The surprising downside of a sunny retirement

The surprising downside of a sunny retirement

Kathy McCoy and her husband, Bob Stover, retired to Arizona from their home in California six years ago.

It's not an uncommon move for US retirees, to relocate somewhere calmer and warmer in retirement. But, since they've moved, McCoy and Stover discovered a few things they didn't anticipate. First, their city in Arizona is a "snowbird" destination, meaning that many people spend winters there but live elsewhere during other seasons.

"About half of our community is only here three to four months a year," McCoy, 71, said. "The more affluent 'snowbirds' who spend winters in their second homes tend to look down on those of us who are full-timers." Many community events are geared toward those temporary residents, as well, and little is offered during the "off" season.

The couple also wasn't prepared for the area's summer weather. "We expected heat," McCoy said. "But we didn't realise how humid it also gets with monsoon season in the summer. A 117-degree day (47 Celsius] with high humidity is not unusual." If they had to do it over again, McCoy and Stover might have chosen to stay in California, they said.

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