Now that you’re in retirement, money might be a little tighter. Even if you have great investments to bolster your income, it won’t be like it was in the past. That’s why seniors have to be careful about their costs.
To help with that, many seniors are downsizing and moving into a smaller home. Read on to learn the benefits of downsizing and how you can handle everything from finding a new home to moving into it.
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Why downsizing is great
What can you expect from downsizing? Although it can vary slightly from person to person, you should enjoy saving money from it. Moving into a smaller house means paying less for property taxes, utility bills and monthly mortgage payments. If you own your current home, the price difference can earn you a nice nest egg to bolster your retirement income.
But as CNBC reports, some seniors downsize to have a higher quality of life. For example, mobility can be a problem as you age, making that split-level house troublesome thanks to all those stairs. Downsizing into a one-story structure can really make a difference. The same is true for feeling lonely. A big house feels empty with all those unused rooms, whereas a smaller home in a new community can help you feel better. It can even give you plenty of social opportunities.
Don’t neglect your needs
With the right realtor, finding a smaller home to move into shouldn’t be a problem. However, any move can be a tiring experience, both physically and emotionally. That’s why you cannot ignore your needs during this time.
Self-care is important for seniors, as you may not have too many people able to help out. That’s why Senior Helpers recommends you make sure to eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly. It will be tempting to blame packing and moving for not taking care of yourself. Instead of ordering fast food and sleeping in, eat the right foods. Unless packing is taking a lot of energy, you also need to stay active with walks or time at the gym. Getting enough sleep is also crucial to your self-care during this time.
The process of packing can be stressful as well. Chances are, you have a lot of memories tied to the old place, and even thinking about moving can be emotional. To help reduce the stress, Harmony Moves recommends you pace yourself. Don’t wait until the last minute to pack and clean your home. Instead, create a plan that lets you slowly declutter and pack up your belongings at an easy pace.
If you have a pet, you should consider taking your four-legged best friend to a pet sitter or family member. Moving is a stressful process, so it’s ideal to keep your dog or cat safe from a lot of floor traffic of packing and movers.
Surviving moving day
As you get your belongings packed and ready to move, there are a few things you can do to make moving day easier to handle. Create an “unload first” box with your prescriptions, some toiletries, cleaning supplies and paper plates. This can really come in handy if the movers are running late. A few days before the move, contact your moving company and make sure they know to visit your house. It also helps to color-code boxes so everyone knows which room they belong in, such as red for the kitchen and green for the basement.
When you arrive at your new, smaller home, the last thing you want to do is start cleaning. Although the previous owners should clean it before vacating, many do not. That’s why it’s a great idea to hire a maid service to clean and prepare the new place. In the St. Louis area, the average price to clean a home is $117-$255 and can take up to five hours.
Enjoy the new home
Seniors can benefit from downsizing, which is why you should start speaking to a real estate agent today. Just be sure to practice self-care during the process and hire cleaners for your new place. All of this can help you enjoy your new home that much quicker.
Content provided by Jim Vogel with Elder Action