Have your kids flown the nest? Do you feel like you are rattling around your home? Do you want to reduce your utility bills? Although moving from a home that you have lived in for many years and possible brought up your family in can be difficult emotionally, there are ways to create a more suitable affordable living space within smaller homes, here are 5 tips to help you choose the perfect home when you are downsizing.
Think about which rooms you can do without
Before you begin searching for a your smaller home, sit with the family and make a list of what you like and dislike about your current home. Which rooms do you use a lot? Which spaces and pieces of furniture just collect dust? A good rule to use is the 6 times a year rule. Think about each room in your home and if you use them less than 6 times a year it is probable that you can do without them.
While you are thinking about your living space, choose which rooms you could use for more than one purpose. If you work at home and require a home office, a good idea is to put a small sofa sleeper or small bed in your office in your new home for when you have guests visiting. If you enjoy hosting dinner parties, you do not need to have a formal dining room in your new home, why not put a table in the kitchen and create a casual dining space.
Consider Purchasing Multi-use Furniture
When you have decided which rooms you can shed without affecting your way of life, consider the furniture you may need. Multi-use pieces like sofa sleepers, bunkbeds, nests of tables and coffee tables with drawers are saving graces when living in smaller spaces
If you have large pieces of furniture which are impractical – donate or sell them. If you are moving to a smaller home because your kids have left home, it will not be necessary to have so much furniture. Before you move, tell the kids to take what they want from their old rooms and also offer them any furniture which you will no longer be using in your new home.
Once you have decided on the furniture you want to keep, measure all larger pieces and when you are viewing homes take a measure with you so you can be sure it will all fit in rooms and through the doorways etc..
Good Design is Essential
In a small living space, design is especially important. Look closely at the storage space in any potential new home you look at. There are many older houses that do not have bedroom closets so you will need to bring space saving wardrobes or an extra dresser.
Don’t rule out homes which have little closet space, think about the possibility of building shelves and getting under bed storage boxes for seasonal clothes. If you are looking to move into an apartment, ask if there is storage space available to use within the building. It is important to explore all the options and to keep an open mind before you rule a place out.
Look at how much light comes into any property you view as light will make any small space look bigger. If there is outdoor living space this adds to a property and gives the feeling of a bigger home.
Choose a Place You Have Always Wanted to Live
The money you will save when moving from a bigger home, may mean that you are able to move to the place you have always wanted to live in. Look at all locations to see what is available to you within your price range.
Regardless of how small you decide to go, don’t forget that you will still need personal space, one of the main complaints from those who have already made the move is that they feel like they are constantly in someones way. Everyone has their own ideas of what personal space is to them and it is difficult to adjust to a smaller home at first. Be patient and you will all get used to it.
Regardless of how small, ensure that you have a place of your own in your new home, it doesn’t need to be a whole room – even just an armchair tucked away where you can read and have some quiet time will be perfect.
Downsizing is always a daunting process when you are used to having a large family home filled with people, however there are many positives to downsizing and it will not take long to adjust once you have found the perfect home for you.