Why would the process of selling my house help me with downsizing? Well the two go hand in hand. Most people usually need to sell their main home in order to downsize and it is through this process that we start to take the first steps towards the future.
Downsizing can become very daunting and overwhelming which is why a lot of people tend to put it off. There are some tips that I give people when they begin this process. Most don’t think about it, but when we are preparing to sell we wind up doing all the work prior to going on the market and once that is done, the rest is smooth sailing.
Generally, the majority of this is done when we are “prepping” our houses for sale and actually works to make the future move so much easier. When I go to someone’s home and they are thinking of downsizing, I know this is a stressful time and I try to make it as stress free as possible.
These are some of the steps that I discuss when I go to clients’ homes, making their upcoming move that much easier.
Get the kids involved if you can. It is almost inevitable not to still be storing some of the kids’ belongings that have been left in the home over the years. Having the kids decide what they would like to keep and what they would like to throw out is a great start. The other things to ask the children is whether they would like to keep anything in the house for themselves. When downsizing, we need to get rid of everything that won’t be going into the next property. This includes antiques, larger furniture and often a few bedrooms’ worth of furniture. This is also the time to tell the kids to take anything that they want for the future, as everything will be getting thrown out or donated.
Donate, donate, donate. This may seem like an obvious one, but you may be surprised to know that a lot of charitable organisations often won’t take our antiques, beds, and a lot of other furniture. They are very specific as to what they will take. To put it bluntly, if they can’t sell it they won’t collect it. Ask a representative to come over to the house, have a look and they will tell you what they will be able to take off your hands.
Arrange council pickups or a skip bin. Depending on how much is left after the kids and charitable organisations have come through will depend on whether it is easier to get a skip bin or just do a few council pickups.
After all this has been done, you are left with the furniture and belongings that you wish to take to your new home. I tell people to just put all these items in the garage. A common question asked regarding this advice is, ‘Won’t buyers want to see the space in the garage”? The short answer is no. Buyers can imagine a garage and what it looks like, but they need to see the space inside the house in order to make an emotional decision to buy the property. I always say that buyers are buying space, so the goal is to create as much as possible. We do that by following the steps above and packing everything up and putting it into the garage.
So once the house is sold all the hard work has already been done. All you need to do is open the garage and let the removalists take it all to your new home. If you don’t have a garage, we can always find the space. I have even had clients use friends’ garages or rent a storage locker for a short time.
As an expert in helping others with this process, I know the first step is literally to just get started and the rest will all fall into place. Grab a few boxes and get ready to see what the future brings.
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. Kathleen is a local agent on the Central Coast