Downsizing has been described as “moving to a smaller or less valuable property, and is most commonly associated with retirees or people whose children have left the family home.” However, in today’s scenario, downsizing homes has become more popular as a consequence of economic pressures, where reductions in mortgage payments and household expenses have become essential. It could be for equity release or, for some, it is just to enjoy a change of environment and lifestyle.
Along with the excitement of new opportunities when relocating come challenges and emotional upheavals. Even the best Sittingbourne letting agents will advise that a well-thought-out plan, taking into consideration all aspects of this big move in one’s lifetime, is the answer.
Given below are some of the factors to contemplate when deciding to downsize.
Look at options: Before choosing, think about where you would like to move. Carry out research on properties available in that location which are feasible to your budget. This will depend on the type of property you are looking for – whether an apartment or a bungalow. Ensure that it has sufficient light and space to accommodate a home office, parking space, storage and open areas according to your needs.
Pick the right location: Think about what is important to you and the amenities you feel are essential. If it is to move closer to family, have easy access to shopping and entertainment, good transport facilities, then you need to choose an area which will provide all your requirements.
Make a choice on the type of home: Do you want to enter a new home where everything is ready and comfortable? Modern houses have lower heating charges and need less maintenance. Or would you rather pay a lower price and choose a home which needs some TLC that you can provide according to your time and requirements?
Declutter before selling your home: This is an important factor. You need to get rid of unnecessary furniture and other items so that the main features of your decluttered home can be highlighted to a potential buyer. On the other hand, you need to decide which items will be essential for your new, smaller home and keep only those. All other furnishings should be disposed of.
Digitise documents: Except for essential hard copy documents, an expert suggested “other personal or financial documents, you can scan and save”. This frees so much space. Remember to shred personal documents once they have been digitised.
Opt for eco-friendly and sustainable items: When recycling or buying items for your home, choose those which are eco-friendly and will last long. This will save on new or replacement purchases in the future.
Lose track of the financial side: Downsizing could result in a good profit by selling a larger home and buying a smaller one. The cash could provide the type of lifestyle you are looking forward to. However, if your target is to increase finances, release equity and ensure that you have enough funds for retirement as well as gifts to family members or expenses for travel, meticulous budgeting is required.
Fail to consider the time involved: With inflation, the increased cost of materials and labour is leading to delays in the process of completing buildings for sale. If you are looking for a new building, choose one that is completed or nearing completion, as it will probably take less time for the sale to go through. If you have time on your hands, then you have more of a choice. Also, some developers may offer options for the sale of your current home.
Choose a huge garden: A smaller home is easier to take care of and involves less maintenance. So does a smaller garden. It should be large enough not to be burdensome, but to be rewarded with the joy it brings.
Forget to talk to the family: In spite of the benefits of downsizing, moving from the family home can be very emotional. It sometimes means the parting of ways for each family member. Remember to talk to your family and listen to their views. It offers a chance for all to bond and decides what is best for the family as a whole.
Procure new possessions: Some offers are very tempting but it is best not to acquire “doubles”, but to make do with what you already have for your new home. As it is, you need to declutter your home so it won’t help by adding non-essential items.
Conclusion: Downsizing your home can bring conflicting emotions. The financial benefits are rewarding though the emotional feelings of leaving the comfort of your old home can be daunting. It is up to you to face the situation with positivity. Try concentrating on the benefits of the new home while discarding the problems of the old. You are sure to end up a winner!