11 things to do before you downsize your home, according to an expert who gets hired by seniors to help them declutter
- Americans are increasingly looking to downsize their homes.
- Although downsizing can be liberating, there are several things you need to do before you can move into a smaller home.
- We spoke to an expert who told us 11 things everyone should do before they downsize.
The number of Americans downsizing their homes is skyrocketing.
Forty-six percent of baby boomers who sold homes in 2017 were in the process of downsizing, according to a Zillow report, and a full 12% of the home buyers between 45 and 64 were doing the same, according to the National Association of Realtors.
Whether it's because of retirement, kids leaving home, a drop in income, divorce, or another reason, it often makes financial sense to find a smaller and more economical place to live.
Read more: My husband and I bought our home, but if I had to do it all over again I'd choose to rent instead
But before you make the move, a lot of work needs to go into downsizing, including the tedious process of deciding which of your possessions to keep and which ones to give away.
That process can be painful, but it can also be liberating, said Karen Shinn, a senior move manager and cofounder of Downsizing Diva, a Toronto business that specializes in helping seniors declutter their lives.
Shinn shared 11 steps everyone should take before they downsize, and it's a useful lesson for anyone looking to part with things they don't need.
Take photos of your home before you downsize
Keep things you want, use, need, or like to look at
Don’t over-save for the next generation
Give with no strings attached
Create 'safe passage' for the possessions you give away
Take only the favorites from your collections
Don't move anything that doesn't have a designated space in your new home
Label your photographs
Purge your paperwork
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