Of people 55 years and older who relocated in the last seven years, eight in 10 moved within their county or state, according a CNBC analysis of data from real-estate information company CoStar Group.
Those among that group making more than $75,000 per year trended toward markets in warmer climates with tax rules favorable to retirees. One such city is Myrtle Beach, SC, which saw the group’s headcount increase 83% in the last decade.
Still, nine in 10 people 55 years and older prefer to age in place, while eight in 10 expect to live out their lives in their existing homes.
Fewer than half (47%) of Americans would consider moving following their departure from the workforce, according to a March report from Bankrate, with relocation most dependent on cost of living, healthcare quality and the area's crime rate.
Older adults already living in the Midwest and areas of the South may be at an advantage, according to a recent report from LPL Financial, which noted the strong financial health among those states as well as social factors that contribute to an overall good quality of life. Meanwhile, New England states scored high in access to and cost of healthcare services, a concern for older adults, in particular.
In response, builders are turning their attention to the active-adult housing segment, which features smaller, accessible units in communities that prioritize walkability and access to social activities. One recent is example is a Jimmy Buffett-themed line of active-adult housing that launched in Florida earlier this year.
Meanwhile, home-improvement professionals are gearing up for growth in aging-in-place remodeling. Eighty percent of remodeling firms reported work in the category in Q4 2016 — up 12 percentage points from 2013. That number is only expected to grow as baby boomers are projected to drive 56% of all residential remodeling spending by 2025, according to the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. Still, a report last year from HomeAdvisor found that while 86% of homeowners are aware of aging-in-place renovations, less than one-quarter have undertaken any such work.