In this post, we’ll explain who are our typical clients and their feelings and are you one of them?
I thought the best way to talk about this particular subject: ‘When is the right time’, is to actually compare it to over a decade’s worth of our downsizing clients, and as I’ve met so many people doing this in this demographic, I wanted to talk about them and how their feelings are so then you might resonate with them.
I found our typical clients are quite typically around 55 plus, they are family home owners, most of our clients have had children that have either left home, or there may be one left – sometimes their children keep coming back and generally our clients are still residing in their family home.
When I challenge the clients and say, how does home feel for you? Is your home serving the purpose you bought it for? Generally the answer is no. So the home is often too large, there are rooms that are not being used and the actual clients themselves normally only utilise about a third of the actual house. They also find that the kids don’t visit as often as they thought and they actually don’t need the space.
So in thinking about their footprint now versus what it was before, is also only a third. The Downsizer lived in an area where it was quite geographically very useful for the kids as they were growing up. But now it is not so useful. It’s more of an effort to get to the shops etc, generally they have to hop in the car for and it becomes a bit of a stressful exercise to know that everything has to be done in the car and not as handy as you’d like it to be to get around now.
Now as for our typical client’s feelings and their feelings about the home. I’ll hear comments like “the children are nagging me to move out because they don’t want the home” or “they don’t feel that mum and dad are safe in the home on their own”. While the children are actually making them feel quite guilty and hanging on to the home, the feeling of guilt can be on both parts. IE. the children “keep wanting me to go and I don’t want to” or “they keep wanting me to hang on”.
I do want to just jump in there and remind you that it is actually your home and it is actually your decision, so sometimes many clients are simply overwhelmed by the thought of a downsize and because of others projecting their views and judgement!.
Some clients feel like they have a huge project and they really don’t know how to approach it – eg. “there’s so much to do that I’m feeling quite overwhelmed”. Also, the feelings of being “sick and tired of worrying about the home”. There are home ‘jobs’ needing to be done all the time. As I was saying before, the footprint, jobs; cleaning and the maintenance. Potential downsizers (our readers) feel like a bit of a “slave to the pool and the garden and the green bin”! that often comes up.
The other feeling is that readers are actually unsure how to maximise the profit from the Rightsize. So, knowing there is a downsize to do, where do they start? “If I go and spend some money, will that be wasted?” “How do I do that carefully and ensure my return on investment?”
Another interesting one is that our clients don’t want to lose control. They’ve often put all their efforts and paid the mortgage their entire working life into upsizing the family home and having everything work so well for the children – in control of that situation to now starting to feel quite the opposite. With the sale of a family home after spending 10, 20, 30, 40, sometimes 50 + years there, they’re getting into a situation where they feel like losing that control and they tell me it doesn’t feel good at all!.
Another big feeling of our readers is starting to feel isolated. After spending 10-50 years In an area which was terrific, it might have been in a suburb where it was down a cul de sac and there were family friends around and the kids would be playing in the street all the time to now being quite disconnected.. Existing neighbours have left and the friends have gone. So whether it be cleaning, whether it be repairs, whether it be gardening, whether it be poor maintenance, all of those sorts of things, the maintenance is just too much and can be a bit overwhelming. I was wondering, those of you who are reading today, if you have any other feelings or issues that you know that you have been concerned about in your family home, feel free to comment down below.
Another feeling is about experiencing grief for the family home loss. I relate that to you having spent all this time working on the property and having it part of your life. But then suddenly, it’s a feeling of loss because it’s been part of your life for so long that you’re actually feeling like you’re going to lose it.
What I would like to do is try and turn those feelings around. Putting a different hat on, put yourself at the centre of the process. My book goes on to explain how these feelings can become positive, once you put yourself back in the centre and ensure you know what is right for you.
All of those facts and feelings you may resonate with those and you may have some more, so please feel free to send your comments below.
Today’s blog is a nugget from last week’s Right Size Your Home Online Workshop. Every Friday at 10:00am, join me as I take you through the “Rightsize Your Home” framework to help and support you move through the process effectively and efficiently with a practical, step-by-step roadmap on how to overcome the fears and challenges of Rightsizing and plan to make the journey a fun, stress-free and profitable process..
This Online Workshop is full of tips and guidance on When is the Right Time to Leave the Nest?
With over a decade of experience as a Property Makeover and Change Specialist, I have spent many years helping transform homes and lives. My experience in helping those looking to Downsize has led me to write my first book – Rightsize Your Home – The Empty Nester’s Guide to a Stress-Free Downsize, available to download or in hardcover.
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