Rightsizing vs Downsizing in Real Estate

downsizing vs rightsizing when buying a home

As we move through our lives, our needs in a home change. What once used to be a large home full of life may now be virtually empty and quiet. All of the sudden, you realize what a large space you’ve been left with, along with the costs to maintain. As the years add up, so do our possessions, and the burden of maintaining what we no longer need or use as we once did. It all gets old pretty fast.

What’s the normal response? To downsize.

The U.S. real estate market has been thriving in 2017, with sales of condos and co-ops rising substantially. This is largely due to the baby boomer and silent generation shoppers that are keen on living the hassle-free lifestyle that accompanies a smaller, more manageable home.

Data shows that these older generations have been buying up these types of properties all over the country. Sales in the Midwest alone have increased 12.5 percent since 2016 as more and more empty nesters purchase condos, co-ops and smaller houses.

So, why are these people choosing the convenient location with a smaller footprint over the big house in the suburbs? The answer has to do with rightsizing vs. downsizing in real estate. Here’s what you need to know!

Downsizing vs. Rightsizing: What You Need to Know

As we grow older, a needed change to downsize your home often arises – but downsizing shouldn’t have such a negative connotation. Instead, think of it as “rightsizing”.  Rightsizing means you don’t have to make sacrifices when moving to a smaller home. In fact, it means just the opposite. When it comes down to it, something smaller yet still comfortable and luxurious is the smarter option.

Those that choose to purchase a smaller space, with more convenience gain the benefits of less maintenance and lower costs, especially in the later stages of life. Rightsizing to a condo, co-op, townhome or other small property requires less upkeep, and reduces large property tax costs.

Today’s real estate buyers that are rightsizing have more time freed up that used to be reserved for household duties like mowing the lawn, shoveling snow and cleaning the gutters. When shoppers commit to small-home living, they open up a whole new bracket of free time to take on new hobbies. Their new, convenient location also means they’re closer to amenities like restaurants, grocery stores, entertainment and other retail options.

How to Know if Rightsizing is the Best Option

If you’re considering rightsizing your home, get introspective – ask yourself what you really want or need in a home, both short term and long term. Additionally, consider these questions:

  • Is the house you presently live in equipped to keep pace with the changes in your health or mobility as you age?
  • Does your current home require a lot of upkeep and maintenance that cuts into your budgeting or free time?
  • Do you like the community you live in, or would you be happier living closer to friends and family?
  • Would you prefer a place with better weather than your current area?
  • Do you have easy access to essential services like healthcare and hospitals?
  • Does your current neighborhood have public transportation access for those days that  you would rather ride than drive?
  • Does your house encourage your favorite hobbies, such as gardening, grilling, or being with friends and family?
  • Would you rather live in an area with more recreational opportunities like bike paths, lakes and parks?
  • Is your current home depleting your savings or causing you unwanted financial stress?

Regardless of how healthy you are right now, you should consider the long term advantages of moving to a home where you will be comfortable as you grow older. By asking yourself all of these questions now, you’re better positioned to make an informed choice, rather than being forced to make an impulse decision when a crisis arises.

Getting Rid of Excess Space

As children fly the coop, many parents are left with excess, unused spaces and empty rooms that don’t serve a purpose. Subsequently, many decide to transform those extra spaces into various recreational rooms, such as an aerobics studio, home theater or billiards room. This may be fine at first, but more often than not, is an unpractical and expensive choice for those consumers nearing or in retirement.

Instead of spending the money on a home gym for your college-aged kid’s empty bedroom in your suburban home, purchasing a smaller, hassle-free condo or small home closer to a city center may be the answer to a secure future.

Rather than taking the time to remodel a basement into a home movie theater, it may be a wise decision to move to a townhome with no basement to maintain or stairs to climb, and head to the movie theater on the corner block.

In both scenarios, you get rid of the excess space while reducing costs and moving to a location that suits your lifestyle.

Benefits of Rightsizing

There are many benefits of rightsizing your home. Take a look at some of the biggest advantages below.

Less is More

A smaller home that is rightsized for your lifestyle means more money directly in your pocket. You won’t have to worry about huge property taxes, rising insurance prices, massive utility bills and home improvement costs any longer. You may even be able to reduce your landscaping budget since you will no longer have to maintain a large yard. Reducing those expenses gives you more money to work with when budgeting for your new, luxurious, rightsized home.

Closer to Family and Friends

When moving to a smaller home, you have more usable space to take advantage of. Buying property in an amenity-filled, recreational neighborhood is easily obtainable when compared to your current home costs, and encourages your friends and family to come visit. While they will obviously want to spend time with you, your kids, grandkids and friends will enjoy the many enticing activities right around your home. Your new home will encourage special moments and create many unforgettable memories. Memories that you may not be able to recreate at your current home.

Live the Same Life of Luxury

While many home shoppers believe that they need a large, expansive property to live the life of luxury, you can, in fact, create the exact same effect with a smaller home. A beautifully-designed, well-built, perfectly-situated house on a gorgeous piece of property in a beautiful neighborhood will certainly make a statement to those who pass by. You may even be able to rightsize to a home that’s next to a park, on a lake or golf course, so you can enjoy your favorite leisurely activities. If you want to make an even grander statement, decorate the inside with captivating interior design elements and high-end appliances.

Create a Wider Resale Market

With the small-home market booming, the time to buy has never been better. When it comes time to sell, a smaller home is a wise investment, as it appeals to a wider audience of potential buyers. Once you purchase your condo, townhome or other small property, you have more money left over to boost the value of your home even further with professionally done remodels, or by moving to a neighborhood where home values are trending upward.

Getting Rid of “Stuff”

We all know people that end up buying more and more stuff, and then often just throwing it in the closet – you may be one of them! Of course, there is nothing wrong with buying stuff, especially stuff we need, but what happens is we start associating those “things” with our happiness and wellbeing. While it may be tough to part with some of the stuff that’s occupying your current home, in the end you’ll realize that you love your dream home much more than you ever loved all that stuff. After all, how much use are those seven boxes of holiday decorations in the basement? Rightsizing will help you reduce the excess and lead a clutter-free lifestyle.

Is Rightsizing Right for You?

While condos, townhomes and other types of small homes may not be the ideal option for every type of shopper, they’re skyrocketing in popularity because they are more affordable, higher-quality and in prime locations, while requiring less work in general. Buying a small home, while seemingly daunting, in the end it’s a wise investment. Rightsizing is about doing what’s best for your lifestyle, so you can be happy for years to come.

Contact A.D. Hays Group and Rightsize Your Home Today!

Ready to make your rightsize home a reality? Contact A.D. Hays Group – we’re the leading real estate company in the Twin Cities, and would love to help you find a home that’s the perfect size for you. We have more than 30 years of experience, hundreds of successful closings and a streamlined process to ensure that all of your real estate goals are met. We’ve mastered the art of tailoring our services to exceed the trust our clients afford us.

We don’t believe there’s a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to making a decision about buying or selling your home. We consider the needs, desires and unique situation of each and every one of our clients, working with you to find your dream home. No one is as dedicated to your real estate success as A.D. Hays Group.

If you’re considering rightsizing your home and trust is crucial, we encourage you to give us a ring. Let us show you how we operate and personalize our process to meet your specific objectives and goals. We look forward to showing you how we can make your real estate dreams a reality.

If you’re ready to find a home that suits your lifestyle, get in touch with one of our representatives today!

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