For one reason or another, you've determined the house you're living in has become too much to handle. Seniors, empty nesters or those moving from a suburban home into a loft or apartment in the city all face similar challenges when it comes to downsizing.
For example, after Judy Raphael's husband was diagnosed with dementia and moved to a nursing home, it became difficult for her to take care of her large house the couple had lived in for 23 years. At first, Raphael tried to maintain the house by herself, but things started to pile up and soon the house was in need of serious repairs.
"There were a lot of unknowns on what was wrong in the house - from mildew and mold to the driveway that needed to be replaced, the list goes on," Raphael said.
When it comes to downsizing your living space, you can start preparing with these steps.
1. Determine what's next. Think about what type of lifestyle you want to live moving forward, but take into account how much space you'll actually need to accommodate that life. Whether it's a smaller house or alternate option like an apartment or townhome, the first step is to decide what you're looking for in your next living space. This can also help you figure out what items will move with you and what will need to be sold, donated, thrown away or left behind.
2. Assess what you actually need. Now that you've determined that downsizing is your best option, you'll need to figure out what size, space and things you need. Maybe there's a pile of stuff collecting dust in your attic or basement that can be sold or donated, or maybe you believe you can move all of your belongings into a more compact area. Either way, a downsize means going through storage spaces, closets and room in your home to determine what stays behind and what goes with you.
3. Sell your home. Raphael knew she needed to fix the house before it would be considered sellable, but knew she could not manage it alone. After seeing a television commercial for HomeVestors, she decided to give them a call to schedule a free consultation with a local independently owned and operated franchise.
Over the course of the seven-month sales process, Raphael not only accepted an offer on her home from Aaron Katz of WinWin Properties, but the unexpected happened: Raphael's mother passed away. Katz not only promised to let Raphael and her daughter tour the home after it was renovated, but he was also the first to stop by with flowers after her mother's passing.
An option such as HomeVestors, the largest professional house buying franchise in the nation with more than 65,000 houses bought since 1996, offers cash payments and quick closing, which can be helpful in the downsizing process. In many cases, homes can also be sold as-is with no repairs and with unwanted contents still inside.
4. Stay organized during the move. You've now spent a ton of time and energy going through old things and boxing up possessions for the big move - don't let that time go to waste by allowing your organization to fall apart on move-in day. Make sure you store items in places that make sense, going room-by-room in an organized fashion.
Learn more about the resources available when downsizing at homevestors.com.