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Downsizing: A Lifestyle Choice For a New Generation

When we think of downsizing retirees are most likely to come to mind. While the sixty plus group are undoubtedly the forerunners of those in the market to downsize, choosing to downsize at a younger age is not unheard of.

Those in the older age group are likely to consider downsizing for one or more of the following reasons:

  • children have left home
  • want to reduce the amount of maintenance and upkeep required
  • want to reduce household expenses
  • want to pay off mortgage
  • current property may not be suitable as ageing progresses i.e sloping block, stairs, busy roads, proximity to amenities
  • want the support/security of a lifestyle village or assisted living centre.

But what about the rest of us? If you haven’t heard, there’s a movement that’s taken hold of the USA that also has a small, but dedicated following in Australia. It’s most recognisable in the form of the ‘tiny house’ but behind it lies a set of core values that resonates with a rising number of people—living a simpler, more economical life that relies on what you ‘need’ to survive rather than what you ‘want’.

Recent subdivision of larger blocks in the outer eastern suburbs of Melbourne has given rise to options for people interested in smaller living quarters. You can now find smaller single level homes sharing the one block, multi storey apartments and townhouses.

Younger people may downsize for the following reasons:

Live a minimalist lifestyle
There are a rising number of people who are opting out of consumerism and excessive waste and choosing to live a simpler life that has a reduced impact on our environment. If you have a smaller home you’re likely to choose your possessions carefully and be less inclined to buy more ‘stuff’ to fill it with.

Maintain a work/life balance
Instead of working overtime to pay for a larger mortgage or spending the entire weekend cleaning and maintaining a property some are choosing to prioritise time spent pursuing things they enjoy such as regular holidays, sporting and outdoor activities and catching up with family and friends.

Relationship breakdown
For some, downsizing comes out of necessity such as when a relationship or marriage breaks down and the family home must be sold. Living in a smaller home can be more manageable when you’re relying on one income.

Loss of job/inability to work
Job loss or the sudden inability to work can be unexpected and devastating and may result in an unplanned move to a more affordable property.

Reduce living expenses
A smaller home often equates to a smaller mortgage and ongoing expenses such as gas, electricity, rates, insurance and so on. For some this will mean money is available for other things such as holidays, school expenses or social pursuits.

If you’d like to discuss your options for downsizing talk to one of our agents today.