One of the key advantages of downsizing is the freedom it affords baby boomers to travel extensively without concerns about home security. It’s an aspect of downsizing that should not be underestimated.
Baby boomers have travel on their bucket list. A report by Merrill Lynch/Age Wave describes boomers as “time affluent” and not surprisingly, 95% of Boomers say they would prefer to enjoy experiences such as travel than to buy more things. The research also shows that Boomers are looking for longer travel experiences than the holidays they experienced while in the workforce*.
Excitement tempered with concerns about home security
However, as over-55s plan to tick “driving Route 66” or “snorkelling in the Maldives” off their bucket list, at the same time, a common worry is the risk of leaving their home unattended – and potentially open to burglars, while they explore the world.
Figures from the Australian Institute of Criminology show household burglary is one of the nation’s most widespread crimes, and one in three Australians (across all ages) believe their home is likely to be burgled in the forthcoming year*. Older householders are especially vulnerable to fear of theft.
Home security is a significant advantage of living in a lifestyle or retirement village, or similar over 50’s community or development, so this can be a key selling point for prospective buyers.
Village or over 50’s living enhances home security
Security features can carry a great deal of clout with buyers making the decision to downsize, and most particularly for women living alone. Indeed, security tends to be a major consideration in the design of lifestyle and retirement villages and other over 50’s property developments – though one that may not always be spelt out in marketing material.
PIN-coded main doorway access or gated communities provide an overarching level of security for the residents. A high level of maintenance ensures residents don’t have to sweet-talk neighbours into emptying their mailbox (or pay Australia Post to hold mail) lest burglars twig to the fact their home is unoccupied while they’re travelling.
There is no need to wear the cost of kitting out a home with costly, and sometimes invasive, security features such as back-to-base security systems or cameras.
As many over 50’s developments provide secure parking, residents can even head off on the trip of a lifetime, free from worries about the safety of their car. Some communities even offer secure boat and caravan parking onsite too, to make a lock up and leave lifestyle even easier.
Sharing the community spirit
Sure, even in a village environment, plants still need to be watered, and pets may need to be minded - but there will be plenty of like-minded neighbours to lend a hand, and also appreciate all your travel stories.
It can all add to the spirit of adventure and freedom – one that village residents can enjoy with peace of mind knowing that whether they head off for a weekend or several weeks, their home is safe and sound in their absence.
It makes sense for buyers to factor in the benefits and convenience of these extra security features. So all it takes to enjoy a trip is to love it, lock it, and leave it, knowing all will be well on their return. It could be the final clincher for potential downsizers – after all, the safety of our home and peace of mind is priceless.