If you want to simplify your lifestyle in retirement, planning ahead can help you prepare for this important transition. Many older adults decide to move to a smaller home so they can reduce expenses and make the most of their investments. With a clear roadmap in place, you can take steps in advance to make the process easier when it's time to fully downsize.
Consider Your Goals
Get to the bottom of why you want to downsize before making the move. You should think about how you want to live in terms of geographic area, home size, style of property and distance from family. You might also want to move for a warmer climate, proximity to hobbies like golf or boating, or a lower cost of living. Considering these factors early and having relevant conversations with your loved ones can help you narrow down your options. You'll also be able to do the math and see how moving will affect your income and financial lifestyle in retirement.
Pare Down Your Belongings
Long before your move, it's time to start finding new homes for the possessions you've been accumulating over the years. For example, you can convert physical media like records and DVDs to digital formats. Make a list of extra furnishings you won't need when you move. Set a date for a yard sale or use social media to sell unneeded items online. You may also want to give items away to family members or people in your community who can use things like baby items, professional clothing and household goods. You can arrange to donate anything you can't sell or give away once it's actually time to move.