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3 steps to being downsizing ready in 2021

Date Posted: December 15, 2020

Just like that, another year draws to a close. If sorting out your retirement is a new year’s resolution you keep putting off, we’re here to help you along the journey.

Here are 3 important steps you’ll need to take to start feeling ready to downsize in the new year:

Step 1 – decide if it’s the right time

As we like to say, the ‘right’ time is the time you decide to make it right! Downsizing may not be for everyone, but it’s an option that many can benefit from – especially those who love to travel! It might be the right time for you to downsize if:

  • You’re ready to retire. Retirement is an ideal time to assess whether your current home is best suited for your future, or whether downsizing presents a better solution for your longer-term lifestyle plans.
  • You travel often. Downsizing provides an opportunity to consider cost-effective, low maintenance and lock-and-leave approaches to your home, so you have more money and peace of mind while off exploring the world.
  • You’re experiencing unsustainable living costs. Downsizing provides a real opportunity to reduce and even eliminate certain costs of living. Lower living costs mean more opportunities to tick items off your bucket list!
  • You’re asset rich and cash poor. If you have value in your home and are looking for greater access to cash, it may be time to consider downsizing to free up equity. This will mean you have more money to spend on the things you love to do.

For more, read our blog When is a good time to downsize?

Step 2 – determine the benefits

You need to determine if and how you’ll benefit from making the move to a downsizing community. How will your lifestyle, wellness and financial situation improve? If you’re looking to enjoy more travel in your retirement, here’s how you’ll benefit from downsizing:

  • More cash, more adventures. Downsizing to a more affordable home can help you free up a significant amount of cash to fund your adventures.
  • More time, more travel. Downsizing to a smaller, low-maintenance home means less time fixing and cleaning up, and more time doing the things you love – like travelling! You’ll not only experience lower living costs, but you’ll eliminate the time and stress that comes with tending to a larger home and garden. 
  • Better security, longer holidays. Downsizing to a secure community means you can lock-up and leave for a worry-free holiday. 
  • Resort-style amenities, resort-style living. When you make the move to a downsizing community, you’ll enjoy holiday vibes and resort-style amenities 365 days of the year.
  • Reduced living costs, greater travelling fund. Downsizing to a land lease community eliminates council rates and lowers insurance and range of other living costs. This means you can reduce your everyday spending and start adding to your travel fund!

Step 3 – understand the process and ask questions

Before making the move, it’s important that you have a thorough understanding of how land lease communities work, and what each community offers. Most Downsizing Communities work on the land lease model where you buy your own home and lease the land on which it sits via a weekly fee.

Because each land lease community can operate differently, and offer different inclusions, here’s a list of questions you may like to keep handy when you’re exploring your options:

  • What are the fees and charges?
  • What are the ongoing costs to live in the community?
  • Are there any exit fees payable?
  • Is there a weekly site fee & what does it cover?
  • How does buying a home in the community work?
  • Can you access government concessions like rental assistance? 
  • What facilities accompany home ownership?
  • Are pets allowed? 
  • What measures are in place to protect your security of tenure? 
  • What homes are available and what is included in these homes?
  • Are there any rules in the community?

You’re now ready to start visiting some downsizing communities in the new year to get a feel for which ones are right for you! There’s no better way to help your decision process than to experience the communities for yourself, and chat to the homeowners that live there.

Until then, you’ll find a whole range of useful information on the Discover Downsizing website.