Life stages influence the selling decisions of homeowners and influence the requirements for a new home.  Factors such as the need to accommodate a growing family; a move motivated by job opportuites, or loss of income; loss of a spouse through death or divorce; decisions prompted by the proverbial empty nest; retirement; etc. all impact homeowners' readiness to sell their home.  


We dread the time when we have to scale down from the family home.  Moving from that special place where one is always welcome, can be very emotional; and at times even frightening.


Follow these steps to make the move to a retirement home, less stressful and more of an adventure:


  • Consult with a financial advisor to ensure that buying decisions include financial planning for the years of retirement.


  • Obtain an opinion on the value of the property to be sold from an estate agent knowledgable in the area to ensure that expectations are realistic.


  • Consult with a reputable estate agent in the area where one wishes to buy to obtain information on property values, rates and taxes, general cost of living and proximity to medical care.  Also make sure that the area will cater for one's needs regarding social interaction, churches, hobbies and sport.


  • Give yourself time to get used to the idea of scaling down.  Decide which furniture to keep, and which to sell or donate.  Do not take these decisions in haste.


  • Plan for a lifestyle of leisure as opposed to a day at the office.


Scaling down need not be the golden-year-monster it is made out to be.  Embark on the adverture of setting up a new home just as you did when you purchased your first property.  The sooner one starts to prepare mentally for this stage of scaling down; the easier it will be to take action once the time comes.  Then settle down and enjoy the fruits of your labour!