According to recent research, over a third of homeowners over 65 are considering downsizing in the next five years. There is increasing pressure on the government and housebuilding industry to build more affordable retirement homes, which would allow retirees to downsize and free up properties that would otherwise be suitable for buyers with families.
However, downsizing isn’t just for older homeowners. There are many reasons why people choose to sell large or expensive property and move into smaller, more affordable accommodation. So how do you know when it’s time to downsize your home?
5 Reasons to Downsize Your Home
1. Caring for Your Home Requires Too Much Work
A lot of the people that eventually downsize do so because they purchased a large property years ago when they had a young family and needed numerous bedrooms and a large garden.
Why spend time and energy cleaning and maintaining empty bedrooms if your children have flown the nest? Perhaps you were an avid gardener in your youth and now you’re struggling to maintain a large outdoor space with labour-intensive landscaping?
When your home becomes a burden to maintain — physically and financially — it may be time to move to a smaller property.
2. Financing the Property Has Become a Challenge
Large properties are generally more expensive to maintain and run than smaller homes. There is more space to heat and light, more things that could break and need repairing, and if you have a mortgage on the property, the monthly repayments are likely to be higher than they would be for a more modest home.
If you move to a smaller property, your month-on-month expenses could drop considerably. It may be possible to ditch the debt altogether and go mortgage-free, depending on your financial situation. Why stretch yourself financially and limit your options in life if you don’t need to?
3. You Need Money to Fund Other Plans and Projects
Downsizing is a good way to release the capital in your home to finance other projects you may wish to pursue. Whether that’s starting a business, helping a child through university or simply enjoying your retirement.
Research by financial services company Just Group has revealed that 61% of first-time buyers receive financial help from their parents or grandparents to get their feet on the property ladder. Few homeowners have savings equivalent to the amount needed to fund a house deposit sitting in the bank, so selling a property to release the equity is a logical move. Likewise, many parents downsize to reduce the level of debt that their children leave university with. The average student debt is £27,000 in 2020 — and that’s just for tuition fees. Factor in repayment of maintenance loans and this can rise to around £40,000.
Unlike equity release schemes that typically tie you into lifelong commitments and restrict your options if you later change your mind, downsizing means the equity you have built up in your home is yours to do with as you wish.
4. You Want to Buy a Second Home
Downsizing is a popular choice for people that want to buy a second property or holiday home. If you no longer need a large permanent residence, switching to a smaller home with lower running costs and mortgage payments could free up the capital you need to purchase a second home in this country or abroad.
Have you dreamed of retiring to Spain, but want to keep a foothold in the UK for when you visit the grandkids? Perhaps you’ve reached a point in your career where you can afford a weekend bolthole in the countryside when you need to escape the rat race? Sell your house, downsize, and your dream could become a reality.
5. Your Home Is No Longer Suitable for Your Needs
Many people decide to downsize due to changes in circumstances that make their home unsuitable for their needs. Ill health in a family is a common reason given for selling.
If you own a large home with steep stairs or a character cottage that cannot easily be adapted to accommodate a wheelchair, moving is essential to ensure the quality of life for you and your family. A bungalow or purpose-designed home will fit your current needs in a way that your existing property no longer can.
Whatever your reasons for downsizing, House Buyer Bureau can help. Many of our customers opt for a quick cash sale to avoid the inconvenience and stress of countless viewings and the high costs associated with selling on the open market. We are set up to operate remotely, and we can value your home using your photographs and videos. There is no need for viewings, and there will be no estate agency fees, legal costs or valuation fees to pay.
Contact us today with your questions or to receive a free cash offer on your property.