Downsizing has been a huge trend in 2023 and is set to continue in 2024 as savvy homeowners take the step to free up capital and switch to a more convenient lifestyle.
There are a lot of incentives to downsize, especially if you fall into the seniors category. For example there is a government initiative that currently allows people aged 55-plus to top up their super by $300,000 for individuals and $600,000 for couples. Experts have indicated that this has the potential to boost the income of a downsizer by $20,000 a year.
If you are thinking of downsizing, here are a few things to keep in mind.
Property prices in 2024
With interest rate uncertainty still in the air but demand for properties at a high, it is difficult to forecast what property prices in areas like Allambie Heights and surrounding suburbs will do over the next 12 months.
However, experts are tipping moderate price increases in Sydney of around the 5 per cent mark. If you’re downsizing, this is good news as you should be able to sell relatively quickly and for a good price.
The other good news is that the northern beaches are always in demand. We have more buyers than sellers on our books and are achieving some excellent results.
Downsizing; where do I start?
There are so many decisions to make when you’re ready to downsize but a good place to start is deciding which suburb you want to live in.
There are plenty of units around the Northern Beaches that can put you closer to the beach or conveniently close to shopping centres and the B line. You also have the option of relocating to one of the area’s many thriving retirement communities.
Alternatively, you might decide it’s time to move somewhere less busy like the South Coast or Central Coast. This will give you more for your money and you can potentially take advantage of the downsizer contribution scheme.
Once you know where you want to live, you can start having a look at prices and property options. If one of you is less excited to move than the other, this can help trigger some excitement about the change. When you walk into a suitable place and can picture yourself living there, it will be easier to detach from your family home (although it’s ok if this process takes a while).
This might also be a good time to talk to your accountant or financial planner. These experts can help you figure out your budget for a new place and decide what you will do with the money left over from the sale.
Next, it’s time to invite some real estate agents to visit your place to give their evaluation. While it’s always exciting to see how much the house down the street sold for, the amount your home is worth will depend on the condition it is in, the size, the outlook, the access to the property etc.
To choose an agent, look at who knows the area and has good online ratings. Request an appraisal and if you think the price is too low or too high, you can seek a second option.
Your agent will also talk to you about timelines. It’s normal to take a few weeks to prepare the home for sale and reach out to a conveyancer to create a contract to hand over to your buyer. You may need to spend some time and money on repairs in order to get the best results; the advice you get from your agent will be essential at this time as you don’t want to overcapitalise or miss out on buyers because they don’t get the right first impression.
Even though it can take a while to get there, the rewards of downsizing are many; from freeing up capital to freeing up your time.
From the time you sign with an agent to the day you move out can be around three to six months. This allows you to get ready to sell, have pictures taken, conduct your open home or auction campaign, negotiate or accept a bid then complete the contract.
From there, it’s usually a six to eight week period until settlement. During this time you’ll be able to downsize your belongings and figure out what will come with you to the next house.
Start the process today! Downland the realestate.com.au and Domain apps to your phone to see what’s out there, then reach out to JDH Real Estate for a property appraisal. We operate in Allambie Heights and surrounding suburbs.