6 Essential Questions That Can Make Downsizing Simpler for Seniors
If you’re preparing for retirement, you may also be thinking of downsizing your home. Moving to a smaller home can help many seniors live more fulfilling lives. So, how can you decide if this is the right step for you? You can start by asking yourself the following questions to better prepare yourself for downsizing as a senior.
Should You Downsize in Retirement?
Before you get into the other steps of downsizing, you need to ask yourself this crucial question. The fact is, downsizing during retirement does make a lot of sense for many seniors and may make sense for you. According to HomeAdvisor, “Having fewer financial- and maintenance-related responsibilities will allow you to focus more on your happiness and less on your home.” Living with less clutter can also keep you safe as you age in place in your new home.
How Can You Prepare Your Finances?
Often times, the decision to downsize comes with a desire to reduce living expenses during retirement. With the right plan for your move, you can potentially save money on things like property taxes and utility bills. Still, you should take the right financial steps to ensure your savings are prepared for all potential costs of a home purchase and the move. Sit down and figure out what your budget will look like in the coming years, so you know how to navigate these expenses without putting a major dent in your retirement income.
Should You Move to a Different City?
Relocating during retirement is a common goal for older adults. For many seniors, moving to a different city offers a chance to save on their overall cost of living, which can provide a financial buffer for pensions and retirement savings. The key to maximizing this buffer is to offset any moving costs by looking for a lower priced home and to look for a retirement location that provides major financial incentives, as well as a decent quality of life, for retirees. If you prefer not to do the math, you could also look for a smaller home in your current city.
What Should You Look for in a Home?
By now you should have a better idea of how much home you can afford for your retirement years. So, with a price range in mind, it’s time to start thinking about what features will help you age in place happily in the coming years. A single-story home may be your best bet for ensuring safety during your golden years, especially if you have concerns about mobility. To make your home even more comfortable, you can also consider adding key safety features like non-slip flooring, uniform lighting, and a safer bathroom.
How Can You Ensure a Stress-Free Move?
As you look for your new home, you should also start planning your move. Planning ahead will allow you plenty of time to take care of potentially emotional tasks like decluttering. As you declutter, you’re bound to come across old photos and mementos that will stir up a variety of emotions. Spreading this task out over a few months will make processing those thoughts and feelings easier, so you’ll be ready to move on to other moving tasks, such as booking a professional moving company or changing your address.
Should You Consider a Senior Living Community?
Moving is a stressful life event at any age. The best you can do is plan ahead to reduce some of that stress. If, however, you feel overwhelmed by life in general, whether due to health or emotional concerns, you may need to think about other senior living options. If you just prefer to be surrounded by people of the same age, an age-restricted community could be a good fit, but if you need help with daily activities, assisted living may be your best bet for maintaining your quality of life during your golden years.
There are so many decisions that come with downsizing during retirement. Really take the time to answer the above questions to help you choose a downsizing option that’s right for you. The right planning and research will help you make the most of your retirement move.
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