The weather’s better in a neighboring state.
It would be nice to be closer to the grandkids.
Those are a lot of stairs to walk up.
Whatever the reason, the idea of selling is beginning to have some appeal—but you might not be quite ready to start packing or see a “For Sale” sign in your yard.
If that sums up the way you’re feeling, you are not alone. Over 6 percent of Americans between 55 and 64 move every year, according to the Over-50 Council of the National Association of Home Builders.
But even if you’re not quite ready to make the leap, there are things you could do while you are still in the thinking stage.
Get rid of the guilt. A feeling that they are the keepers of family heirlooms is the top reason seniors hesitate to move. So, this is the time to get rid of that guilt by transferring as many of those heirlooms as possible to the people who will inherit them anyway. Ridding yourself of emotional tie-downs will make it easier to make a more sensible decision about moving.
Get rid of clutter. Now it’s time to clear out the clutter—dust-catching knickknacks, old draperies and area rugs, any furniture you don’t need. Go through every room and make a list broken down into three categories: keep, toss and donate. It may be difficult at first, but try to fall into a rhythm. At the very least, if you decide to stay, your home will be easier to navigate. If you decide to move, your streamlined rooms will be more attractive to buyers.
Do it again in 30 days. Once you are accustomed to the new look of your home, go through it again. Chances are it will be a lot easier to decide what to keep, toss or donate.