June 25 — Seems like there is no end of articles about folks delaying retirement. Millions of boomers are planning to work longer than they had intended. But just how long should you delay: how good are your reasons, and even if you don’t retire – should you hold onto your current home? We will explore these questions in this short article.
There are several main reasons for delaying retirement – most, but not all of them, have to do with money.
– Haven’t saved enough – need more money… to live on
– Want to work a few more years and delay social security payout to increase monthly payment at full retirement age
– Can’t sell your house, which is key to the new retirement lifestyle
– Waiting for one spouse to hit pension or retirement age
– Enjoy working, don’t want to retire
The Red Herring
These are all good reasons for delaying retirement. But our contention is that the third one, “can’t sell your house”, is often a red herring and a poor reason for not retiring. Here’s our thinking:
– Your house is not worth what it once was. And it might not be for a long time, if ever. The real estate market is different today. With so many foreclosed and under-water houses on the market, prices are way down from their 2006 peaks. Those heady prices are not coming back any time soon, however.
– Don’t assume you can’t sell your house. It is true you can’t sell it for what it was worth in 2006. But reasonably priced houses do sell if they are in good condition and marketed well. Ask your real estate agent at what price he or she thinks it will sell, and be reasonable when you set a price.
– If you are a baby boomer the chances are your house is still worth a lot more than you paid for it. So be happy with that instead of fretting about what it was worth at one time.
– The good news – you can turn around and buy a bargain. So many real estate markets, particularly in the sun belt so popular with retiring boomers, are filled with bargain homes. You can either easily find a rental, or you can have your pick of thousands of easy to maintain, easy to live in homes – all at reasonable prices.
Bottom Line – Sell Now
Of course if all the pieces in your retirement decision are not in line – not enough money saved, don’t want to quit working – retirement doesn’t make sense. But as far as selling your home goes, we think a good case for parting with it now can be made. You can save money by downsizing, and you can upgrade to a home that is more appropriate for today’s baby boomer lifestyle. We hate to hear of people who are really ready to retire and move to their dream home – but won’t pull the trigger because they don’t want to “give away their home”. In our opinion, it’s worth what it’s worth – take it and move on to a new chapter.
Please share your opinions and strategies about putting retirement on hold in the Comments section below. We’ve taken a bold stance, maybe you don’t agree.
For Further Reference:
Don’t Let Your House Become a Retirement Burden
Should You Put Retirement on Hold
Many of Us Won’t Be Able to Retire Until Our 80’s
Retirement – The Event That Shall Not Be
People Plan on Working Into Their 70’s