What Are the Best Tips for Downsizing Your Home?

Felicia Dye
Felicia Dye
Woman with hand on her hip
Woman with hand on her hip

Realize that downsizing your home may involve getting rid of some of your belongings. It should not involve eliminating spaces that you need, but be aware of opportunities to consolidate living areas. Also consider the features and services in your current home and whether you will have to pay for them in a new home. If downsizing your home involves selling your current residence, try to avoid making a hasty decision that results in financial losses.

A common mistake that people make is selecting their new, smaller home based on whether their belongings will fit. When downsizing your home, you should analyze your motives and the benefits of your actions. If you are trying to reduce costs or lessen your housekeeping burden, then you may need to sacrifice some of your belongings. You are likely to experience the best results if you choose a new home based on the space that you need and then keep only the amount of possessions that it can comfortably contain.

When downsizing your home, it is important to make sure that you have space for all of your needs. You are likely to have feelings of regret and may suffer in numerous ways if you eliminate essential spaces, such as your home office. You may think that you will be able make the kitchen table double as a desk, but you may learn a hard lesson when choosing to do so. Downsizing does not have to involve completely eliminating the areas that you require; rather, you can accomplish your goal by choosing a home that has smaller areas.

There are some instances when it is wise to consolidate spaces, such as when you have multiple children but one is about to leave the home. If you have two sons and the oldest is a year away from college, it may be best for the boys to share a room. Carefully consider whether you want to invest in a bedroom for an individual who will only be in the household temporarily. Another good consolidation idea is eating where you cook. If you are downsizing your home and you rarely eat in your current dining room, avoid the wasted space by getting a house that has a kitchen that is large enough to eat in.

Figure in the costs of features and amenities that you will lose in your current home before making a choice for a new home. Although you may find a cheaper and smaller residence, you may also find yourself bearing equal or greater expense if you will incur a list of itemized expenses as a result of the move. If you are currently living in a community that provides security, trash collection, and lawn care, make sure to estimate the costs if you are considering a home where you will need these services but be required to pay for them.

Always try to avoid downsizing your home in a way that involves taking a financial loss. If you are planning to sell your current home, for example, but housing prices are low, you may want to rent it out instead. You can still move into a smaller house and sell the property that you are renting when the housing market recovers. If this is not an option, you may be making the decision at the wrong time and may need to postpone the decision.

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