By Kathleen Albury
Downsizing all starts with a decision and it is one that will often take quite some time to come to. Is the house feeling a bit bigger now that the kids have moved out? Does the property need a bit more work than you’d like to do. Are your days being taken up by work on the house when there are other things you would rather be doing?
Most of us wonder when the right time for a change is. Maybe we have been in our house for 4 years or 40 years but either way, it is a big decision and one not to take lightly. I have met so many people over the years and they have all said that they were happy to be able to control their own outcomes instead of having it determined for them. Is the property you are in suitable if someone in the family gets ill or injured? Is this the home you still see yourself in if you are on your own? Sometimes people will hold on to a larger home as it may have extra room or a pool for the grand kids. If it is a two story house, is there a room downstairs that can be used as a bedroom in case the stairs become too much.
There are a myriad of things to consider and I always suggest making a good ole’ fashioned pro’s and con’s list. The right time for a change is when you are ready. It will start as a passing thought and then you will find yourself thinking about it more and more as time goes on. Once you think you might be ready to consider a change, the next step is to get…..excited.
I have found over the years that until someone is excited about a move, they will just stay in the same place. It is comfy and familiar. You may have good relationships with your neighbours. The home is full of wonderful memories. The key to getting over an emotional attachment to a property is to get out and go “shopping”. What this means is get out there and start looking at what options may be available to you.
There may be two downsizes in your future. Some people downsize into a large home but one that is still smaller or less maintenance than their existing home. Maybe going from acreage to a large size single level. It really depends on what your current needs are.
Would you want to move into a smaller house? A small house or villa with a small yard for a garden. Maybe a unit or townhouse with no maintenance is for you. Perhaps an over 55 community is your thing. We really don’t know until we get out and start to look. Instead of going into this as a chore, I like to say it is like window shopping. The key is to get out and see lots of different areas and different types of housing.
I have met so many people who will say “oh I am not a retirement community type of person”, only to call me a few weeks later and say “you won’t believe it, but I found a community that I love and want to move into” or “I don’t think I can handle being in a unit” to “I just saw the brand new apartment building that is being built and it is amazing”. The truth is, we don’t know what we will fall in love with unless we keep our minds open and have a look at everything that is available to us.
Downsizing doesn’t need to be daunting or forever. You may downsize a couple of times throughout your life. I know many that people that have. It can, and should be, an exciting idea when the time is right is for you. Is it time to trade the pruning shears for a Pina Colada or choose golfing over gardening? The decision is yours for the making.
Kathleen Albury L.R.E.A, is an award winning real estate agent with a career spanning more than two decades. Kathleen started selling real estate in the US and has been lucky enough to call Australia home for the past 11 years. She is a mother to three daughters and a few fur babies. Kathleen loves helping people with their real estate journey.