Having a Roommate After 50 Could Improve your Health and your Bank Balance

Posted by Margaret-Ann Burness on Oct 14, 2017 11:13:00 AM
Margaret-Ann Burness

I was at a dinner party the other night when a man asked me what I did for a living. I introduced him to Silvernest – the house sharing and roommate matching service for boomers and empty nesters where I work.


He immediately loved the concept and quickly rattled off a list of people he wanted to tell – like his Aunt Lucy who was struggling to make ends meet on a fixed income of social security and her teaching pension.  


While my dinner companion quickly understood the benefits, we know that not everyone is ready to open their home to a roommate. Which begs the question, why not? We all had roommates back in our twenties, so what’s stopping us from doing the same later in life?


Well, for starters, back then we weren’t so picky. We just wanted someone to help cover the rent and maybe put some beer in the fridge. It didn’t matter so much if they partied all night, sang in the shower, or worked crazy hours.


Fast forward thirty years, and these things carry more weight as we become more in touch with our own personal likes and dislikes and have established our own habits.  


Plus, life is more complicated than it once was. With the cost of living on the rise and salaries growing at a slower rate, many people are financially strapped.


The good news is that if you’re a homeowner, your home can work for you. It’s often much cheaper to stay in the home you love and rent out your unused space than to try to save money by downsizing or moving. In other words, having a roommate could make a lot of sense – just like it did after college.


At Silvernest, our homeowners make an average of $10,000 a year by renting out a room in their home.  That’s more than $800 a month, and we all know that can go a long way, especially when you want to make home repairs, pay off the mortgage, or even take a dream vacation.


There are other benefits too. Like Aunt Lucy, many of us are living alone and studies show that social isolation negatively impacts our health. In fact, AARP’s research shows that lacking social connections is as damaging to our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. Renting out a room in your home and sharing space can improve your well-being, reduce doctor visits, and even help you live longer. 


Today, you may have more refined priorities for what you want in a roommate than you did in your twenties, and that’s where Silvernest can help the most with our unique compatibility matching system.  


Silvernest was designed especially for those of us over 40 who want an easy but secure way to find a roommate. Our goal is to find you the perfect match for you and your home. It all starts with our compatibility algorithm and what you want in a roommate. We ask the questions that matter most to you – Do you want to live with a man or a woman? Is their faith, sexual preference or hobby important to you? Do you mind if they smoke? Are pets ok? These and many more questions tell us exactly what you’re looking for in a roommate and help us find your ideal match.  


So, I pose the question again.  What’s stopping you?


Tags: Aging in Place, Lifestyle, Wellness, Finance