Life changes—children grow up and leave home, we don’t need as much space, and our financial means may change. Any of these reasons may prompt us to consider downsizing: reducing our possessions and moving to a smaller home.
If you’re contemplating making such a change, take time to evaluate the many facets involved. Downsizing is an important transition requiring careful consideration.
What’s involved? Relocating to a new home that’s more suitable to your current needs requires well-planned steps, including financial planning and paring down your possessions. Social and health considerations also play a role. Like any long-term commitment, consider the benefits and limitations a new home will provide.
Think about where you want to live, what amenities you require, and who you want to be near. Spend time researching the area and property.
Don’t go bigger than you need. By contrast to downsizing too much, you can also not downsize enough. You can imagine the kids and grandkids will visit all you want, but don’t go for a home that’s bigger than you need, simply to accommodate potential visitors. One spare room and a fold-out sofa could probably adapt to most needs and will still keep your home manageable.
The same goes for lot sizes. Take into consideration how much yard maintenance you will be able to do as you advance in years and what the costs will be if you have to hire someone to mow the grass and weed the garden.
Planning for a quiet life outside the city might make sense on one hand, but it puts you further from essential services when you’re older and usually further from public transport if you’re unable to drive because of your health.
The location considerations you had as a family or when you were younger may not be the same as you get older.
Where ever you choose as a location, make sure you plan ahead so your future needs are met.