You’ve spent a lot of time in your current home. Its spacious rooms and generous floorplan were perfect for your growing family, and many of your fondest memories took place within its walls. Now, the kids are grown and you’re beginning to realize just how empty it feels. Whether for more financial freedom, less responsibility, or in preparation for the future, you’ve started to consider downsizing. Here are some questions to help guide your decision (and help you break it to the kids).
You may choose to include your children in the discussion regarding your homeownership plans. These questions are meant to help you and your family engage in a meaningful discussion about the future of your home. Remember, this is a new stage of life for each of you, so try to be patient, understanding, and open-minded about each person’s opinions. In the end, your decision needs to be one that will put you in the best position to enjoy your empty nest, retirement years, and the decades ahead.
Do we really need all of this space?
At one point, two stories, four bedrooms, and two bathrooms may have been an integral part of your family’s livelihood. With all of your kids out of the home, the extra bedrooms are basically wasted space, and the second story of your home isn’t as necessary as it once was. Take some time to evaluate your current home. Are you really using all of its rooms? If you’re unsure, try this for a week. Use a sticky note to mark the door frame of every room in your house. When you enter a room, remove the sticky note. At the end of the week, consider the rooms that you haven’t entered. If it’s a fair amount of your home, it could be a good indication that it’s time to move.
Will we miss out on other opportunities if we stay in this home?
It’s natural to place significance the nostalgia, memories, and comfort of your current home. While these aspects are valuable, they may not truly be at the top of your priority list. As you determine your next steps, it may be helpful to consider not what your current home will offer you in the years to come but what it will prevent you from enjoying. This will look different for everyone, but some examples of missed opportunities might include
- The chance to travel often or be gone for long periods of time
- Financial freedom or bonus unallocated funds
- Extra free time with your spouse, friends, or family
Often, desirable qualities of your current home can be replicated in a new home, but the opportunities that downsizing brings are not always available if you decide to stay where you are.
Can I age in place, or will aspects of my current home force me to move in the future?
It may seem way too early to begin thinking about whether you’ll age in place, but it's far easier to make a choice your happy with when you do it early and out of your own initiative rather than waiting until it becomes a necessity. Moving when you choose will allow you to plan and prepare for the future without the urgency of deteriorating health. You and your spouse can choose the home you want to live in for the rest of your lives and not have to worry about it again.
If you’re ready to move into the home of your dreams, contact the professionals at Midwest Development Partners. Life doesn’t end with an empty nest; in some ways, it’s just begun. Experience our many community advantages and start enjoying your golden years. It’s your life. Live it your way!