Retirees Want Best of Both Worlds

September 4, 2015

According to a recent survey, fewer people using Where to Retire magazine looking to choose a new location for their post-work life are interested in multifamily arrangements than those looking for a more traditional set-up. Eighty-three percent of the magazine's subscribers say they would most likely choose a single-family home in retirement.

"We hear time and again from the people we interview that moving to a traditional single-family home in retirement allows them to maintain their autonomy while still choosing the size—smaller or larger—of their new home to suit their new chapter in life," says Where to Retire editor Annette Fuller.

However, as they seek to preserve their autonomy, many of those prospective retirees want to live in areas that offer the benefits of communal living. Seventy percent of respondents say they are most interested in a master-planned community.

"Many opt to live in an active-adult master-planned community—a concept made popular by Del Webb in the 1960s and still thriving today—which gives retirees the opportunity to take advantage of all the benefits of single-family home living while enjoying the camaraderie of peers as well as amenities and activities geared toward them," says Fuller.

The study, conducted by Readex Research in June 2015, also found that 62 percent of the magazine's subscribers are planning on buying, rather than renting, and that potential buyers plan to spend an average of $263,000.

Because the survey allowed respondents to choose all answers that applied to them, the results add up to more than 100 percent and capture the fluidity of the decision-making process for some retirees. Despite the strong showing of single-family living, 58 percent of subscribers say they may consider a condo or townhouse, and 17 percent say they are interested in apartment living.

Where to Retire magazine—launched in 1992 and targeted at readers looking for the ideal place to retire—has a national circulation of 200,000.

Source: "Single Family Homes and Master-Planned Developments Rank Highest for Relocating Retirees," Where to Retire magazine (Aug. 26, 2015).