Do you want to become a snowbird when you retire? For many Americans who are no longer tied to one location by their career, the idea of living in one climate during the cold weather and another during the summer heat is very appealing. And you can have success as a retiree snowbird, but it calls for some unique retirement financial planning. Here are five things you'll need to plan for.

1. Double Household Expenses.

Certainly, the biggest difference between a snowbird retirement and a traditional one is the upkeep of two houses. While the expenses of one home are generally lower during the season when it's not in use, overhead costs remain all year long. You may need to plan additional housing funds to cover these.

2. State Tax Issues.

Being domiciled in two states can cause some additional tax challenges. You may be able to choose the more tax-advantageous state to be a resident of by the amount of time you choose to live in each one. But without planning, your income and retirement withdrawals could end up overtaxed. 

3. Potential Rental Income.

One benefit of having two households is that you may opt to rent out one of them for short-term vacation use when you're not in it. This provides an additional stream of income, which can make your retirement more comfortable and prevent concerns about outliving your money. But you'll need to choose a property with good rental potential and learn about the pros, cons, and expenses of being a long-distance landlord.

4. Travel Costs.

Moving back and forth between your two homes is an additional hassle that snowbirds take on. You should plan for the additional travel expenses when crafting your retirement budget. However, you may also use this opportunity to travel more. This means even more attention to your travel budget plans within your retirement financial plan. 

5. Different Costs and Benefits.

Each area you have a home in will come with different expenses and potential benefits. You may need specialized insurance coverage that covers you in both locations, particularly if they're very far apart. You may also insure the homes against different hazards, use different medical services, and enjoy different social activities. These will all have their unique costs, but they also provide more variety for snowbirds. 

Being a snowbird has many advantages, and it's the perfect balance for more and more retirees. If you think you may want to join the ranks of snowbirds, the best way to begin is by meeting with a retirement financial planner to discuss your plans today.