When you’ve spent the majority of your life filling your home with cherished belongings and their accompanying memories, the idea of downsizing your home can seem more like the destruction of all of those years. In reality, the process of downsizing can be cleansing, liberating, and financially beneficial. About 43 million Americans move every year, many of whom choose to move into a smaller space. If you aren’t convinced yet, continue reading to learn about the financial upsides you’ll see and the steps you need to take for a successful downsize.
The Financial Benefits Of Downsizing
Let’s face it, you simply don’t need the massive amount of space you have in your home right now. From the unused rooms to the expansive lawn space, there are areas in your current home you don’t even think about them most of the time that are costing you money. When you downsize your home, you’ll spend significantly less on your mortgage payments, energy bills, and maintenance costs.
The best part? There are countless different ways you can spend these savings. One source of relief for many is the ability to attack their mountain of debt. Whether you have lingering student loans, a looming credit card bill, or car payments that never seem to end, you can direct the money you previously spent on your home to rid yourself of this debt.
Downsizing now will also give you more money to pad your retirement fund for the future. By the time you’re 63 years old, the average age of retirement, you won’t want to worry about making it through your golden years comfortably. By putting extra money in the bank every month now, you will have thousands more to rest on later once you stop working.
Simple Steps To Downsizing
Now that you know how your financial world can change when you downsize, you need to know how to do it. The best advice we can give you is to take a deep breath and tackle each of these tasks one at a time.
- Take stock of what you have: Do you really need the three different strainers sitting in the bottom cupboard? When going through your belongings, try dividing your things into three categories: Must-Haves, Replaceables, and Unnecessaries. For instance, you need your bed but you don’t need all the extra bedding to go with it. And you can always buy more if you find yourself lacking.
- Do a donation test run: The first — and most intimidating — step is to eliminate the things you won’t take with you to your new home. If you’re hesitant about tossing certain things out, do a test run by putting the objects in boxes in the garage and leave them there for a few weeks. If you don’t think about them in that time, you can feel safe in carting them to the nearest donation center.
There’s no doubt that this transition will be one of the tougher ones in your life. However, once you get into your smaller, clutter-free home, you’ll marvel at the financial opportunities you now have.