Start out by asking yourself a question. Are you comfortably able to afford your existing residence or are you knee deep in debt? If you are struggling to pay the monthly bills, or would simply like more disposable cash at your fingertips, downsizing may be an option. It is not; however, the only option.
Another vehicle to consider would be the reverse mortgage. A reverse mortgage is the mirror image of a regular mortgage. It enables older homeowners 62 or older to convert part of the equity in their homes into tax-free cash without having to sell the home, give up the title, or take on a new monthly mortgage payment. The borrower retains the title of the home and the reverse mortgage comes due at the time of the death of the borrower, when he or she permanently moves out or when the house is sold. If you love your home and have no desire to consider something smaller, this may be a good choice.
On the other hand, if too much upkeep and maintenance is getting difficult and taking up your free time, you may want to meet with a Realtor who specializes in downsizing. This person is an expert on what it takes to downsize effectively. He/she can speak with you about the myriad of options and can walk you through various scenarios.
The downsizing expert will be able to discuss what is currently on the market, and help you to learn more about what's out there. Ask yourself a few questions. Are you interested in a smaller home? A condo? An active adult community? Learning a bit about each of these will give you a clearer picture of what's best for your personal taste and situation.
If you do choose to downsize, this person will be with you every step of the way, and will help you understand the best way to go about the process of culling your belongings and moving on to the next phase of your life.
Downsizing can be a chance to own a smaller home, with the amenities you have always dreamed of, for less money.
The point is there are options. Whether it is a new loan vehicle, a refinance, credit counseling, or downsizing, a Realtor can help you through the process until the day you walk through your new front door with extra cash in hand, and a sense of peace.