Thinking About a Smaller Home? Here’s Why it Might Be a Good Idea
The kids are growing up and they’re a rare sight at home these days and you’re stuck paying for a house that’s twice as large as you really need. If you’ve ever given a second thought to selling your large family home and downsizing to a space that fits your current lifestyle, keep reading for a few reasons that might just convince you to take action.
Big houses = big bucks
As you already know, home ownership is not without its expenses. On top of your mortgage, there are numerous hidden costs that can easily shred your monthly budget, leaving you with bills to pay and no time to enjoy your large home. HireAHelper, a nationwide service that connects moving labor and homeowners, points out that a smaller house will save you each month on utilities, property taxes, HOA fees, and homeowner insurance. These fees, a few of which are built into your mortgage, can add up to hundreds of dollars per month – money you could use to invest in quality over quantity.
Larger spaces require more time to upkeep
Becoming Minimalist’s Joshua Becker lists easier maintenance and less time cleaning as his top two of 12 reasons why a smaller house may actually make you happier. A larger home with more square footage takes more time to clean and maintain. You may be able to save several hours each week by simply downsizing your four-bedroom family home to a two-bedroom condo or cottage.
A smaller home results in less environmental impact.
Moving into a smaller home doesn’t only affect you. OneGreenPlanet.org asserts that on top of lowering your cost of living, downsizing your living space will have a positive effect on the environment.
When you are ready to list your large home for sale, you’ll want to partner with a real estate agent who has experience in your area and price range. He or she can help you get the most equity out of your home. In addition to taking photographs and putting a valuation on the property, your agent will also offer valuable advice on how to make your home more appealing to a broader range of buyers. These suggestions may include:
- Decluttering – When your home is on the market, clutter can be a major distraction and can make even a large home seems small and cramped. Eliminating excess clutter from your home is the single most important thing you can do to make it more attractive to buyers. When you move, keeping the clutter at bay us much easier in a smaller house.
- Painting – Neutral colors are the way to go. However, make sure to use the right kind of paint for each room. Flat and matte paints are ideal for walls, especially in an older home that may have imperfections. The biggest downside is that these types of paint are more difficult to clean. Satin finish paint has a slight sheen and works well in low-traffic areas. Like satin, eggshell paint has a subtle shine but it’s not as smooth and does not highlight imperfections. The biggest benefit to eggshell paint is that it typically only requires one coat. Semi-gloss and glossy paint should be reserved for trim and cabinets as their reflective quality is distracting on the wall. However, these are the easiest to clean. Whatever type of paint you choose, use a quality brand, which will save you time and money.
You’ve likely spent the last two decades raising your family. Now it’s time to do something for yourself. The equity in your home combined with the money you will save on hidden fees and maintenance costs each month may be enough to let you follow your dreams whether it’s traveling, starting a new business, or padding your retirement nest egg.