After 18 or more of having a house full of kids – the time (finally) comes for the last one to fly the nest. As a result, not only do you get the time back that was spent driving, cooking and cleaning for them – you also have your space back. But, do you really need it? A four-bedroom house suddenly seems a bit extravagant for just you and your partner.
Research by Prudential found that 41% of over-55s plan to sell their current home, freeing up about £88,000 of cash per household. You may well find the thought of downsizing daunting. However, as well as the money, there are many benefits to this including less time cleaning for a start, which means more time to do the things you love.
Sold? If you are now considering selling the family home, here is a basic guide to downsizing – with hints and tips that should help.
Take time to think what you want out of a smaller home
Before you start looking at smaller homes you need to know what you want from it. For example, rather then moving to a one bedroom property, you might want to consider a two bedroom home, so you have somewhere for the kids or even grandkids to stay. It is also important to bear in mind, we are now seeing a boomerang generation, where more and more kids make their way back home due to high rent and low wages – so those visits could become a bit more permanent.
Think to the future…
When downsizing, it is important to look to the future because moving is stressful and you don’t want to be doing it again. This might be be your final move and so it is important to consider how things might change in the following years. For example, you might want to make the move to a bungalow rather than a third floor flat with no lift, as climbing stairs could be something that becomes increasingly difficult as the years go on. For the same reason you might want to think very carefully about the location. Take a look at this book for some helpful advice from those who have done it.
Obviously, downsizing means you will be better off financially – so it is important to think very carefully about what to do with the money. You might also want to consider cash house buyers – to get access to the funds quickly. Then you know how much you have to play with and can get on with making your decisions.
Consider your belongings
One of the biggest considerations when downsizing your home is what you are going to do with all your belongings. Although there are many perks to a smaller home, one downside could be the fact you will need to get rid of a lot of belongings because you simply won’t have room for it all. Sort through everything and decide what you would throw out, donate, sell and keep. You could also consider a storage unit, to enable you to keep the things that won’t fit, but you don’t want to throw away.
Use floor plans to arrange your furniture
When you are doing the above, use a floor plan to organise your belongings. This will give you a better understanding of what you can and can’t keep. If your sofa won’t fit in the new, smaller lounge – then it will have to go.
Whilst it may seem like a long process to get there, it will definitely be worth it once you are in your new home!
Image Credit: Shutterstock.com