We posted an article about downsizing a couple of weeks ago and had some questions about our ability to help families downsize. The answer is yes, we are certified “downsizing consultants”. By certified, I mean we have literally worked through extensive downsizing for homes that are in excess of 30,000 square feet for the last 8 years. Alas, we wanted to share some of that knowledge today.
Downsizing Tips for Seniors- 77 Million Baby Boomers is Alot!
According to the US Census Bureau there are approximately 77 million baby boomers and the most senior boomers began retiring about five years ago. Being the most affluent group of adults in the history of the world, these “Boomers” have accumulated massive amounts of collections, furnishings, antiques, art and many other possessions that their wealth afforded them. As these older baby boomers retire they are being forced to decide what they will keep and get rid of as they “downsize” from their large homes.
There are a number of key questions seniors should ask as they make this major lifestyle downsize.
- What will I spend the next 10-15 years of my life doing? Many will want to travel which means having a large home to up-keep is costly and time consuming. Downsizing to a smaller home will free up resources and time.
- Where do I want to live during the next phase of my life? Many seniors are choosing more southern, warm climates so they can spend more time outdoors and not worry about ice and snow.
- Do you and or your spouse have health issues? As these older boomers age, they will find that in their senior years, climbing flights of stairs may be difficult. Downsizing to a single story home may save the process of having to do this in just a few years. I know because less than two years after downsizing from our large 3500 square foot homes, to a more compact 1600 square foot, low-maintenance, 3 story, condo, I ended up with knee surgery and navigating flights of stairs is not easy.
- Do any of our adult children want any of the things you have been saving for them for the past 30 years?
Millennial children are not that interested in grandma’s rocking chair, or the box of high school track and field trophies. Getting rid of these during the downsize will save from renting storage space and/or using valuable space in the smaller home you move to.
Finally, as you consider those senior years, that will be upon you before you know it, use this simple phrase to answer all your questions while you are in the process of downsizing: “When in doubt…just throw it out!!”
We hope this is helpful guidance. Please let us know if we can help you, or the senior in your life, downsize their life for an easier and happier golden years.