Things to consider when Downsizing
Research tells us that over 40% of people over 55 years of age, start thinking about what their next move will look like: do they sell the family home and move into a unit, townhouse or apartment; do they make the sea change or tree change?
Whilst there are numerous things to consider, perhaps some of the important factors are: Will the next move be the forever move? Will it suit access to children and grandchildren? What will you do with the leftover funds? Will your current furniture suit? Who is the best real estate agent to select? Do you buy first or sell first? Will it impact my pension down the track (if you’re in a position to be entitled to one).
Other things to consider are: Will I be close to friends, what personal space do I need in my new property, do I need a home office, can I manage future visitors, what amenities do I want closeby?
There will be lots of questions and invariably lots of options. The important thing is to make the move future proof. If you still have years of working life left, one thing that Covid-19 has taught us, is that we can work remotely, we maybe don’t need to be in the office every day, and we can have more of a balance between work and private life.
We’ve seen a huge uplift in recent months of Baby Boomers moving to the Coast. Many have purchased a property remotely, or by virtual inspection, with the plan being that they move to the Coast and downsize the family home in Melbourne to an apartment, which they will use as a base, whilst spending more time at their beach property. They’re opting for a considered lifestyle change and still retaining a ‘home base’ in Melbourne due to family or work commitments.
There are obviously many options and it’s important to start planning early. Seek advice from your trusted advisors; your accountant and financial planner. Discuss your plans and work together scheduling a timeline, to work towards achieving whatever it is you want for your future.
Think about your future needs. Will the property you are considering suit you in 10 years as you get older? Maybe the 3 level townhouse is not the right choice. It could be that a two level townhouse with a master bedroom downstairs is the right choice. Or perhaps it needs to be single level.
The other option of course is whether a Retirement Village is the right choice. We see some beautifully master planned Retirement community villages, where people find the ideal sanctuary.
It all depends on what stage of life you are at.
Hopefully you can see that there are many options and lots of choices. To some people it may seem overwhelming and there is usually comfort in sticking to what we know. However, we have seen over and over again, that if people plan properly, once they make the move, they look back and ask themselves why they didn’t do it earlier.
Proper planning, in the majority of situations, will provide the right outcome. The reality is also that what may suit one person, couple or family, will not suit someone else. Everyone has different needs and wants. Identify what it is you hope to achieve and then look at whether it’s the right fit, look at whether it suits you financially and consider if the timing is right. If it suits you, it’s the right decision.
In closing, there are clearly many considerations when deciding to downsize. Careful planning and the right independent advice, should provide the necessary information to be able to make an informed decision. In the end, make it about what’s best for you.