Benefits of downsizing your home
Category General News
Many South Africans will downsize their homes once the kids move out and the space becomes too big to maintain properly. Other reasons for moving into a smaller home could be due to financial restraints and a slow economy, as was the case in 2017.
However, making the choice to downsize and move to a smaller place can be liberating in many ways. Financially, it is cheaper to maintain and you should have some money left over for savings after selling a large home and buying a small one. But the cost isn’t the only benefit - here are some great reasons to downsize your home.
Smaller homes are more cosy
For a middle-aged couple nearing retirement, a large home can be simply too big. Having three extra bedrooms with no one using them can be quite a lonely reminder that the children have moved out. The large rooms will seem empty as well, so packing up and finding a nice cosy cottage will be a warming solution to the empty nest syndrome.
Another benefit of a smaller home for a couple nearing retirement is that it will be easier to lock up and go if they decide to go on holiday. Many retirees choose to travel and so moving into a smaller apartment or house will make it easier for them to do so.
Small houses are more cost-effective
A major factor in deciding to downsize is the cost. Small houses are cheaper to run month-to-month. Electricity bills are reduced because there won’t be as many lights as in a large mansion, and water consumption will be cut down too. Added to these, the cost of maintaining a swimming pool and security for a big house add up to a significant amount every year.
Small homes are easier and quicker to clean, and often take away the need to pay someone to help with the housework. A townhouse or apartment are great options for downsizing as the costs of garden maintenance and building repairs are generally shared among all the residents, saving you time and money in the long run.
Some people choose to downsize once their children go to university. Education is highly expensive and selling a big house is an easy way to recover some of those costs. Similarly, downsizing can help to reduce debt by using some of the excess money from the sale and putting it towards outstanding bills.
Smaller houses offer a simpler lifestyle
Moving to a home with less space will force you to declutter and throw away any unused household items and general junk that gets collected over the years. This super-spring clean will simplify your life and re-organise your valuable possessions.
Small houses usually come with small gardens, which means that green-fingered homeowners can turn the new garden into a lush and vibrant area with less time and effort. Speaking of green, smaller houses are more environmentally-friendly and energy-efficient.
Smaller houses are generally safer
Besides the reduced costs of security systems and electric fencing on small properties, people often choose to downsize to apartments as they are the safest property option. Housing estates and blocks of flats are harder targets for criminals as they usually come with security guards and lost of neighbours in close proximity.
The costs of security guards and high-tech systems are shared between all the residents in a complex or apartment building. Living higher up and not on the ground floor also means that criminals can’t break in from the outside.
Some homeowners decide to downsize but keep their bigger house as a rental property. This means that an additional source of monthly income can be used to pay off the bond for the new small house. However, this option means that more time needs to be invested in landlord duties.
Whatever the reason for wanting a smaller space, downsizing can be a liberating and financially-smart decision.
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Author: Berman Brothers