Think you’re ready to downsize your home? If you haven’t taken the time to plan properly, you could end up making quite a few mistakes. Downsizing can be a complicated and stressful process, and mishaps can make it worse for seniors. So before you start planning your downsizing move, make sure you can avoid these common missteps.
Not Weighing Pros and Cons of Downsizing
Before you start working on any other downsizing step, you need to decide whether downsizing is right for you. Ask yourself some serious questions to make an informed decision, and be sure to weigh any risks against possible benefits. For example, you could sell your home to buy a smaller one, but you may also need to adjust your profit expectations to account for selling expenses. Those expenses can include, but are not limited to, agent commissions, repair costs and staging fees (which average $2,300 to $3,200 nationally) to help your home sell. Of course, you can also save on utilities and rent or a mortgage with a smaller home or apartment, which may outweigh any potential profit losses from selling your old home.
Not Researching Assisted Living Options
Assisted living can be a scary prospect for many seniors, but it really shouldn’t be. This housing option provides seniors with the extra care they need without any major sacrifices in life quality or independence. So before you put a lot of time and effort into finding a smaller home, think about whether local assisted living may be a better fit for your golden years. With the expenses for assisted living centers in New York City ranging from $1,500 to $17,250 per month, you will want to tour facilities and look for a community that can provide your preferred level of care without any excess costs. While cost shouldn’t be your primary consideration, knowing this information can help you plan for expenses more efficiently.
Not Creating a Financial Plan for Retirement
Saving for retirement is a smart move for adults of all ages, but too many people fail to address two questions when creating their financial plan. In order to enjoy the years ahead and afford your downsizing move, you need to know what age you plan to retire (many people aim for 65, but this doesn’t always happen) and whether you will continue to work during retirement. Answering these two questions will allow seniors to plan out their expenses and adjust spending to cover potential downsizing costs, such as new furniture or storage fees.
Not Asking for Help From Experienced Pros
If you have decided to downsize your home, and know you can afford it, then you need to seek out the right professionals to guide you through the process. Before you make any major financial decisions around retirement, you may want the expert advice of a financial planner. In a single consultation, you should be able to figure out whether retiring and downsizing makes financial sense, and how to begin living off of your retirement savings without major sacrifices. Once you have your finances squared away, reach out to an experienced realtor, who can take the stress out of searching for a smaller home and also help you navigate the homebuying process.
Not Beginning Moving Tasks Early Enough
There’s a lot to think about when planning a move, which means the chances for missing important details is pretty high. To avoid this mistake, take care to create a moving checklist that includes minor tasks, like changing your address, as well as major undertakings, like decluttering your belongings. Decluttering can be especially challenging for older adults, so allow yourself enough time to process related changes and emotions. Look online for decluttering tips to make the work a little easier, and don’t be too shy to ask close friends, family members or neighbors to help you, if needed.
Managing a move can be stressful for anyone, including seniors looking to downsize. Make sure your plan will help you avoid common downsizing mistakes, like the ones mentioned above, so you can avoid additional stress and start enjoying your retirement sooner.
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Written by: Suzie Wilson ⎸firstname.lastname@example.org ⎸Happier Home
For: Metropolis Apartments | Contact us for for all your real estate needs.