You know this winter came as a harsh reminder that home ownership in the GTA can get pretty challenging and a few of my older clients weren’t honestly prepared. In spite of the warnings that we received from weather experts, winter last year was pretty much a non-event. Ron and I have a snow blower and I don’t think it even got one use. A couple of light shovel days and voila - we were through it.
This year though was a different story. Arctic temperatures, biting winds and regular snowfalls have made this winter one for the record books. Add in a quick thaw or two and the risk of flooding and this season just may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.
Some of you were lulled by the summer-like temperatures that we enjoyed in the fall and it was easy to think: “I can stay in my house for another year – it will be good”. Now, as you and your loved ones muddle through frozen pipes and heaving driveways that decision may not feel like the best one that you ever made… .
It can be stressful trying to keep on top of the home maintenance responsibilities even if you do contract some of them out. It can also be tough – not to mention lonely - to stay positive emotionally when the weather outside is frightful and hibernation seems like the path of least resistance.
So, on the bright side, this very #harshwinter has provided an opportunity to reflect. Time certainly flies and is your existing home honestly serving your health and #mobilityneeds? Are you enjoying the #lifestyle that you thought you would be at this stage of your life or do you owe it to yourself to be proactive and make a change? Could you be happier in a condo or a #retirementresidence? Will you have less to worry about and an opportunity to engage with others with some shared interests? Will a move to #smallerspace give you an opportunity to clear out some of the stuff that you – or others - have been collecting for the last three or four decades. What would a fresh start actually feel like?
I can hear a “but”. In fairness the housing market has given some a reason to pause. It’s not quite as robust as it was last year but, if you are truly honest with yourself, your home in the #GTA has served you very well economically. A case in point: One of my clients shared that he and his late wife purchased their house for $40,000. He sold that house at the end of 2016 for $1.7 million. Yes, if he had held out a few more months he would have been able to sell for even more but he has no regrets now. He is in his eighties and he is enjoying the social aspect of life in a retirement residence. At the urging of his family he had given up his car and, truth be known, his house was starting to feel way too big and way too much trouble.
There is no telling what the spring market will look like this year but, really, if this gentleman’s house now sold for less - perhaps $1.6 million instead of $1.7 million - he would still be doing very, very well on his investment and, at this point anyway, there is just not that much on the market. The principle of supply and demand can work in your favour.
If your house or condo is no longer serving your emerging health and #mobility needs maybe 2018 is your year to make a fresh start.
None of us is getting any younger and my older clients tend to recognize that their remaining time is finite. Some have lost their spouses and while their homes hold many #memories, they also hold a lot of things that have added to their #clutter. In some cases these items were never really their taste to begin with. . . . Engaging the services of a knowledgeable, sensitive and objective Senior Move Manager can help you to practically and cost effectively get the ball rolling and keep your project on schedule – without having you and your loved ones feeling overwhelmed. Our dream team can literally help you get out from under the weight of your stuff – and we do it with a smile!
What to take? What to sell? What to give away? What to do with what’s left over? We can help you to decide – but the final word on each decision is yours. You can set the pace and we will keep your project moving so that you can truly experience that fresh start in 2018. It doesn’t have to be hard!
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