As the sun creeps lower in the sky, the days get shorter, and the first traces of snow start to fall, millions of Americans pull up the stakes and hit the road. By and large, these so-called “snowbirds” are heading for warm weather destinations, where they can keep having fun in the sun all year long.
But what happens when the season changes once again, and it’s time to for these “birds” to flock back home? That’s the question that millions of snowbirds, mostly older Americans and retirees, tend to face right around this time of year.
As the winter winds down at home, it’s time for this group to wave goodbye to their getaways in spots like Florida, Arizona, and South Carolina and head back north—just in time for the weather to turn sunny and mild in other parts of the country!
But after a long winter away, coming back home can sometimes feel like a major transition. From making travel plans to getting your household back in working order, there are all sorts of things that snowbirds need to consider when they migrate back north.
If you’re a snowbird planning to head back home, here are a few items that may be worth adding to your end-of-season checklist:
Close Down Your Winter Home
Whether you own your home away from home, or you rented or borrowed a property for the season, here are a few things to consider when it’s time to leave:
- Have you stripped the beds, done the laundry, and gotten the furniture ready for the off-season?
- Have you cleaned out the fridge of anything that might go bad?
- Have you unplugged all of the TVs, computers, and other electronics?
- If the house will be sitting empty, have you suspended phone, internet, or cable service?
- Have you locked all of the windows and doors?
- If possible, have you made arrangements with a property manager, neighbor, or professional service to keep an eye on your home after you leave?
- Have you thought about renting out your vacation home through a service like VRBO, HomeAway, or Airbnb?
- Have you updated your forwarding address for bills, mail, packages, and other notifications?
Get Ready to Travel
The spring travel season can be hectic under the best of circumstances. One way to make the move from home to home at the end of the season easier is to plan your trip ahead of time.
Here are a few questions worth asking yourself before it’s time to go home:
- Have you looked at the weather for the days you’ll be traveling?
- If you’re flying, have you booked your flights well in advance?
- If you’ll need to stop off anywhere or take a long layover on your way home, have you booked any accommodations at a hotel or motel?
- Have you packed all of your belongings? Have you accounted for absolutely everything that needs to go from home to home?
- Have you gotten your pet(s) ready to travel?
- Have you made plans to have your bulky belongings, or your vehicle, shipped from location to location?
Get Back Into the Swing of Things
After your winter holiday, here are a few things you may need to take care of to get your primary household back up and running:
- Have you taken steps to “de-winterize” your permanent home, and get it ready to be occupied again?
- Are your HVAC and plumbing systems ready to go after sitting dormant for the winter?
- Have you reconnected your cable, phone, and internet service?
- Have you reached out and remind the important people in your life that you are back in your permanent residence?
Take on the Important Tasks You May Have Been Putting Off—Like Purchasing Health Insurance!
Part of the appeal of being a snowbird is that you can put off all of the hassles that come with winter, whether that means shoveling a walkway, fighting for “dibs” on a parking space, or paying that expensive heating bill.
But the end of the season is a great time to take on all of the tasks, big or little, you may have put off over the winter months—including reassessing your health and life insurance needs! For a lot of snowbirds, that may mean looking into Medicare supplement insurance.
Often thought of as “the gold standard” for coverage, Medicare supplement insurance is private health insurance designed to help pay some of the health care costs that original Medicare doesn’t cover, like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. It is used by millions of seniors and other Medicare beneficiaries, offering them a sense of security about both the predictable and unexpected costs associated with medical care.
Want to talk about Medicare supplement insurance in a little more depth? Looking for health and life insurance guidance, so you’ll always be able to say “I Got A Guy!” for any of your coverage questions? The Enrollment Specialists can help! Drop us a line today to get the conversation started.