Financing Your Retirement: Costs of Retirement Living OverviewFinancing is undeniably one of the biggest factors in any retirement living decision and often one of the biggest hurdles as well. You may be wondering about the actual costs of retirement living, the average monthly cost and how it compares from province to province. Or you might be looking at ways to save, including insurance products to check out and home equity plans. Maybe you've started to consider whether you want to buy, rent, or lease but you're not sure where to start the process.
The financing portal of our website is designed to help you get started right now, regardless of which stage you're in for retirement planning. Get information on what to consider in your financial assessment, facts about longevity and care needs, how much is enough for retirement (including the three stages of retirement) and whether it could be less expensive to live in a retirement residence.
Costs of Retirement Living
Our cost of retirement living section has an entire breakdown of the average monthly cost you can expect to pay across Canada, as well as the following tips for what to look for and what to ask about depending on your personal needs:
- Find costs you can manage based on your specific needs and desired location.
- Each combination of location, payments and services results in a different monthly cost.
- Personal support and health-care services are generally available for an additional fee.
- Ask the retirement community you are interested in for their rates.
- You can get special discounts for a couple or a second person living in the same residence. This should be taken into account when planning for the retirement of other family members and can be an excellent way to cut costs.
- The most common types of retirement communities allow residents to continue living independent and active lifestyles. With the least amount of extra care provided by retirement residence staff, the costs of independent living communities and active adult living communities are generally lower priced.
- The costs at retirement communities that provide intensive attention to residents, such as Alzheimer's care and long-term care, are slightly higher.
Find out what costs you can expect at BC retirement homes and what the highest and lowest rates are in provinces on the east and west coasts and everywhere in between. You can also compare the costs in this section between general independent living communities and those with heavy care. In this section you'll also find additional resources on financing a retirement home stay, general retirement advice, preparing your finances, and five retirement savings tricks.
Retirement Saving Tips
If you're looking for ways to save, the retirement savings tips section is for you. You may have been hearing all about RRSPs but you're not sure how they work or how they can help you save. The advice in this section will explain and help you get started with your financial adviser or institution. In addition, it's worth noting that according to Statistics Canada, Canadians aged 25 to 64 contributed $27.8 billion to their RRSPs in 2000, less than 10 per cent of the total contribution amount available. One good suggestion is to set up an automatic withdrawal plan in order to avoid making one large contribution come tax time.
You'll also find advice in this section on how to select the right insurance package, the benefits of long-term care insurance, and information on the recent Manulife Nursing Care Income Plan. As noted, insurers are aware of Canada's changing demographics and have been introducing insurance products to help the sandwich generation, seniors, and their families face the financial challenges ahead.
Plus, have you looked into a home equity plan? The Canadian Home Income Plan (CHIP), which is administered by the federal government, registers a mortgage on your title and through it you receive a lump-sum payment of 10 per cent to 40 per cent of the appraised value of your home. You continue to own your home and when you sell the house or die, the mortgage is repaid. CHIPs are available at most financial institutions. Learn more about CHIP in this section and how it can benefit you!
Buy, Rent or Lease? That is the Question!
Now that you've probably read up on the monthly average cost for retirement residences and their associated amenities and fees, maybe you're interested in exploring other options as well such as life leases and ownership.
- Life Leases—These give seniors a stake in a community but do not involve traditional home ownership. Residents buy a lease or leasehold interest in their accommodations, giving them a right to occupy their unit and use of amenities, such as dining rooms and recreational facilities.
- Ownership—These market value retirement condominiums are attached or linked to a retirement residence offering a range of amenities, including housekeeping, personal support and health services, available for a fee and are marketed to healthy and active seniors, who want to age in place and be able to access certain services as needed over time. The services are available within the same complex as the need arises.
Check out more about life leases and ownership in this section, including the option of retirement home rentals, and which options may be right for you. You'll also find a breakdown of the most popular retirement home types, including 55 Plus retirement residences, luxury retirement homes, and assisted living retirement homes.
However you decide to finance your retirement, the financial resources and advice provided by the experts on our site are meant to help you plan ahead, help you save, and give you options to make the process a little bit easier!
Feel free to explore the site further and check out our other resources, including our free retirement living ebooks with topics on downsizing advice, the cost of living at home, and one specifically on financing your retirement.
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What is your biggest concern about financing your retirement? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.