When Is It Time To Downsize?

  • Estate Planning
When is it time to downsize

As we get older, enter retirement and update our estate plan for the next chapter of our life, it’s a good time to consider whether it’s time to downsize our possessions. It may be  difficult to think about, but our treasured possessions are often not valued or appreciated by our children or heirs – it’s just stuff that they don’t need and don’t want.

Communication Is Key

Your cherished heirlooms may not be as important to your children as they are to you. And on the other hand, your kids may covet some of your belongings. This is when communication becomes important. Ask your children or grandchildren if there is anything of yours they want after you pass away. Or, they could have it now, making it easier for you to downsize and move into a more manageable house.

You may be surprised at what your children consider treasures. You may want to pass along the dining set from your mother, but they would rather have the rocking chair from their youth. The good thing is that you don’t need to wait until you pass away to see your children happy with your treasures. If you give it to them now, you know they are going to someone who loves and cherishes them.

It’s okay if your children do not want some of your belongings. Selling them now ensures someone will appreciate and use the things you have worked so hard for. And it allows you to move into a smaller, more manageable home. Talk with an estate planning attorney, you may want to have both a will and a trust to ensure you and your loved ones are taken care of.

How to Know When It’s Time to Downsize

Many people should downsize sooner than they do. It’s hard to change, sell the family home and start again. But on the other hand, downsizing can give you the freedom to enjoy your life.

Here are 5 signs that it’s time to downsize:

  • Your monthly housing expense should not be more than 30% of your income
  • You’re overwhelmed with house maintenance
  • Your home no longer fits your needs (steps, too large of a yard, large driveway to shovel)
  • Have unused rooms or space
  • Want to be closer to family

Talking with your loved ones may help you decide if it’s time to downsize. An experienced estate planning attorney can help write a will or trust that ensures your belongings are passed to whoever really wants them. Let your family know your concerns; this can become a family endeavor to find you a house that is perfect your you at this time in your life.

DuPage County Estate Planning Attorneys

If you are planning your estate and have questions about setting up a will or a trust, an experienced estate planning lawyer can advise you throughout the process. To talk to an estate planning attorney in Chicago about how to make your will, contact the Estate & Probate Legal Group at 630-864-5835.  
AREAS WE SERVE: Cook, Dupage, Kane, Lake and Will counties.