07 Jun, 2024/ by Homeward Legal /Buyer, Sale & Purchase, Seller

There is quite a bit of talk at the moment on the subject of downsizing.

In part, this is in connection with the availability of suitable housing and how large residences with one or two people within them would be perfect for a sizeable young family. The guilt trip is insinuated that, somehow, if you own a rambling pile - or, at least, a property in which you don't use all the rooms any more - you are somehow responsible for the housing crisis and even helping to push up house prices because you are adding to the increasing demand and lowering available supply.

However, that unhelpful argument aside, there are good reasons for downsizing, and here we look at some of the common and valid reasons for wanting to downsize.

What is downsizing?

First, we should consider what downsizing is. In the strict definition of the term, downsizing means moving from one property to one that is smaller.

But it means more than that, once you start investigating the options.

It's also about uprooting your history if you've lived in your current home for a long while. It's about potentially disrupting your social circle as you might move away from your friends. It might be about moving closer to your family. It's about taking the plunge to start somewhere new. It's about all those emotional ties that you've created since you've lived there.

It can be daunting to even consider uprooting your life, by having to organise cramming your possessions into a smaller place.

But there are several positives, too, that can be considered.

Why consider downsizing?

Less upkeep - the smaller the property, the less effort (and money) you'll have to expend on its maintenance. 

Smaller garden - obviously, the size of garden is by no means proportional to the size of property, but you might be feeling overwhelmed by your current garden size, which means a smaller one will satisfy your green fingers without it becoming a burden.

Less outgoings - a smaller property, generally speaking, will mean that there are fewer bills and lower expenses for the utilities than would possibly be the case for a larger home. You are also likely to pay less in council tax (assuming you're not thinking of moving to a generally more expensive area).

Quality of life - as we age, certain aspects of our life decline from a physical point of view, so a smaller property, perhaps one that is on the one level, can be more manageable and therefore improve your quality of life.

Equity release - simple mathematics shows that moving to a smaller property will release a sum of equity in the larger place you sell (notwithstanding relative standards of maintenance). And this opens up opportunities for all the domestic projects, desired items or plans to travel that you might feel thwarted by currently because of the expenditure on the current home.

Paying off the mortgage - if you have an outstanding loan for your property, the equity from downsizing to a smaller and cheaper place could help pay off the remainder. But check with your lender to confirm whether you will have to pay any sort of fee by doing so.

Seeing the grandkids more often - one of the obvious perks to moving home is if your family have spread their wings to more distant places, making family get-togethers currently less frequent than you might like. Downsizing could help you to move closer to enjoy their company more regularly.

Where to downsize?

One of the key questions, other than affordability and impact of the disruption, is where the best place to move would be.

Consumer rights group Which? have carried out an analysis of downsizing, which has considered the differences and financial benefits between moving locally and elsewhere in the country, as well as the equity that might be improved based on the types of property.

The Which? report shows that, unsurprisingly, the cost of housing in the UK's capital is the highest premium, with Londoners therefore being able to release far more equity by downsizing than other compatriots. 

But it is an interesting guide for another reason, because assuming there are no particular familial or emotional ties holding you to stay in a specific area, there are gains to be made from where you might want to consider setting up your (smaller) home. There are great houses at a cheaper price in certain parts of the country and it's worth considering this in your calculations for a proposed move to a smaller place.

Worried about the whole process of downsizing and moving home? Need guidance on the legal aspects of selling your current home and buying a new one, even if it's in a completely different part of the country? Looking for expert conveyancing service at a very competitive price that has your interests firmly at its centre?

That's where Homeward Legal can really help with affordable but quality conveyancing services! 

They will start work on your planned purchase (and/or sale) as soon as you agree to the quotation and appoint them to represent you. 

Homeward Legal will also provide a quote that will not change - what you are quoted is what you pay for standard conveyancing process.

There are some unforeseen items that might arise during the purchase and/or sale, but the solicitor discusses these and their cost as they come up. 

In addition, to protect the homebuyer further, Homeward Legal operates a ‘no completion, no fee' promise, which ensures that, should the purchase or sale not go through as planned to completion status, no payment is required.

Call  to get your conveyancing quote started, or to discuss your concerns with your plans to move.

Or you can get a quick quote, using Homeward Legal's easy-to-use quote generator.

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