Since COVID-19 began, we’ve seen demand for single-family homes increase steadily. But while some sellers are trading their downtown condos for more space in the suburbs, other homeowners are looking to take advantage of the increased demand for single-family homes and downsize into something more suitable for their current lives.
There are plenty of reasons to move into a smaller and more economical home, like retirement or a drop in income, but downsizing doesn’t have to be a bad thing. You may well be on your way to making tremendous financial strides by simply downsizing to a house that works for you. Here are some tips to make sure downsizing is the right idea for you.
1. Get Ahead of Your Debt
If you’re a homeowner looking to get ahead of your debt, downsizing is one of the most effective ways to do so. An optimized space that covers your needs and reduces expenses will increase your ability to save. Adding funds into your loan account as early as you can helps to lessen the pinch of high-interest rates, too.
2. Feed Your Retirement Fund
Once the weight of mortgage or debt lifts off your chest, it’s time to start thinking forward. Building wealth towards your retirement plan is crucial, and fortunately, there are simple ways to begin. A good starting point is investing 15% of your household income into a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA). Once you add in the savings from downsizing, you could be sitting on a sizable nest egg in a couple of decades.
3. Keep it Functional and Declutter Before You Move
Start thinking about what to keep and what to get rid of at least three months before you make the big move. When you’re downsizing, maximizing space is key. Begin by decluttering anything that can be digitized—from papers and CDs to photos and more. Essential documents can live on in posterity on your digital drive. Get rid of anything you haven’t used in at least a year, and donate what you can to your local charity
When moving locally, bring along any routinely used items (such as cleaning supplies, sheets, kitchen/bathroom equipment, etc.), so you don’t have to purchase them again.
4. Be Mindful of Costs
While downsizing may help ease the monthly mortgage payments, it’s essential to know the hidden costs of living small.
Make sure your old furniture and property will fit into the new place or budget for space-efficient pieces that will suit your new life.
Before settling on a home, be sure to check for any needed repairs. Your home inspection should help ease your mind, but watch out for signs of excess moisture, warped walls, or any problems with drainage, wiring, or plumbing. Your trusted REALTOR can advise on property taxes, storage, and zoning restrictions to be aware of.
5. Think Long-Term
Whether you prioritize spending quality time with loved ones or are looking forward to having more space to yourself, your changing needs will matter as the world prepares to acclimatize to post-vaccine reopening. Downsizing works best when you plan while keeping your and your family’s needs in mind. If you can function smoothly by sparing the extra square footage, then downsizing is the way to go.
Your Havn Comes in All Shapes and Sizes
If it’s time for you to make a move, talk to a friendly Stilhavn REALTOR today. No matter what you’re looking for, we’ll help you find the space that suits your needs.