The Role of Recreation Amenities in Retiree Relocation Decisions


  • Traci L. Haigood
  • John L. Crompton


retiree relocation, recreation, push factors, pull factors.


The goal of this research project was to identify the relative importance of recreation amenities in shaping retiree relocation decisions. Data were analyzed from 270 retired respondents who had moved permanently to the Texas Lower Rio Grande Valley within the previous one-year period. Seven factors, containing twenty-six items, which push individuals to move to another location upon retirement, were identified and their relative importance evaluated. The two items that referred to recreation were ranked second (desire to live in a more recreationally enjoyable area) and third (desire to live in a place where recreation opportunities are plentiful) in importance, behind desire to get away from cold weather. This suggests that wealthy retirees are likely to consider moving from communities that fail to provide a comprehensive set of recreation opportunities. An additional thirty attributes were assigned · to seven pull domains, which reflected reasons for retirees selecting destinations to which to move. However, the recreation/park opportunities domain was not prominent, ranking substantially lower than climate/terrain preferences and availability of support services. Data from this study suggest that communitites that fail to provide a high level of recreational opportunities for retirees are likely to have their tax base eroded by the loss of the economic spending power from some of their more affluent retirees.





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