You’ve raised self-sufficient children who’ve left the nest. Congratulations on a job well done! Parenting isn’t easy. And after years of focusing on your kids, it’s your turn to pursue your own dreams. This empty-nester chapter of your life is filled with exciting opportunities. Foremost, it’s the perfect time to downsize from your current house and build a custom home suited to your changing needs and lifestyle.
Here’s a peek at what empty nesters are looking for in their dream home:
First Floor Living
Research by the National Association of Home Builders 50+ Housing Council shows that 64 percent of baby boomers favor single-level living. Specifically, downsizing families prefer ranch-style homes. But stylish two-story homes with first-floor bedrooms are also in demand.
Homebuyers ages 55 and up are looking for open plans with the primary bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, and laundry room on the main floor. With fewer steps to climb, older adults prevent falls and harm to their joints.
Creating Inclusive Living Spaces
Empty nesters gain more freedom when their children are grown. But they still want to make smart long-term investments. This means building a home where they can age in place without compromising on style.
The demand for housing that adapts to all people regardless of age or physical ability is addressed by universal design.
For example, universal design features include a no-step entry, wider doorways and hallways, and extra floor space. Prior to the need for wheelchair or walker accessibility, the easy access areas make moving furniture easier, and everyone feels less cramped.
According to the American Optometric Association, beginning at age 40, many adults start to have problems seeing clearly. As vision naturally deteriorates, you need more light to see accurately.
Builders are designing new homes with more windows to allow natural light in. Empty nesters appreciate this energy-efficient feature. In addition, more light fixtures and user-friendly rocker light switches are helpful in areas like the kitchen, bathrooms, and walkways to help people see more clearly and prevent accidents.
One benefit of building a home when you’re older is you have more life experience and know what you like. Empty nesters might be willing to downsize square footage, but they want everything else upsized.
For example, older adults want new homes with high-end features: hardwood floors, a high-grade of carpet, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, walk-in showers, and custom cabinetry.
Shore Home Builders ensures the products and materials in your new home are of a higher grade. We install features such as home automation, tankless water heaters, gunite pools, and more!
Empty nesters may have spent decades raising children in an older home. They are delighted to finally get their home the way they want it. Therefore, no cookie-cutter floor plan will do for these discerning homeowners.
Some downsizers find their new nest is far from empty but wouldn’t have it any other way. They want more indoor and outdoor living and entertaining spaces and a place for their family to come and stay.
Customization allows people at any life stage to get the home they want.
Downsizing families love the problem-free aspect of new construction after years of making costly repairs to their older homes. They want a newly built home with a warranty for added peace of mind.
Some empty nesters want to work after retirement, either by choice or necessity. Since many companies give employees the flexibility to work from home, many builders are incorporating spaces for home offices.
If the new home has two floors, empty nesters often utilize an upstairs bedroom for an office. This helps them maintain a healthy life-work balance.
Their kids may be out of the house, but many empty nesters eventually bring some four-legged “children” into their lives.
Some of the most common cat and dog-friendly features include washing and drying stations, eating areas, heated floors in transition zones, and built-in cabinetry to replace unsightly scratching posts and dog kennels.
Location, Location, Location
Many downsizing families want to build a new home close to their original location to stay connected to family and keep their network of friends, doctors, and stores. The AARP Public Policy Institute lists its top five amenities as public transportation, grocery shopping, pharmacy, parks, and hospitals.
But don’t forget about the local school district. Even if your kids graduated from high school years ago, the quality of nearby schools matters. Studies prove homes in the best school districts, on average, sell for higher prices than similar homes in less-popular school districts.
Since many empty nesters consider their new homes as permanent residences, resale value may not be a priority. However, it should be a consideration. Incorporating universal design principles will give the home a broader appeal.
You’ve worked hard all your life. And with your children grown and on their own, it’s time to go after your dreams. A custom-built home offers floor plans and amenities aligned with your current and future needs.
Colorado Mountain Builders offers their custom build homes as a complete turn-key package. This means that the base prices of our homes include items such as the basement, heating and cooling system, water heater, cooking range, and much more.