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  • Planning Your House Like You Plan Your Retirement

    Aaron D. Murphy

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    Today's blog is titled Planning Your House Like You Plan Your Retirement. Have you ever considered how planning a forever home is similar to planning for a comfortable retirement? Hi, my name is Aaron Murphy. I'm a licensed architect, CAP certified aging in place professional, speaker, author, and founder of Forever Home. At Forever Home, we have a passion for designing spaces that evolve with your life's journey and the new longevity. So today we're going to talk about how planning your housing is as crucial as planning your retirement. First of all, key point number one is long-term vision. There's a significant level of importance in forecasting what might be or what might become in your future. Just as retirement planning isn't about a single goal of saving money, house planning isn't just about buying a property. You can't set it and forget it. It's about anticipating life's changes. lifestyle, mobility, even family dynamics. You have to reverse engineer the goal. If your dream is successful aging and place in your own home and community, you have to set a vision and a timeline for achieving that outcome. So you can get started taking steps toward making that happen while you have the freedom to choose and plan for it. Point two, financial aspects. Investing in a home that meets your future needs can be as financially significant as investing for retirement. The cost of updates and remodeling for aging in place is an investment in yourself or your loved one. You're investing in protecting just like your financial nest egg or your legacy. Your freedom, autonomy, and independence. There are lies in comparison to the cost of if not. That's denial. We all do it. It's just the nature of our psychology. But it has a price, a big one. That choice to do nothing and assume we'll never be a statistic until we are one leads to $6,000 to $10,000 a month in new expenses for living, after the fall, the hospital, the surgery, the PTOT, and then the inability to move back home. That leads to spending up to 20% of the sale price of your home for moving expenses, and you end up at a retirement facility, probably chosen by someone else in your family, in very short order and without research, that burns through your savings in just a few years. No legacy, no inheritance, no generational wealth to pass on. Now, let's compare that to early planning. Planning early allows for more options and less stress. It's easier to integrate features like universal design when building or remodeling rather than retrofitting in the 11th hour after a fall. We get this call too often. Mom fell, she's in the hospital, she'll be in OT rehab for six weeks, and we need home modifications for her to return home safely. Too late. That's panic lipstick on a pig. Good outcomes don't come from emotional and financial backpedaling choices. We get this idea. Think about the rule of 72 or the concept of compounding interest. Have you heard the story of the person who saved money from 20 to 30 years old and stopped versus the person that starts at 40 and can't ever catch up? That's the value of planning ahead and starting early. It has a compound effect. seen and unseen, just as good design just works and disappears. So works the early plan and implementation and the not experiencing of the family panic that fall in the disillusionment of disappearing choices for empowering outcomes. So when you're doing your house planning like your retirement planning, let's consider accessibility. Master or primary on the main floor or single-level living, wider doorways, no step entries in bathrooms and showers. These are the basic features that are not just for elderly, they're for everyone. It's enhancing convenience and safety for anyone in your home, visitors included. When I'm on stage, I tell people it works just as well for your six-year-old as it works for your 86-year-old. It's just better designed than the spec house you grew up in. Accepting is okay. Step two, consider flexibility. Design spaces that can adapt. A home or an office today could be a nursery, tomorrow could be a mother-in-law down the road. Future flex your housing design. We're personally working to disrupt the spec home builder in this category. We have an entire development we're designing all the homes for right now. that is going to use our longevity plans and future flex specifications. It's pretty exciting stuff. So stay tuned on our Facebook and LinkedIn pages for more on that in the months ahead. Consider sustainability and efficiency. Energy efficient design reduces long-term maintenance and operation costs, similar to how smart investment choices bolster your retirement funds. Again, with the ROI, just like investment planning. If you're going to stay in your home another 10 to 15 plus years, then maybe solar, or HVAC and water heater upgrades, or insulation increases would pay you back in the utility bill expenses of operating your home later when you're on a fixed income. So how do we get started? Number one, seek professional advice. Just as you'd consult a financial planner for retirement planning, consider speaking with a CAPT-certified occupational therapist, architect, home designer, contractor, somebody that understands these needs for the 50-plus demographic. Another step, ensure your house can adapt to unforeseen changes. Kind of like diversifying your retirement portfolio. Okay, remember you guys at the end of all this, what we're doing is trying to help you plan for the long-term journey. Okay, play chess, not checkers. It's a long game. It's about creating a space that grows and changes with you and ensures your comfort and security for every stage of life. So if you're thinking about your future home, start planning today. Feel free to reach out to me for advice, and don't forget to subscribe for more insights on designing a home that's ready for your tomorrow. Thank you for watching. If you found this valuable, please subscribe to our YouTube page if you're watching on that platform. And please also go and sign up for our newsletter at for more tips and tricks to create successful outcomes in your life with empowering home design solutions. for the new longevity forecast. Join me next time, we're gonna dive into the cost savings of avoiding falls in your home with good design. Stay tuned, stay inspired, and let's plan together and create spaces that make life better at all ages.

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