Shot of a senior woman moving house with help from her daughter

When is the Right Time to Downsize? It’s More About Function Than Age

There’s a common misconception that downsizing your home is something you do “when you get old.” But what if “getting old” isn’t a clear-cut line in the sand?

This article challenges the idea that chronological age dictates when it’s time to downsize. Instead, it introduces the concept of functional age, which focuses on your ability to manage your daily life.


The Age Gap: Biological vs. Functional

This  article starts with a thought experiment: How old do you feel compared to your actual age? Our chronological age. But our functional age reflects our physical and mental capabilities for daily tasks. These two ages can be quite different!

Someone in their 80s might be as spry and independent as someone in their 60s. Conversely, someone in their 50s might experience limitations that make a larger home difficult to manage.


Downsizing for Your Functional Age

The key takeaway is that downsizing isn’t about a specific age. It’s about aligning your living situation with your functional age. Here are some signs it might be time to consider downsizing:

  1. Maintaining your home feels overwhelming. Yardwork, cleaning, and repairs become a burden.
  2. You have rooms that sit unused. Empty spaces mean you’re paying for square footage you don’t need.
  3. Mobility limitations makes getting around difficult. Stairs or a sprawling layout become obstacles.

Downsizing as a Positive Step

Downsizing isn’t about giving up on your dreams or admitting defeat. It’s about embracing a lifestyle that allows you to live life to the fullest, at whatever age or functional ability you are. In many ways Downsizing is really Rightsizing your future to fit you best.

A smaller home can mean:

More freedom: Less time spent on maintenance means more time for travel, hobbies, and spending time with loved ones.

Financial benefits: Lower property taxes, utilities, and potentially even accessing equity tied up in your current home.

A sense of security: Knowing your home is manageable can provide peace of mind, especially as you age.


Considering Downsizing?

If you’re starting to think about downsizing, here are some resources to help you navigate the process: National Association of Senior Move Managers (NASMM):

AARP Guide to Downsizing: Remember, downsizing is a personal decision. There’s no right or wrong age, but by considering your functional age and lifestyle needs, you can make an informed choice that sets you up for a happy and fulfilling future. When you are ready to downsize and you want support to help you with your transition, Journey Senior Move Managers is here to help. 

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