Updated: Jul 19, 2020
Real talk. This was a hard decision to make. Not hard like running in the Boston Marathon would be, or 12 long hours of labor before giving birth hard, but hard. For us, the tough decision ranged from leaving a home that we love and have raised our children in and leaving the great friends we made in our neighborhood. We realized though, that our memories will follow us anywhere we go, and our friends will always be our friends. Our son will be leaving us onto his own journey soon, and it will be just me, Sean, Bear (our King Shepherd dog), and Nike (our Tabby Cat). There really is no need for such a large place, it'll be just us two and the animals. We explored the benefits of downsizing, what it might be like to live in a smaller house, and what it could mean for our future. The positives most certainly outweighed the negatives. Although we vowed to never move again (don't we all say that... packing and moving sucks), here we go once more. So now, we are sharing with you 7 reasons why we decided that downsizing is a good plan for us.
1). Less Cleaning Time.
I envy all of you who have their own cleaning service, I really do. I have never got to the point where I was comfortable having someone do my cleaning for me. Having a smaller place will be a breeze to keep tidy, because who really loves dusting and vacuuming? If you do, then I apologize, but HUH? I do like a tidy space, however, with our spacious home, it really is a lot of work. With a smaller square footage house to clean and less stuff, it would seem very easy to manage and almost liberating!
2). Becoming Minimalist.
Keeping only what you need. Sell or give away the things you don't. We have begun this exercise already, with many questions directed to Sean "Do you really need this?". He has so many widgets and gadgets and collectibles that he has been hanging onto for years, it's going to make for "fun" conversations moving forward. I pray for patience and even stronger wine. I'm not much of a packrat, but his focus may turn to my extensive shoe collection, and then "Houston, we have a problem". A smaller house will mean we'll have to part ways with a lot of things (even some shoes - sniff), but the very idea of a clean, open space is more appealing to me than ever.
3). Cheaper To Heat / Cool.
The cost savings alone here, are significant - providing we buy an energy-efficient smaller house. I would like to think we would take that savings and spend it on ourselves. Take a trip or three! Go out for dinner more. Buy more shoes (just kidding). Downsizing to us means less house, more savings, more life.
4). Sell High, Buy Low.
Our real estate market is hot, and we hope when we are ready to sell - it still will be. Having some money left over after the sale of our home means making some significant life changes that we cannot be more excited about. Our careers are still here, so buying an adorable small house for us in town, will happen. I don't want to jinx it, but we have always wanted a cottage on a lake, and this little plan of downsizing will get us one! Maybe you are thinking about downsizing or already have. Perhaps buying a cottage isn't in your plan. Is it to be mortgage and debt-free? Possibly travel? Maybe top up your retirement funds. The key here is to live simpler, and I am betting on being happier.
5). More High End With Renovations.
With a smaller space, you can choose more high-end finishes, appliances, and decor, because of your reduced square footage. You can get super creative with the use of the space, and choose a design that you possibly couldn't afford in a larger home. So maybe there could be a brand new kitchen instead of painting the cupboards, or maybe you can invest in that bamboo hardwood flooring versus carpeting. The options are very exciting.
6). A Reduced Commute.
This may not be a path for all, but for me, the choice to move out of the country and buying a smaller home in the city is very attractive to run my business. I am a country girl, without question, but I need the convenience of being closer to town, Monday to Friday, with less time in the car. I would imagine some gas savings too, I am sure. We will reserve the country living for weekends.
7) Value Experience Over Stuff
This is a big one. I need to unclutter my life. I need, not want, need to experience more, try new things, travel, and float on my blow-up mattress for hours on end on my lake.
Fewer things, more moments. Did I mention already that we want to buy a cottage after we downsize to a smaller home? This gives us a place to make new memories with family and friends. What can be better than that? I'm turning 50 next year, and Sean, 49. I feel we have a new exciting journey ahead of us. Maybe I will let him float on his blow-up mattress beside me, but then who would bring me drinks? Hmm...
I know, that shifting into a smaller home, will drastically change our lives, for the better, with benefits I am not even aware of yet. Heck, we may find out that spending more time in the same room together might be better for us? Without having to tend to our lawn and gardens for 3 hours or more a week during the summer, may mean more time for walks! Now that we have made the decision to downsize, we are so excited for this next chapter. We are full steam ahead to finish renovations and purging, purging, purging. Does anyone need any widgets? Shhh, don't tell Sean.
I hope you stay along for the ride, it's going to be a lot of fun.
Have you considered downsizing your house? Have you already done it? Any advice you would like to give?