26 Sep Downsizing
You will wish you had done it sooner!
Have you decided that the time for change is Nye?
In a previous article, we discussed The Light Bulb Moment. That very moment when you know that it is absolutely time to move on to a new address. So many circumstances could be driving this change, and many of our clients tell us that whilst at first daunting, it is a liberating journey that ultimately ends a sometime long period of worry over how they will adjust to a more compact environment to wondering why they hadn’t done it sooner.
Generally speaking, the time to downsize comes about for majority of people as they have reached one of the following milestones in their lives;
- RETIREMENT – that time in your life when you finally get to stop officially working
- FAMILY – that time in your life when the children have grown up and left the nest
- FINANCIAL HARDSHIP – that time in your life when circumstances change and you are forced to downsize everything in your life
- MARITAL / PARTNERSHIP CHANGES – that time in your life you possibly never saw coming, never considered would happen to you and inevitably never planned for
We are constantly working with clients who are going through the motions and emotions of downsizing. We always provide them with the support and guidance they need to ensure they maximise their sale, locate the perfect ‘next address’ and transition smoothly.
Here are 5 steps to follow when preparing downsizing;
- Put your current home on the market
If you don’t already have an agent, research and appoint an agent you feel 100% comfortable will work very hard to sell or auction your home for the absolute best price the market is willing to pay. Having your home under contract at the time you make an offer on your next address places you in an ideal position with another seller. Have your agent conduct a CMA (current market analysis) on your property. Allow them to physically conduct a walk-through to properly evaluate your property. You may have made renovations, upgrades or changes to the land that could affect the estimated price range your home should fall into within the current market.
- Prepare your home for sale
Preparing for the sale of your property does take a little work. For obvious reasons, you will want to have your home presented in its best possible state. Buyers need to be able to imagine themselves in your home. Your agent will look out for the following;
- What are the key features of the property and are they presented in their best form
- Does your property require de-personalising and de-cluttering
- Will your property benefit from any touch ups or repairs
- Is your garden looking at its best
- Would your property benefit from some styling
- Perform the cleanse
The most important factor in downsizing is that you are ‘downsizing’. So, cleansing your home of any unused, old or dysfunctional furniture and items is a must. You can advertise items on sale portals such as Gumtree, Ebay and Facebook Marketplace and you can host a garage sale also.
Review everything in your home and ask yourself is it a necessity or indulgence. Try to be realistic about what you will need in your new (much smaller) home and how you will store your items. This may take some time, so start it as soon as you have decided it is time to downsize. In some cases, you may not be ready to part ways with certain pieces so you can always arrange to store them. Nowadays there are many options available to affordably store personal effects.
- Work out your budget
One of the most important steps in this process is for you to have a budget and stick to it. If your home is yet to be sold, you might not know your exact budget, but you will have a good enough idea that you can pin point what you are able or willing to spend on your next home. If you are not sure, then it would be wise to discuss this with a financial planner.
- Find your next home
Start researching your next address. Ask yourself the following questions;
- Is there a particular suburb you want to be in or are you flexible?
- What kind of accommodation are you open to? single dwelling | duplex | gated community | apartment
- How many bedrooms do you require?
- How many cars will you need to house?
- Do you have a boat or caravan or trailer to house?
- Do you have pets?
- Do you want a garden?
Once you have the answers, you can be very specific in your search criteria and work very closely with your agent to achieve your goal. Planning and preparation is key and a little courage does not go astray. Yes, there will be some adjustments to be made, but like everything, you will get used to your new environment and you will reap many rewards.