Tips When Downsizing Your Home For Retirement

John Carew

The children are all grown up and have moved away. The family home is now far too large for you to continue to keep. It’s getting harder to maintain and you are no longer as young as you were when you first purchased this property.

Does this sound familiar? Then it may be time for you to consider downsizing.

Here we look at some of the main points you should consider if you are thinking of downsizing for retirement.

The Benefits of Downsizing

downsizing your home for retirement

A buyers agent is an advocate for you when you are looking for someone to help you in downsizing your home for retirement.

There are a number of good reasons to consider downsizing your home. They include the following:

1. Less Expense

The major benefit to downsizing as a transition to retirement is how much it can save you. You will save with a smaller property, costing you less to keep and maintain. Household bills, especially heating and cooling costs, will shrink once you downsize to a smaller home. It will also reduce your mortgage which will increase your retirement savings and income stream.

2. Climate Change

Downsizing often allows you to move somewhere new. It could mean living closer to family and in a different, warmer climate. This will add enjoyment to your years and can also assist with your health. If a family is not a motivation, maybe living somewhere new will bring added bonuses such as new friendships, exploring a new neighbourhood and becoming involved in new activities.

3. Closer To Amenities

For some who have lived in large homes it may have meant living in quieter more rural settings, or perhaps having the larger backyard has kept you further away from urban centres and transport hubs. Downsizing affords you the opportunity to find a home that is closer to an urban centre. Plus, if you no longer drive, being closer to amenities includes access to alternate forms of transportation such as a train. Light rail or bus routes.

4. Less to Maintain

Due to the fact that you are downsizing, there will be less work required for you to maintain the new property. If you move into a strata or apartment complex many of the yard and common area chores are taken care of so you don’t have to. This adds more time to your days to do whatever it is you want to do, and will ease up on the physical demands that keeping a yard or larger home requires

5. Opportunity to Declutter

Another plus to downsizing is it allows you to do a major de-clutter of your home, belongings, and life. Over time, we tend to accumulate a lot of ‘stuff’. There comes a point when much of it just needs to be released so that we can move forward without the extra weight of owning too much stuff.

6. Find Somewhere More Suitable

The 2 story home that you raised a family in may now be unsuitable as you get older. Walking up and down stairs, all day just isn't as easy as it used to be. This is your chance to find somewhere that is more suitable for this stage of your life.

How To Start Retirement Planning With Downsizing

There are several steps to take when you are about to begin the first phases of downsizing. The whole idea behind the concept is to reduce. That includes reducing the size of your home, reducing your amount of belongings and reducing your overall responsibilities.

In order to fully retire and enjoy your final years, you need to cut down on the things that are keeping you tied down. This may include work and community service. While it is still important to remain active, sometimes reducing the amount can help reduce stresses.

Here are some suggestions on how to start planning for your retirement:

1. The New Home

Once you have determined that you will be downsizing you will need to decide on what size home you will still require. It could be a transition to a smaller home, an apartment or a completely different residential structure. You will need to figure this out first.

2. Location

As mentioned above, downsizing allows you to relocate. But before you get too far in the planning stages you must determine what your desired new home will be. Are you moving from the country to the city? Are you moving nearer to family or are you just looking for something new?

3. Reduce

Before you can actually move to a new, smaller home in a different town or location in your region, you will need to begin the process of reducing your belongings. A common option is to start with family. Let them have access to what they would like to have. This will reduce a lot of stress and worry.

After the family and friends have gone through the items you are trying to de-clutter, host a yard or garage sale. This will not only help to recycle items, it will generate a little extra income for you. You could host weekly sales if required to get rid of all those extra belongings.

You can even upload many good quality items onto many community sites such as Gumtree, Craigslist, eBay or Facebook.

Once the yard/garage sale cycle is completed, seek local charities that may take some of the usable items that still remain. They may take a lot of things off your hands in order to provide for others within the community who may be in need.

Whatever remains may end up going to the dump. Hopefully, this is a small load that either you can handle or you can hire help to haul away. Regardless, after you complete reducing the clutter you will have a better idea of the amount of space you will require in your new home.

4. House Hunting

A buyer’s agent can be one of the most useful tools at your disposal when you get to this part of the downsizing process. Finding the right property in Sydney can be a challenge and a buyers agent will be able to save you much in the way of time when you are looking for a new home.

The buyers agent will work for you, keeping your budget in place and keeping you stress-free by handling all negotiations on your behalf. The goal of the buyers agent is to get you in the downsized home of your choosing at a great deal less than if you used a real estate agent.

5. Make The Move

After you have settled the deal with the assistance of a buyer’s agent, you will be selling your home and packing up to move. A good buyers agent can also assist with this, as they have access to a range of professionals to help with all stages of the buying and moving process.

Once you are in your new home you will be able to start the next chapter of enjoying retirement. In a smaller home you will save money and still have independence.

See A Buyers Agent When Downsizing Your Home For Retirement

A buyers agent is not just for buying your first home or for upgrading to a family home. A buyers agent is also an advocate for you when it is time to look for a retirement home.

Downsizing is stressful enough. Finding your retirement home shouldn’t be. Let a buyer’s agent handle that for you.

If you are at this stage in your life and need help with finding a home to downsize to, then please contact us for a no obligation chat to see how we can help.

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