My husband retired a couple years ago and we’ve been on the hunt for where to live ever since. We bought a trailer to see the sights but mostly to visit towns and see what we liked. To be honest, we have spent more travel time vacationing in our trailer, but we do consider every town for it’s potential.
As background, we sold our home in the busy SF Bay Area and are renting a home in an active adult community close to our son and grandson. It hasn’t been without challenges. We’re loving spending time with them and enjoy many things about this community but haven’t decided if it’s the best place for us…so we continue to look.
Here are a few important things we’re keeping in mind as we look for the “perfect” place to retire if such a place exists.
Proximity to good medical care
The older we get, the more likely we will require medical care so it needs to be top notch and easily accessible. Living in a remote place with a podunk clinic that may necessitate being medevaced out for emergencies, is not our idea of smart.
Accessibility to big box stores
We buy many of our staples at Costco, Target and other big box stores. It saves money and makes life easy. Living too far from those stores means we will pay more for what we need and settle for less than what we want.
The older we get the more vulnerable we become so the crime rate is important. I don’t want to feel unsafe heading for my car in the evening when leaving a grocery store.
The older we get the less tolerant we are of weather fluctuations. Extreme heat, high humidity, freezing rain and constant clouds are not our idea of fun. A temperate climate without massive swings in temperature is high on our list. That said, we do love the change of seasons.
Cost of living
Living on a fixed income that isn’t adjusted for increases in the cost of living mean we want to live where our dollar goes furthest. Traveling in our trailer we have seen gasoline swings as much as $2.00 a gallon!
Cultural and recreational resources
Our idea of retirement is not sitting on the couch watching endless hours of television so we want to live in a place with options for both entertainment and physical activity.
Proximity to family and loved ones
The older we get the more precious our time spent with loved ones becomes. Our daughter lives in Canada and our son lives in the Sacramento area. It would be so much simpler if they lived closer together.
We’ve visited quite a few small towns in the last 2 weeks and ruled most out because they didn’t meet enough of our criteria. It’s hard to say with certainty which of these is most important so we judge each location individually.
What do you think most important when deciding where to live in retirement?
Thanks for reading ladies and have a great day!