Know the costs, consider the trade-offs and prepare for changing circumstances when downsizing.
The biggest house isn’t always the best house, especially if you’re hoping to simplify your life and save a few bucks while you’re at it. Often as people age, the desire to cut back and streamline in order to take a step up in lifestyle can mean taking a step down in home size. The reasons to downsize your home are many. They include shrinking expenses, reducing upkeep and maintenance, moving closer to family or starting a new adventure.
In fact, new single-family homes continue to decrease in size in 2017—according to the National Association of Home Builders—which creates more options if you’re looking to downsize your home to save money. Among baby boomers, 37 percent plan to move from their current home, with 54 percent of those moving also planning to downsize to a smaller home, according to the Demand Institute, which tracks consumer demand.
“A lot of people might wake up one day and realize that their home is just too big,” says Judy Dutton, deputy editor at realtor.com. “Oftentimes it is because the kids have gone off to college or because your aching back can’t handle raking up the fall leaves one more time.”
While there are many reasons to downsize your home, it’s important to thoroughly understand how downsizing will impact your finances and lifestyle before packing up those moving boxes.