How to downsize your living space

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Real Estate

Enjoy a Smooth Downsize by Avoiding These Three Common Snafus

A guest blog by Lisa Walker of

It’s easy to overlook certain things when you’re in the midst of moving. The process can be stressful and complicated, which is a challenging combination under the best of circumstances. However, planning a downsize often adds a fly in the ointment, leading homeowners to grievous errors. To ensure your downsize goes smoothly, the Steve Martin Homes Group suggests that you stay alert to these three common snafus.

Consider Your Financial Situation

This should be the first step as you survey a potential downsize. If your current home has been paid off, you can use the equity to buy a smaller home outright with leftover cash to put away for the future. One the other hand, if you’re trying to reduce your mortgage payments and maintenance costs, bear in mind that sometimes downsizing can be an expensive endeavor, and you might not end up saving much money. Plus, if your credit is in jeopardy, this could keep you from securing a better interest rate. Take the time to carefully assess your budget so you know what you can afford without being house poor, and consider consulting with a debt counselor if necessary. You want to go into this new venture feeling positive from a financial perspective.

Think Ahead
All too often, homeowners fail to think about their future when they downsize, especially when it comes to long-term planning. For instance, if you’re considering a home-based business down the road, it’s helpful to choose a property with an appropriate office space. Or, if you plan to adopt a cat or dog, homeowners associations often have pet restrictions you should explore. 

Along those same lines, older adults often benefit from investing in a home that’s senior-friendlyA house with wider doorways, a bedroom on the main floor, and a generally low-maintenance layout can mean aging in place comfortably.

Do Some Editing
Is your current home packed to the gills with belongings? Many homeowners get distracted by the fact they will have less yard to tend and less home to maintain, forgetting that also means they simply won’t have as much space for all their stuff. With that in mind, long before your moving date, it’s crucial to get started on paring down

It’s to your advantage to start with a game plan. If you have kids, ask them to lay claim to whatever items they want, and give them a deadline for removing those things. And don’t hold onto anything believing they will want it “someday.” Young adults mean it when they say they don’t want your heirlooms. Then, do a thorough decluttering, eliminating items you have in duplicate or you don’t really use. 

Bear in mind changes to your lifestyle as well. All too often, homeowners save things “just in case.” For instance, if you’re heading to a condo and the homeowners association takes care of lawn care, shed your gardening gear because you won’t need it anymore. 

Decluttering can be one of the biggest challenges in the process of downsizing, but you can do it! Make sure you stay positive and recognize your achievements along the way.

Get Some Help
Downsizing is a major job, and many people bite off more than they can chew. A house to declutter, a new home to search for, belongings to pack, organizing the transition, so on and so forth — it’s a major undertaking, and you don’t need to DIY the whole thing! 

Your Steve Martin Homes real estate agent can help you find an ideal home, and a professional moving company can save your aching back. Older adults can simplify things by hiring a senior move manager to tackle the organization and details from start to finish. Think through your best options, and rather than suffer with stress, get some assistance.

Downsizing is a terrific lifestyle change when it’s done correctly. Think about your future, edit your belongings, rent a storage unit if necessary, and get help with the process. In the end, you’ll enjoy the ease of your smaller home, so long as you avoid these common snafus!

Are you ready to downsize into something smaller? Turn to the experts at Steve Martin Homes to find the perfect Sarasota home that fits your lifestyle. Call today to make an appointment! 941-894-9800