Are you considering downsizing your home?

Downsizing to a smaller property happens for many reasons – it may just be that you are eager for a change, want to simplify your life, move closer to friends or family members, or start a new phase in life. Perhaps the children have moved out or the house is too big to maintain.


Whatever the reasons, the benefit of downsizing is that it can also provide a real opportunity for those looking to save money, and enjoy the equity freed up because of selling the larger property.


The many advantages of downsizing

 For the most part, people try to upsize throughout their home-buying journey, however downsizing can offer so many great opportunities!

  • Firstly, if you’ve been in your current home for a while, it’s likely to have increased in value, and you may also be near to paying off your mortgage, if not having paid it off already.
  • Buying a smaller, less expensive property will free up extra cash, to use for whatever you wish. It also means you can possibly buy your new home as a cash buyer, giving you more options and the ability to live mortgage free.
  • Downsizing to a smaller home means less upkeep, lower bills, and more time to do the things you love. It’s an exercise in saving both money and time.
  • If you are downsizing later in life, it means you can choose a property that will be better suited to your needs as you get older. Instead of having to contend with stairs, limited accessibility or a huge garden requiring maintenance, you can pick a property that works for you.

When not to downsize


Some people have become accustomed to a home of a certain size and space, and perhaps nothing they look at really appeals to them. It can also be tough, after years of aiming for more space, to decide to move somewhere smaller and its natural to be resistant to the idea of change.


Downsizing is often dependent on location. If you want to be in the same neighbourhood, or to be near family, you may find there aren’t many downsizing opportunities. You may struggle to find a smaller property in your area or feel that even the smaller homes are too expensive for you to truly benefit from a shift.


There’s no real need to downsize if you’re opposed to the idea, but you must also balance this against the greater quality of life with the money you make from the sale.


When is the best time to downsize?


People downsize for a variety of reasons. For some it may be an empty nest and a house that requires too much upkeep, for others it may be loneliness, divorce, accessibility, loss of a job or the loss of a loved one that prompts the move.


Whatever the reason, it’s important to do some research into where you want to live, what kind of property you would be happy with, and how much you own or how much space you would need – remember to be realistic here. Some always intend to downsize but are surprised by how much they’ve accumulated over the years.


From the moment you start considering moving, you should also consider what you want to keep. Decide on what can be donated or given away and do so before you even put your home on the market.


If you’re downsizing due to divorce or a change in your financial circumstances, it can be frustrating to have to contend with a smaller space than you’re used to.


Use our handy downsizing checklist to check if you’re ready for the change:


  • Consider your reasons for downsizing
    • Is it necessary
    • Are you happy about it
    • Is there another solution
  • If you’re excited to downsize, consider where you want to live.
    • In the same area
    • In a different area such as the coast
    • In a luxurious apartment with all the modern conveniences
  • Look at the type of properties that would work for you
    • Can you afford to live there
    • Will you have to make a compromise or is there a lot for you to choose from
  • Consider whether you want to pay off your mortgage fully before you sell the property.
  • Start throwing things away – donate, give items to family members, and separate out the items that you really love and feel strongly about from those you don’t really need. It’s an opportunity to clear everything and save yourself money when you pay for removals.
  • Prepare your home for selling – have a look at our guide to selling your home.
  • Start viewing properties and look at our viewing home checklist if you’re not sure what you’re looking for.

Downsizing can be a traumatic time but there are so many advantages and opportunities to be had, from the chance to save on expenses to making household tasks more manageable, new décor and opportunities in a new area.


The best reason of all is of course the financial gains; the extra money received from the lower cost property can go a long way to helping you enjoy life in your new home!

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