Downsizing – What to consider and how best to approach it.


Whether you’re retired, an empty nester, or simply looking to declutter your life, downsizing has many benefits. Downsizing can mean different things to different people. It can mean moving from a 4-bedroom home, to a 2-bedroom townhouse. 

Or moving from a 3-bedroom home on two acres, to a 3-bedroom home on a more manageable 650 square metres. Regardless, there comes a time in most of our journeys when it’s time to consider downsizing. 

What to consider when downsizing?

Downsizing typically involves making decisions about the family home – a home filled with wonderful memories. As such, it can be a very emotional time. Downsizing usually involves two parts – the actual decision being made, and the physical move and property sale. 

If you are starting to consider downsizing, ensure you know your “why” and the objectives for downsizing.  Is the maintenance become increasing time consuming and expensive, do you want to access equity in your home, or are you simply looking for a tree-change?  Start by discussing downsizing with your family too. You may be surprised at how much support you will receive.  

You will need to consider whether you buy a new home first, or sell your current home first. Selling first may be attractive as you will know how much money you can take into the next purchase; however, consider where you will live during the time when you may have no home – for example, in a hotel or with family.  

Alternatively, you may prefer to buy a new home first. Prospective downsizers often consider submitting an offer, subject to the sale of their current home.    However, in the current market, vendors are likely to receive multiple offers for their property.  Vendors who receive offers with a “subject to a sale” condition, may not accept this, as these are not as attractive as unconditional or “subject to finance” offers.

Where to start when de-cluttering your home?

We all have possessions and “stuff” in our homes that we’ve accumulated over the years. As you begin to de-clutter and go through everything, it’s very important to not get overwhelmed.  Start with the easy unemotional items – for example, old newspapers, calendars, old linen etc. Starting with the nostalgic items can really stop you in your tracks, and you may quickly think it’s all too hard. 

If you have a shed, consider putting the items you are keeping there. As part of your home’s presentation, it’s important to de-personalise – take down photos, remove awards – either store these in your shed, or consider leasing short-term storage as you get everything ready. 

Presenting your home

It is so important to get the presentation of your property right. With the increase in buyers looking for well-presented ‘ready to move in’ properties, it is always recommended to invest the time to present and style your property in its best possible light. It is critical all elements and features match and flow within your home – including paint colour, tile selection, windows, and floorboards and carpets.  

If you are keeping your existing furniture in the home, remember to consider traffic flow. Ensure potential buyers can naturally flow through your home without any road blocks. This will add to the sense of space, and make rooms appear larger than they are. 

Remember, you want potential buyers to form an emotional connection with your home. Once buyers can see themselves enjoying a lifestyle there, they will become increasingly motivated to purchase.

Speak to a trusted professional and seek advice

Remember to always speak with professionals who can provide you with an unbiased opinion and provide insight on how your suburb is performing. If you are considering downsizing, start by discussing with a trusted real estate agent too. You may not wish to have a full marketing campaign with two open-houses each week. A trusted real estate agent will respect your wishes, and let you know alternative discreet approaches to selling your home in this current market. 

Selling a home is a process that takes time. If you are finding it difficult to know where to start, speak with Mark who can help with information on what buyers may notice about your property. 

With Mark being one of Mildura’s most trusted Real Estate Agents, he is well placed to provide you with his view of the current market and how best to approach downsizing. He’ll thoroughly guide you through the sales process and help you take advantage of this opportune time in the market.