It’s estimated that by 2040, nearly one in four people will be aged 65+, according to research conducted by The Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation. This represents a major challenge in the UK as under current circumstances demand for later living properties, including retirement housing and care homes, is set to outweigh supply as the country’s population ages.

The same research document delves into the supply shortage in more detail as it uncovers the concern that the existing stock of housing is skewed towards family homes, with 60% of homes having three or more bedrooms. Whilst only 750,000 homes (less than 3% of the UK stock) cater specifically for the retirement market, representing only 9.4% of households aged 65+. Surveys have shown that up to a third of older households are amenable to downsizing, but that only a small minority actually do so. Key reasons have included a lack of suitable properties and anxiety about annual charges.

We asked John Wybar, Associate Director of the Edinburgh Sales branch, to comment with his experience of clients selling their homes to help finance later living arrangements:

“Selling can provide a significant capital sum that can be drawn on to pay care homes or retirement home fees. It can also be invested to provide an ongoing income. Selling means that clients can have funds readily available and don’t have to worry about the maintenance or upkeep of their properties.

A property sale requires quite a bit of paperwork, which will require the appointment of a Solicitor. However, Rettie can take care of everything involved in the marketing of homes, including getting the necessary Home Report produced. We aim to take all of the stress out of our client’s hands, particularly at this sensitive time in their life.”

As an established, premium brand who are RICS regulated for both sales and lettings, and licensed as a letting agency under the Agents Code of Practice, Rettie are in an ideal position to advise in the sale or letting of homes to assist with financial planning for later living. Equally, if a move to a smaller home is desirable, we can also help to source a suitable property.

Our Director of Lettings, Karen Turner, shared her thoughts on why letting a property with Rettie could be beneficial as part of later living planning:

“Letting a property can generate a significant monthly income; it also means that you retain your property. There is quite a lot that needs to be done to get a home ready for letting, including making sure that all safety regulations have been met. At Rettie we take care of everything, including instructing all regulatory work. Once the property is let, we can provide a full lettings management package. When using Rettie lettings services you can be sure that you’ll be in a safe pair of hands and we are sympathetic to the intricacies of planning for later living.”

For those based in Edinburgh, we also have a great relationship with luxury care home, Cramond Residence and would be happy to introduce clients to the appropriate contacts.

Cramond Residence is situated to the north of the city and provides a combination of luxury accommodation and the highest quality of care in small group-living units made up of nine houses.

All residents benefit from a wide range of amenities and activities, delicious food and bespoke care with specialist facilities and trained staff on hand to provide additional support.

We recently caught up with Graeme Kelly, Managing Director at Cramond, who shared his insights on later living at Cramond Residence:

“Cramond Residence believes every resident should receive bespoke care tailored to their needs and wants, in a safe and friendly environment.

Alongside our long-term residential care, we also offer respite care to provide a short-term break, and recuperation care to help speed recovery after an operation or illness.

There are many ways to fund care and, with careful planning, it is possible for a wide range of people to benefit from the accommodation and service.

We offer a selection of comprehensive care packages and when you move into Cramond Residence, major costs will be covered – meaning you won’t have the worry of the bills that can make running your own home so expensive.

This is just one of the reasons why moving into a care home is often much more cost effective than remaining in your own property and getting carers to come in to look after you.

Cramond Residence advocates specialist financial advice through advisers who are members of the Society of Later Life Advisers. These specialists can work with Rettie to develop an integrated solution to care and property needs.”

There are a number of options available for later living arrangements. Early planning for retirement years is certainly worthwhile, whichever route you decide to take. At Rettie our expert team offer professional property consultancy services with senior years living in mind. We take a collaborative approach to meet you and your family’s needs and can support with preparations for a move to a smaller home, retirement housing or a care home.

Rettie continue to stay informed on the latest market status for retirement living. Our experienced team are well positioned to support with planning for later living and have a network of suitable connections should you need any introductions to support you further.