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Beginning the House Hunt Early a Big Help to Empty Nesters

So the kids have finally grown up and moved out.  At last you have a chance to breathe and focus on yourself again. While the proverbial “empty nest” may initially seem refreshing, many people discover that it now feels as if their home is just too large.  Before each extra room was a luxury, but now these unused areas are just extra space to maintain. The inevitable conclusion for many empty nesters is to move into a smaller home.

Unfortunately this is often easier said than done.  Sometimes the home’s value may have changed, which might make moving just not an option.  Another difficulty is finding a home that is the right size – big enough to store decades of memories, with some extra space for the kids when they return, but small enough to not be overwhelming. There is a lot to consider in terms of rooms, bathrooms, storage space and home location. Making the correct decision is often more complicated than it may have originally seemed.

The best solution for finding the house that’s “just right” is to simply start the process of looking well before you are ready to actually move. Begin a dialogue with a real estate agent as to what you will eventually be looking for. This gives the agent plenty of time to search while allowing you to begin assessing your own belongings and selling off unneeded items. Extending the timeline also gives family members time to prepare for the fact that their childhood home may be no more.

Beginning the moving process early will also give you time to assess your needs in a home and decide what is now important to you. Many empty nesters no longer have a need for things like a yard or garage now that the kids are no longer running around the neighborhood. Without a need for these things, smaller homes and condominiums often become an attractive option. As far as the location of your future home goes, you no longer need to take school districts into account. Perhaps a place on the water is now an attractive option, or a place in the country with scenic views.

Starting the planning process early also gives you extra time to work with a moving company.  By reaching out to a moving company early and being flexible on your moving dates you can often save a lot of money on your move. It also gives the kids and/or other family members time to return home to lay claim to the various items they still have stashed around your house.

It may seem like a lot of work at first glance, but most empty nesters who decide to downsize really appreciate the size and location of their new home once everything is complete. By beginning the process early and taking your time with everything, the whole thing can actually be much simpler than you ever realized.

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