When people think about retirement, they picture strolling on the beach, playing a round of golf, or just participating in anything generally relaxing. Something that doesn’t usually come to mind is struggling to maintain a too-big home. People often buy their dream homes without considering the consequences that come with aging, and many seniors find themselves with a spacious house they not only don’t need, but they also can’t take care of.
Downsizing is a great option for many seniors who find themselves in this predicament. Here are some tips for seniors who are considering the move:
Come up with a plan
One of the best downsizing options, especially for those who don’t live near family, is moving into an assisted living community. Assisted living is great because these types of places offer a variety of housing options from fully independent to a more supportive environment so that you can feel comfortable knowing someone is always around to help!
Research assisted living facilities long before you have to make the move so that if the time comes, you’ll already have a good feel for your new home. We also suggest putting together a downsizing checklist, which should include where you plan to move, what you want to do with all of your belongings, and what finances need to be in order. Figure out what your current home is worth before moving by using a home value estimator. That way, you can estimate how much extra you’ll have in your pocket after the sale.
Hire a real estate agent
Downsizing is meant to remove the stress from aging, not add to it. Selling your home on your own might seem like a good financial decision—no commission equals more money, right? However, this couldn’t be further from the truth! A home sold by an experienced real estate agent goes for, on average, $60,000 more than a home sold without one.
Carry over what counts
Arguably one of the most difficult parts of downsizing is giving up the home where you’ve made countless memories. Not only will you be saying farewell to your home, but you’ll also have to part ways with some of your belongings since you won’t be able to fit everything into a smaller space. We suggest carrying over all of the things that count, like photographs, cards from families, homemade quilts, and everything that holds a lot of sentiment. This will make the new space actually feel like home! This also gives you the opportunity to part with items that take up space. Try selling or donating used items and tossing or recycling anything that’s leftover. The lack of clutter will be refreshing!
Downsizing can be the perfect way to fully transition into the relaxing lifestyle you envisioned when retiring! The Plaza Assisted Living in Hawaii offers a variety of living options for seniors, whether they are seeking independent living, need personal assistance, and or memory care. If you’re considering downsizing, we invite you to visit one of our five communities in Moanalua, Mililani, Pearl City, Punchbowl or Waikiki.