It’s not just the economy – there are lots of reasons that people choose to downsize. It could be retirement, a recently emptied nest, or just plain “maintenance fatigue.” Whatever the reason, plan your new lifestyle carefully.
When you search for a smaller home, don’t forget that Location is still the key ingredient. Even if you don’t have kids or they’ve flown the coop, a good school district and proximity to public transportation and recreation are still the best bets for retaining value.
If this will be a retirement move, think about the future and seek out homes on one level, or at the very least, with the master bedroom on the ground floor. For practicality’s sake, at least one bathroom should be handicap-accessible or easily remodeled as such. Even if you don’t think you’ll need it later on, your visitors might appreciate the convenience.
If downsizing to you means less maintenance, you may be tempted by town home or condominium living, but be aware of “hidden costs,” like annual or monthly homeowners association fees. Check recent association meeting reports to see if there is a building renovation planned, as you could be hit with an assessment fee in the future, too.
There are a lot of considerations in advance of your move, so ask an agent for more advice and enjoy your new lifestyle!