The current lifestyles and location preferences of baby boomers will be a huge driver for where they decide to age in place, according to a report released this week by AARP. With most baby boomers having lived their entire lives in the suburbs, AARP reports, most will age in place there.
That location choice, in turn, directs and determines the majority of services and networks available to the aging population, AARP writes.
“The place where people live as they age is critical to the kind of support networks and mobility options available to them at home. Currently, the vast majority (83 percent) of baby boomers live in suburban and small towns or rural areas,” the report states.
One of the biggest issues of concern to policymakers will be this proportion of the older population that does decide to remain outside of urban areas in retirement. The decision will be based largely on the age at which boomers decide to retire. Regardless, transportation will come into play for many.
“Baby boomers’ choices about whether to move after they retire, and, if so, where and when, are entwined with the economy and housing market, the desire to continue working if possible, and their family situations,” AARP reports. “But policymakers are carefully watching whether the baby boomers who chose to move will consider transportation issues in making their decision.”
Transportation will not only be an issue for private providers of services for aging customers but also a public policy consideration.
“To meet their evolving transportation needs, both public and private investments will be needed, as well as continued research in new technologies and individual mobility planning,” AARP writes.
Written by Elizabeth Ecker