What is a Seniors Real Estate Specialist?

Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES)® is a designation awarded by the National Association REALTORS® for REALTORS® who have successfully completed additional training and demonstrated proficient knowledge of the issues and resources important for working with seniors (age 50+).

Why should I work with a Seniors Real Estate Specialist?

A Seniors Real Estate Specialist® takes a bigger picture approach to assisting with your real estate needs.  Additional considerations, resources, and services are often required when working with seniors, and an SRES® is prepared and committed to providing those. 

I’m thinking about downsizing, where do I start?

First, decide what your goal is.  Then, work with your SRES® to develop a plan and determine what assistance or services you might need to accomplish the downsizing.  In addition to providing resources and support, your SRES® can also work with you to prepare your house for sale. 

How can I help my parents downsize?

The task of downsizing can feel overwhelming.  Be patient and supportive, and offer to help with the sorting, organizing, packing, and moving of items.  Visit our moving tips for more ideas. 

What if I want to relocate so I can be closer to family?

Many older adults choose to move closer to their children and grandchildren.  If you have a particular area you are interested in, consult with your SRES® to learn about your housing options there and to be connected with a local SRES® through our national network to ensure you are supported throughout your move. 

How can I help my parents relocate to be closer to us?

If your parents own a home they will need to sell, it is recommended that they consult with a local SRES® in their area (we belong to a national network, contact me if you need help locating one).  If they will be purchasing a replacement home near you, it is recommended to also work with a local SRES® for that purchase to ensure continued access to resources and support.  

I would like to move to a seniors community. What are my options?

Your SRES® can help you determine the various types of seniors communities in your area of interest, and the different features and amenities they offer.   You can also ask your SRES® for a referral to a placement specialist who can do the research for you to find a facility that meets your specific needs, goals, and budget. 

My parents have asked me to help them research their housing options. Where should I go for information?

Many seniors communities and campuses are happy to provide information and tours to interested parties (which is highly recommended).  There are also online directories that allow you to search and compare various communities.  Here is a general definition of the different options.  It is a good idea to consult with an SRES® to get more information and to assess whether a placement specialist is advised. 

What if I want stay in my home?

Aging in place is a common goal.  Those that are most successful with staying in their homes have planned ahead to make their homes more accessible and safe, and have a plan in place for anticipated support and care.  Consult with your SRES® on what to consider and for referrals to support services. 

My parents have decided to stay in their home. What can I do to help them?

Safety is critical.  It is often an avoidable accident that creates crisis.  Help your parents plan ahead to increase access and safety to their home BEFORE they need it.  Consult with your SRES® for referrals to support services.  It is also recommended to work with your parents to create a plan for assistance and care as needs change.   

What are some my financial considerations if I sell my home?

It is always advised to consult with your tax professional or financial advisor before deciding to sell.  For instance, certain qualified homeowners may be eligible for an exclusion from their capital gains taxes when selling a home.  It is also important to factor in any outstanding debt or liens against the property.  Your SRES® can help assess your specific situation and collaborate with your trusted professionals. 

What is Proposition 60 and 90?

For seniors (55+), California’s Proposition 60 allows eligible homeowner-occupants to transfer their current tax base to another a newly purchased home of equal or lessor value in the same county.  Proposition 90 extends this transfer to an additional eight counties in California.  Consult with your SRES® on this important tax benefit. 

I have a lot of equity in my home, but my income is limited. What can I do?

You likely have more options than you think.  Consult with your SRES® to learn about some of your options, and consider seeking advice from other trusted professionals who can coordinate with your SRES® to meet your real estate goals. 

What kinds of services are available to support me?

In addition to local community centers and seniors centers, there are many paid and volunteer services available to support you, depending on your needs.  There are also charities and other non-profit organizations that provide additional support for little or no money for those who qualify.  Your SRES® should be able to give you referrals.