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Downsizing Your Home?

At some point in a homeowner’s life there comes a time when you need to sell your home.  It might be because you are being transferred to another city; or that the children have moved out and you don’t need all that space now.  Perhaps you are thinking about retirement and wanting to travel?

Here are some tips for downsizing your home. 

The key to downsizing is allowing yourself enough time in advance to do what you need to do in order to put your home on the market.  This will give you time to de-clutter before starting home repairs.  Start by making a series of lists. 

  1. The first list should be things you have that you no longer use or don’t enjoy.  Sell or donate the items on this list.  The second list is possessions you hold dear and will never want to part with.  Everything that is not on the first two lists is now up for discussion.
  2. The next list you will need to create is essential items that you will need.  You will find items in your home that won’t fit in the new space, and then you have to accept that they will not come with you.  Especially furniture items like a dining room set or large living room furniture.  Now is the time to pass on furniture and collectibles to family members.

Depending on the age of your home and how well it has been maintained, certain kinds of repairs or cosmetic updates might be needed to help the sales process.  If you have an older home it is not necessary to renovate it before you sell.  Some buyers would prefer to renovate after the purchase to his or her taste and budget, then to get stuck with a brand new kitchen that doesn’t work on many levels.  So it’s best to just present your home as well maintained.  Make repairs to fix cracks from normal house settling or if any part of the house that shows more than average wear and tear.  

When it comes to cosmetic repairs there is one aspect of selling that always works: Remove the layers of interior decorating to give the house an open and neutral look.  This would include removing wallpaper, carpets and maybe the drapes or blinds.

Painting walls and ceilings are essential in the repair and selling of your home.  Painting neutralizes odors from years of smoking or cooking or other smells that might draw attention.  Generally speaking if your home is in good repair then it will get a higher price depending on the current market in your area.   If you have installed a new furnace or new roof it shows the buyer that you continue the upkeep of your home.  People in their 20’s and early 30’s aren’t looking for large move-up homes, rather simple starters that put minimal space to efficient use.  In fact, people are staying single much longer than before; however they still want to buy homes.  First time buyers are looking at smaller homes and not the big-box houses.


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