Sunday, April 26, 2015

Downsizing to a smaller home efficiently & effectively

There comes a time in many a life when a homeowner finds he or she simply has too much house ~ too big, too expensive, too much maintenance, too burdensome to clean and care for, too time-consuming. The first word that comes to mind entered the American English language about 40 years ago: downsize. Home-wise, that signals a move to a smaller version of abode, and it can be a smooth transition.


There are many reasons to downsize, and many people, seniors among them, have found it very freeing to live in less space, do less maintenance, spend less house money and live more efficiently. Smaller mortgages, utility bills, upkeep and property taxes reduce financial obligations, and smaller yards lower time spend on maintenance. It is a win-win for those who embrace less expense, time and energy spent on home ownership and more of all that on personal pursuits, travel, family and perhaps more disposable income to enjoy.

With more than 130 senior living 55+ community lifestyle options in the Tampa Bay area, it's not hard to find one that suits your style and budget. If you're not quite ready for the 55+ or assisted living scene, there are many small housing possibilities. Bungalows and ranch homes are the best for lower maintenance. Townhouses, lofts and condos have the advantage of sharing walls, exterior maintenance costs and common spaces with monthly fees that cover parking lots, trash pickup, roofing, exterior building maintenance and landscaping. Many couples and families report a renewed closeness, not just in proximity, but emotionally, when they downsize.

As with any project, it takes planning to pull off a successful downsize, and one can begin before finding the new, improved, smaller model.

  • Thin out clothes, shoes, linens, excess furnishings
  • Envision smaller rooms similar to what you have now. The new living room, for example, might be the size of your guest bedroom
  • List items that you think you cannot live without. Check off how many times you use each one over a month or two months. Re-think that list
  • If you opt for condo living, pass along things you'll never need again like ladders, lawn mower, weed eater and so on
  • List things for sale on Craigslist, hit a consignment store or donate
  • Trade exercise equipment taking up space for a good pair of walking shoes
  • One room at a time, take out everything, putting back only what you use regularly or seasonally
  • Measure furniture you intend to move and figure room space and square footage
  • Use this as a great opportunity to bless others with things they have admired, family heirlooms and more because you will have less storage space. And, after all, what's the point in storing something when someone else can love using it?
  • Look at closet and storage systems which maximize space utility
  • For furniture, consider Murphy beds, ottomans with storage, wall tables and ironing boards and double duty chairs, desks and end tables

If you've lived a long time in your home or have accumulated things that have been water damaged or become moldy, piles of newspapers or broken items, you may well need a Bin There Dump That dumpster rental. Call right now to schedule your delivery: 727-475-1080.

All along the way, remember the definition of "stuff" ~ something that has weight and takes up space. Take it from the Dumpster Diva that downsizing can be a definite delight and is downright doable.

No comments:

Post a Comment