Financial and taxes in retirement
June 29, 2021 — We baby boomers are constantly being warned that scammers are ready to take our last nickel, if we let down our guard for just one careless moment. An interesting pair of articles in the New York Times showed how that can happen to seniors, and surprisingly, that people in their 20s are twice as likely to lose big bucks to the internet’s artful dodgers than older people. Online Trickery Traps Seniors reported on how the elderly (and that increasingly means us) fell prey to unethical political fundraising ploys from both parties in the recent elections. The second article, The Young Fall for Scams More Than Seniors, found that scams involving job offers, paper checks, and student loan forgiveness snagged a surprising percentage of people aged 20-29.
Posted by Admin on June 29th, 2021
Best Retirement Towns and States
June 26, 2021 — Getting around on a bicycle is becoming more and more popular. People use their bikes to get to work, for exercise, or just for fun. Biking is inexpensive transportation, gets you outside, parking is a cinch, and it’s a healthy activity. The growing popularity of electric bikes, with the extra help they provide on long rides and hills, has helped to get even more people into cycling. So, just as they do for every popular activity, publications are coming out with lists of the cities and towns that are “best for biking”. We will highlight some of their choices here.
But first, what makes for a great biking town? The website Lawnstarter used a long list of considerations to score and rank the largest 200 U.S. cities on biking. Their multiple rating criteria fell into five categories: climate, bike lanes and routes, bike shops and bike share programs, safety, and community support. Safety features like bike lanes separated from car traffic and dedicated crossings were among the most important considerations, since biking isn’t fun and can be dangerous if speeding cars get too close. Icy cold winter weather, steamy hot summers, and car traffic were negative factors used in the ratings. PeopleforBikes.com rated even more towns, including smaller ones, to find out which are the best for biking. It used similar criteria to rate the towns it considered, such as the number of bike lanes and trails, ability to use multiple routes to get to the same place, bike parking, number of bike shops, safety, and slow speeds for cars. See video below from PeopleforBikes on what makes a best biking city. When you are checking out places to retire, don’t forget to keep your eyes open to what it would be like if you wanted to get around there on two wheels.
Posted by Admin on June 25th, 2021
Best Retirement Towns and States
June 20, 2021 — Virginia’s recent Comment to our “25 Most Popular Active Communities in the Southeast” article really got things going. Many folks jumped in to help answer her question, which asked what people thought about retiring in Maryland. Since hers generated so many other Comments (and Maryland is not an active community nor is it in the Southeast) we thought we would pull everything together under a new post to keep everything in better focus.
Most of the Comments quickly got into taxes and cost of living, although just about everyone liked other aspects of the Free State. Regarding taxes, an estate lawyer once said something very wise to my mother and I. He said: “Don’t let the tax tail wag the dog”. In other words, if you want to do something for good reasons (like move to another state), do it. His mantra – enjoy your life; fear of taxes is not the way to live. Just as important as that thought though, you also have to act on the basis of the facts, not on what you think you know or heard from someone else.
Posted by Admin on June 19th, 2021
Best Retirement Towns and States
June 19, 2021 — If you are a retiree looking for a place to retire that offers superior outdoor recreational opportunities – you are in luck! There are countless towns in this country where mountains, lakes, rivers, or trails are just outside your door. In addition to traditional activities like tennis, golf, and fishing, these retirement destinations usually provide great hiking, skiing, water sports, etc.. Here are our top 10 picks for great outdoor places to retire.
10 Great Retirement Towns for Outdoor Activities
Bend, Oregon. Located on the Deschutes River on the eastern edge of the Cascades, the area offers great scenic beauty, skiing, mountains, golf, fishing, and more. Word about how nice this city is has gotten out: the population keeps increasing by leaps and bounds.
Burlington, Vermont. On the eastern shore of Lake Champlain you will find this town, home to the vibrant University of Vermont. Burlington is very popular with outdoor loving retirees who also want the youth and enthusiasm provided by a major university. Mountain bikers enjoy many great trails such as “The International”, which is about 20 minutes outside of town. Nearby ski resorts including Sugarbush, Mad River Glen, Smugglers Notch, and Stowe, which now offer year round recreation. For the recreational bicyclist/walker/jogger there is the Island Rail2Trail path, which has 8 miles right along Lake Champlain.
Posted by Admin on June 18th, 2021
June 15, 2021 — Where do people go when they choose an international retirement? Different sources have different answers for the best places to retire abroad. The 2021 Expat Insider Survey named Taiwan, Mexico, and Costa Rica as the best 3 places for American expatriates of all ages. A study looking at Americans who receive Social Security benefits put Canada, Japan, and Mexico at the top of their list, while Investopedia rated Panama, Costa Rica, and Mexico as the best 3 countries for American expat retirees. Other countries making frequent appearances on this type of lists are Thailand, Portugal, Spain, Vietnam, Ecuador, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and France. But in truth, people go all over the globe in pursuit of a happy retirement, and for a variety of reasons.
Some of the factors to consider when choosing a country for an expat retirement are:
- Political stability
- How easy is it to buy or rent property
- Healthcare and entertainment
- Visa and residency requirements
- Cost of living
- Will you fit in
- Development and infrastructure
Posted by Admin on June 14th, 2021
Home and Garden
June 12, 2021 — Thanks to the 200 people who took our Home Readiness for Retirement Quiz. The Topretirements community appreciates the few minutes you took to assess your home’s readiness. We hope that you found the exercise useful. We know we did, our grab bars were installed today! Here are the results of the survey, with several surprises mixed in with findings that were more predictable.
The point of the quiz is to make sure that wherever you decide to live in retirement, your home is a safe place that lets you age gracefully in place. The good news is that most homes can be retrofitted to get there. Those without a first floor bedroom/bath option face a more problematic situation.
Almost three quarters (77%) of our Members have a bedroom/bath on the first floor, which is great news. They should be able to stay in their homes regardless of their mobility in the future.
Posted by Admin on June 11th, 2021
Home and Garden
June 8, 2020 — Want to know if the home you are living in will be able to keep up with you over the next 25 years or so of your retirement? Well, just take this quick quiz and we’ll give you an instant score. We’ve graded it high, but the good news is that if your score is low there is a lot you can to do fix it!
(the headline above is a link)
It’s just 13 questions, and it’s free. Take it and see how you do!
Take our other interactive quizzes!
What Is Your Social Security IQ
What Is Your Medicare IQ
How Ready Are You for Retirement
Comments? If you have suggestions on these quizzes or ideas for others, please let us know in the Comments section below.
Posted by Admin on June 7th, 2021
Home and Garden
June 6, 2021 — It doesn’t matter. Whether you plan on staying in the home where you’ve always lived, buy a new retirement home, or you haven’t yet decided where you are going to retire, the same principle applies. You have to make sure that your home continues to be an easy place to live as you age in place – transitioning from newly retired to graceful old age. If you don’t, life in that home is going to get harder, if not impossible. This article will lay out some of the things that you absolutely, positively, must keep in mind; either if you buy a new home or decide to stay in the one where you live now. At the end of the article you will find a quick quiz to help you evaluate if your home is ready to support your retirement.
Commonly called universal design, the idea is take steps to insure that your home will be a friendly place to live, no matter what your physical condition in the future. It starts with the assumption that you might not always be able to see well, bend down or reach up, walk unassisted, or have great balance. That might not seem that important now, but it could easily be the case some day. Most homes assume that everyone who lives there has normal physical abilities. Sadly, not all of us will have those during the rest of our lives, and those changes usually come out of nowhere.
Keep these universal design principles in mind for the long haul:
Posted by Admin on June 5th, 2021