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Different Homes For Different Ages

12 October 2013   Lee Amble
The house you needed while raising kids, may not be the house you need in retirement.

The following article is based on information I have gleaned from my clients, both buyers and sellers as I have sold real estate throughout the past 38 years.

I understand there are many different levels of income, retirement, investments and net worth. I've tried to present the average buyer or seller.

Let's walk through the ages and more:

1. First age stage - newly married 21 to 28

This group should probably rent for the first couple of years to save money for a down payment. Their first buy may be a small home, townhome or a condo. The sooner they can buy, they will start gaining equity and be on forced savings, along with tax savings. Some may need to have a parent or grandparent gift them a portion of the down payment so they can buy in the slow selling time of the year. Never overbuy; only buy what you need.

2. Second age stage - 29 to 45

This group may already have started a family or at least know what their goals are for increasing their family. Buy accordingly like a typical 3 bedroom 2 bath home, which would normally be adequate in a family neighborhood and preferably close to schools, if possible. Hopefully, it will have a useable yard for the children at that time, but do not buy a home with too many bathrooms or too many amenities for resale value, especially if you don't want them or need them. SIMPLY PUT: A homes live-in value is much greater than its resale value.

Again, do not overbuy! College savings are needed just ahead!

3. Third age stage - 46-56

Hopefully you can still live in the home you purchased in stage two for a long time. If you need more room, at first, probably add a small addition which can be used as an office or hobby room later when the kids move on. I believe not all square footage is created equal. Size doesn't matter as much as what you do with that size. Again, do not overbuy!

4. Fourth age stage - 57-70

In my opinion, this is the age that frequently people buy way too much, but, again, if they can afford it, why not? I do see many who wonder later why they needed 3000 to 5000 square feet for two people. Do you really want to clean five bedrooms? Do you really need the high taxes, maintenance of the home, yard maintenance, sky high energy costs and, last, but not least, the problems of selling a home that only a small percentage of buyers want or can afford? All of the above costs are huge, but, again, if you can afford it, who really cares?

5. Fifth and last stage - 70+

Many different things happen at this stage, mainly because of health issues and retirement income. Hopefully, if you purchased sensibly in stage four, you can stay in your home for many more years. Now, you will see how important stage four really is!

Other Great Alternatives For Stage Five

A. Renting if you want to spend a lot of time enjoying your travels to see children, grandchildren or just travel for enjoyment.

B. Small home with small yard and maintenance free outside.

C. Town homes patio homes or condo's.

D. Some like large travel homes - most people enjoy for 2 to 3 years and then get tired of them. It's your choice!

6. Single - no age bracket.

Smaller homes, condos, town homes, etc. are good if they do a lot of travel on the job or get a job transfer. They certainly are less upkeep, which many people prefer.

The single market is a great market and is enjoyed by many realtors, as there usually is only one person to please.


Bigger is not always better as many buyers found out during the housing slump. It was very difficult to sell the large homes and McMansions.

We don't always think about what we actually want. Sometimes we make decisions on what we are told we should do, so, consider a "just right home"! Buy one that's right for you.

If you have any further questions or ideas for articles you would like to read in the future, please call me. The call is free and so are my ideas!

Remember, "Experience Isn't Expensive, It's Priceless!" and, "Selling A Home Is Easy, Doing It Right Is The Key!"

Lee Amble, Realtor/Consultant
National Realty Of Prescott
Lee's Cell: 928 533-4455
Jan's Cell: 928 533-4488

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