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Empty nesters are enjoying better social lives, traveling more frequently and have more financial freedom, according to the most recent
As a whole, nine out of ten empty nesters, defined as those whose children have permanently moved out of the home, indicate they are happy and look forward to more social and personal time now that the kids are gone. The top responses included:
- Having more personal time (95 percent)
- Lower grocery bills and fewer expenses (91 percent)
- Spending more time with their significant other or dating (85 percent)
- Going on a dream vacation (80 percent)
- Socializing with friends (80 percent)
- No longer attending school-related functions (68 percent)
"As with most transitions in life, when the kids leave the home, many adults have a period of exploration," said
Lend a Hand, Not a Room
The empty nesters surveyed were asked what they would rather do if their adult child was facing a hard time with finances – help support them financially or allow them to move back home. The answer was clear: 68 percent said they'd lend their child financial support rather than allowing them to move back home.
Ehle said, "Once kids leave the home, parents take a close look at their home and often find their large home no longer fits their new lifestyle. Do they need all this space? Do they want to maintain the large yard? So, they think about downsizing or moving to a new area. Often, they look at redecorating their kids' former rooms as a temporary solution before making the leap to move."
The survey revealed that 70 percent have turned their child's room into another room for personal use, including 34 percent as a guest room; 14 percent as an office; four percent as a media room and two percent as a storage/junk room.
Making plans to move
When asked if respondents are planning to move now that the kids are out of the house, more than half (55 percent) are planning to move to a new home at some point in the future, with nearly 10 percent indicating they may move out of state or to a warmer climate.
"Becoming an empty nester marks a new life phase, and downsizing in place or moving to a new home is an exciting part of the transition away from their primary career or from the day-to-day rearing of school-aged children," said Ehle. "Whether staying close to home or moving across the country, there are many options for empty nesters as they plan for their newfound freedom," added Ehle.
Savings Inspired by Wanderlust
No longer budgeting for kids-related expenses, empty nesters are now saving for "big ticket" items besides their retirement and a new home. According to the
Other top mentions: 50 percent are saving for their children and grandchildren's inheritance; 38 percent are saving for a sports car, boat or other recreational vehicle; and 21 percent are saving for a second/vacation home.
Del Webb has been surveying the 50 and older demographic for more than 15 years, seeking to better understand the attitudes and opinions of this generation. The diverse definitions of retirement reflect the diversity of the baby boomer generation and are evident in the variety of Del Webb community sizes, types and locations across the nation.
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SOURCE Del Webb