The Pros and Cons of Moving Closer to Family
Family is important, but when you live apart it's hard to see each other very often. While telephones and video calls have shrunk that distance, it's never quite the same as being able to actually see your loved ones. If you're considering moving closer to your children, or to your grandchildren, you should carefully consider every part of that decision. Because it's easy to see only the positives, without really considering the negatives. And for every up there is a down, which is why it's a good idea to compare and contrast what you'll be getting if you choose to make that move.
Pro: You Get More Family Time
Even busy families can find time to catch lunch, or go to a weekend movie, provided they live relatively close together. It also means you won't miss out on holidays, birthdays, and other important events like recitals, plays, etc. that grandkids tend to have on the regular. That is a compelling reason for many older parents to try to close the physical distance between themselves, and the rest of their families.
Con: You Have Limited Options
If the rest of your family already lives in a certain city, then you have to take that city on its own terms. That means you have limited choices when it comes to budgets, locations, and other factors that are available for you. Depending on your resources, and your personal needs, you might not be able to find a new home that gives you everything you need.
Pro: You Have a Support Network
Even if you are unfamiliar with your new location, you'll have a support network in the form of your family. They can help integrate you, show you around, and get you up-to-speed on what your new area has to offer. That's a big plus, especially for seniors who may have issues reaching out to others, or starting a new social network from scratch.
Con: It Can Be Hard to Balance Life
Just because you're a parent, or a grandparent, that doesn't mean you don't have a life to attend to. You have interests, hobbies, and you may even still be working on your career. Just because your kids have grown up (and in some cases had kids of their own), that doesn't mean you don't have things to do, still. If you live near your family, though, you might feel pressure to put that aside in order to be more involved with the group.
Pro: New Opportunities
If the area you're moving to has things your current place of residence doesn't, then that can be a big win for you. Whether it's better social services to help you with your needs, a more active social scene, or just an economy where your money goes further than it does where you currently live. You need to carefully evaluate where you're going, and try to find positive aspects of it that will allow you to branch out.
Con: The Cost
Even if you have a small house full of stuff, and you're moving a relatively short distance, it's going to cost you time, money, and effort to move. Those costs need to be calculated, and their impact evaluated, before you decide to move. Because even if you can afford your final destination; you want to be closer to your family; and there are opportunities there, the cost of moving might be enough to shackle you in place.