One of the biggest moves many people make in life is to downsize. This can happen in stages over a decade, while they still come to grips with moving to a smaller space. Some though, rip the band-aid off quickly and go from big family home straight to an apartment.
Now granted, there are some apartments people downsize into which have a larger internal space than a family home, but for most purchases, it really is going to the extreme of a one to two bedroom apartment circa one hundred square metres. This is a big move and knowing where to begin and what to expect can be difficult for some, but it’s not all doom and gloom and you shouldn’t think because you’re downsizing that you’re downgrading your life, or you’ve come to a point.
The first thing to do is to consider moving most or all, of your current belongings. A big part of downsizing is decluttering your life and sometimes just keeping the few real sentimental items and purchasing all new furnishings and white goods can not only be fun and exciting, it can also help with the new phase in your life and give you a boost to take advantage of the low maintenance living you’re about to enter.
If you’re not already, then work on becoming neighbourly. Meeting new people in your complex and making new friends in your building is great for every day/week activities or even just to have someone close for health and safety reasons. Your apartment is your own space and for the most part, people keep to themselves. It’s not unusual for people not to know anyone in their complex, though it becomes a lot more habitable and enjoyable by being part of a community. Now, this isn’t to say you will snub your current friends, but between visits from them or you to them, you have a good base that will keep you entertained when you want.
One of the biggest drawcards for downsizers into apartments is the ability to lock up and leave. Whether that is just to go down the road for some shopping or spend months away on holiday, this aspect of apartment living is generally an afterthought. Everyone understands that it can be a little more secure, though in most buildings, security is very high on the agenda and break-ins and robbery are minimal. If you’ve never experienced traveling without that thought of coming into a ransacked home, then this is one that will put you at ease.
The final thought is the fact that you will never have to maintain anything more than the inside of your own apartment. Most complexes have window cleaners, gardeners and all other maintenance aspects. You may have a concierge that will take parcels for you and even security guards for an extra piece of mind. There are so many pros to moving to an apartment, but until you do, it’s all just speculation. It may not be for you or you may find a renewal on life, it’s hard to know until you do, but if you’re that worried about it, maybe rent before you buy and splurge a little if you can and go to a good quality building.
The following advice is of a general nature and intended as an opinion and broad guide. For all legal, financial or real estate advice you should obtain independent professional advice to do with the specific nature of your circumstances before making any legal, financial or real estate decisions.