How to Enjoy the Snowbird Lifestyle

Thursday, March 14, 2013

How to Enjoy the Snowbird Lifestyle

Most people reluctantly put up with the cold winter when it arrives and complain their way through it, but some flexible and adventurous people move to a warmer climate when winter comes around. While this sounds like too much of an effort to most of us, there are many ways in which such a lifestyle can be enjoyable and even beneficial, especially to sufferers of seasonal affective disorder.

 

Some suggestions to enjoy the snowbird lifestyle:

  • Do not wait until you retire before you try this. Your health may not last until then, so putting it off might make you miss it altogether. Start with winter holidays in Costa Rica, Florida or Arizona, for example, and if you think that fleeing the winter is for you, change your employment to becoming self-employed or to a job that you can do from home.

  • Flexible rental agreements are widespread in cities that attract snowbirds. These allow you to rent for a month at a time, and many even throw in cleaning and repair services.

  • House exchanging or house sitting is a great way to do this on the cheap and in luxury to boot. Advertize as widely as possible and consult internet classifieds for ads. If you can find a house with all its comforts to live in during your months away, and possibly someone to look after your home while you are away, you are very lucky.

  • If you use a trailer or motor home to escape the winter, pick the park where you settle well. The more amenities, the more expensive, so if you don’t plan to use them, pick a cheaper park. If you can fit most of your comforts into a motor home, this is a good way to do it, because it gives you a choice of winter locations.

  • Wherever you choose to settle, remember that there might be legal issues around driver’s licenses and taxes. Arizona, for example, requires everyone that lives there for seven months a year to have a local driver’s license, and if you stay anywhere for long enough to be considered a resident, your income will be taxed.