Older Americans who’re able to work remotely are making earlier moves to their retirement locales, according to a report by CNBC.
What with more employees giving people the chance to work from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some have decided to take up the offer on a permanent basis. And as this means being freed from the need to commute, some are deciding to up sticks and move as soon as they can.
“The pandemic was unexpected, working from home was unexpected, but nonetheless many companies realized that workers can be just as productive working from home,” Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors, told CNBC. “We may begin to see a boost in people buying retirement homes before their retirement.”
Yun said that he’s seen demand for homes rise in vacation resort areas, and also in warmer states that are traditionally targeted by retirees, including Arizona, Nevada and Texas.
Moreover, a September retirement survey conducted by Transamerica found that 38% of those who’ve entered retirement this year have opted to move to a new home. Most retirees cite being in closer proximity to family and friends as the main reason for their move, followed by a more affordable cost of living and access to better healthcare.
Another motivating factor that’s prompting people to move earlier is home affordability, Yun said. He noted that residents in pricey areas on the East and West coasts can find much larger homes inland at more affordable prices. Those people could be worried that home prices will continue rising, Yun added. On Tuesday, the NAR reported that existing home prices rose by 11.4% in August compared to a year ago, to a nationwide median of $310,600.
“It seems like demand will remain solid for the upcoming years because the Fed has clearly made its intentions known that we will have a low-interest-rate environment,” Yun told CNBC.
The NAR released a study earlier this month that showed the best places to work remotely, with Forsyth County, Ga., and Douglas County, Ohio, topping the list.