I’m a senior. I know what seniors want. I know what I want. In the last third of life, priorities shift. Though we all have individual wants and preferences, there are likely many similarities when it comes to what seniors want. Comfort. Convenience. Time. Family. Friends. Fun. Travel. Health. These are just a few of the top priorities. When it comes to housing, what’s important for those entering their golden years?
Interestingly enough, when I talk to seniors, most want to age in place. The majority are concerned about maintaining independence and staying self-sufficient. They want homes that will allow them to do just that. One-level floor plans, energy-efficient homes, walk-in showers, easy to reach appliances, and proximity to good medical facilities, are just a few of the desirable features seniors want.
Convenience and Comfort
I’ve learned in dealing with seniors that it is all about day-to-day convenience and comfort. Simple pleasures matter. Friends and family matter. Most seniors want to enjoy and embrace each new day. Backyard barbecues, time with children and grandchildren, long chats with neighbors and friends rate high. Having a home that is welcoming, comfortable, affordable, and convenient provides opportunities for seniors to enjoy this special time in life. Seniors relish newfound freedom and flexibility, but they also appreciate the deep roots they’ve established through the years. Community counts. Seniors enjoy the company of other seniors. But, being in a community that is demographically diverse is also important. In fact, it’s healthy. Seniors who interact with children and young adults are generally more engaged. Happier.
For seniors looking to maximize their quality of life, home-buying decisions are crucial. After all, the next home purchase may be the last home purchase. Selling is equally challenging. The challenges of selling and saying good-bye to a home that has been in the family for 30, 40, or perhaps 50 years, are real. Emotions can run high as seniors seek to make decisions that will allow them to enjoy life to the fullest.
Understand Seniors’ Unique Needs
It takes patience, understanding, and empathy to help the young at heart to make decisions that will better their future. Being a senior and working with seniors has helped me to appreciate the unique challenges this special season in life brings. There are financial decisions and health care directives to consider. Legacy and estate planning are essential. Communication is critical. Seniors know what they want, but that doesn’t mean getting what they want comes easy. It takes thought, time, and guidance to arrive at good decisions. It takes intention. Planning. Seniors need someone who will listen. Someone who understands. They need help navigating the myriad of complexities that come with aging.
I love working with seniors. Perhaps that is because I am one! Yes, there are challenges to being an older adult. But, there are gifts. The gifts come in all shapes and forms, but perhaps the biggest gift is getting to a place in life where you know what you want. And discovering that what you want is less about what you have and more about who you are!