Downsizing: tips to get started


Thinking about downsizing?

5 simple tips go get you started

Have you ever looked around the house and felt a bit overwhelmed by the clutter surrounding you? Do you dream of living a minimalistic lifestyle? Is excessive clutter around the house causing you stress and affecting how you live life?

Downsizing isn’t a new topic for many of us, especially to older people who are seeking a simple and more minimalistic lifestyle.

It can be challenging at first to get used to the idea of owning less and living in a more compact space, but once you get started, the results can be really rewarding. For South Australians aged over 55 seeking a lifestyle change, now is the perfect time to begin planning your next move.

We have asked our Real Estate Services Manager, Nat Johncock who has come up with 5 handy tips for you to get started with downsizing and embarking on your next journey.



Preparing for downsizing is likely to involve some form of declutter. While most people welcome the concept, the thought of having to deal with all your belongings collected over the years can be daunting.

Decluttering can be a long process which takes some commitment and time. The first step is always the hardest. It may seem overwhelming to look around and have no idea where to get started. That’s why we recommend you taking it one step at a time. But remember, there’s no need to rush doing everything in one day, or one weekend.

Here’s a tip: Break it down into different areas you would like to focus on each week and aim to get that specific space done, then move on to the next one. There may be a different amount of clutter in different areas. Maybe there is more to clear out in your kitchen than in your living room. Try listing each room down on a piece of paper, then prioritise them by marking from 1 to 5, with 1 being the least difficult and 5 the most difficult and likely to take the longest time to complete. Get started with the easiest one first to get an idea of how long it may take you to declutter the area, then work your way up to 5.

Expect emotional ties

Getting rid of things that you’ve had for so long isn’t easy, especially items that bring back memories of your family or loved ones. But remember, these are objects, not actual memories. Memories are in your heart and they will stay with you forever. It takes a bit of courage to throw away things that you no longer need to simplify your life. However, it doesn’t mean getting rid of everything; keep the important things that you would like to share with your grandchildren one day. If there are family photos that you would like to keep, go digital and have them scanned in a hard drive. That way, you can always go through them from your mobile devices, share them with others and they will be kept in a better condition.

Plan now


Most of us have spent more time in our own homes than ever before, which makes us see our homes in a new light, both good and bad. When it comes to retirement, it may become clear that our current home is not really a good fit for the future. And with extra time on your hands, this really is a good time to plan for your next home.

Downsizing from your large family home can lead to an affordable and easy lifestyle. You can spend less time looking after your house and more time doing the things you love. Think more time in the sun doing gardening and more time to spend on social activities such as attending an art group or a choir.

It’s also worth taking into consideration how well your existing home can accommodate your needs as you age. For example, limiting the number of steps or stairs in the home or considering a more convenient location close to public transport and facilities. Start by having a wish list of what you would like to have in your future space. Work on this list with your family and agree on what you like.


There can be a whole range of lifestyle reasons why downsizing is an appealing option. One key indicator that it’s the right time to downsize may be that your income no longer matches the expenses of your current house, especially if it’s starting to need a lot of maintenance and upkeep.

If you’re looking to free up some cash, downsizing to a smaller, easier-to-maintain home is a great option. It not only reduces the stress of having to look after the house, but it also brings you a more convenient and fulfilled lifestyle.

If you have a home to sell, it is a great time to obtain a market appraisal from a good real estate agent (preferably one which has been recommended to you by a friend or family member). Understanding the current value of your home is a crucial step in setting a budget for your next purchase. Real estate agents are still able to provide you with an appraisal during COVID-19 restrictions.

Virtual inspections


Virtual tours are a great way of taking in key aspects of a property at any time of day or night. Virtual inspections help you inspect your favourite home simply and quickly. You can also invite friends and families to go on a virtual inspection tour to get a second opinion. With all this information and assistance now available at your fingertips, or at the end of a phone, making the move to your new home is very achievable regardless if you are in South Australia or elsewhere.

With a smaller space and a lower maintenance lifestyle, you will have less responsibility in your life. It will free you up to spend more time doing things you love. It can be challenging at first, but rewarding once you are done. Decluttering your space, looking around for inspiration, and making a plan are things you can do to get started now. Remember downsizing is not the end of your lifestyle, it is a new beginning which can bring you great freedom.

If you want to learn more about your retirement living options and how best to plan for your next home in retirement, contact our Real Estate Services Manager, Nat Johncock on (08) 8159 3480 or 0418 834 943 or email [email protected].

4 ways to find your retirement living home during COVID-19


The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted most of us in some way. We all need to adapt to a ‘new normal’. This can mean embracing technology to communicate, having a bottle of hand sanitizer handy and rethinking travel plans. But not all plans need to go on hold.

If you are considering a move, now could be the best time to do your research anrd learn more about retirement living options. While opportunities to meet with the retirement living service team or going on an inspection may be more restricted, there are still ways that you can work towards your dream home.

We’ve put together a few tips for you to consider if you’re on the search for a more manageable retirement living lifestyle.

Do your research on retirement living home options


Before you start your research, consider suburbs and areas that you might like to live. Are you happy in your current area, or looking to move closer to family or public transport options?

Once you have your preferred location sorted, you can then focus on other things you need to consider. Is a village of many like-minded people your preference or is a small grouping of homes more your style? If you are looking to meet more people, a community centre with organised activities might be a priority for you. You need to consider how many bedrooms you want also.

By assessing your priorities and then establishing a budget, you can make sure you view homes that tick all your boxes. Writing a list is a good way to start and then you can add as you do more research.

Take a digital inspection for your retirement living home


The beauty of digital technology is that it enables you to view a retirement living home by a click of a mouse. Virtual inspections during the COVID-19 pandemic are easy and beneficial to do from the comfort of your own home if you can’t do a physical inspection in person due to COVID-19 or preference.

Bookmark your favourite properties and take virtual tours to get to know them better. You can also share the link to the virtual tour with your loved ones if you need a second opinion.

If you’re time poor or in a rush to find your dream home, taking a virtual tour is the best way to visit many properties in one day at a click of a mouse. When you take a virtual tour, you receive a realistic view of the retirement living home and can start visualising your life there.

Book a virtual private tour


Another option to inspect the retirement living of your dream is to take a private tour with the retirement living service agent. There are many organisations that offer this option. It’s the best way to view the property and ask the agent questions you may have at the same time. You can either connect via FaceTime, Zoom or Skype. All you need to do is download the app on your mobile, tablet or laptop, and make the call with your 4G or Wi-Fi. Don’t forget to ask about this option when enquiring about your favourite retirement living property.

Consider your lifestyle


Are some everyday tasks becoming harder due to health conditions? Are you forgetting where you left things like your keys? Do you have family interstate that you can’t see at the moment?

With new smart home technology available in the market, you can control your home from afar. This means you don’t have to worry about forgetting to switch things off before you leave the house or before going to bed.

Regardless of your current technology knowledge or digital use, a Smart Technology Occupational Therapist (OT) can assess your needs or concerns and recommend technology that will best suit you. This could be assistance to connect with family and friends online, devices to prompt and remind, automated or voice activated household appliances, or technology that gives you confidence to get out and about.

See how Ron used Smart Technology to support him live a good life independently and safely. 

Imagine going out for social activities and leaving the robot vacuuming the house for you. You can enjoy doing more things you love and spend more time with your loved ones. A smart watch gives you confidence if you are worried about tripping and falling and if security is a concern, a video doorbell is a great way to increase security and safety before opening the door to strangers.

Smart technology can also help track your keys, wallets and phones, so you don’t have to worry losing them. Smart home made easy at your fingertip! If you are isolating or can’t see family and friends due to border restrictions, a TV portal allows you to talk with family and friends via your TV.