It’s not easy to downsize what is often a lifetime of possessions. It takes time and it takes hard work. However, there are five basic steps to start the process. If you follow these steps in order, it will make the process that much easier when it comes to making your move.
STEP 1: RESEARCH – This is where you call the real estate professional. It’s important that you know what you’re going to be paying out for what you purchase, and what is going to be coming back in. Here are the questions you will want to ask your real estate professional when they visit and view your home:
- How much is my home worth? How much equity do I have once I sell?
- How long will my home take to sell? When should I list it?
- What can I do to make my home more saleable?
A true, full time, full service real estate professional will be able to give you this information at no cost, and with no obligation.
STEP 2: DECIDE – This is when the family comes in. If you have kids, they can help you with this decision as it is a big one. Is this really what you want to do? Are you physically prepared to move to a smaller space, and more importantly – are you mentally ready to make the move?
STEP 3: MAKE A PLAN – Make a plan and follow the plan. Your chosen real estate professional can help you with this, as well as your family. You want to decide what the steps are that you need to take in order to make this move happen, and what a reasonable timeline is to accomplish these steps.
STEP 4: START THE DOWNSIZING PROCESS – How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. And it’s no different with your lifetime of possessions. Give yourself time and give yourself space to get this done bit by bit. Start with one room, one closet – even one drawer. Give yourself permission to take it slow. As they say, slow and steady wins the race!
STEP 5: PUT YOUR HOME UP FOR SALE – Eventually it will come to this. As per the plan you set with your family and your real estate professional, put the home up for sale with a time frame that is acceptable to you. The real estate professional will also come back at this point and give any final tips as to what should be done to have the place merchandised and ready for the open market.
Downsizing is a big step in your life and can look as difficult as climbing Mount Everest when you think of everything you need to do. But know there is help out there and people who can make this easier on you. Don’t go it alone. Follow the steps, one by one, and you will get there.