Real Estate and Community News

Aug. 15, 2022

Is Selling Right for You?

Downsizing Your Homes Part 6 - 1 of 6

While you might already be highly motivated to sell your current home, others may need convincing. I can imagine that many of you reading this blog already have in place a long list of reasons you wouldn’t consider “uprooting” yourself and leaving your current home for another, potentially smaller, one. (If you are happy where you are, why make a change?) I can give you plenty of reasons to consider moving at this stage in your life (but we’ll get into that soon). For now, I want to recognize that those of you who are hesitant, or even resistant, to the idea of moving, are completely justified in your reasons. But my guess is that you haven’t taken the time to fully consider the potential positives of doing so. Here are six of the most common objections longtime homeowners have to selling for the purpose of downsizing. For every common objection, I will address an upside.
1. “I don’t want to deal with the stress of moving.”
Moving, regardless of when, where, and why, can often be a stressful process. Downsizing is no different. There are many different steps involved, which can be overwhelming and time-consuming. The stress of moving often boils down to decluttering. After all, moving from a larger home — one that has collected many memories and belongings — to a smaller one requires getting rid of a lot of stuff because you literally won’t be able to take it all with you. And remember, many of today’s Baby Boomers have millennial adult children who prefer minimalist lifestyles and don’t necessarily want to inherit their parents’ stuff. The thought of having to sort through all of your possessions, keepsakes, and knick-knacks that you’ve collected over the years can be daunting. What to keep? What to toss? What to give away? What to recycle or donate? What to sell? What to do with family heirlooms? Plus, just the idea of packing everything up and moving it out of the house can make potential sellers postpone selling. But think long-term gains vs. short-term hassles. Sure, decluttering can be stressful, but it’s something you’re going to have to do at some point, so why not now? Also, some people actually really enjoy the process of decluttering, and find it both rewarding and freeing. Further, moving from a larger home that you no longer need to a smaller space will likely lift major burdens off your shoulders and give you a less stressful life — physically, emotionally, and financially.

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Posted in Selling Your Home
Aug. 12, 2022

Community Living - Retirement Communities

Downsizing Your Home Part 5

If none of the options we’ve discussed thus far appeal to you when you picture your life and your future, then perhaps you might consider community living as an option.

However, some homeowners nearing retirement and entering their senior years balk at the idea of community living or senior housing. “I’m far too young to consider moving to a retirement community!”

Maybe you’re thinking the same thing. Maybe you’re worried about losing your independence and freedom. Maybe you’re worried about losing your uniqueness and sense of self.

If this sounds like you, then you probably have some misconceptions about everything a retirement community can offer. 

As I’ve said before, you can look forward to the future with hope, anticipation, and even excitement! You’re entering a new stage of life, which can be very rewarding, and downsizing into retirement community living can get you there! But if you hold common misconceptions about senior housing, then prepare to be pleasantly surprised. These aren’t your mother’s senior living arrangements!

In fact, there are many different types of community living options available, and what you choose will depend on a variety of factors, such as your health and activity level, how much or how little independence you seek, and what types of leisure and social activities and environments interest you the most.

LEISURE AND ACTIVE ADULT COMMUNITIES

Leisure and active adult communities offer homes that are mainly geared toward empty nesters, although often both younger and older adults are welcome. These communities are designed for those who enjoy more active lifestyles, and offer leisure activities and amenities with that in mind. If you like to keep active and enjoy activities such as golf, tennis, yoga, swimming, hiking, etc., then this might be the perfect type of community for you.

INDEPENDENT LIVING COMMUNITIES

Independent living communities are another option, designed more for older adults who prefer or require additional services, such as central dining facilities, housekeeping services, maintenance, transportation support, etc. There are also age-appropriate leisure activities available, such as adult classes, gardening, games, and social events or outings. These communities are usually age-restricted with noise level limits, which is a big attraction for many people in this stage of life. They offer rental or ownership housing options with additional features that improve accessibility for those entering their senior years.

CONTINUING CARE RETIREMENT COMMUNITIES

Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) offer a combination of an independent living lifestyle with assisted living and nursing care. Essentially, they’re semi-independent living facilities for those who don’t need continual health care supervision, yet offer a continuum of care — housing, services and supports, and nursing care — all in one convenient location. You would be able to maintain some level of independence and privacy and enjoy various activities and friendships, while having access to the supports and health care you might need.

Another benefit is physical and financial security, allowing you to enjoy your post-retirement years comfortably and pursue your interests and goals. Finally, CCRCs come in a wide variety of housing options, anything from apartment style to campus style to individual homes, with many of them offering various amenities for you to enjoy.

ASSISTED-LIVING FACILITIES

Assisted living is designed for people who need help with certain activities and household management. It’s not full care — hence the term “assisted” — so residents are still technically living on their own, but they still offer varying levels of assistance. Some communities offer all three of the above types of living arrangements/housing — leisure, independent, and continuing care.

BENEFITS OF COMMUNITY LIVING

Regardless of which type of community living arrangement would best suit your needs as you look forward to the future, there are many benefits to choosing community living over purchasing a small house or townhouse, or over moving into your own condo or apartment. Here are some of the most notable benefits of community living.

1. You don’t have to worry about home maintenance or yard work.

Looking for a simple and stress-free lifestyle in your future? Consider moving into a senior housing arrangement. While this also applies to condo and apartment living, not having to worry about home maintenance or yard work is a significant benefit of community living. 

Every time there’s a problem that needs to be dealt with, it’s someone else’s problem.

Say farewell to making small repairs around the home and keeping up with landscaping, gardening, snow removal, and more. These services are provided as part of community living, and are included as part of a monthly fee. Depending on where you choose to live, you might even have the added benefit of adding housekeeping services on top of home maintenance and yard work. While some people think of moving into community living as a loss of independence, they don’t consider all the freedom it brings — freedom from regular home maintenance, in this case.

2. Pay one monthly fee for your expenses.

Community living is probably more affordable than you think! While I certainly won’t lead you to believe it’s inexpensive, when you compare the monthly fee to what you currently spend a month on everything across the spectrum — think property taxes, utilities, and entertainment — they’re pretty much on par. Keep in mind that you probably won’t need a car — or use it very much — because you will have almost everything you need on site and have access to carpooling and public transportation services. You can save a considerable amount on vehicle-related expenses (gas, maintenance, repairs, insurance).

3. Enjoy nearby amenities and explore new activities.

While there are certainly cost savings related to having so many services, activities, and attractions, there is also the sheer convenience. Healthy and high-quality dining options staff by professionals? It’s there. Fitness options, adult classes, hobbies, community outings, special events, and entertainment (speakers, comedians, musicians, movie nights) are onsite too. You can take up a new hobby or activity that you’ve never tried before but have always wanted to, whether it’s gardening, golf, hiking, yoga, woodworking, or arts and crafts classes.

“It takes more intentional effort to be bored in a retirement community than it does to stay entertained” (SeniorAdvisor.com). 

4. Make new friends who share your interests.

Community living offers a fantastic opportunity to meet new people and make new friends. Some people find that their social circles grow smaller as the years go by, but you can look forward to enjoying the benefits of new friendships within a community living environment through many of the available onsite activities and events. You might even end up forging a close bond with someone who shares similar life experiences or interests.

5. Reap the rewards of safety and security.

Concerns of safety and security tend to grow as people age, particularly when they consider their next homes. Worried about falling and not being able to get up when you’re older? What about catching the flu or developing any number of conditions or ailments? If an older person lives alone and falls, or develops an illness quickly, the results can be devastating. But you can basically throw these worries out the window if you decide to join the ranks of seniors who have decided to embrace all the benefits of community living. There will always be people around to help, helping you to live as safely and securely as possible. 

6. Avoid moving in the future.

Picture your life with the peace and security that comes with never having to move again! This can be your reality if you choose community living in your retirement to enjoy your golden years without stress. 

As people age, it becomes increasingly difficult to go through the process of downsizing, regardless of where they choose to move. If they are experiencing changes in their physical and mental health, then it becomes even more challenging, and the burden of selling and moving might fall on someone else’s shoulders, most often their adult children. 

But if you choose to move into a retirement community before you experience any decline in your health, you’ll be ahead of the game, and you’ll be able to enjoy all the benefits and perks of community living without the hassle of worrying about selling, buying, and moving down the road.

7. Choose your independence.

One of the best things about community living in your senior years is that you have flexibility in choosing how much — or how little — independence you need and want.

Many people mistakenly link senior living directly to assisted or nursing home living — and those certainly are great options if you’re looking for an increased level of care and dependability. But you can choose to start out as independently as you would like, then, depending on your situation and your changing needs, you can usually transition to more dependent living in the future, as many communities offer these types of facilities.

This way, you don’t have to move (a bonus, as discussed previously) or start all over again, and you can keep your social circle, the staff you’ve come to trust, and the activities you’ve been enjoying. 

Remember, there’s no right or wrong way to live in a retirement community. There is no “one-size-fits-all” approach. You are able to pick and choose whatever works best for you! 

For example, maybe you’d like to keep your independence in the kitchen and prepare and cook your own meals. That’s entirely possible! There are independent living apartments with full kitchens, yet you can still be part of a community and make social connections and enjoy new hobbies and interesting activities. However, if you don’t want to cook — whether it’s matter of never wanting to cook a meal again, or being unable to, then choose a senior housing situation where you can eat meals prepared by staff on site.

Key Takeaway:

Retirement community living is a fantastic alternative to moving into a smaller house, townhouse, condo, or apartment for many homeowners nearing retirement, offering many benefits you might not have considered before. Today’s community living options offer much more than they did decades ago, allowing you to have less stress, more time, and opportunities for social connections, leisure activities, and amenities. 

Posted in Selling Your Home
Aug. 9, 2022

First Steps to Selling Your Home

Downsizing Your Home Part 4

Location! Location! Location! is the most crucial consideration in real estate and a major factor, if not the predominant one, in real estate pricing. Novice (and not-so-novice) home sellers alike must know the considerations that determine a home’s price.
 Setting the price at which to sell your home is not a simple formula, nor totally mathematical. Many elements factor into the decision. Throughout this book, you will read examples of similar and similarly situated houses that sold for very different prices, along with the reasons for the disparities. A calculated home value is not necessarily what you believe your home is worth. Recognizing this helps avoid overpricing, a major factor that leaves homes languishing or unsold.
 Familiarity with the real estate terms market value, appraisal value, and assessed value can save disappointment and frustration, and allow the home seller to meaningfully engage in setting a home’s listing price.
 The most used definition of market value is “the most probable price a property should bring in a competitive, open market, under conditions requisite to a fair sale.” Essentially, this is a pre-negotiation opinion of what a house should bring in its local market, i.e., its geographical area, generally an area such as a suburb or neighborhood.
Appraisal value is an evaluation of a property’s worth at a given point in time that is performed by a professional appraiser. Appraised value is a crucial factor in loan underwriting and determines how much money may be borrowed and under what terms. For example, the Loan to Value (LTV) ratio is based on the appraised value. Where LTV is greater than 80%, the lender generally will require the borrower to buy mortgage insurance.
 Assessed value is the amount local or state government has designated for specific property and frequently differs from market value or appraisal value. This assessed value is used as the basis of property tax and when a property tax is levied. The assessed value of real property is not necessarily equal to the property’s market value. Approximately 60% of U.S. properties are assessed higher than their current value.
Link for FREE copy of my book:HOW TO SELL YOUR HOME FOR MORE MONEY
Posted in Selling Your Home
Aug. 6, 2022

Condo or Apatment Living

Downsizing Your Home Part 3

Finding the right type of condo or apartment in the right neighborhood that meets your needs, with the right amount of space, can actually improve your quality of life. Here are some of the advantages of condo and apartment living:

 1. You’ll have less upkeep and maintenance.

 Less overall upkeep is a major benefit — and one of the most attractive — for many homeowners when downsizing from a larger house to a condo or apartment.

First, there are fewer indoor chores to manage since you have less space and fewer rooms to clean and maintain regularly, including tidying, dusting, sweeping, wiping down, and scrubbing.

 Second, most condos and apartments include homeowners association (HOA) fees that cover maintenance of the grounds and community amenities. You won’t need to worry about mowing your grass, weeding your garden, shoveling snow off walkways, and other landscaping issues.

Third, if you rent, whether it’s a condo or an apartment, you won’t need to worry about common maintenance issues. Property owners are responsible for taking care of their tenants, so most of them will pay to fix leaky sinks, handle plumbing issues, replace broken appliances, and repair a malfunctioning furnace or air conditioning system, among other issues.

 2. These homes offer increased accessibility.

 Condo or apartment living, particularly if you’re centrally located, can offer more accessible living, as you’ll be closer to amenities and services (groceries, doctor’s offices), as well as entertainment and social activities (dining, concerts). It will be easier to walk to these places, or, if it’s something you enjoy, cycle. There’s also better access to public transportation so you don’t have to worry about driving as much.

 3. You’ll have even lower monthly utility bills.

A second and important benefit of downsizing into a condo or apartment is that you’ll be able to save even more on utilities and reduce your monthly bills — more than by purchasing a smaller house or townhouse. Most condos and apartments take up less square footage than a single-family home or townhome, and considerably more than the larger family home you’re leaving behind, so you’ll pay much less to heat and cool your space, especially if you can find a good deal.

“You’ll use less electricity, heat and water in an apartment, and some monthly bills may be eliminated altogether,” reports Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. “For instance, the monthly cost to rent a water softener to manage hard water is unlikely inside an apartment. Some of your utility costs may be included in your rent, too, such as your waste management or water bill.”

 Besides saving money, you’ll also be making a good choice in sustainability, both environmentally and financially. For example, many modern condo and apartment buildings are being built with an eco-friendly, more energy-efficient, and “greener” approach.

 

 4. You can meet new people.

 While some homeowners in the process of downsizing prefer to move into a small house so they can maintain their independence, enjoy privacy, and reduce the possibility of dealing with annoying neighbors, other downsizers hope to meet new people, get to know their new neighbors, socialize, and make connections.

 If this is you, condo or apartment living would make a fantastic choice — especially if you’re looking for a sense of community without moving into senior housing or an official retirement community.

 Living in close proximity to your neighbors means there is ample opportunity to meet new people — and even try new activities. You can easily walk down the hall to drop by and say hello, catch up over a cup of tea, ask for an ingredient you’re missing for dinner, play a game of cards, go out for a nice stroll, or take up a new leisurely activity together.

 Nearby neighbors are also handy for things like feeding your cat or watering your plants when you’re away, or keeping on hand a set of spare keys. These are all much easier and more convenient to do in a condo or apartment than if you lived in a house.

 5. You can take advantage of amenities.

 Many condo complexes and apartment buildings include access to fantastic amenities, akin to what you might find in some hotels. Think game rooms, party rooms, swimming pools, fully equipped gyms and wellness centers, tennis or basketball courts, and club houses. Some more upscale options include libraries, rooftop pools and hot tubs, rooftop terraces, outdoor kitchen facilities, and concierge services. Upscale amenities alone can attract downsizers who want to live a relaxed, leisurely lifestyle.

These extra amenities can be included in the price of purchasing or renting the unit — or will be included in a monthly HOA fee. It’s important to find out if there are any additional costs before you buy or sign a lease, and also to check whether those amenities are regularly maintained. Also, if these types of amenities are important to you, make sure you do your research to find out which condos and/or apartments within your budget offer the ones that are most appropriate and realistic for your lifestyle.

 6. You can save money on “things.”

 By downsizing to a condo or an apartment, you can save money by avoiding unnecessary purchases. Simply put, having less space means you’ll be less inclined to accumulate stuff, because there’s really nowhere to put it. However, with a smaller space, you will naturally make more intentional decisions and purchases, focusing more on what’s needed and what makes sense and what works in your new home, rather than buying impulsively.

 A condo purchase, or renting a condo or apartment, will most likely set you back a lot less than a typical house purchase would, which leaves you with extra funds for things like leisure activities, travel, and investments. And don’t forgot those all-important utility bill savings (see #2). People consume much less energy in apartments and condos when compared with their energy consumption in houses (factoring in the same usage by the same number of people).

 7. You get to start fresh.

Finally, choosing a condo or an apartment can give you a new outlook on life, especially if you’ve never lived in a condo or apartment before.

 “The apartment represents a new beginning without home burdens such as high property tax payments and larger mortgage or rent payments, depending on the location of the apartment. It can feel liberating to start a new life chapter, and it may inspire you to make other freeing decisions, too” (Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company).

 Key Takeaway:

 For many homeowners who are downsizing, the prospect of purchasing another smaller home isn’t appealing, but neither is jumping into retirement community living. Condo and apartment living can provide a happy medium, offering the “best of both worlds.” Living in a condo or apartment means less upkeep and fewer expenses — especially when it comes to utilities — as well as time to meet people, engage in activities, and enjoy various amenities.

Posted in Buying a Home
Aug. 5, 2022

Single-Family House or Townhouse?

Downsizing Your Home Part 2

I’m going to discuss five benefits of choosing this type of living situation: 1) independence; 2) personalized space; 3) homeownership pride; 4) space for company; and 5) utility savings.

 1. You can maintain your independence.
 Many longtime homeowners who are considering a move don’t want to sacrifice the independence of owning, maintaining, and living in their homes. This is especially true for new empty nesters or those nearing retirement.  If you’re not ready to give up the independence of living in your own home, then a different single-family home or a townhome might be the right choice for you. In many cases, this home will have less square footage than the home you currently own, but as I pointed out in the previous chapter, it may also just be a different type of home — for example, a 1-story home as opposed to a 2-story home, even if it has similar square footage. But for the sake of this chapter, we’re going to assume the home is a smaller size.
 2. You can create your own personalized space.
 If you choose another house or townhouse for your new home, rather than a condo, apartment, or community living space, think of this as your chance for a fresh start in a new home! You can create your own personalized space — a space that’s truly your own — and design your home however you like (without having to consider the needs of children).
 If you love creating, designing, and stylizing your own space, this could be a great option for you. And the added benefit is that you’ll have less stuff, since you’ll already have decluttered by this stage in the downsizing process, so it won’t take as much time, energy, and funds to design your entire home.
 3. You can take pride in homeownership.
 There is definitely a sense of pride that many people feel in homeownership. If you loved owning your own home and aren’t quite ready to give that up, then another single-family home or a townhome could be the perfect option for you. You can still be an independent homeowner, but enjoy things like less maintenance and upkeep, which will save you time, freeing it up for things like leisure activities, family, and travel.
 4. You can still have enough room for guests.
 Some homeowners worry about downsizing because they assume they will no longer have enough space to host children, grandchildren, other family members, and out-of-town guests for the night (or longer). However, if you downsize into a smaller house or even a townhouse (instead of an apartment, for example) that has an extra bedroom or two, you can still have that bit of extra space to host overnighters when you need it. Choosing a smaller house or townhouse over an apartment can help ensure you have that space.
 5. You can save on utilities.
 As I mentioned in the previous chapter, if you downsize your home, you can also save money on some of your bills! If you choose a smaller single-family home or townhome, you can save a significant amount on utilities, such as electricity and gas. Smaller houses are often considerably more energy-efficient than older, larger homes because they have less space to heat and cool, which means more savings for you, as well as a lower ecological footprint. Likewise, single-story homes can be easier (and less expensive) to heat and cool than 2-story homes, even if they share a similar square footage.
 House vs. Townhouse
 There are certainly differences between choosing to downsize to a single-family home vs. a townhome or carriage home.
There are benefits to living in a townhouse compared to a smaller detached house. For example, some homeowners who are downsizing prefer complete privacy and independence, and aren’t ready to give that up just yet — but also aren’t ready for community living.
Compared to a townhouse, a smaller single-family house has more privacy and provides greater independence. Though likely smaller than your current home, a single-family home may offer a beautifully landscaped backyard with a garden, a fenced-in yard, a garage, and the freedom to be able to do what you want with the home, including repainting the exterior and adding some outdoor home improvements. These options aren’t necessarily available with townhouse living, as there may be standards and bylaws preventing you from making the changes you want.
Of course, there are benefits to living in a townhouse compared to a smaller single-family house:
  • Price: In general, townhomes and carriage homes are less expensive than single-family houses. But they still offer much of the space and flexibility you’re probably looking for. But keep in mind that most townhomes also include monthly HOA fees to cover things like landscaping, plus any other amenities in the community.

  • Flexibility: Besides the price factor, townhome living tends to give you more flexibility. It has the added benefit of the low-maintenance lifestyle that comes with condo or apartment living, but generally includes more space, as well as more flexible options when it comes to function (such as parking spaces) and leisure (backyards for private or semi-private entertaining).

  • Practicality: Sometimes, it’s the more practical option. For example, a downtown three-bedroom townhouse might actually be a better investment option than the little two-bedroom house down the street.

  • Community: Townhouse living can also offer a similar sense of community to an apartment, but generally with more privacy and fewer neighbors.

 However, many homeowners would prefer to move into a condo or apartment, and there are many solid reasons for that, which we’ll take a look at in the following chapter.
 Key Takeaway: Thinking about where you would like to live when downsizing is a big decision, as there are many options to consider. We’ve looked at the benefits of choosing a smaller single-family home or a townhome, which can offer things like independence, privacy, pride in homeownership, space for family, and savings on utility bills.
Posted in Buying a Home
Aug. 5, 2022

10 BENEFITS OF DOWNSIZING YOUR HOME

Downsizing Your Home Part 1

1. Profit

 Simply put, you could make a profit by selling your current home and moving into a smaller home — bonus points if you’ve already paid off your mortgage because you might just be able to purchase your next home outright. You might even stand to make a sizable profit (this is all dependent on your individual market and how much your current home is worth) and feather your nest egg. If you’ve been delaying retirement because you don’t think you can afford it, selling your larger home and moving into a smaller one could allow you to finally retire in peace and comfort.

2. Lower Bills

Downsizing also presents another money-saving opportunity: lower (often significantly lower) energy or utility bills! Who doesn’t want to save on bills?
 Choosing to live in a smaller dwelling space can reduce housing costs. Think about it: It costs significantly less to heat and cool a smaller home. Smaller homes also typically have less wasted space. Less square footage decreases the amount of overall energy expended.
 Something else you might not have considered are the potential tax benefits and savings that you could be eligible for, if you’re over a certain age. This will, of course, depend on not only your age but also your location, as there are different rules and requirements and benefits in each state. Before you sell your home, ask your real estate agent to help you do some research about the different tax-saving options available to you in your state.
 And don’t forget about the impact on the environment. Moving into a smaller home reduces energy, which is better for the environment and helps to keep your home “green,” reducing your carbon footprint.
3. Reduced Consumption
It’s a fact: The more space you have, the more likely you will feel the need to fill that space with something. If you’re an empty nester, it may be tempting to fill the extra space in your big house with stuff, even though you likely have more than enough of it.
 One of the great perks of downsizing is that it automatically reduces your consumption of “stuff” because you first have to declutter before you sell and move. You will have less space to store your possessions — whether old or new — in your next (smaller) home.
 Downsizing can help you focus on your priorities in life so that you bring only what is truly necessary into your home or what you treasure most.
 The fact is, if there’s no place to put something, then you’re less likely to buy it. You won’t want all that decluttering to go to waste, so you’ll naturally buy less of everything — food, clothing, consumer goods, household décor, furniture, etc. You will focus more on what you need rather than what might be “nice to have” and avoid impulse spending.
4. Organization
Downsizing forces you to become organized. Decluttering might seem like a disadvantage to downsizing. After all, it’s time-consuming, exhausting, and sometimes even heartbreaking to go through all the stuff you’ve accumulated throughout the years and get rid of much of it.
 But the short-term hassle is worth it. You’ll be forced to eliminate all that clutter and end up with only what you need and your most valuable items. This will free up space in your home and in your mind.
 5. Accessibility
 For many individuals entering retirement — especially those with health or mobility issues — accessibility within a home becomes increasingly important.
 Stairs are one example. As much as we all might not like to admit it, as we age, mobility can become more of an issue. Stairs are often barriers that prevent people from enjoying the full use of their homes. Stairs can also significantly increase the risk of falls and subsequent injuries.
 Your longtime home might have served you well over the last few decades, but it could become more challenging and riskier as you age. Mobility issues present an even greater challenge.
 However, downsizing from a two- or three-level home into a smaller, one-level house, condo, or apartment can give you greater accessibility, allowing you to live in your new home for longer instead of needing to switch to an assisted-living facility before you need one.
 6. Less Driving
 One unexpected benefit of downsizing is that you will probably drive less.
 If you’ve lived in a larger home in the suburbs for years, you’ve likely become used to driving to most places, including work, shopping, entertainment, visiting, etc. Many people who live in suburban communities feel isolated in retirement.
 Proximity and accessibility aren’t the only concerns. Many aging homeowners wish to reduce the amount of driving they do due to one (or all) of the following reasons

Health concerns (often related to eyesight challenges or mobility issues, or both);

  • Cost (you can save money related to gas and ongoing maintenance);

  • Environmental concerns (Many Boomers are becoming more concerned about their carbon footprint and the state of the environment they’re leaving for their children and grandchildren.)

7. Less Work for Your Adult Children
 Deciding to downsize can mean reducing, or even eliminating, a lot of work for your grown children — something that many empty nesters find to be important.
 Adult children are often left with the arduous, time-consuming, and often unnecessary task of sorting through, giving away, selling, and storing the possessions of their parents after the parents become ill, are immobilized, move into assisted-living facilities, or pass away. Is this something you want your own children to deal with?
 While paring down your possessions is definitely better for you as you go through the process of downsizing — for decluttering, organization, making the most of your new space, and even mental health — it’s also considered a gift to your adult children because they won’t have to sort through all of your stuff down the road.
 Too often, aging parents hang on to sentimental possessions in the hope — or assumption — that their children or grandchildren will desire them some day. However, the truth is that many children don’t even want these items their parents have “saved” for them.
 Before you save anything for your children or other family members, ask them if it’s something they might want in the future.
 I know someone who saved his extensive record collection, retaining them through several moves, only to find his nephew, whom he had been saving them for, didn’t want them. He eventually sold them to someone who treasured them as much as he did, and he made a healthy profit in return.
 When you do go through these more personal items, make sure to approach the process fairly to avoid any conflicts or confrontations about who gets what.
 Downsizing can prevent all this hassle, as you’ll be forced to declutter and become more organized.
 8. More Time
Besides the money-saving opportunities, one of the biggest benefits of downsizing is more time.
If you sell your current home and move into a smaller space, that means there is less square footage, fewer rooms, and less stuff. This, in turn, means there are fewer household tasks, less to clean, less to maintain, less to organize, and less to worry about!
 This, in turn, means there are more hours every day to do something else — whether it’s a leisurely walk, exercise, volunteering, a neglected activity or hobby, time with family or friends, travel, or even just resting with a good book. By downsizing, you’ve now claimed more time for yourself and your priorities in your golden years.
9. Less Stress
Who doesn’t want less stress? This is a major motivating factor for many areas of life.
 Homeowners who have gone through the process of downsizing are generally much happier in their new home, and their new lifestyle, as they’re no longer overwhelmed by the demands that owning and maintaining a larger home often brings. The increased cashflow, along with less responsibility and more flexibility will, when added together, reduce stress considerably.
Paring down your possessions (decluttering) as you downsize helps you to truly appreciate your new home and increase your enjoyment of it, which helps to reduce stress. It’s been proven that too much clutter increases stress because it’s just not conducive to a comfortable living situation. There’s just too much stuff, which can get in the way, and you’ll have a hard time finding things. By having less stuff and becoming more organized, you will simplify your life while enjoying reduced stress levels.
 10. More Peace and Security
 A major benefit of downsizing is the peace and security that comes with making that big decision and having successfully downsized from your current home into a smaller dwelling.
You will have peace of mind that you downsized before it was too late — that you didn’t wait too long to organize yourself and your home, declutter, and get rid of possessions you no longer need. You won’t have to worry about doing this in the future when you’re older and/or in poor health, and having to leave all the work for your grown children.
 Downsizing also brings security. You’ll have financial security in the sense that you were hopefully able to make a profit and enjoy increased cashflow to help you throughout your retirement. The security also comes in knowing that you’ve successfully sold your home and you’re going to be OK as you age, whether you’ve downsized into a smaller house, condo, apartment, or community living. and, as I’ve already pointed out, you will have more time and less stress.
Posted in Selling Your Home
May 12, 2022

How To Decide Whether To Buy or Sell First

The right option for you depends on your particular situation.

 

In today’s real estate market, low inventory and high demand are dominating the conversation. It’s easy to sell, but it’s much harder to buy. Many homeowners are in a position where they need to complete both transactions in a short period. Deciding which one to do first comes down to several factors. Each route comes with pros and cons, but the right option for you depends on your particular situation.

If you need to sell your home and buy a new one, here are three key questions that you should consider before starting the process:

1. Can you afford two mortgages? If possible, most people choose the buy first, then sell option. However, qualifying for two mortgages at once is difficult and can add a lot of stress to your situation. If you can carry both payments for a few months, you’ll have plenty of time to find a new home while also preparing your current property to sell for top dollar.


"The right option for you depends on your particular situation."


2. What type of home are you buying? If you have a specific neighborhood or school district that you’re targeting, you can’t always afford to sell first from a timing perspective. You might need to make a contingent offer, use a bridge loan, or take out a home equity line of credit. It might be worth it to secure your dream home. If you don’t have a super-specific wish list for your next home, selling first might make more sense for a multitude of reasons.

3. Do you want to move twice? Most people don’t, but you might not have a choice. If you need the money from your home sale to fund your subsequent purchase, you may have to find temporary housing while you search for your next property. With rent on the rise due to inflation, that’s not always the wisest move. On the other hand, depending on how high demand is in your specific price range, you may be able to negotiate a rent-back agreement with the buyer who purchases your home and avoid the dreaded double move.

We’ve helped many clients in this situation, and we’d be happy to help you too. There is more than one way to sell before you buy and vice versa.

If you have any questions about your specific situation or real estate in general, don’t hesitate to reach out via phone or email. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

 

 


 

Posted in Selling Your Home
April 19, 2022

What’s Happening in Our Market?

Our market is experiencing low inventory and high buyer demand.

 

Many homeowners and prospective buyers ask me whether they should wait to see if there will be a price increase or a market correction. The answer to this question depends on your situation, goals, long-term plans, and needs. Today I’ll give you an overview of our current market.

We’re in a hot seller’s market, and we have fewer than two weeks of inventory in Collin County. There are fewer than 1,000 total homes available. Some neighborhoods have zero homes for sale, and some cities have 50 to 60.

This low inventory and high demand will cause home prices to rise. If you're thinking about selling, now is a great time.

Interest rates are also rising for buyers. If you need financing, you might want to act quickly because you won’t be able to afford as much home in the future.

If you have any questions, email, text, or call me. I'm happy to provide solid information to help you make an informed decision.

 


 

Posted in Market Updates
Oct. 6, 2021

10 Things To Know About Allen Texas | Trophy Homes Realty

Allen TX

Thinking About Moving to Allen Tx?

If you’re planning on making a move sometime soon then have a look at one of the best cities in the DFW area, Allen TX. It’s one of the best times to think about moving to Allen TX with its beautiful neighborhoods and fantastic real estate opportunities. It’s one of the best places in the area for so many different things so let’s have a look at a few good reasons to make Allen TX your new home.

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Posted in Buying a Home
Sept. 6, 2021

The #1 Guide To Moving & Living In Frisco Texas

Living In Frisco TX

Dubbed as the fastest growing city in the US in 2017, Frisco is an up-and-coming area that attracts visitors and people who are looking for a new place to call their home. Frisco is a city located between Denton County and Collin County in the state of Texas. With an estimated population of 200,000 people and an award-winning school district, it doesn’t come as a surprise why a lot of people are interested in moving to Frisco, Texas.

Located just 25 minutes north of Dallas, Frisco is the ultimate place to live in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.  Frisco has an award-winning school district and is considered cheaper compared to the bigger cities in Texas. The city offers a plethora of recreational activities, things to do, world-class restaurants, and the natural Texan charm. 

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Posted in Buying a Home