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3 things to consider when downsizing

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Downsizing is a popular choice for older people, especially those who are retiring or whose children have left home and therefore no longer need as much space.

Moving to a smaller, cheaper home offers a number of advantages, including releasing capital, allowing you to pay off your mortgage, cut your cost of living and get a home more suited to your changing needs. However, to get the most out of downsizing, there are some key issues it is worth thinking about before taking the plunge.

What are you hoping to achieve?

When downsizing, it is important to have a clear idea of what you want to get out of the move so you can make sure you choose a property that fits those goals, rather than getting carried away and “falling in love” with a property that isn’t suitable.

One of the most common reasons is in hopes of clearing your mortgage by moving to a cheaper property. If this is the case, you should request a mortgage redemption statement from your lender, so you know exactly how much you will need to pay to clear your mortgage.

You should also consider the cost of moving as well as any changes you will want to make to the new property, Stamp Duty fees (if applicable) and any other costs you will have to pay. This will then mean you have a realistic budget for your new home.

Will your new home meet your long-term needs?

For older people, it is sensible to consider whether a property will suit your changing needs as you get older. For example, if you have mobility issues or are concerned this could become a problem in a few years, it may be worth looking at a bungalow, rather than a property with stairs. It is best to be as realistic as possible otherwise you risk having to move again and wasting money in the process.

Will you be able to fit everything into your new home?

A major practical problem for a lot of downsizers is that they simply have too much stuff to fit into a smaller home. As soon as you make the decision to downsize, it is a good idea to start going through your possessions and deciding what you want to keep and what you can get rid off.

This can often be time-consuming and emotive, so it is advisable to give yourself plenty of time so you do not end up rushing the process at the last minute or having to place lots of things into storage.

Get expert legal help for downsizing

Bird & Co Solicitors is a long-established law firm offering conveyancing services for properties across England and Wales from our 3 offices in the East Midlands.

We have achieved accreditation from the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme demonstrating that we provide a safe, reliable conveyancing service. Our goal it to make it as easy as possible for you to buy or sell property quickly and cost-effectively, no matter what your situation. We can also assist with other legal work including wills and estate planning, Lasting Powers of Attorney, remortgaging and equity release.

To find out more about conveyancing for downsizing, call us today on 01476 591711 or use our contact page to find details of your nearest Bird & Co office.