Is your home getting hard to manage? Would you rather spend your time doing things you truly enjoy rather than keeping up with chores? When it comes to homes, bigger isn’t always better—and certainly if it doesn’t fit your circumstances. Here are some sure fire signs that it may be time for you to downsize:
This is one of the most common reasons people look into downsizing. As they move toward or through retirement, many people hoping to stretch out their retirement savings want to decrease their yearly expenses. A smaller and cheaper property can help do that by reducing property taxes, insurance, and mortgage payments.
2. Feeling Overwhelmed with Maintenance
No matter what your age, you have to ensure that your home is cleaned, maintained and paid for – whether you do the work yourself or pay someone else to do it. Fixing broken shingles on a roof and making sure a large yard is constantly mowed can be exhausting. If you’ve reached the stage where you feel overwhelmed or just think you could better use your time or money, it’s time to go smaller.
3. Unused Rooms
Bigger is not always better. If you can’t remember the last time that you walked into your guest bedroom except to dust, then you should consider downsizing. If these spare rooms do nothing but collect dust, they may be a waste. Unused rooms still end up costing money not only in property taxes and eventual maintenance (leaky roofs, peeling paint, etc.) but also in that they must be heated and cooled, using up unnecessary electricity, gas, or oil.
4. Lifestyle Change
When thinking about downsizing, it’s important to forecast ahead for the future. While you may be spry and able now, what about in 15-20 years? Medical issues or disability is one of the most common reasons some chose to downsize. The time may come where climbing the stairs in your two story home multiple times a day may become too much. A one-story home or apartment may be more appropriate for your physical abilities in years to come.
5. Financial Troubles
Financial issues are another reason some consider downsizing in older age. The trick to successfully downsizing for financial reasons is to not wait too long.. If you are already dipping into your savings to pay your home expenses each month, chances are you shouldn’t be in that house. You need your savings for retirement, not to maintain a lifestyle you had back when you were drawing a larger salary. This is a sign that can apply to any homeowner–not just those considering downsizing in older age. For some, they bought a home they could afford, but circumstances changed and it’s now more difficult to pay the utilities. You shouldn’t have to struggle each month to come up with the money to make your house payment. Stressing over short funds can compromise your mental, emotional, and physical health. Your better option is to find a house payment you can comfortably afford.
6. You Can Make Big Money
Houses in your neighborhood are beginning to sell for a pretty penny. When purchasing a home, you typically calculate the home’s potential appreciation based on market factors. If your home has appreciated in value, right now may be the perfect time to cash in on that value– particularly because it’s a seller’s market. There is a low inventory of homes on the market and low interest rates, so there is a high volume of buyers. Downsizing in today’s market could be the smartest way to earn the highest value of your home. Imagine what you could do with the extra money!
Downsizing in today’s market could be the smartest way to earn the highest value of your home. Imagine what you could do with the extra money!
7. You want to see more of your family
If distance from your family is what’s keeping you from watching your grandchildren’s soccer games or ballet recitals, consider moving closer. Downsizing to a smaller home closer to your family will allow you to grab lunch with your son or read to your grandchild as they drift off to sleep. These moments just aren’t the same when you only get to see them a couple of times a year because you live far away from each other. Even if you do not choose to move to the same city as your family, owning a smaller home such as a condo with less maintenance will make travel much easier and more feasible.
If any of these signs apply to you, it may be time to look into buying a smaller, easier to maintain home.