Make your space more streamlined and efficient
Downsizing is not just for Baby Boomers anymore. Thanks to a recession, environmental and energy concerns and technological advances, the downsizing trend is evolving into a culture shift as more people examine their lifestyles and values and embrace the idea of living smaller.
While people are beginning to acknowledge that bigger is not always better, they are not necessarily willing to forsake luxury and comfort. Instead, they strive to make more out of less, demanding homes that are more energy efficient, use eco-friendly materials, are conveniently located, incorporate high-tech conveniences, are easy to maintain and have ergonomic features that will allow them to live life to the fullest at any age.
It is important to understand that downsizing is both a lifestyle choice and a process. It’s not just about getting rid of dated furniture and moving to a smaller home. Downsizing is about moving forward, making decisions, setting priorities, letting go and using your resources (including your space) wisely.
Although you can downsize on your own, you might find yourself among the DIY downsizers who think that their new spaces aren’t a good fit, either for them or their furniture. To avoid the downside of downsizing, seek out an experienced team to facilitate the process and achieve optimum results. Experts can guide you through each stage, helping you ask the right questions and make the tough choices, including the emotional decisions about what to take with you and the seemingly endless process of disposing of everything else. Downsizing experts can ease your pain and assist you in making the most of your new space and lifestyle.
So whether you are an empty nester or an eco-conscious 30-something, remember that going smaller can actually mean living larger.
design for downsizing
A successful downsizing design entails
• Planning well-designed storage areas
• Rethinking how furniture is used and arranged
• Using color to unify or divide a space
• Selecting appropriately sized furniture with multiple uses
Need a reason to scale back? U.S. News & World Report lists the top seven reasons why so many people are downsizing.
1. Increase the nest egg – By scaling back, couples can boost their retirement savings.
2. Lower cost of living – A smaller space means less area to heat and cool, and fewer rooms to furnish and maintain.
3. Tax reduction – Inexpensive housing often means a cut in property taxes. Some can save thousands annually.
4. Reduced maintenance – Often, a downsized living space means moving into condo or loft complexes, which have maintenance teams to take care of yard work.
5. Lower utilities – Electric and gas bills can drop substantially, along with the cost of homeowner’s insurance.
6. Flexibility – If you’re renting, you have the freedom to pick up and move to a new area when it’s convenient for you.
7. Additional amenities – Condo, loft and apartment communities can offer amenities such as swimming pools, fitness centers, Internet cafés and more.