It happens to a lot of us. A death, change jobs, fall in love, financial problems coming or, on the contrary, the sudden desire to make money fast. In other words, there are a lot of reasons for finding yourself at a crossroads where you have to decide if you want to sell your house or rent it.
Renting comes with a whole new set of responsibilities: finding good tenants, making sure that the house is in order, responding to emergencies, assimilating the new tax calculations. It’s not for everyone.
Selling is much easier, but may not pay as much in the long term. Much less. And if you’re nearing retirement, you have to take the time to think about it, because people are living much longer today. You need more money if you want to maintain an enjoyable lifestyle.[……]
While nearly half of Canadian homeowners don’t plan to sell their homes when they retire, many are still unsure what they’ll do. Moving to a new city or downsizing to a more compact home can offer advantages but, depending on your goals, a few disadvantages as well. If you’re thinking about a post-retirement move, consider these pros and cons before you start packing:
When you relocate to a new city or property…
PRO: Save money on daily expenses: If you relocate to a less expensive area, you’ll be able to stretch your retirement savings further. Consider the benefits of a suburb vs. city, and look to exotic areas that provide a lower cost of living. Need a little inspiration? Mexico, Panama, and Costa Rica are popular post-retirement spots for Canadians. Or, look to Buenos Aires, Argentina, where you can rent a one-bedroom apartment (in a good area!) for as little as $400 a month.
CON: Spend money on moving costs: Even if you’re exchanging your current digs for a less expensive property, moving isn’t cheap — real estate agent expenses, land transfer tax and moving costs can dissolve a big chunk of money. In Toronto, for example, land transfer costs, legal fees and moving expenses alone could be $15,000 or more. Plus, you’ll have to consider the cost of traveling to visit family, but if you pick a tropical locale, Canadian relatives may be more likely to come to you.
Savings Account (TFSA) are two savings vehicles that each have their own objectives and advantages. However, which one is best for you?
When should you choose an RRSP?
The RRSP is most often used to build savings, tax free, for use at retirement. Tax on earnings is deferred until the funds are withdrawn from the plan, generally at retirement age. The RRSP is an excellent way to defer a portion of your salary in order to make up for any shortfalls in your income after you retire. Also, RRSP contributions can be deducted from your taxable income, which could lead to potential tax refunds.
For many people, a house seems like a miraculous investment: Owning a home solves most financial problems and is the ultimate pension plan.
It’s an undeniable fact that a house is a long-term and effective investment. Most property owners and experts agree on this. But placing all your bets on a house is a huge risk.
Patrick Charlebois, investment advisor and manager at Bank National Financial in Trois-Rivières, cautions his clients. He definitely recommends purchasing a home and lists the advantages: good financial investment, better quality of life and a valuable asset for retirement.
Becoming an owner helps you to obtain a good credit file, to develop discipline for the family budget and to acquire the habit of saving money. But property owners may commit an error by placing all their hopes on their property.[……]
If they had to do it all over again, baby boomers would invest more in real estate. If they had a second chance at planning their retirement, 35% would invest in real estate, 31% would opt for guaranteed investment certificates and 20% would choose cash.[……]
According to TD Bank Group, the answer is no. “Even if selling your home is a great way to increase your retirement income, and unless you want to adopt a much simpler lifestyle, it probably won’t generate enough money for your entire retirement. It’s important to have access to savings funds and additional investments, such as an RRSP, a TFSA, pension benefits or shares,” states a press release where, in conjunction with a questionnaire, the institution unveils the results of a survey on beliefs about retirement in Quebec.
It’s true that the net worth of a home represents a significant amount. Until recently a house could provide the owner with a comfortable cushion, but that no longer holds true today. [……]