As individuals near their retirement one of the biggest decisions to be made is where to live. With children on their own there's no longer a need for a large house with several bedrooms and an expansive yard .
Once the decision is made to sell and downsize to something smaller that requires less time, money and maintenance the next decision is whether to own another home, move to a condo, or rent? What about maintaining lifestyle? Or better yet, what about improving lifestyle?
The option to build a new home should not be overlooked at this juncture in life. Downsizing gives you the ability to unlock equity from your house and the advantages of rightsizing and building a new Built Green™ home are abundant. A Built Green™ house requires less maintenance but increases functional space, is healthier, has lower utility bills, provides the ability to design rooms that are truly needed, access to government rebates and grants and the added benefit of potential revenue with a legal suite. The inclusion of a legal suite not only provides revenue, it also adds substantial value to your home.
Contrary to popular thought, Built Green™ homes are NOT always ultra-modern in design; they vary in size and shape, can be built on odd-shaped lots, and can be designed to preserve the character of a neighbourhood.
Building a new home makes it possible for the homeowner to select features that are essential to "aging in place". Features such as a laundry room near bedrooms, larger door passages, accessible bathrooms, universal lighting and heating controls or even an elevator. If finances permit a few "modern utility" items can be included like heated floors or kitchen pot filler taps. The interior and exterior design of the house should take lifestyle needs into account: such as an expandable eating area for family gatherings, or if you like to garden perhaps a small raised garden with in-ground sprinklers, no to low maintenance landscaping or multiuse rooms for overnight guests.
Final Thoughts: Start with plenty of research, work with a reputable builder, assess your needs and plan wisely. Retirement nirvana is within your reach.