Retirement gives people the freedom to move somewhere they have always wanted to live and according to a new ‘best places to retire to’ list by Unbiased[i] – the counties of Suffolk and Essex top the list, followed by Sussex and the southwest counties of Dorset and Devon.
However, the list also highlights buying property in these hotspots can be expensive. For instance, retirees can expect to pay an average of £500,000 for a detached home in Essex because of its proximity to London and prices can be just as high in some of the other areas too.
A more affordable housing option is to rent in a retirement community according to Dominic Stead, Property Director at My Future Living, which can enable people to live in popular retirement hotspots without breaking the bank.
Dominic says, “Coastal locations in the south, and towns closer to the capital can mean high property prices. For people looking to relocate in retirement to such areas another option is to downsize and rent in a retirement community.
“Developments are often located in popular retirement areas and are usually right in the centre of all the action close to beaches, shops and restaurants. They are often near town centres and provide access to local amenities, allowing residents to make the most of their retirement years.
“Downsizing and renting in a retirement community is a growing in popularity as people realise the benefits including freeing up capital from the sale of a home, living in a sociable community where it’s easy to make friends and not having to worry about property maintenance.
“Factor in that most also come with assured ‘lifetime’ tenancies, which give the same security of tenure as property ownership as long as people stick to the terms of their agreement and it’s easy to see why people are choosing this housing option in later life.”
One couple who chose to rent in retirement are Robin and Valerie Greenfield. Retired actor Robin (67) and Valerie (64) have rented for six years and made the move to retirement community Waverley Court in Hampshire in March 2022. They couldn’t be happier.
Valerie says “It is everything we wanted. We were adamant we wanted to find a home which would enable us to grow old in, so we weren’t prisoners in a flat having to go up flights of stairs and we did not want to become a burden to our children. We are really happy to have found the perfect place which has ticked every box for us.”
Robin says: “Our apartment is cosy but still spacious and even though we have downsized from a two bedroom apartment to a one bedroom place, we did not need to get rid of lots of things. The apartment has lots of space and there’s a cupboard in the hallway which is like a tardis – it just never seems to get full.”
“We looked around a few properties but were immediately drawn to this one as it was ground floor with some outdoor space. We have a couple of chairs out and we enjoy sitting out on a summer’s evening in the lovely landscape gardens that surround us.”
Married for 37 years, Robin and Valerie they enjoy spending their free time together going to the theatre, doing quiz nights and attending murder mystery evenings. They also enjoy the host of social activities on offer at the Waverley Court.
They both concluded that: “After 37 years of marriage, we couldn’t be happier together and we’ve now found the perfect place for the next 37 years of marriage.”
My Future Living currently has several properties available in retirement communities in Sussex and Essex, as well as on the south coast in Dorset and Devon.
There is a one bedroom apartment at Homeshore House in Seaford on the Sussex Downs close to shops and the seafront for £925 per calendar month.
In Essex there is a one bedroom apartment at East Haven, close to Clacton for £850 per calendar month or a one bedroom apartment in Homeweave House in Coggeshall, a small market town situated in the Essex countryside near Colchester for £895 per calendar month.
In Dorset there is a one bedroom apartment in Wellington Court in Westbourne, a bustling suburb of Bournemouth for £875 per calendar month or a one bedroom apartment in Homefarris House near the centre of Shaftesbury for £750 per calendar month.
And in Devon there is a one bedroom apartment in Homecourt House in Exeter a stone’s throw from all the amenities of the city for £795 per calendar month.
All these purpose built retirement developments have a 24-hour emergency call system in each apartment and an onsite manager on duty. They have shared lounges and gardens to socialise in, plus events and activities are organised that people can join in with if they wish.
To find out more about renting a home in a retirement development in 2023 visit: www.myfutureliving.co.uk