One of the things that surprised me this Florida trip is the large number of retirees putting their places for sale and heading north. There seems to be three common reasons for doing so. For any individual person, more than one factor may be involved.
Being closer to family is a big one. Travel isn’t as easy and cheap as it once was. Fewer and fewer people are hopping on a plane for a quick visit with the kids. Those who drive are very aware of the rising price of gas. Being closer to family is winning out over sunshine and days on the golf course. The flip side is that the kids can’t afford a southern vacation anymore.
Ill health is a common reason. Frankly, some are going home to die.
Another reason is that their pensions can no longer support them. It doesn’t cost all that much to live in a trailer park in Florida, but even that low hurtle is too high. Social Security isn’t much to live on. Those living on investments have taken a bit hit. If they are lucky, they have kids or other family willing to take them in.
The phenomenon of retirees heading south has only really existed for a relatively short period of time. Historically, elders would live in extended family groups. For many, those days have returned.
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