Most people believe that downsizing is a simple matter. They assume that involves little more than moving to a smaller home. However, that isn’t actually the case. The process can be surprisingly complex, and even little missteps can lead to trouble.
If you want to make sure that you can downsize without any hiccups, here’s what you need to know about common downsizing mistakes and how to avoid them.
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Assuming Downsizing Is Cheaper
In the United States, the median home sale price is sitting near $408,000. If you look at that alone, it’s easy to assume that downsizing would mean you pay less. In reality, that isn’t always the case.
Every housing market is different. Depending on where you want to buy, even a small house can be expensive on a national scale. You also need to look beyond list prices.
By understanding the market in your preferred area, you can get a better grip on the actual cost. That way, you don’t make a decision thinking it’s budget-friendly when it actually isn’t.
Keep in mind that if your downsize involves moving into senior living, it could be prohibitively expensive. For example, if you’re planning to move into assisted living, you’d be wise to learn more about costs and payment options and to read reviews on affordable facilities in the Miami area.
Not Having a Solid Plan
Downsizing involves more than buying and selling a home. You also need to spend time decluttering, coordinate a move, and much more.
Additionally, decide how you want to manage the move. If you want to save money by going the DIY route, you’ll need to dedicate time to packing, loading, transporting, unloading, and unpacking. With a full-service move, you don’t have to worry about any of that. However, it does cost much more.
Consider the pros and cons of every decision point. That way, you can factor it all in before you commit to a plan.
Not Giving Yourself Enough Time
One of the most complicated parts about downsizing is that you aren’t just looking for a new house; you also have to sell your old one. That process can be surprisingly lengthy. Even if you get an offer within a week, it takes another 30 to 45 days to close.
If you need to sell your current home to make downsizing possible, failing to give yourself enough time to make that happen could derail your plans. After all, if you find your dream house on the market, you might have to act quickly. But if the sale of your property isn’t underway, that could cause you to miss out.
Ideally, you want to focus on getting your house sale-ready as soon as possible. That way, if you have a buyer lined up when you find your ideal new home, you may be able to work with your seller to coordinate the closing of both properties.
Additionally, it’s important to note that some sellers will extend the closing if you ask. If the sale of your home is falling a bit behind closing on the new one, don’t be afraid to request more time if you need it. While not all sellers will agree, many will, allowing you to make the transition smoother.
Downsizing takes quite a bit of time and effort. With the tips above, you’ll be able to avoid mistakes and complete your downsize as smoothly as possible.