Apr 29

Blogging alsbout retirement has had to take a back-seat to moving in recent months. Selling a larger family home, downsizing and simplifying is something most retirees deal with sooner or later. Many of my friends still have bigger houses and continue to enjoy the gardening and upkeep that goes with that. My husband and I had tired of maintaining a larger house. We wanted to spend more time travelling and shed a lot of the unnecessary “stuff” we had accumulated over the course of our marriage. Moving to smaller digs made sense. We put our house on the market before buying, and we sold quickly. A long-closing gave us reasonable time to search for our next abode, but that did not solve the probelm of where we actually wanted to go.

I was initially thrilled – and then somewhat daunted by the idea that we could move anywhere we wanted. I have a friend who sold her home and decided to travel the world, rather than settling anywhere. I was pretty sure I wanted to settle – but where? Did I want to stay in the somewhat staid and predictable suburban community where we had raised our three kids? Did I want to move out West where we have two children residing and some good friends? Certainly the weather in a place like Vancouver would be more appealing that the often severe Ontario winters. But I liked the change of seasons, and my husband is a skier, so we were not driven by a need to move to more temperate climes.

We had the option of moving from our bland suburb into the city. We love cities and drive regularly to films and musical events. Locating closer to downtown made some sense. A new-built condo in one of those upmarket areas of town – steps from coffee houses, art galleries, and restaurants was enticing. The downside was cost and space. The new condos are clearly designed to separate retirees from any wealth they may have come into with a gradual rise in housing values over the last 30 years. You can trade your 4 bedroom home for a one-bedroom, plus den postage stamp size living arrangement. I wanted to downsize, but possibly not that much.

We ended up purchasing a modest townhouse very near our previous home. On balance, this turned out to be the most practical option. Am I disappointed not to have been more venturesome in my choice? Sometimes. Is the grass likely greener across the city or across the country? Could be. Have I missed opportunities for meeting new people and discovering a new neighborhood? Likely. Did we make the wrong choice? So far, I don’t think so.

Bethune

 Not fancy, but well located and lots of green space!

I would like to start collecting “downsizing” stories. I invite you to post your own experience?

Update me when site is updated

One Response to “Downsizing Dilemma”

  1. jchahal says:

    I know the feeling of too many choices – hard to believe that can actually be the problem.

    We have decided not to downsize in the foreseeable future, mainly because our only grandchild lives just down the street. Other reasons include the limited financial advantage that you noted and not being able to face clearing out the basement.

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