Is it right for you?

How do you know when it’s time to downsize? Is now a good time?

The short answer is that there is no short answer. The time to downsize is different for everyone.

It does happen to all of us eventually though. We have achieved the great Australian dream of owning our own home, raising our kids and making many memories in the family home. Only to discover once the kids are gone the house is far too big. This just might be the right time to consider selling your home and finding something smaller that better suits your current – and future – living needs.

To help decide if now is a good time for you to downsize, consider these 10 things:

1. Do you have too much space?

If all your children have homes of their own, you may not need those 2 extra bedrooms and large living space anymore. You may have gotten to a stage where you’re tired of cleaning unused rooms and storing the things your kids left behind. You start seeing the value in this one big asset, your home, and realise that you could easily live in a smaller place and have money left over to play with. Money that could be put to better use, like holidays or even an investment property.

2. Can you handle your home maintenance?

With all of that extra space in and around your home comes extra cleaning and maintenance. Has it become too much of a task to take care of your home by yourself? Is mowing your lawn and tending to your garden getting too hard? You could downsize to a smaller home and cut those tasks incrementally.

3. Will your home accommodate you in five or 10 years?

Think long-term when you make a decision about downsizing. Try to imagine living in your home in a few years. Do you have steps you have to navigate up and down? Are the doorways large enough for wheelchair access? If it will be too hard to get around your current home without major renovations, it could be time to downsize.

4. Can you continue to afford your current home?

Obviously if the costs of living in your home have become too much for you, downsizing is a great idea. A smaller home typically means lower mortgage, taxes and utility costs. If your current home is putting a strain on your bank account, it may be a good idea to go for a smaller option.  

5. Are you prepared for other costs?

When you downsize to some communities, you may be faced with new costs. For instance, if you want to move into a community where lawn maintenance is included, you will likely pay a monthly home owner association fee to cover the shared service. So, while your mortgage may be lower when you downsize, know that you could face other costs.

6. Do you frequently have visitors?

You may not need all the space in your current home all the time, but if you regularly have children or grandchildren come to visit or stay with you, it could be too important for you to part with. Take into consideration how often you’ll be entertaining when you decide if you should downsize.

7. Do you plan to travel?

Maybe your children have moved interstate and you intend to visit them frequently. Maybe you want to join the grey nomad club and don’t intend to spend much time at home. Either way, if you don’t plan to spend much time in your current home, it may make sense to downsize to a smaller home.

8. Are you attached to your current neighbourhood?

If you are really attached to the community in which you live then simply look to purchase a smaller home, unit or apartment in the same area.  That way you will still be close to family and friends.

9. Can you part with the memories you’ve made?

If your current home is the one where you’ve raised your family, the chances are good that special memories fill every room. Though you certainly can take those memories with you when you go, you need to decide if you’ll be able to deal with the emotional detachment of leaving your current home. The key in deciding to move is to do it while you still have choices and are able to make those choices that suit you, instead of being forced into it.

10. Do you have equity in your current home?

If you have built equity in your home, downsizing could be a lucrative option for you. Profiting from your home sale could give you more options when it comes to buying a new home or just enjoying the next stage of your life.

No one can tell you when or if you should downsize, but considering these 10 factors could help you decide for yourself.

Our Sales Consultants at One Agency Robert Mure would be happy to discuss your needs with you.  Their professional, friendly, stress free approach will help remove the anxiety and uncertainty out of what can be a very emotional time for all concerned.

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