Buying a property near elderly parents - tips?

(15 Posts)
msgloria Mon 14-Sep-20 19:59:57

Hello, wonder if anyone might be able to advise...

I live about 150 miles away from my parents, and I worry about them as they get older. I've thought about buying a two bed house or flat near them so that if they get more vulnerable and their needs increase I could use the place to stay in and work remotely from whilst helping them out / supporting any hospital appointments etc. They are ok now but I think it's likely that in 10-15 years they will benefit from more support - obviously I don't know the exact timeframe though. As DH and I get older and our DC grow up it might also be nice to have a small base in another city.

I already have a family home with DH so this would be a second property in a much cheaper location. I have no desire to make money from it - it would be very much about having a base to support my parents from.

I can't work out though... is this idea sensible? I'd be looking to spend up to about £150k I think. A flat would incur management charges and often ground rent, but would be more secure. A small house wouldn't have these charges but if I was largely leaving it empty until it was needed then I imagine it might not be very secure. I worry about renting out a property to tenants in case it turns into a headache, but as noted I wouldn't be looking to make a profit so wouldn't be averse to paying a decent management charge if that meant most of the stress being taken away.

Any thoughts much appreciated. Would also be really interested in input from anyone who has been in a similar position in respect of wanting a base to support family from. Thanks smile

OP’s posts: |
msgloria Mon 14-Sep-20 22:08:25


OP’s posts: |
JoJoSM2 Mon 14-Sep-20 22:13:52

If you’re parents are fine at the moment, you don’t need it. A rent on a 150k property isn’t going to be massive so with service charge + management fees + additional income tax etc it’s likely to be more stress than it’s worth.

I’d probably invest elsewhere and get a property as and when needed.

JoanieCash Mon 14-Sep-20 22:22:12

My friend did exactly this for her in laws. They went for a 1st floor flat as secure rather than house. Don’t rent it out, low running costs and can turn up ad hoc, also feels like home from home. Works really well and have a nice neighbour who keeps an eye out too.

motherofawhirlwind Mon 14-Sep-20 22:36:20

We considered this, but also buying something big enough for them to live in now and for us to stay in when we visit.... Just as another idea to consider.

Chewbecca Mon 14-Sep-20 22:41:07

It seems a big outlay/commitment to make now when there are so many unknowns - your parents’ needs and your own situation.

BigGlasses Mon 14-Sep-20 23:06:38

It does seem like a big outlay. It would be much cheaper to just book a airb’n’b or serviced apartment for a weekend a month. If you did want to invest in a property I would go for a ground floor flat or one in a complex with lifts which could be a property that they could move to in the future if they needed to downsize or move closer to amenities


LooseMooseHoose Mon 14-Sep-20 23:24:17

Would it be a cash purchase? If you'd need a mortgage, they may not be very keen on it being empty most of the time.

There's also the moral argument of owning housing that is unused most of the time.

Giraffey1 Mon 14-Sep-20 23:31:21

What if you parents decide to move ? You’ll be stuck with a property in the wrong place. It’s nice that you want to support them but aren’t you way too ahead of the game here?

ladybirdsarelovely33 Mon 14-Sep-20 23:37:20

I think it's a lovely idea. However is your parents' current place going to be able to meet their future needs? Would they prefer to move e.g. to a bungalow or somewhere needing less maintenance?

Porridgeoat Tue 15-Sep-20 06:26:58

There are so many ways to go through old age. They might be really mobile then be gone in a flash or they might have a long drawn out period of poor health and require a nursing home. It’s hard to predict.

AlwaysLatte Tue 15-Sep-20 06:42:45

In reality I don't think this idea would work terribly well so if they needed your support they would need it all the time, not just for the occasional day here and there. Certainly with my parents what is helpful to them is me popping in often (one of them daily, the other weekly). Have you suggested they move to an easier property near you instead?

chocorabbit Wed 16-Sep-20 10:04:24

There is nothing wrong with renting it out through an EA. Ours sorts out everything but asks "tht washiong machine broke down, should I get a second hand one or will you be buying a new one?". When I was renting as a student the whole house was owned by a man who lived in Ireland and rented out the rooms through the EA who arranged everything. But as a pp mentioned you could invest in a better location and when the time comes you could use that equity or sell it to buy around your parents.

Of course if you really like the area and you would like to spend time there by yourselves it would be nice too.

chocorabbit Wed 16-Sep-20 10:06:31

Or could you help them build an annex which you could use instead?

PragmaticWench Wed 16-Sep-20 10:33:04

What if your parents wanted to move somewhere different for their older age?

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