Factors to Consider Before Downsizing to a Smaller Home

Posted by Justin Havre on Thursday, January 3rd, 2019 at 12:27pm.

How to Maximize Profits Before Downsizing a HomeFor some people, the ideal living environment involves cutting down on their current space to something more manageable. This might be a great opportunity, provided that the current sale offers enough incentive. This guide shows how to improve the odds.

Establishing Downsizing Goals

First, sellers should set a few goals based on the reality of the current market. For a lot of people, selling in a hot market can return a lot more money than they were expecting. However, sellers who plan to buy in the same market might also have to pay more for a smaller home. It makes sense to consider some questions about the reasons for downsizing, including:

  • What is the market like in the place I'd like to live?
  • Am I looking to supplement my income with the sale of my current home?
  • How much money do I need left over?

The answers to these questions will help sellers figure out how much they would like to get from their home sale, and to set a budget for the home they plan to buy to achieve their downsizing goals.

Establishing a Home Downsizing Timeline

In the six months to a year before moving out of a house, a home seller must spend their time sorting through all of their belongings and determining what needs to be eliminated. There are many ways to get rid of old things, and throwing them away should be a last resort. Recycling, selling and donating are all better ways to get rid of things that a homeowner no longer needs.

Most homeowners will make a rule that states they can only keep something if they've used it in the last one or two years. This makes it easier to make decisions about what needs to be kept. 

In the final six months before moving, the homeowner will begin to pack. This packing process starts a second round of purging as the homeowner goes through everything to place them into boxes. Going through everything in multiple rounds ensures that the homeowner can purge as much as possible.

Measuring the Heat of the Market

Selling a home in a hot market can be an excellent thing, but it takes some care to be sure that the market will sustain the current rates. A market that is growing explosively without any apparent checks may eventually settle or even deflate, especially as local buyers find themselves priced out of affordable homes. A region with steady growth and relative affordability is likely to provide a predictable result. Sellers who need more information about what to expect from their home sale should consult a real estate agent about the real estate trends in their region and specifically their neighbourhood.

Making Ideal Improvements

People who want to get a little more out of their home sale would be wise to consider making a handful of upgrades that appeal to home buyers. The modern home buyer is hoping to find an energy-efficient home with at least three bedrooms, an open kitchen and as much storage space as possible. Although making all of these improvements may cost a lot of money, a few targeted upgrades could dramatically increase the sale price. Adding custom storage to closets and the garage is less expensive, and offers buyers what they want the most. Sellers who plan to upgrade their appliances should think about selecting those with the Energy Star designation. A minimal extra investment could improve competition for the home, especially in hot markets like Cougar Ridge.

Picking the Right Time to Sell

The trick to downsizing and using the profits to fund retirement or other enterprises is to sell high and buy low. This might mean that sellers who want to sell their homes for the highest price and pay as low as they can might need to have a plan for the interim. The best time of the year to get interest in a home for sale is typically mid-spring, around May. By comparison, the optimal time to buy a home at the lowest possible price is January, although inventory is often lower then. With these general trends, sellers can balance what they hope to get from the sale with what they will expect to pay for a smaller home.

Downsizing could be a dream come true, with extra money as an added benefit. By maximizing interest in their homes and selecting an ideal time, sellers may get a higher sale price and a better return on their investment.

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