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10 Mistakes to Avoid When Downsizing

Friday, November 25, 2022   /   by Laura Larson

10 Mistakes to Avoid When Downsizing

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Now might be the moment to downsize your house, whether you've made the decision to get out of debt or you're an empty nester eager for a new chapter in your life. However, it's crucial to realize that there are a lot of potential pitfalls along the path. To make the most of your new, smaller lifestyle, this blog will show you how to avoid some typical pitfalls.
 
1) Lacking clear objectives prior to downsizing your home
Although downsizing your home can have many financial advantages, it's crucial to set goals before you start the process. The most common reasons for downsizing are:
 
- Getting out of debt
- Turbo-charging your retirement fund
- Paying off your mortgage instantly
- Saving money after retirement
- Reducing home upkeep and maintenance 
 
2) Ignoring additional fees
Downsizing will allow you to save money on utilities and on your mortgage, but that doesn't mean you should forget about your financial security. When looking for a home, be sure that the property either doesn't need a lot of care or repairs or at the very least, that you can afford them. Make sure that your new house doesn't have high HOA or property tax obligations that could deplete your finances.
 
3) Not setting a moving budget
Remember the costs of moving to a new place when you start to see how much money you'll save by downsizing your home. Even though you might be tempted to move everything yourself to save money, consider hiring a moving company. In addition to having someone pack, transport, and unpack your stuff, most movers offer insurance, ensuring that you will be compensated in the event that anything is damaged.
 
4) Keeping useless items
Being well-organized is essential for any move, but it will be especially helpful if you're downsizing. Spend some time going through your garage, closets, and extra rooms to see if there are any items that are gathering dust. Gather these kinds of items first, then go through outdated apparel, toys, appliances, etc., and sort them into three piles: keep, maybe, and donate.
 
5) Failing to assess your lifestyle needs
Spend some time considering the characteristics you want in your new home after deciding on your aims. Since you'll have less living space when you downsize, this is particularly crucial. Make sure your new home will accommodate your desired lifestyle and that any belongings you're bringing with you will fit if you're downsizing.
 
6) Not considering spaces you won't use
It's probably obvious to you which rooms in your house you use the most: the living room, kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom. But, why even have a dining room, den, and third or fourth bedroom if you're not really utilizing them? You can streamline your search for a downsized home by considering the rooms you already use and don't utilize. You can use the same strategy in your yard. Consider looking for a new home with a smaller yard or one without if you find that you spend most of your free time maintaining your yard rather than enjoying it.
 
7) Moving all of your furniture
Your two-story home is more than big enough to fit all of your furnishings, but your new place won't be as big. Therefore, consider the restrictions of your new home before you start loading your beds or sectional sofas onto a moving truck. Additionally, furniture that is too big for the space will only make it appear smaller, so you might want to think about purchasing a new couch that will actually fit in your new room.
 
8) Not considering a storage unit
A storage unit is a fantastic choice for keeping seasonal goods like winter jackets and sentimental objects like scrapbooks in addition to crucial documents that you don't need easy access to. Renting a storage unit is a terrific solution for those goods that you don't have room for but just can't bring yourself to get rid of, whether you're downsizing temporarily or permanently.
 
9) Not establishing a timeline for moving
Even without the additional work of downsizing your house, moving is a lot of work. Remind yourself to take things one step at a time to avoid becoming overly stressed out by the procedure. Instead of trying to do everything at once, set a deadline for yourself and make a moving timetable in accordance. You can reduce stress and stay more organized throughout this process by making a moving checklist and a downsizing schedule.
 
10) Choosing the wrong type of home
You'll need to decide what kind of home you want to relocate into after deciding to start downsizing your current residence. Your choice of residence will be influenced by your lifestyle preferences, health requirements, and financial situation.