Right-sizing 101

Many options to consider for a lifestyle move in Waterloo in your golden years, writes Paul Stickney

If your children are returning home these days with a van full of grandchildren for a swim at the neighbourhood pool and dinner, chances are you live in a home full of memories. The thought of downsizing may have crossed your mind, followed by a stress relieving glass of wine. Downsizing can be a daunting thought. Sorting through the family home full of 25+ years of family heirlooms, mixed in with old Eaton's shopping bags containing grade school report cards likely doesn't take priority on the weekend to do list. That said, there are resources and tried processes available in Waterloo to ease the burden and help you move forward.

Realtors sometimes use the term right-sizing instead of downsizing not because it's a buzz word, but rather it explains the reasoning behind a later lifestyle move more accurately. Downsizing can be the result of a change in health, a work-related move, or perhaps anyone of any age realizing they have "too much house." Right-sizing better reflects a golden year shift because it doesn't necessarily mean sacrificing space. Perhaps you're right-sizing to a bungalow from a two-story home, or it's time to transition to a condo option with decent square footage and live among peers who have already completed the process.

Throughout Waterloo there are plenty of options that lean toward adult lifestyle living. Leasing at the Barrel Yards has become a popular option for those who want to try out condo living without worrying about committing to a significant lifestyle shift, if it isn't the right fit. If condo lifestyle is right for you, Waterpark Place is well maintained and provides fantastic amenities among an adult lifestyle community in the heart of uptown.

If you're an active individual who enjoys gardening, Waterloo has great neighbourhoods (Lincoln Heights, North Lakeshore, Westvale and Westmount) stalked full of bungalows and mature landscaping on quality lot sizes. This right-sized move offers the opportunity to lower your home maintenance activities and bills without sacrificing parking or a neighbourhood feel you may desire to maintain.

Beyond the housing opportunities available locally for making right-size moves, there are resources available to help ease the burden of decluttering and simplifying the process. A professional Realtor helps develop an optimal timeline and suggestions on how to get your home "show ready." There are senior moving services available to help move items that younger generations may not appreciate, but still have value. These services can include online auctions, facilitating content removal with Habitat Restore and assisting with the recycling process.

Moving from a long-standing family home shouldn't be a rushed decision, and it also doesn't need to be chaotic and stressful either. We are hosting a seniors seminar on Thursday Sept. 27 between 2:00 to 4 p.m. at the Waterloo Recreation Complex. Experts will be on hand to discuss right-sizing in greater details.