Many people who are planning to downsize have no idea where they’ll go. As a matter of fact, it’s the uncertainty of where they’ll go that can be the biggest barrier to embracing the idea, committing to the process, and enjoying the post-downsizing glow. The Forbes “Best Places to Live” issue and “Best Places to Retire” lists from other publishers are illuminating, but they don’t tell the whole story. That will be one of our responsibilities with DownsizeToday: We’ll present ideas for simpler living and provide options that will help answer the “where to go?” question.
So many places to go, so many people to meet! Just as people downsize for a variety of reasons, so do their reasons for where they want to live. Maybe people are nearing retirement and they want to move to a new city to find a fresh new perspective, or maybe they've divorced or lost their jobs and want to hit the “reset” button. There is no shortage of "best places to live" lists. Generally, these lists take into consideration the cost of living, the “walkability” score (easy access to restaurants, stores, movie theaters, etc.), the weather, access to health care, whether there’s a college or university, and a variety of other factors – depending on who’s doing the moving. Thinking of heading to a new city to find work? Well, consider the Forbes “Best Cities for Job Seekers” list. Or for people nearing retirement age who are considering a fun new place where children and grandchildren can visit, they can check out the “Best Places to Retire List,” also from Forbes. And … Read More about Top Places to Live
Regardless if people are considering downsizing because they’re tired of their commute and want to live closer to work, or they want to live closer to children and grandchildren, or they’re newly single want to move out of the house they “won” in the divorce, there’s often hesitation or uncertainty of WHERE to go. Downsizers should not despair. Instead, they should conduct a bit of “market research” on hip-and-trendy areas close to where they live or work – or want to live and work – and take a try-before-you-buy approach. Or if they need a fresh start and want to explore living near beaches, mountains or small towns, they should focus on one or two areas that they’ve always loved and be open to the option of renting a condo, townhome or apartment for a year or two to see how it feels. Staying focused is critical. Because it’s an apartment that will be rented for only a year or two, it is relatively easy to find a place to live. But moving is a hassle – and downsizing is an … Read More about Renting and Exploring Options
In many situations, people downsize because they need to downsize for one reason or another: death of a spouse, divorce and relocate, their own or their spouse’s illness or injury, a corporate relocation, loss of a job or other unforeseen circumstances. But in some situations, such as to enjoy retirement at the beach or to fulfill a lifelong dream to live on a riverbank or near the mountains, people choose to downsize. When people downsize by choice, they often have more options to consider than they would like. “I wish it was easier to decide!” For many people who enjoy financial security, deciding where to move is a fun exercise. They can take their time considering options and visiting various places for long weekends to do their “due diligence.” Some even have the luxury of downsizing from one large home into two small places – perhaps a small home in a neighborhood close to loves ones and the other a condo near their favorite family vacation spot. For those who want to … Read More about Downsize, Relocate, Reinvent!
For baby boomers thinking of their next act, moving to an active-adult community may be the perfect choice post-downsizing. Some are located in urban environments, others are in suburban settings, while still others are gated communities in resort-like settings located several miles from the nearest town. Some consist primarily of single-family detached homes, but others can be in multi-family mid-rise condominiums. Most have amenities such as swimming pools, workout facilities, golf courses, tennis courts, wine clubs, garden clubs, and city-centers where residents can buy dine at restaurants, buy groceries and have their prescriptions filled. It’s no-worry living in a community designed for socializing, staying fit and, often, aging in place. Sun City, Arizona, just outside Phoenix, was the first community to offer an active lifestyle for people 55+. Built more than 50 years ago, the community now consists of 27,000 single-family homes, garden apartments, condos, and … Read More about Active-Adult Communities for the 55+ Set
A sense of community holds special allure for many people, particularly those who are nearing retirement. One vexing challenge that often faces downsizers who want to remain in their communities is the limited number of developments and “communities” available that offer smaller-living options. Another issue that many people find challenging is that they’re accustomed to lots of space – large yards and large bedrooms with walk-in closets, two-car garages, and plenty of space to have dinner parties and overnight guests – and they cannot fathom the idea of moving closer to city centers, into an apartment or condo, or across town in an up-and-coming development. Compounding the challenges of downsizing in the same community in which they’ve lived for many years is not only a fear of the unknown but also the worry that people might view their downsizing move in a negative light. (The term “rightsizing” or “smartsizing” can be substituted, and the response if anyone asks precisely why … Read More about Downsizing and Staying Close to Home
In an article by Christine Romero on Realtor.com, she writes: "As baby boomers look to downsize out of the suburban McMansions, a generational showdown is looming: Millennials might be coming into their own as the nation's biggest group of first-time home buyers, but they aren't exactly lining up with bids in hand for those large, expensive homes in the sleepier suburbs. Instead they're looking for a different kind of home -- the same ones, in fact, that the empty-nesters are looking to buy. It's a battle of the millennials vs. baby boomers playing out in the nation's suburban housing markets." It's quite a dilemma. The problem is, unless they've already gotten the home-selling process out of the way, owners of large homes on large lots in suburban America may have missed the boat. That's because while it's definitely a seller's market in many areas, the number of buyers interested in buying large properties is dwindling. Like millennials, buyers in the demographic … READ MORE about Staying Put Because No One Wants Your Large Home