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End note Why I bought a flat… THE RETIREMENT FLAT

I bought a retirement property when my house became too difficult to manage. I decided on a brand new flat that I purchased from the developers. This meant I could choose my preferred bathroom and kitchen fittings which let me co-ordinate with the furniture from my house that I already had. I chose a retirement flat as I wanted to move in to a community. I had lived alone for a few years and missed the companionship. We have regular events including coffee mornings, dominoes, card evenings and ballroom dancing which most of the residents get involved in. Rosemary Hazelock


We have been trying to get our foot on the property ladder for some time, but the prices have always been too high for us to afford our own home on our salaries. We had been keeping our eye on the property market when prices started to fall in mid 2009. In July 2010 we managed to locate our first home in a 2005 - built development of apartments in Romford. The flat had been tenanted before we purchased it

and needed a little bit of tidying up, but this worked for us as getting it at the right price was the most important thing. I imagine that when we decide to start a family we may need to consider moving to somewhere with more room – but for now it suits us just fine – we are so pleased that we managed to find something within our budget. Max And Sophie Russell


When I was offered a new job in London I decided to buy a flat in Brighton. I was struggling to afford a flat in London so started looking in the surrounding areas. In the end I chose Brighton as it was a place I had visited for holidays when I was younger and the commute only takes around an hour. I try to use the commuting time for something useful, for example to catch up with my friends on Facebook, or to catch up with any work. I find this allows my time once I reach my apartment to be more restful. James Webley


After my husband died unexpectedly in 2005, I thought I would want to stay in our marital home forever. Fortunately, once the maintenance - particularly the gardening - got on top of me, my family convinced me that moving somewhere which is easier to manage was the best thing. I moved in to my flat in Bournemouth in 2007. As I like gardening I decided to move to a ground floor property

which had access to the garden. In the summer I can do as much or as little as I want. I haven’t looked back. I have two bedrooms, one

for me and the other that my grandchildren stay in when they visit – I have plenty of space and masses of storage – I enjoy not having all the maintenance to organise and also the free time that this has given me. I joined a local social group

when I moved in to my flat, where I met my second husband Douglas in 2009 and we have just got married. We are staying in our flat as it has plenty of space for us both. Irene Thomas


Because the interest earned on my savings had virtually disappeared, I decided to buy a flat to rent out to supplement my pension. This is the first time I have bought a

property as an investment rather than to live in so don’t have the experience to handle it day to day. I came across a local letting agent that a friend had recommended to me. This means my returns are good without any hassle.

Frank Shaw


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