Retirement in the Naples, FL Real Estate Market

Type A Retiree Concerns.

I wish I could tell you how many times a Type A Individual looking for a major residence in the Naples / SW Florida real estate market and who is about to retire will express their concern as to how they are going to keep busy in retirement. They have been so busy for years. They have been tied to a professional work schedule; they have worked long hours from dawn into late at night. My standard reply is that while I sincerely understand their concern, they will ultimately be very surprised when they look back after their first year ‘out of the office’!! When I see them a year out and ask them how they are doing, their standard reply seems to be that ‘I am so busy, I don’t have time to do the things I really want to do’! What a great problem to have!!

Such as? Many are still very active on corporate boards or consulting within their specialty fields. There are those who find time to volunteer for countless opportunities. Examples might be … SCORE where many can provide invaluable business insight to start up local start up enterprises; Florida Gulf Coast University, more commonly referred to as FGCU has opportunities for the professionally trained to lend their knowledge whether as a teacher or tutor with the same opportunities with Edison Community College or Hodges University; I have several friends who deliver meals-on-wheels or work at a local hospice and wouldn’t even consider not showing up for ‘work’; there are literally hundreds of volunteer organizations who give back to the community. Did you have time to do so when you were a professional? Most likely not. Then there are the challenges of playing golf or tennis for fun and believe me, it is a lot of fun. Remember that 9 AM meeting on the 10th floor where there was the constant strain and pressure to make decisions that affected a lot of other people? Now your 9 AM meeting is on court # 2 or the 1st tee and it is a ‘meeting’ that most really look forward to … several times a week!! There are those days when I frequently will play 2 – 3 sets of tennis as well as 18 holes of golf and it sure beats the dickens out of a 9 AM business meeting? Remember those books that you didn’t have time to read? Now there’s time! What about those late afternoon meetings when you finally got home after 8 PM and the family is already in to their evening activities and you still have work to do. Not now! Now, you might become Chef D’ Cuisine of your own castle and your wife is more than happy to relinquish the task. You get to make the dinner choices even if it is to go out for dinner!! The Naples and Bonita areas offer an abundance of cultural activities from the Naples Philharmonic Center for the Arts to various art associations and theater productions. Naples and Bonita is a very happening place to live.

You may still set an alarm clock even in retirement but it will be because the next day is full of things you want to do rather than schedules which must be met. How many times in one’s professional life does one live in a particular locale because their job demands they live there. This time, you get to pick where you want to live rather than someone telling you where you are going to live.

I can specifically describe my decision as to why I decided to move to SW Florida in 1993. I had reached a time in my professional career whereby I needed to find a new way of making a good living. I had sold my company and it was time to move on. I was 53 and it was in 1993. To my way of thinking, it did not make sense to start a new career in metropolitan New York City and then turn around and move somewhere in retirement. My option was to move somewhere where I could spend the rest of my life and not have to go through the process of moving again and making new friends in 10 – 15 years. I opted to move to SW Florida where I preferred Florida Green rather than Desert Brown. I made one major mistake: I wish I had done it sooner!!! It was the best decision I ever made.

I could go on. But, you will just have to experience this yourself!! WHAT A LIFE … and someone has to do it !!!!!!