Downsizing, Part 3

How to Prepare Your New, Downsized Space

Small Home DownsizingNow that you’ve decided you want to downsize into a smaller home and have put some thought into how to purge the things you don’t need, you need to think about how your new, downsized space will look. Preparing for this new space is a lot of fun, and there can be many options.

Perhaps you are building a new, smaller home. Or maybe you found a smaller home to buy or rent, or are buying and remodeling a little. Here are the pros and cons of each:

Building new: The advantage is that you can get everything you want — lots of built-ins and secret spaces. This options offers that maximum in flexibility. On the con side, it is likely the most costly option and could take the most time.

Buying or renting: Great option because you can get into the new home quickly — or test it our if renting. The cons are that you are taking it as is and may not be getting the best layout of space for you needs.

Buying and remodeling: The pros are that you can incorporate a bunch of great spaces and improve the layout by remodeling; the cons are there are still some limitations on what you can accomplish, but it is a good, happy medium.

There is a long list of things you need to consider when you are downsizing. Here is an abbreviated list of some of the items you should mull over and make sure to accommodate in your plans:

  • Smaller rooms often can’t hold full-scale furniture and feel functional. Are you ready to part with some furniture or buy new pieces to work in the space?
  • Everything needs to have a place. A smaller bedroom may not be able to accommodate “his and hers dressers” – maybe just one, larger dresser. Where will your clothes hamper go? Do you need a chair to sit in, and where will that fit?
  • Do you have pets? Where will their food dishes be? Litter boxes? Storage of larger food bins for dogs and cat litter?
  • What kinds of space do you need for laundry? Do you need handing space, an ironing board?
  • What kinds of built-ins would help you to store things better? And where can you sneak in added storage?
  • What kinds of larger items do you need to store and where will they go — vacuum cleaner, blankets, other bulky or large items?
  • Do you have special hobbies that need spaces and what does that storage look like? If you have exercise equipment, where will it go and how much room do you need to work out?
  • Anything else you can think of, including storage furniture. Ottomans with lid openings, beds with drawers in the side — all those extra spaces make a huge difference in how you live in your smaller space.

Once this list is complete, you can begin to really define your space and decide what you might need to add, change or remodel.

This is Part 3 of 4 in a Series on Downsizing: