Unconventional housing options for retirees

As baby boomers approach retirement age, many are starting to think about how and where they want to live during

As baby boomers approach retirement age, many are starting to think about how and where they want to live during this next phase of life. While many consider selling the family home and downsizing into an apartment or small house, there is a new wave of homeowners and downsizers doing something totally different.

With house prises soaring over the past decade many people have found themselves pushed out of the market. While a lot of the media attention has focused on the younger generation struggling to afford a mortgage, it seems to have forgotten that a lot of over 60s are in the same boat.

Even if you sell your family home for a decent price, a large chunk of that change can end up going into a new and albeit smaller house, leaving you with little left over to help you enjoy your hard-earned retirement.

In the past, an apartment has been the obvious choice for those downsizing once the kids have grown up and moved out, but with the the property market currently saturated with apartments in many major cities, this is no longer a solid investment for a lot of boomers.

So what to do?

There are two new major trends emerging in housing: tiny houses and shipping container homes.

Tiny Houses

The tiny house movement was the first of the two to really take off. These amazingly small homes are especially popular with singles who say they simply don’t need all that extra room anymore.

They can be custom made or bought for a fraction of the price of a unit or full-size house and are so nifty with their design that you can actually fit a lot into them!

Drawers are hidden in side panels, beds pull out of walls or descend from roofs and dining tables easily tuck away when you’re not using them.

The Alpha by New Frontier Tiny Homes. This is definitely a hard one to beat! #tinyhouse #design #architecture #downsize #tinyhouselife

A photo posted by Living Big In A Tiny House (@livingbiginatinyhouse) on

Not only that, many of them are mobile meaning you can move wherever and whenever you want.

Shipping Container Homes

The other big trend is shipping container homes, which can give you a lot more room for a fraction of the price of a house.

😍#shippingcontainerhomes #nofilter

A photo posted by @shippingcontainerhomes on

The containers themselves are low cost, which means you can spend more fitting them out with beautiful finishes and appliances. The containers are stacked together to create length and height, so you can end up with two-stories and any shape you want.

❤️ #shippingcontainerhome #shippingcontainer #tinyhouse #tinyliving

A photo posted by @shippingcontainerhomes on

There are a number of companies building these homes in Australia now, with many of them starting at around $135,000 for a three bedroom house and going up to around $300,000 for a two-story five bedroom place.

While these housing options are relatively uncommon right now, they’re expected to become more and more popular in future as people begin to look for different ways of living and spending their money.

#interior #beautiful #nofilter #shippingcontainerhomes

A photo posted by @shippingcontainerhomes on

For those heading into retirement, tiny houses and shipping container homes can be a great option and a real money save, too.

Would you consider living in one of these homes? Will you downsize in your retirement?

  1. This is nice for those who can afford it.

    For us without a property to call ours, it is a very different story.
    We are in the laps of owners of the real estate we wish to reside in. Currently in NSW, you sign a lease and then you have the property for at the next 12 months.
    Then the landlord, without any reason can say that they don’t want you there any more, and you then go back into the cycle of having to search for a suitable home to move into.
    The landlords don’t realise the cost to the tenant of this – there’s the bond, rent in advance, mover, cleaning, transfer of phone services, electricity & gas disconnections/connections. The only thing that comes out of this is that you get back the bond of the previous property, but this in no way compensates for the disruption to your life.

    Is it any wonder that those who are the most vulnerable cannot save for anything if the above happens every 12 months?

    In the current rental market, it is getting harder to get a property that is suitable for your needs. I have done some research and have found that the older properties (over 20 years) don’t have the offering of one step into/out of the property, a shower that is virtually walk-in (most have a step to get into and a base that is lower than the floor level again making it hard to get into/out of).

    Housing is not much help. There is currently a wait of around 10-15 years in our area. This means that I would be between 70 and 75! Even for disabled housing, which I am eligible for, there is around a 7 year wait.

    I am not able to ask for family help. I lost my parents in a car accident over 47 1/2 years ago, and my siblings have mortgages of their own to worry about.

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