With history’s largest and most affluent generation, the boomers, heading for retirement we see a transformation happening …
All our lives conventional wisdom told us to work hard, save for retirement, and pay off our mortgage. We followed the rules: toiled at those jobs, made those payments and we did it—we are now mortgage free!
But something is missing. Living mortgage-free in a big house is not necessarily a happy life.
For this reason we are seeing droves of retirees selling their houses and moving closer to locations where they can enjoy a more vibrant and simple lifestyle. They want to be surrounded by life and people who energize them, and be able walk to interesting places, like beaches or art galleries, and to amenities, such as grocery stores and medical clinics. They want to simplify their life by driving less and by having fewer responsibilities, such as yard work, repairs, tenants, and so on.
In Vancouver, the largest shift of this nature is among retirees selling their large houses in either the suburbs or west side of Vancouver and buying townhouses and condos in Kitsilano, False Creek, and Downtown. Although some view these areas as relatively expensive destinations, they are easily affordable to anyone selling a detached house in the Vancouver area where the prices of houses have skyrocketed in the past few decades.
One couple sold their big house in the suburbs for about a million and picked up a stylish townhouse in Kitsilano for the same price. “I don’t wanna be the richest guy in the graveyard”, said the husband. “I enjoy the Kits vibe – it’s like living in a resort”
Another couple sold their family home for about two million and had no trouble finding a semi-waterfront townhouse near Granville Island for under a million. They said “We are so excited – we are going to live in paradise for the next 25 years!”
Our real estate team has helped many retirees realize their dreams of downsizing from large houses all over Greater Vancouver to fantastic condos and townhouses where they can walk to wonderful amenities, such as beaches, parks, food markets, theaters, cafes, restaurants, and more.
*Written by Annette Saliken, YourHomeTeam with Sutton Westcoast Realty – 2015