Changes in thinking about retirment housing

The latest Del Webb survey of baby boomers and their attitudes about retirement housing is set to drop, and (unsurprisingly) big changes have occured.

According to MarketWatch's Steve Kerch, "If your idea of a dream retirement home is a luxury contemporary overlooking a championship golf course in the desert, you better be prepared for some mighty small block parties: When it comes to retirement living, golf courses are out."

What kind of houses will be in demand among those 55 and older? Kerch reoprts on a consumer survey conducted by the National Association of Home Builders. The most important design features that 55+ buyers want in their homes center on the practical:

  • Washers and dryers in their units

  • Storage space

  • Windows that open easily

  • Garage-door openers

  • Easy-to-use thermostats

  • First-floor master bedrooms

  • Private patios

  • Porches

  • Attached garages

  • Bigger bathrooms

  • Island work areas

  • Separate showers

  • Private toilet compartments

  • Sun rooms

  • Woodburning fireplaces

  • Exercise rooms

But a number of items that home buyers overall don't find to be of much interest are much more popular with older buyers. According to Kerch, these include:

  • Bathroom aids such as grab bars

  • Kitchen aids

  • Light home-repair services

  • Outdoor maintenance services

  • An entrance without steps

  • Accessible public transportation

  • Wider doorways

  • Nonslip flooring

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