Seniors Upsizing Instead Of Downsizing?

and Bob Shannon from

Senior Upsizing: How Bigger Can Be Better

While some seniors opt to downsize once they become empty nesters, others decide to go bigger, creating a homestead where family and friends can gather, or where additional space allows for advancing a hobby or starting a home-based business. If you’re considering upsizing, do some advance research to ensure you’re getting the best type of property to meet your needs.

How Will Your Property Function?

Deciding to go bigger and upsize in retirement requires a bit of forethought and planning, particularly if you’re going to use the property for a specific purpose, like a hobby farm, a workspace, or as extended family entertainment headquarters. Make a list of what’s most important to you, whether that’s land, outbuildings, a large area for entertaining, workshops or hobby rooms, or a spacious home office. Once you have an idea of what you need, you can start narrowing down your choices or retain a real estate professional who can help you find appropriate options within your price range.

Are You Running A Hobby Farm?

Many retirees are attracted to the idea of sustainable living, and hobby farms are growing in popularity. If this is on your agenda, learn about everything you need to do to make it a reality before you make a final decision about a home purchase. The property you choose will require specific zoning, and there may be city or country regulations you’ll need to follow, especially if you plan to have any type of livestock on site. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, from a home-based business budgeting perspective, you’ll also want to ensure you have the necessary funds in reserve to get your venture up and running.

How Will You Finance?

A larger home may cost a little more than your previous one, particularly if you’re looking for land or special amenities. Get an appraisal on your existing property to determine its resale value, and take stock of your other finances, including outstanding debt and retirement savings or income. It’s also wise to research what total new home costs will be. It’s not just the price of the house to consider, but also down payment, insurance, and property taxes – the latter two are of great importance if you plan to run a business. The U.S. Internal Revenue Service allows you to deduct business-related expenses, including some associated home-use costs, which you can also factor in.

Do You Need To Be An LLC?

If you’re considering a home-based operation like consulting, or you’re set on a small farm where you’ll house livestock or sell produce, you need to have proper licensing and permits. Connect with your secretary of state’s office or your state’s department of business and industry to find out if there are particular considerations you need to keep in mind. You may benefit from becoming a corporate entity, like a limited liability corporation. This can provide liability protection and make the tax-filing process easier. Corporate formation can require some serious time investment and legwork. You can save on pricey attorney fees by filing the paperwork yourself or using a formation services company to ensure you’re in full compliance. You’ll be able to rest easy that your interests are protected.

Being an active retiree has many advantages, including the time and space to explore new interests, hobbies or business ventures. You may also choose to increase your leisure time, hosting regular gatherings for family and friends. Having adequate space for this exciting next phase of life can be well worth the investment. Know what you want, know your budget, and start enjoying your second act! 

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