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Should remodeling your home be in your retirement future?

For a lot of people, preparing for retirement includes strategic planning across bank accounts and 401Ks to make sure that you have the financial security necessary to retire from the workforce one day. For a lot of people, a good retirement plan not only sets aside money for everyday expenses and other obligations, but it also accounts for travel and other indulgences.

But should your retirement plan also account for other expenses such as modifications to your home? It's not something most people consider but sometimes becomes a necessity, especially in cases where a retiree wants to stay in their family home instead of moving to a more elderly friendly environment. So we'd like to ask our readers to consider an important question today: should remodeling your home be in your retirement future?

For a lot of people in other states, their retirement plan includes selling their home and moving to Florida. But for long time residents of our state, moving may not be in their plans. In fact, many people who purchase homes when they are middle aged may want to remain in their homes well past their age of retirement. But because features such as ramps or grabbing bars aren't common features in all homes, this can create problems down the road if homeowners don't plan now.

Even though installing features that will make mobility and accessibility easier for elderly dwellers might not be a high selling feature for younger homeowners, these are great modifications to make to a home especially if you plan on staying there for the long haul. That's because you will get use out of the features later on and will be glad when they are there when you need them.

If you're worried about the chance of resale, consider adding features that are considered more universally friendly that may be a great benefit to elderly dwellers but will go relatively unnoticed by younger families such as door handles instead of doorknobs to accommodate those with arthritis, and hardwood or tiled floors for those who use walkers or wheelchairs.

Whether you've considered setting aside money for remodeling or not, chances are you are considering it now, which is why you may want to speak to your lawyer soon so that you can start saving as soon as possible.

Source: Kiplinger, "Remodel Your Current Home With Retirement in Mind," Chris Farrell, March 21, 2012

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