The conversation around retirement gets more serious with our clients once a combination of things happen- they no longer have children living at home, they get closer to THAT age, and they get closer to THEIR magic number in savings.
Each fall, US News & World Report releases their list of top places to retire. This year Sarasota ranked as the #3 Best Place to Retire. I wondered what metrics are used when compiling these types of lists, so I thought that I would take a deeper look at what future retirees find important.
Aging Successfully is the New Retirement
The Milken Institute leverages the concept of “Successful Aging” in its research. Wikipedia offers a robust definition of this phrase, which encompasses the physical, mental, and social well-being in older age.
This holistic concept of aging and retirement resonates with me since we work with people who are making an investment in a better lifestyle.
So what are the most important attributes of aging successfully? Why does Sarasota continue to make the headlines when rankings are published? Let’s take a look at the 5 criteria that are most heavily weighted:
1. Quality of life
Quality of Life for most retirees begins with blue skies and warmer weather. The biggest reason that people migrate to Florida and Sarasota is they get to leave the gray, sleet and ice. Sarasota is a bit more moderate in temperatures than south Florida and is usually immune from freezes.
2. Access to Quality Healthcare
Quality Healthcare is one of Sarasota’s calling cards. There are no true university teaching hospitals, however there are lots of practitioners and Sarasota is proud of its independent hospital. There is also considerable emphasis on staying healthy and the local climate allows for year-round out door activity.
3. Taxes and the Cost of Living
Florida is considered one of the better states for lower taxation since there is no state income tax. Taxes for utilities, gas and alcohol tend to be higher then other states. Sarasota is not inexpensive when it comes to groceries and services.
4. Creating a Community
One of the biggest initial concerns from our clients is how they are going to meet people. Surprisingly, I find that this is possibly the easiest box to check. Sarasota is made up of people from all over and their enthusiasm and interest in meeting like-minded people is endless.
4. Multiple Real Estate Options
Finally, there is no moving here without a place to live. With all of the growth the past several years, developers have created multiple new options for housing. One can rent or own, live on the beach or golf course, and walk or ride their bike to almost all of one’s activities.
Q3: What’s Going Up and What’s Going Down?
With all of this building, renovation, and migration, here’s how the Sarasota real estate marketing is performing:
- During the 3rd quarter of 2018- from July 1st through September 30th-Sales were up 4.2% from the same period a year ago.
- Luxury sales (which are those properties listed for $1M or more) are down 18.2 % from 3rd quarter last year but still ahead of the anemic 3rd quarter in 2016.
- Distressed market has gone from 1 in 21 homes to 1 in 38 properties.
- The percentage of sales in the affordable segment decreased by 15% another indicator of fewer affordable opportunities.
- 87% of all sales are below $500,000.
The net of all the numbers and rankings is that there is steady demand for the lifestyle that Sarasota offers. In my experience it does not matter your age to tap into the many benefits of living here. If any of the factors in your personal outlook on “aging successfully” draw you to Sarasota, give me a call to discuss finding the right timing and fit.
Call me (941.587.0740) with any questions I can answer for you 🙂