NDSU Extension Service - Ramsey County


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Home ownership has long been considered part of the “American Dream”.   But is there ever a reason to sell your dream home? While the idea of owning and living in your large dream home is shared by many people worldwide – does the idea of living this type of lifestyle always make economic sense? For many people, it may in fact make more financial sense to think about downsizing to a smaller home.  What are some of the advantages and disadvantages to downsizing your home?

Reduced Energy Costs – As you will be living in a smaller space, there will naturally be less space to heat in the winter and cool in summer.  In turn, you can save quite a substantial amount of money on any associated energy costs. 

Reduced Maintenance & Cleaning Costs - Smaller homes, usually have smaller yards to maintain and thus less expense for smaller mowers, paying for weed control or trimming and/or removing trees and shrubs        

A Lower Tax Bill - In most situations, you will not have to pay as much money in taxes for a smaller home.  However, it is important to be aware that tax rates can vary dependent on the neighborhood and recent improvements made to streets, lighting, etc.

Less Space - One of the main disadvantages of downsizing is the lessened amount of space. Having less space can mean selling some furniture, or buying new furniture to fit the house if older furniture is too large. It can also result in family crowding, if a family downsizes while children are still in the house.

Leaving Behind Friends - Depending on the location of the move, downsizing can mean going to a new town or a new state. Even if you're staying in the same city, you're still uprooting the family and moving to a new neighborhood. Leaving behind friends and neighbors who you've known for years is often emotionally challenging.

Moving is Work - Moving is stressful, even when the move is good and is an idea you are in agreement with.  You must pack up all of your belongings, sell the old house if it was purchased or give appropriate notice for a renter, and perhaps even buy a new house before the old house is no longer available.

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