select
|

Property Advice: Downsizing for all the right reasons

“While it can be a huge undertaking, downsizing offers many rewards,” says Mike Greeff, CEO of Greeff Properties, an exclusive Affiliate of Christie’s International Real Estate.
 
Reasons for downsizing might be practical; from the need for less responsibility due to advancing age or ill health, to an attempt to save money, live in a smaller space once children have left home, or perhaps a career relocation has offered an opportunity to downscale.
 
“Practical reasons aside, many people aspire to downsize based on the expectations they harbour about a perceived new lifestyle,” says Greeff, adding that while it is usually possible to change your behavior in order to live comfortably in a smaller space, or in a new and different environment, if your true needs are not met by the move, you’re likely to feel dissatisfied.
 
His advice is: plan your downsizing based not on the ideal you have of yourself, but on the actuality of who you are, and the nature of your fundamental needs.
 
“You might dream of living in a forest cabin in a remote spot, but ask yourself if you are truly able to live as a hermit far from amenities and conveniences all of the time. You may want a tiny home in a small coastal, or country town, but in reality, is it too far for friends and family to visit regularly, and will that become a problem,” asks Greeff.
 
He advises opening a dialogue with friends, family or colleagues and discussing your reasons for downsizing.
 
“Include the issues and circumstances you do not enjoy in your current home and outline why and how downscaling will change, and /or improve your lifestyle,” says Greeff, adding that you should voice as many pros and cons about both your current and envisaged future scenarios.
 
“Be brutally honest and you will invariably find that voicing your likes, dislikes, hopes and fears about staying where you are, or about downsizing can help to reveal things to yourself you weren’t conscious of.  When you become aware of problems or pitfalls which may lie ahead, you can avoid rash or ill-conceived decisions,” explains Greeff.
 
Pros of downsizing might include a better cash flow, more time for leisure, if you’re not cleaning a pool and mowing a huge lawn, or lock-and-go and security for peace of mind when travelling. Cons might be: less privacy, having to deal with a body corporate, not being allowed to keep pets and having less room for guests.
 
If you’re serious about downsizing, Greeff advises that you begin with a serious decluttering effort.
 
“Once you have ridden yourself of unused, unwanted and unnecessary items, you will be in a better position to decide what kind of accommodation to downsize to,” says Greeff. “If you don’t dispense with enough junk, you might fall into the trap of seeking a space to accommodate all of your stuff and not necessarily looking for an ideal space that could work wonderfully for you.”
 
“One way of proving to yourself that you can live happily with less is to place unwanted items in rooms in half of your house and lock the doors to those rooms. Then see if you are happy to live with fewer things in a smaller space. Many people are surprised at how little they actually miss or require on a daily basis,” says Greeff.
 
Downsizing, is however, a huge undertaking and it’s normal to feel excited, confused and overwhelmed at the prospect.
 
“It can be useful to get some personal testimonies from those who’ve been there, so read books, magazine articles and blogs by people who have downsized and try to picture yourself in their shoes,” says Greeff.
 
“Remember also that downsizing affects others in your life and this can be a positive thing. Anyone who has had to pack up the home of an ageing, infirm or recently departed relative will know that decluttering, and simplifying your way of life can be the greatest gift you give to those who will one day survive you,” advises Greeff.


  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
  
2000
Characters remaining


    Latest Property News
    • 22 May 2018
      According to Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, dealing with some sort of neighbour dispute is an unavoidable part of life unless, perhaps, you choose to live on a remote small holding for the rest of your life.
    • 22 May 2018
      Buyers feel that they are getting value for money in the Northcliff area without having to compromise on aesthetics and amenities
    • 21 May 2018
      Secure living is one of the growing property trends in South Africa and Nooitgedacht Estate in Stellenbosch certainly ticks the right boxes for buyers who want a secure, exclusive lifestyle in one of the Boland’s most sought-after estates, says Pam Golding Properties.
    • 21 May 2018
      As the impact of technology on the real estate industry becomes more significant, it is clear that there is a need for an objective look at not only traditional real estate models but also online and other alternative low-commission real estate agencies, to examine what they offer and what their impact might be.
    • 21 May 2018
      With sectional titles growing in popularity, an increasing amount of homeowners simply do not have the garden space to install a tool shed in their backyard.
    • 18 May 2018
      Home improvements are a great way to add value to your property, but not all of us have bottomless pockets for a full-on renovation. Lucky for us, there are plenty of affordable DIYs that can spruce things up over a free weekend.
    • 18 May 2018
      The need for large office spaces is slowly eroding as more and more employers choose to allow their staff to work remotely. As a result, the home business model has grown in popularity, with many new entrepreneurs choosing to start their business from home rather than in a business district. But, what are the legal implications of operating a business in a residential area?
    • 18 May 2018
      Proxi Smart Services Pty Ltd, a company that deals with the day to day administration of property transfers while the conveyancer attorneys perform the legal side of transfers, lost its bid for the court to allow them to do business in this regard.
        
    X
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Name  
    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    select
    X
    Share this Page

       
    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    About
    Connect with us
    FEEDBACK