Looking to move to a smaller house? Read our 11 highly practical tips for downsizing home.
Downsizing home is a liberating process.
Many downsizers often report a new and less encumbered life, with lower household bills and a smaller house to manage.
According to a report by the Intergenerational Foundation, downsizing allows young families to enjoy the space they need to thrive, and frees older generations from the tyranny of cleaning, upkeep and unwieldy gardens.
With the rising cost of university tuition fees, downsizing is also an excellent way for parents to fund their child’s education.
Whatever your reason for downsizing, it will take careful planning and preparation to do right. Get on top of your move with our downsizing home checklist:
Downsizing presents logistical challenges. All the items you have in a large home simply won’t all fit in a smaller one.
It really is a case of move it or lose it.
Whether you’re moving to a smaller terraced property or a thatched cottage, you will need to plan ahead.
A good starting place is the loft or garage. These are the main areas where junk accumulates over the years. Under the beds and in the wardrobes are other serial offenders.
This way you can assess whether your current furniture will fit. If not, you will need to sell or replace them.
Be realistic. If the furniture fits, will it look right? It’s no good transferring furniture and other items if they stick out or do not fit with the décor of the new home.
And If you have no room, get rid!
Use a colour coded system to mark boxes destined for each location.
This will help you keep on top of things and assess whether there is any more available space.
It will also assist your removals team in allocating where everything needs to go.
Besides reduced space you need to think about the practicalities of the new property you are moving to.
Ask yourself the following questions:
If you are downsizing home to retire, you will need to ensure the property continues to be accessible for you and your family. Houses with lots of stairs or with difficult outside access will need to be assessed.
There are certain items you will simply not need depending on the property you are downsizing too. For example, If you’re moving to a flat without a garden you’re not going to need a lawnmower.
Do you really need 8 or 9 mugs if there are only three of you? How many garden tools do you have in the shed?
Unless the items are of real sentimental value throw away duplicate items that will only take up space and increase the cost of your move.
Keep extras for entertaining guests but otherwise throwaway unnecessary duplicates.
Downsizing home is the perfect opportunity to get on top of the bundles of paperwork you’ve been amassing over the years.
Depending on how much you have and what you need to retain you might wish to use a shredding service.
Lots of people now file electronically using a hard drive or cloud-service option. Explore your options and where possible retain records In electronic format to save space.
It makes no sense to pay for stuff to be moved which you no longer can use.
It makes even less sense not to cash in on this opportunity.
A car boot sale is a great way to raise some extra cash and shift some stuff.
There are also various online websites and apps like eBay, Gumtree and Schpock to sell unwanted items. You can even put the money towards the cost of your removals service.
While the process of downsizing home is liberating be sure you’re not getting rid of anything valuable or of serious sentimental value. Particularly if it belongs to someone else.
If you have older children who no longer live at home they may still have items of theirs from the childhood stored away in their old room or attic.
Consult them and give them the opportunity to salvage anything before you throw it away.
It might be worth thinking about storage facilities. If you have reduced kitchen cupboard, shelf and office space.
Consider stamp duty
Retirees looking to downsize and make a profit on their existing home should remember they must still pay stamp duty.
Homebuyers in the UK (except first time buyers) pay stamp duty on any property with a value over £125,000.
Those looking to live off the proceeds of downsizing should factor this into their considerations.
Even if you’re physically fit and healthy, a removals company can help lighten the work.
Removals companies move belongings between houses almost every day of the year.
They have a pretty good idea therefore about what will fit where and what won’t. They are also knowledgeable on access issues and can advise on whether a particular item of furniture will need a certain approach.
For example, whether a king size bed will need to be airlifted into a property.
Our expert removals team are fully trained and can move everything from furniture and antiques to everyday household items.
All our services are tailor-made to the client to ensure their moving day experience is as smooth and stress-free as possible.
Whether you’re moving from a detached property in the suburbs to a flat in the city, or a farmhouse to a country cottage we’ve got the right removals solution for you.
To find out more about any of our services, and to see how we can hep you downsize home, don’t hesitate to give us a call today.
Sean Delaney is a creative copywriter with his finger on the pulse for all the latest happenings in the removals industry. He authors in-depth guides and blog content on selling your house, packing, moving and all the legal and insurance jargon in between. In addition to writing for GoodMove, he also provides editorial and copywriting services for a range of clients across the legal and recruitment sectors.