t you say?

Have you ever thought about housing options as you age?

 

What did I do this week?

 

This week I managed to lay seed down on the front and back gardens as I want to thicken it up. The first two years after I put the new sod in the grass was immaculate and I aim to keep it that way. With that comes maintenance so I bought the best grass seed for an area that gets lots of sunshine. Hopefully we’ll have the lush green grass that we love so much.

On the work-front…

I’m done one contract now and am moving into another for 5 weeks which means no rest for this guy. Thankfully when this contract is over I’ll get some time to spend with the family for the rest of the summer.

Baby tantrums…

We’re still struggling with our little guy who loves to throw tantrums and whine when he doesn’t get his way. It’s such a difficult part of parenting for us as there are times we don’t know how to help him. Eating is a bit of an issue as he’s just not that into it but he loves his milk. He eats when he’s hungry and is gaining weight as he should so the doctor isn’t too worried at this point.

Any tips on how to handle toddlers who whine?

I need wine.

Next week I have some major cleaning up to do around the house while I have a few days in between contracts. I’ll be super busy getting the outside of the house ready for summer. Our neighbour got his air-ducts cleaned to the tune of $400 which was an unexpected price for me. I didn’t realize it was so pricey. We get air duct cleaning calls all the time as I’m sure the rest of Canada does however I think I’ll do a bit more research into it. Have any of you had your air ducts cleaned?

That’s all the entertainment in the CBB family I’m afraid this week folks. Catch me here next week with an update on the who, what, where, why and how things are going for our little family.

Mr.CBB

How was your week?

 

Awesome posts I published this week

 

Just in case you’ve missed any of my blog posts this week I will share them all below. If you are looking for past Saturday Weekend Review posts scroll down to the bottom of this post where I will list up to 5 previous weeks for you to read.

If you have a question that you would like to ask Mr.CBB fill out the Contact Mr.CBB form on the blog home page and I’ll do my best to reply to each one. If you want to share a story via a Fan Question please ensure that there is minimum 500 words and lots of details…we love details! I’m more than happy to chat via email to bring your story to life.

New: If your story submission gets chosen and published you will be entered into a yearly draw for a $25 Gift Card or $25 CDN via PayPal if you are from the USA.

Right now CBB is posting Tuesday (Grocery Game Challenge), Thursday (Personal Finance Post), Saturday (Personal Finance and Weekly Wrap-Up and a Frugal Recipe on Sunday!

Top performing CBB Post this week : How much should my Grocery Budget Be?

 

Budget brags

 

console table(1)You got WHAT for HOW Much?

Submit your Deal or Brag:

Saving money while grocery shopping is essential in the CBB family and that’s why we share our grocery shops every week in The Grocery Game Challenge .

Join the Budget Brag Challenge 2016 and WIN!!!

What I love the most is when my fans share their amazing shops with me whether it be groceries or other deals they find at a garage sale, online or freebies!  In 2016 if you send me your Budget Brag you will automatically get entered into a yearly draw for a surprise gift card.

If your Budget Brag gets chosen you get an extra ballot! So start sending in your brags with a photo and tell me about your deals. If you are from the USA and win I will PayPal you the money in CDN dollars. Open to Canada and USA only.

Email me at canadianbudgetbinder@yahoo.(ca) < remove brackets) or fill out my contact form by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post.

Jen garage sale deals April 2016(1)

This week Jen Peacock shares her garage sale score from last Saturday.

  • Tall console table $20 (they were asking $40)
  • Green toy bin $0.50
  • Crayola sidewalk chalk $2
  • 6 children’s DVD’s and 3 Scooby Doo books $5 (my dad paid for these for Adam to use at his house ?).

Total spent : $22.50
I have looked for a tall console table for my living room since we redecorated a few months ago. I intend on painting it.

 

Making a difference (MAD)

 

Making A Difference Canadian Budget Binder MAD

Welcome to the 2016 Making A Difference series! Join the networking movement of Personal Finance Bloggers around the world. If you are a personal finance blogger (anywhere around the world) and would like your blog to be MAD featured simply drop me an email and I’ll explain the process to you. I’m currently booking for July and August. I have one spot left for June.

This is my way of giving back to the personal finance community through networking and sharing knowledge with my fans. Today it is my pleasure to share with you the blog, Young Wealth Builders.

Young Wealth Builders

Hi Mr.CBB,

My name is Garrick Bradley II. After passing the CPA exams in 2015, I started the Young Wealth Builders blog to follow my passion and fulfill a need I identified among my peers and community.

While in college, I constantly read and thought about personal finance, creating value through my career and positioning myself to gain wealth. After receiving two accounting degrees and reading dozens of books on personal finance and investing, I wanted to share what I learned with others; Young Wealth Builders gives me this outlet.

I want to equip readers with the knowledge to accumulate wealth. Whether it’s through articles entailing asset ownership, personal finance, career advice, or investment opportunities, I want to help.

Personal finance plays a major role in our everyday lives. Unfortunately, too few people are financially literate. In my blog, I not only want to tell people about personal finance, I also want to push them to reassess their financial decisions.

My hope is that Young Wealth Builders will increase individuals’ knowledge of financial literacy to help them realize attaining wealth is not part of a “get-rich-quick” scheme. Attaining wealth is the accumulation of assets (such as real estate, investments, business interests etc.) through hard work, and discipline. Although my job is easier said than done, I aim to simplify the process to heighten the level of financial understanding.

Thanks again for the opportunity!

Mr.CBB>> You’re welcome and thanks for participating.

 

My best recipe find

 

mini cheesecakesFood and grocery shopping are relevant to us because food is a large part of the budget which people struggle the most with. We all have to eat to survive but just because we have a budget doesn’t mean we can’t eat delicious home-cooked meals that are drool-worthy.

If you are someone who would rather buy convenience foods consider cooking homemade meals or baking from scratch.

Not only will you save money but you will be proud of what you’ve accomplished and you’ll see that from the smiles on those you feed.

For the past 2 years I’ve had a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot where I exclusively share recipes from Food Bloggers around the world. I also share recipes on the blog on Sunday either made by home cook and mom Nicola Don or myself.

This week our Top Recipe Pick goes to Dee over at Meatloaf and Melodrama for these cute Mini Cheesecakes with a strawberry on top which is perfect for Mother’s Day.

What you could do is take the Strawberry Roses below in the Food DIY and set one of those on top. Gorgeous!!!

 

Top DIY project

 

strawberry rose bouquet

You are going to love this Strawberry Bouquet of Roses!

I stumbled upon this blog called Ash and Crafts and found this amazing online tutorial and photo gallery of how to make strawberry roses.

Since Mother’s Day is May 8 this year and if my mum was in Canada I’d certainly give these strawberry roses a go and present them to her. They look fairly simple to make as long as you have a sharp knife and steady hand.

Check it out… very nice.

 

Editor’s Choice weekly read

 

Every week I will pick a blog post of the week from around the web that I found interesting and want to share with all of you. Please head on over and give the post a read and let them know that Mr. CBB sent you if you comment. Thanks.

Editor’s pick (That’s me Mr.CBB) This week I read a post over at Esquire about 4 Men with 4 Very Different Incomes who share the Life they can afford. It’s interesting to see who budgets and who doesn’t. I can’t stress enough why it’s important to track every penny that comes in and out of your bank account.  Great read.

 

The things people Google

 

Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Any spelling errors below are because I share with you the exact way they typed their search engine query to land on my blog. Some of them are serious and others are meant to have a laugh.

  • How much is a dog in Canada?– More than the cost of a bird but less than a monkey. They differ in price depending on many factors. There’s no one price fits all pet.
  • Walmart charging for bags in BC– Get used to it as every shop will eventually
  • Best way to make quick, legal cash– Get a job. I always love these ones.
  • Are seeds from Dollarama safe?– Of course they are. Haha!

That’s all the fun for this week, thanks for dropping by.

See Ya!

-Mr.CBB

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2 Comments

  1. That’s a great decision on downsizing. We just recently downsized and moved to a smaller house so that we could save much money for kids’ education. Previous house was just too big for us and the house we are living now is just perfect and fits our needs and space.

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