You have no doubt heard of down-sizing, but you may not have heard of right-sizing.
The traditional down-sizer has grown children and just doesn’t need as much space in their home. But changing the size or location of your home to meet your needs can happen at any stage of life. And that’s why I prefer to call it right-sizing.
Right-size moves, even for older adults, come in so many forms.
I’m working with a few right-sizers at the moment and there’s no better way to illustrate the variety than through their stories.
In none of the situations I’m describing were the right-sizers expecting to “down-size” their home price. They simply want a lifestyle change and a new place to call home. They are making a lateral move financially and frankly, the perfect time to do that is always when you are ready.
Unlike traditional downsizing, rightsizing isn’t reactive – it’s proactive. It’s a plan where you can maximize what you’ve built over the course of your lifetime, and focus not on what you’re giving up, but the life you want to live now and the amazing future you’ve got ahead. In other words, it isn’t about winding up your life – it’s about getting started on the next chapter.
Ray and Freya
Ray and Freya lived for 36 years in the same suburban home on a 100′ x 100′ lot with a pool in a beautiful private yard. They love entertaining friends and family including their many grandchildren. They were afraid to give up the space, but wanted to have an urban, walkable lifestyle near many of their friends.
After an extensive search for the right home, they realized it didn’t exist. They bought a vacant lot on which to construct a smaller custom home for their next chapter. They ultimately invested more into this smaller home – but in the years since that investment has performed better than it would have in any other investment vehicle, and the appreciation is not taxable since its their residence.
Jane and Richard
Their children and even their grandchildren are now adults. They have lived in their stately urban home for 40 years. They go south for the winters and want to do so without worrying about their property and frankly, all year round they simply want less to take care of. The thing is, they want a really spacious condo. While there are some buildings with these 2,000-ish SF condos, they are rare and they are pricey. It will take leg work to find them just the right space. But I know their budget, their location and the amenities they want will align in our market; so while it may take time, it will happen.
Nancy and James
I’m working with Nancy and James to move from their suburban home to a condo between McKellar and downtown. James is an avid cyclist and Nancy loves being near cafes and boutiques. They need space for visitors to stay. For them, we will need to align the budget, square footage and amenities. It may need to be a slightly older place so that they can have the space to spread out the way they would like to.
John and Justin found during the pandemic that their 2 bedroom condo would be too small when they are both retired. They will need more space for entertaining and pursuing their hobbies into retirement. They are looking for a townhouse or larger condo now.
So what does rightsizing look like?
There’s no one way to do it – it’s about doing what’s right for you. Your plan might involve selling your large home to find a smaller space that’s a better fit with your changing lifestyle. It might mean moving out of the city to a quiet spot in the country – or out of the suburbs into the downtown core. It might mean staying in your home but renovating to allow you to age in place. It could mean minimizing your belongings so you can live more comfortably in a less cluttered space.
Or it could even be the opposite – upgrading to something bigger or more luxurious. Really? Why would a mature homeowner or empty nester want to upsize to an even larger home? People ask me that all the time. And the answer is simple: because they can. Because it’s the right move for them and their lifestyle. It happens all the time.
Right-sizing can also be a key part of your financial plan, ensuring you have the resources to get through life the way you want, without financial stress.
I'm Liisa and I love helping people moving to Ottawa make their home purchase and transition smooth and seamless. I also love helping sellers get the most for their Ottawa home. Let me know how I can help you make your real estate dreams come true.
613-898-1184 (call or text)