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5 reasons to downsize your household today


Whether you’re months or years away from moving into your retirement home, there really is no better time to start downsizing your household than right now. Here are five reasons to get out your step-ladder and start sorting your stuff. 

1. It takes longer than you think
If, like most of us, you’re planning to move into your retirement accommodation from your family home, you’ll probably have accumulated several decades worth of belongings – yours as well as those of your grown-up kids. Sifting through it all and deciding what you want to keep and what needs to be rehomed will likely take several weeks, if not months. And it has to be done before you can even think about packing a single box.

2. You’ll never be this young again
Getting your house in order can be a mammoth task and starting the process now instead of several years down the line means you’re likely to be in better shape and have more energy for the job at hand. If however, you leave things until you’re close to moving into your retirement home, you may not feel up to it physically – after all, one of the reasons you’ll be thinking about downsizing is that you no longer feel capable of looking after a big property. 

3. It’ll cost you less
Having time to sort through the last few decades of your life is guaranteed to save you money, and could possibly earn you some too. Giving yourself the space to sort through your possessions at your own pace also allows you the time to decide what to do with it. Some of it will likely be gifted to family or donated to charity, while other items could be sold online or at a local car boot sale. If, however, you leave your downsizing to the last minute, you may end up having to pay someone to come and take it away for you. 

4. It’s less stressful for you
Adding a deadline to something is sure to increase your stress levels. By removing urgency from the equation, you immediately give yourself the freedom to work at your own pace and remove unnecessary pressure. That said, try to create a timeline for your downsizing project – projects that drag on for too long tend to cause their own stress!

5. … and for your loved ones
Leave your downsizing until you’re ready to move and there’s every chance you’ll need your loved ones to save the day, adding the stress of a last-minute move to their already full lives. If, however, you work slowly and methodically through your belongings now, the only thing you’ll need from them is a home-cooked meal on moving day.

Not sure where to start?
Take a look at our tips for decluttering in retirement. Then, when you’re ready to make the transition to your retirement home, find out how you can make it a hassle-free move.