For the next 18 years, baby boomers will be turning 65 at a rate of about 8,000 a day. That’s a lot of Canadian homeowners who are reaching retirement age and are starting to think about the next phase in their lives. Part of that next phase may include unloading their large family homes in favour of spending their ‘empty nest’ years enjoying their newfound freedom. When you think about the combination of approaching retirement and the children off on their own, what are the real advantages to downsizing? Here are a few enticing advantages to living the ‘Less is More’ lifestyle:
Smaller house=Smaller mortgage: generally a smaller home can translate into a smaller monthly mortgage payment. In many cases, if you have lived in your family home for many years, and built up a sizable home equity, you may be able to cash out and purchase a new, smaller, less-expensive home—even possibly eliminating a mortgage payment completely.
Less monthly expenses: downsizing your home also downsizes your monthly expenses. Utilities may be smaller, taxes and insurance may be reduced, and general upkeep and maintenance on a smaller home is going to be more affordable.
Climate change: downsizing also provides an opportunity to give up the snow shovel and put on some sunscreen. Raising your family in the cold winters of the mid west and northeast could become a distant frozen memory if you take the opportunity to move south or west to follow the year-round sunshine.
More affordable town: downsizing is a great opportunity to move to a less expensive metro area. Finding a city that gives you more ‘bang for your buck’ is a big boom to retirees and empty nesters that will soon be adjusting to living on a fixed income. In a hot retirement market like West Palm Beach, Florida, the average sale price on a home is $127,000 and the cost of living in the area is affordable.
Lifestyle upgrade: empty nesters have a bit more time to themselves. In the process of downsizing, you have the opportunity to relocate closer to all the new lifestyle amenities you want to enjoy with all that newfound spare time. Downsizing allows you to live closer to the lifestyle you want!
Less stuff=More life: there is also something intangible about downsizing and getting rid of all that ‘stuff.’ Here is the wonderful added benefit to this clearing-out process: when you organize your home, you organize your life. When you create space in your home, you also create space in your life! Remember, your home is a mirror of you and how your life works, so simplify your home, you simplify your life. By investing the time needed to clean out and edit your possessions, you are on the road to creating a new lifestyle that not only functions better, but is easier to maintain.
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