There are countless benefits to downsizing your home, and it’s a wonderful way to open the door to the next stage of your life. But making the decision to downsize can be hard, and leaving a home filled with cherished memories can bring heartache. So, when is the right time to downsize?
If owning your current home has brought more stress and worry than it has joy and comfort in recent years, the time may be now. Here are seven signs it’s time to put your house on the market and downsize…
1) You have little leftover once bills are paid
The definition of retirement has changed drastically over the years. Now more than ever before, retirees are maintaining an active lifestyle that includes hobbies, exercise, and continued learning – and these all cost a bit of money. So how would you like to spend your time? Perhaps it’s joining a gym, taking painting classes, or taking a few education courses. If your monthly housing expenses are so high that you can’t enjoy your hobbies or activities, now may be the perfect time to downsize to free up some cash so you can spend it the way you want.
2) Maintaining your home is becoming difficult
Our homes are filled with precious memories that we hold dear. The wall where you recorded your grandchildren’s heights, to the living room where your daughter first learned the piano. Our homes are reminders of the love and laughter we’ve shared with friends and family, and this leads many to remain in their homes longer than is wise for their health and financial stability.
Limited mobility can prevent you from being able to perform general maintenance around the house, like garden work and regular cleaning. No matter your age, there will always be household chores that need to be done. But cleaning the gutters, vacuuming a two-story home, or mowing the lawn and trimming the shrubs can become more difficult as you get older.
One of the many benefits of downsizing your home is you can choose a property where you longer need to worry about these chores. If you’ve reached the stage where these tasks seem impossible, it’s time to go smaller. And it’s better to make this decision sooner, rather than later. If household chores begin to pile up and if they impact the condition of your home, you may see a decrease in property value when it comes time to sell.
3) Your home has features that make aging in place difficult
If you’ve gained mobility restrictions as you’ve grown older, you probably made home improvements and modifications for safe and comfortable living. You’ve installed handrails, upgraded the lighting, and replaced your hard flooring for carpet. But depending on your layout, there may be some home features you’re unable to modify that still pose a threat to your safety and make aging in place difficult.
Features like several flights of stairs, narrow doorways, or high-maintenance landscaping can all be safety hazards. If these home features have become obstacles for you, then now is the right time to downsize to a safer floor plan. A home designed for optimal accessibility, convenience, and safety is imperative to avoid falls and serious injuries.
4) Your location no longer fits your lifestyle
If you’ve lived in your current home for countless years, you probably opted for an area that suited your lifestyle at that point in time. Maybe you chose a suburban neighbourhood to escape city life. Or maybe you moved into a townhouse in the bustling city for an easier commute to work. These locations may have been ideal for your previous situation, but now they may no longer fit your needs.
You may find downsizing to a different location is what you need to fit your current lifestyle. Downsizing your home to a smaller one can reduce the amount of upkeep and free up your time for leisure activities, getting more rest, and spending time with family and friends.
5) You want to release home equity
An easy way to generate some cash – perhaps to travel, invest or help family members make their way onto the property ladder – is to sell and release some of the equity in your home. By downsizing, you end up with a bundle of cash to do whatever you like with!
6) You have the option to live anywhere
The beauty of retirement is that you’re no longer tied to one location and can choose to live wherever your heart desires. This gives you the opportunity to look all across the country and find somewhere suited to you, perhaps with lower living costs or even by the sea! If you’re wanting to sell your home and escape to the country, or if you’re looking to be closer to family, the world is now your oyster.
7) Consider downsizing your home when several rooms go unused
It may feel like just yesterday when three bathrooms didn’t feel like enough, or when your children’s toys somehow managed to take over the entire house. At those times, you probably longed for a larger house to control the chaos. But, if any of the rooms that were once used are now rarely opened, it doesn’t make sense to pay to heat, cool, and light them. Saving money on utilities is just another reason to think about downsizing your home.
Thinking of downsizing but not sure where to start or how much your home might now be worth? Get in touch, and our expert team will guide you in your next steps!