Are you realizing your home, lawn or bills are becoming too big to maintain? I often consult with homeowners that are in the very beginning stages of asking themselves "are we ready to scale down?"
Some questions we discuss during this initial consultation are; have you thought about where you want to move? Will you stay local, move towards kids or move to more enjoyable weather? Have you thought about the type of lifestyle and community you want? It's easy to get fed up with maintaining your home, but you need to dig deeper to figure out your what you want from your next home.
Whether scaling down due to age, health or just be more economical, it's a big transition and takes time to make the official leap.
Here are some questions to ask yourself when thinking about downsizing:
What is my budget? Have you determined the equity you may get out of your current home? A Realtor can help give you a good idea of the current market and value of your home ( I do these consultations for free!) Often your next home costs significantly less than your current. So may have a minimal or no mortgage at all. But there are also other bills to consider like utilities, taxes, medical and home maintenance. Rule of thumb- don't spend over 30% of your monthly income on housing. Ideally less than 30%.
What is the market like where I want to buy? Will I be able to find an affordable home now if it's a sellers market? Some areas are really hot right now and not showing signs of slowing down anytime soon. If you want to move to these areas, such as Denver, it may make sense to take out an equity line to purchase a new home then pay off when you sell your home. Seek financial advice to determine what makes sense for your budget and means.
How will downsizing affect my family? Will your son or daughter move back after college? Does your extended family always stay at your home for the Holidays? You can certainly work about these scenarios, but it's something to keep in mind.
What kind of lifestyle do I want? Why are you downsizing? Simpler life? Less maintenance? Moving to a different country? Deciding what you want to achieve by this move first will help you find the home that aligns with your goals and dreams!
If you or someone you know is thinking about downsizing, I'm happy to give a personal consultation to see if now is a good time for them.