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Choosing to downsize is a big decision, but you'll know when the time is right. You may want to downsize to help a loved one raise a deposit to purchase their first home. Or you may simply be downsizing to move to a property of a more manageable size. Whatever your reasons for moving to a smaller property, here's what you need to consider before the big move...or the small move, as it were.

1. Consider the costs

You may be downsizing to release equity and free up funds, but don't forget that there are costs associated with putting your home up for sale. There will also be conveyancing fees, estate agent fees, and the cost of homebuyer surveys. Stamp duty on your new property is another expense. Make sure you figure these costs into your budget when downsizing.

2. Choose the right location

The SE1 area has plenty of flats, period conversions and apartments. This makes it a prime location for downsizers. When choosing a suburb to live in you should also consider the most important characteristics you think an area should have. Whether that means a property in a thriving location, close to transport and amenities, or one that's as private and quiet as possible. The nature of downsizing may mean moving to a smaller property within a block or closer to neighbours, and therefore more noise. That's something you should keep in mind.

3. Find a quality property

Think about the benefits of downsizing. A major plus point is that your new property will require less maintenance and cleaning. Therefore, you should seek a property that features top quality workmanship and finishes. That means significantly less work and fewer costs for you. It's also a good idea to consider what you like about your current home and seek it out in your new home. These might be elements such as natural light, a nice view, or a modern kitchen. If your new property has these features, you'll find it easier to adjust.

4. Get rid of the clutter

Moving to a smaller property means less room for your belongings. So, you will most likely have to part with some of them. If you struggle to get rid of them, then consider storage options. Alternatively, sell your items online, at an auction, or boot sale. On the plus side, it will make you a little bit of cash that can go towards your move.

5. Downsize at the right time

Downsizing can be a lot of hassle. There's the process of negotiating a sale, buying a new home, not to mention the logistics of actually moving. It may be a good idea, then, to downsize before problems associated with getting older such as illness and mobility issues become a hindrance. There's also the emotional upheaval to think about. The support of family and friends may help. But, generally, the sooner you move the better. This will give you a chance to make new acquaintances, get to know the area, and get settled as quickly as possible.

If you're looking for further advice on downsizing, then contact us or find out about our services for sellers.