If you're living in a large family home but the kids have flown the nest, then you may want to consider downsizing. Andrew Winter shares his expert advice.
There are two principle benefits to downsizing – one is financial and the other is time.
Firstly, smaller homes need less maintenance.
Plus, depending on where you choose to live or buy, you could see a drastic reduction in your mortgage - possibly the elimination of your mortgage altogether. Wouldn’t that be nice?
But the decision to shed that excess property baggage can be an emotional wrench.
Downsizing and moving areas – now that’s a double whammy!
Some people move to a smaller place as a sea or tree change and live to regret it. They miss their friends and family and the convenience of urban life.
If you are going to downsize my recommendation is: do it in an area you are comfortable with. If you are considering a totally new location then rent there for a while first.
The cost of buying and selling a property can be tens of thousands of dollars so you want to get it right
Also bear in mind if your moving from the suburbs to the city then your sale dollar may not go as far as you think.
A one bedroom unit within 5km of Sydney or Perth could cost your half a million or more.
One of the drawbacks of downsizing is fitting the contents of a four or five bed house into a two bedder – ever heard of a square peg in a round hole?
Get rid of unnecessary books, clothing and furniture.
If, like me, you’re sentimental about memorabilia then photograph the things most precious to you and make them into an album.
A really good test is to lock rooms off in your current property and see how it feels – can you live without the space?
It’s important when moving to an apartment to factor in strata or body corporate fees and remember, you’ll be living very close to your new neighbours.
So if your willing to compromise space for more cash flow and less maintenance for less privacy then downsizing could be the right decision for you.