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Downsizing to a smaller home can be hard, but sometimes it’s the best financial decision you can make. If you no longer have a full home, kids have grown and moved out, or perhaps you overbought and have no need for the size of house you own, it might be time to consider downsizing. Here are important things to consider when you do.

When it’s time

When the time comes to choose a smaller living space, it often stems from the desire to live more simply. This could mean that your bigger home is no longer filled with kids, as they’ve grown up and moved out. It could simply mean that you don’t need the space you currently have, and you’re looking to save costs by moving into a smaller home.

Today most adults over the age of 55 are leaving larger properties and looking for smaller ones. A big trend is older adults moving closer to cities and amenities, looking for condo or loft spaces, rather than homes.

Benefits of downsizing

Cost can be a big one here. If you own a larger home that you aren’t utilizing completely it can be costly to manage the upkeep. Heating a home or cooling a home costs more money when there’s more space to heat. Sometimes the upkeep of a yard or outdoor space can be expensive, like owning a lawn mower, or paying someone to do it for you.

When older people move to smaller spaces like condos or apartments, they’re usually getting the added benefit of yard care that’s included in a purchase or rental price. It’s no longer something that they have to take care of individually.

What to consider in a new property

If you’re moving because your current home no longer fits your lifestyle, it’s important to find a new home that does. If you’re looking for something that’s more economical, keep that in mind during your house hunt.

Most people look for attached homes, like townhomes or condos, as they typically offer low maintenance. Consider that with less maintenance responsibility placed on you, that you could pay more to an HOA for those fees. Do your research on potential properties, because the mortgage may be far less than you’re currently paying, but with the added HOA fee, it might not provide enough savings to make the house a good buy.

Stay away from older styled homes, like Victorians, as these may require extra maintenance or renovations considering their condition. Consider the floor plan, as well. Some older couples only look for single level floor plans, as they’re looking to the future and the ease living on only one floor.

If being close to grocery stores, restaurants or a small cultural hub, like a downtown, consider the location of a potential home. If you want it to be within walking distance to these amenities, it may limit the available properties that you can look at.