Saturday, May 17, 2014

Tips for Creating your Perfect Retirement Home on a Tight Budget

Retirement (Photo credit: Tax Credits)
Building a customized retirement home is a great way to ensure that every single aspect of the property is exactly how the owner would wish, but there are some important considerations to make. Here is a look at a few simple steps to avoid common mishaps, save money, and not cut corners.

Consider Splitting Lots

One of the biggest parts of creating the perfect retirement home is finding an ideal location. A sprawling lot next to a lake may seem ideal, but that is not always going to be in the budget. Those that are retiring can speak with family and friends about purchasing larger lots with one of the parties using their half as an investment property while the retirees begin building their home.

Carry Out Minimum Site Prep

Site prep tends to be one of those expenditures that very few think about before it is too late. While the initial cost for a near-ready site is going to be more expensive, site preparation can often cost tens of thousands of dollars. Some of the most common preparation costs include hauling in fill dirt, cutting down trees, grading, leveling, and breaking down rock. 

Find the Right Location

It is popular to build a retirement home in a beautiful, tropical location. When potential retirees begin to fantasize over the potential places to retire, they begin to lose a grip on smart location choice. Location can save a very significant amount of money in your site and in the cost of living after moving in.

Take for example Florida. Florida ranks consistently as one of the 5 most popular places to retire, especially for east coast seniors. But not all of Florida is made equal. According to CNN Money, living in Tampa, FL will save you 33% on housing costs compared to Miami, FL. In addition, health care, groceries and transportation cost around 6-7% less respectively in Tampa. Do some research and pick a smart location!

Use Stock Plans

A fully custom floor plan is typically going to be too expensive for those that are looking to build a retirement home on a budget. Instead, a much more affordable option is to choose a stock layout from a reputable builder or architect and then make the minor changes to the home in order to customize it how the residents would like it.

Explore Used Materials

Demolition sites may not sound like a place where one wants to collect materials, but they actually can provide some amazing and unique options without the overwhelming costs. Many of these sites offer their materials at little or no cost for those that are willing to haul and builders can find stressed woods, bricks, and a variety of non-finishing materials as well. 

Use Cheaper Material to Save Money

One of the best ways to save on building a house is to knowing the kinds of material that can go into a certain room. For example, you may be working with a contractor who suggests that you install a natural stone floor in your kitchen or bathroom. However, if you know good alternatives to natural stone, you will be empowered to make better decisions. For example Centura Tile, a supplier from Hamilton, Canada, offers ceramic tile at less than a dollar a tile compared to natural stone which can get over $50 per tile.

Create Allowances

The builder is going to make or break a project, and they could also create extra savings or go well over budget. While there are some safeguards against them gouging prices, that does not always mean that hiccups won’t happen. It is important to set aside allowances for overspending, notify the builder of that amount, and have them agree to it in writing.

Creating a retirement home from the ground up does not always mean exorbitant costs. Taking the time to understand each step and cutting expenses one at a time will mean a beautiful home that is on budget.


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