What are you going to do when you retire?

1. Staying Put.

More and more, retirees are remaining in their local communities longer. However, the definition of “local community” is changing. Before the definition of local community used to be defined a 10-15 mile radius, it now encompasses an expanded area of almost 100 miles, based on supply, demand and costs.

2. Creative living solutions and multigenerational homes

Concepts such as multigenerational housing, the Greenhouse Project, senior villages, co-housing, homes built with in-law apartments and other communal living solutions will continue appearing and evolving. As the housing market stays neutral through 2012, investments  to make the home more of a multi-generational dwelling will increase. Renovations will be a key driver in adaptation but the resale value of these enhancements will have negligible effect on the value of the home.

3. Downsizing…or Not

In the past, retirees often downsized their living spaces from homes to condos. However, with today’s housing markets, retirees will be reluctant to sell their home at current market prices.  They may be looking at other ways to downsize, such as cutting their mortgage costs with reverse mortgages.

4. Reverse Mortgages

With fixed incomes and increased living expenses, many senior citizens are turning to reverse mortgages as a way to receive extra cash. Reverse mortgages allow seniors to turn equity into cash while keeping ownership of their home.

According to the AARP, more than 600,000 reverse mortgages have been issued since the start of the program in the late 1980s, nearly three-quarters within the last five years.