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What to Consider When You’re Downsizing

As more and more of the Baby Boomer generation send their children into the world and hit retirement age, we’re seeing a trend towards moving out of large homes meant for a family to small homes just right for one or two people. We expect to see even more of this in the next decade, with condos and maintenance-free living becoming more and more popular. So if you’re considering moving out of your family-friendly house and into something a little cozier, what do you need to keep in mind?

  • Rent or buy? Just because you’ve owned a home for the last 30 years doesn’t mean you have to buy again. Think long and hard about your lifestyle. Does it really make sense to tie yourself down to a long-term mortgage? Do you intend to travel, maybe split your time between Indiana and some warm spot like Florida or Texas for the winters? How ‘s your health? Will you be able to keep up with maintenance on your home? For some people, having a shorter commitment to a condo or other rental unit may make more sense than buying.
  • Location. When you bought a house for your family, your first concern was probably the school district and the safety of your location. Even if you no longer have children of school age, location is still king. Not only does a great school district have a huge impact on property values (if you’re buying), you also want to consider whether the area you’re interested in has the amenities you want. Do you want to be able to walk to restaurants and shops? Is it important that you have space for a garden or would you rather not have a lawn to mess with at all?
  • Accessibility. Many people who choose to downsize are getting older, and mobility concerns become more and more important. While that three story townhome might seem like a great idea now, what happens when your body starts slowing down and all those stairs become painful or impossible to manage? And while you may love that huge lawn for your rose garden, what happens when you don’t have the energy to manage it anymore? Go into your downsizing decision with a clear picture of what your health future looks like, and what your evolving needs might be.
  • Space. Spending 20 years in a large four or five bedroom house means you accumulate a lot of stuff. From furniture and decorations to clothing, when you have thousands of square feet to spread out in, your stuff grows to fill the space. But that California king bed may not fit into a smaller home, and you might not need that 72” TV in a smaller living room. Consider what will happen to all of your possessions and furniture in a smaller house, and consider selling some of them and buying furnishings more appropriate for your new home.

Interested in finding a downsized home in Indianapolis? Call Polaris Real Estate. We’ll help you take an honest look at your life and find the home that’s right for the next chapter of your life.

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