Seniors: How to Know When to Downsize

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The housing market is currently buzzing with people looking to relocate. Whether they’re searching for more space, a larger yard, or just a new location, it’s undoubtedly the prime time to sell a home with such high demand. 

With the housing boom, many seniors may be wondering if this is the perfect opportunity to downsize and get the most money for their current home. While the timing is undoubtedly great, there are a few questions to answer before determining whether downsizing is the right choice. 

While some decisions may be easy, like determining the best home insurance for seniors, some may be more difficult. Here’s how to know you’ve reached the time to downsize and sell your current home. 

Unused Rooms Could Mean Time to Downsize

An excellent place to start when determining whether you are ready to downsize is considering how many rooms in your home go unused. Perhaps you bought your home when you had multiple children filling its space, but now those kids have moved out — leaving you with empty rooms.

While extra space is great when your home is full, it can quickly become overwhelming to care for. More rooms mean more cleaning, maintenance, and money spent on heating and cooling.

If you find your home is not as full as it once was, it may be the perfect time to consider downsizing. Fewer rooms will mean less work and less money in the long run. 

Downsizing Could Solve Layout Troubles

In your 20s or 30s, the home you buy may not be suitable for your senior years. While you might not have thought twice about purchasing a home with multiple levels 25 years ago, it may be a problematic layout to deal with now.

Using stairs each time you want to access a different part of your home can cause a lot of physical strain and difficulty. You may find yourself avoiding your upstairs altogether or using it as little as possible.

Instead of struggling with a bad layout, downsizing could allow you to find a lovely ranch home to better suit your needs. You can feel more comfortable and not let parts of your house go to waste.

Choosing to Downsize Could Help Finances

Living on a fixed income can mean looking for ways to save in your golden years. Even if you bought your home for a good price years ago, property taxes, home insurance, and maintenance could cost more on a larger house. 

Downsizing to a smaller space can help you save on expenses and leave you with less worry about your monthly bills. In turn, you can spend more of your hard-earned money on things you enjoy.

You may even be able to earn a little extra money while you’re downsizing by selling the items you no longer need. Since you are moving into a smaller space, you may need to reduce your furniture and clothing. Selling gently used items can make you some significant extra cash. 

Hot Markets Offer the Perfect Time to Downsize

If all your considerations are leading to the realization that downsizing may be right for you, the last question to ask is, how is the market? Currently, the housing market is in favor of sellers. People are often overbidding on beautiful properties, allowing sellers to earn their maximum asking price.

A seller’s market will mean you will undoubtedly get the most for your home compared to other times. If you need a deciding factor, this might be the one for you. When the market favors sellers, there are few better times to downsize. 

Downsizing in Your Golden Years

It can be difficult to deal with downsizing from a home you have spent so much time caring for and enjoying. However, it can also be challenging to keep up with the home you purchased many years ago as you age.

Unused space, poor layouts, and higher expenses are all determining factors for downsizing. You want to ensure your home is meeting your changing needs.

It could be time to sell and move into a smaller home if you aren’t fully utilizing your space — whether it’s due to too much space or a poor layout. And if you find yourself overwhelmed with the cost of taxes, insurance, or utilities, this could also mean it’s time to downsize. 

Selling your current home and downsizing can allow you more financial freedom, more access to your home, and relieve the stress too much space could be causing. 


Alexandra Arcand writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, She is passionate about helping people find the best home and insurance options to meet their needs.

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