Blog Buyer Downsizing Dreams: How to Transition to a Smaller Home

Downsizing Dreams: How to Transition to a Smaller Home

By Sharon Bloudek, March 27, 2020

You’ve been thinking about downsizing. But it seems like such a big step. How do you know when you’re ready? How do you know when the time is right? And what do you need to do to get ready to downsize?

When to downsize is a personal decision—one that you don’t have to rush into (unless you want to, that is!). The timing has to be right. And first things first: make sure the market is optimal. Research what’s happening in real estate in your community. Is it a seller’s market? You might want to take advantage! If the market is down, however, you might be better advised to bide your time.

Beyond the state of the market, consider whether your home is meeting your needs. Do you use the space in your home, or do you have rooms that you rarely enter? Do you feel overwhelmed by maintaining your house—or do you simply prefer to spend your time doing other things? Does the expense involved with your home make you feel like you’re missing out on other things—the opportunity to travel, for example?

Once you’ve decided that you want to downsize, know that the process can take some time. As you begin, think about your next home. What will be important to you? As people enter retirement, they often look to one-level living, accessibility, and security. In short, they want a home that they can stay in as they age. Deciding what you’re looking for in your next home will inform how you prepare to downsize.

Big items in your home will certainly need your attention. After all, if you’re moving from a 4-bedroom home with a formal living room, formal dining room, den, and home office to a 2-bedroom condo with an eat-in kitchen, you’re going to have to pare back your furniture considerably. Do you have family members or friends who you might give pieces of furniture to? Or, can you donate furniture to a nonprofit organization?

Paperwork accumulates over the course of a lifetime. Don’t move boxes or filing cabinets full of documents. Instead, go through every last file folder, box, and drawer. Shred documents that you no longer need. And digitize those you do need to keep.

The same goes for photographs. Of course, you should keep treasured family photos. But do you need to keep, well, all of them? You can give some photos to family members. You can digitize others. (There are even services that will do this for you.) And you can still keep your most precious photos in an album (or two).

When it comes time to move, commit to moving your remaining possessions—ALL of your possessions—into your new place. In other words, don’t move furniture and personal items into long-term storage. No matter how important these things might be to you, in most cases, these things will be out of sight, out of mind.

Whether you’re thinking of selling your current home, buying a new, smaller home, or both, I’d love to walk with you through this process!

Sharon Bloudek


Sharon was recently recognized as the #1 Individual Agent in the #1 Real Estate office in the State of Oregon. Recognized as a FIVE STAR Real Estate Agent in Portland, Oregon for 9 years. Sharon has been named top 1% in the RMLS, and has been a member of PMAR's Masters Circle Diamond Platinum Level. Also a Neighborhood Favorite on Nextdoor and a Zillow Premiere Agent. Having lived both in the city & the suburbs, she is a great resource for relocation clients. She has worked extensively with first time home buyers & first time home sellers, upsizers, downsizers and investors. She has experience in multi-family units, plexes, and timberland. She is the third generation in her family to be in the real estate business. Sharon graduated from the University of Oregon with a MBA in Marketing & International Business, and from Loyola Marymount University with an emphasis in Business Management. She lives in SW Portland with her husband and three kids and enjoys volunteering in the community. She is a proud supporter of Jesuit Volunteer Corps Northwest, being a former Jesuit Volunteer in Woodburn, Oregon as well as a previous Board Member. She loves hiking, traveling and going to the beach. Basketball and softball were her favorite sports to play, and while she never played soccer - her husband and kids do - and now she appreciates the beautiful game. Sharon would love the opportunity to work with you!
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