How often have you heard your friends and neighbors say they’d like to move closer to their grandchildren or that the time has come to pursue their lifelong dream of starting the business they’ve always envisioned? Or perhaps other financial and lifestyle transitions have people considering a move to a warmer climate.
Those scenarios, and many others, are prevalent, especially among adults aged 55 and older, who represent more than 20% of the U.S. population. For most senior adults, the homes that they live in are their largest asset and account for most of their net worth. To address the special concerns and often quite specific real estate goals of this population, the National Association of Realtors has developed the Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES®) Designation.
The SRES course examines key differences in housing options, from age-restricted communities to age-in-place design to assisted living; applications of the Housing for Older Persons Act (HOPA); the ins and outs of reverse mortgages; the use of pensions, 401k accounts, and IRAs in real estate transactions; and suggestions for the realtor in how to develop a team of senior specialists, including estate planners, reverse mortgage lenders, clutter removal and staging specialists, and more.
At the recent National Association of REALTORS conference in San Diego, it was announced that there are currently 16,000 SRES trained in the United States. A significant number are located in the west, including 504 in the San Francisco area alone. By comparison, there are 50 SRES within a 25 mile radius of Buffalo.
Whether you’re relocating, refinancing, or selling the family home, SRES specialists are prepared to offer specialized expertise needed to help examine the array of options that confront seniors when facing these life changing decisions.