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Common Questions & Answers

When Should I Downsize?

when should i downsize
Understanding the who, what, why, where and when of downsizing is critical to a successful change

You might not need to save money, but downsizing isn’t just about finances, it can also save you stress. The less space you have, the fewer things you will have and the less upkeep will be required of you. It isn’t an easy process, though, so it’s important that you know when you should downsize. There is an emotional burden to the process, as well as a financial one.

There is a lot to consider – you may have spent 40 years in your home, raised your children there, and the idea of letting go is difficult. There is a lifetime of memories tied to this old house and as much as you want to have a property you can maintain, you still can’t let go of the one you’re in right now. The process will be easier if you are sure it’s the right time for you.

Five questions to ask yourself about downsizing

If you want the answer to when should I downsize, then you can ask yourself the following questions.

What do your mortgage payments look like?

The closer you get to retirement, the more likely you are to want to reduce debt. So, the remainder on your mortgage might be the biggest sway over whether you choose to downsize now or later. If you are nowhere near to paying it all off and approaching retirement, now is the time to downsize. Of course, if your home is already paid off, you can downsize whenever you like.

Are you in a financial position to move?

Moving isn’t cheap, even if you plan to downsize somewhere locally. It’s also time-consuming so think about the logistics of packing, moving, and unpacking.

Are you ready to let go of your belongings?

This is a key part of downsizing, you have to let go of your belongings. Not everything will fit into a smaller space so, you have to decide what you are comfortable with getting rid of, whether you donate it, sell it or pass it on to your family. It can be really difficult to let go and if you’re not ready to do it, you might not be ready to downsize.

Are you currently living near family?

This is another key consideration you will need to make before you determine whether you are ready to downsize. If you currently live close to family, you don’t want to let go of that support. As you get older, your health declines and you want your loved ones near you. If you are moving closer to family, then it’s an easy one. If you are thinking about going abroad, you will need to really consider what that looks like for your health and happiness.

Would someone inherit your home?

If you have family and you’re holding onto your home because you want to pass it onto them, you should speak to them directly. You might find that your children don’t want your home. Many children simply sell a home when they inherit it because they are already established in their own places. Don’t hold onto your home simply because you want to pass it on to someone else.

Ultimately, it’s up to you to consider your situation and determine whether now is the time to downsize or not.

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