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Is downsizing right for you?

For decades, the Canadian home buying mantra was "Bigger is better." In the 1940s, average home size was well under 1,000 square feet. By the mid-1970s, the average home size grew to 1,075 square feet, growing rapidly in the 1980s, and peaking in the mid-2000s at 2,300 square feet.

But that trend has reversed. In its most recent survey, the Canadian Home Builders Association pegged the average new home size at 1,900 square feet.

Does downsizing pique your interest?

Whether you're an empty nester, looking for less upkeep, want an urban dwelling, or just ready for a change, downsizing to a smaller home may be the right decision.


Is Downsizing Right for You?

If you're considering moving into a smaller home, here are some great questions to answer:

• Which rooms do you use the least in your home? Which ones do you use the most?

• Do you need a big garage, or could you use less space - and less clutter?

• Where in your home do you spend the most time when you're awake?

• What about your home do you consider irreplaceable, and what is more of a luxury?

Knowing what you're willing to live with (or without!) is a good start to determining whether downsizing is right for you.


Two Crucial Tips for Downsizing Your Home

Downsizing your home can streamline your life, but the process itself can be stressful.

Here are two tips to make the journey smoother:

1. Get rid of all the "stuff" you really don't use: you won't have the luxury of keeping everything, so take some time to clean house.

2. Enlist some help. Whether it's hiring an organizing expert or just calling in a favour from a friend, a neutral eye can do wonders as you start consolidating your belongings - and deciding what stays and what goes.

Two More Great Downsizing Tips

Are you getting ready to downsize?

Here are two more great tips:

1. Consider donating some of your belongings to a registered charity. It's a great way to simultaneously give back and clear some space. You may also be able to receive a charitable donation tax credit.

2. Go digital: Your camera can capture memories so you can let go of some physical items that have been sitting around in boxes.


How much money can downsizing save you?

Downsizing your home will make your life a bit easier, sure, but it also can make it less expensive. Consider:

• Your mortgage: For most people, a smaller home means a smaller mortgage payment. After all, space costs money!

• Real estate taxes: Typically when your home costs less, your taxes are less. Moving into a smaller home can mean a smaller impact on your wallet come tax season.

• Utilities: When you downsize, your utility bills are lower - sometimes significantly.

• Maintenance: Remember, less is more. You'll spend less each year on everything from cleaning supplies to yard upkeep to home repairs.

One Unexpected Way Downsizing Saves

You may not realize it, but taking care of a bigger home simply takes more time. When you downsize, you're not only reducing your household expenses, you're saving time, and that means more time for yourself.

It's one of the best, most unexpected benefits of rightsizing your life.

The Downside of Downsizing: What to Avoid

Before you downsize, it's important to look before you leap. Here are two potential pitfalls to consider:

1. Not being emotionally ready: All the planning, pruning and packing may not completely prepare you to say goodbye to your current home. Before you move, work through the emotional consequences of your decision.

2. Avoiding that claustrophobic feeling: Moving to a smaller home can be a bit shocking if you've spent years living in a larger space. To avoid the panic that all your stuff "won't fit," prune and purge before your move.

You're Ready to Downsize

You've done the math, gone through your belongings, and now you're ready to take the leap and begin looking for a smaller home. Congratulations!

What's the next step to take? Call me!

As your local RE/MAX agent, I'm available to help you find a house that fits you perfectly. Let's get started today.



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Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton.