When is the right time to downsize? The facts are that according to the 2016 Canadian census, 6.5% of seniors 65 years and older live in nursing or senior’s retirement residences. Not surprisingly, this figure jumps to 30% of Canadians 85 years and older. In addition, due to improved health, longer life expectancies, and the proliferation of home care options and community support services for seniors (you can visit a Mosaic Community Resource Centre to obtain details on these), about 55% of Canadians 55 years or older indicate that they intend on remaining in their homes as long as possible. So what does all this mean?
Having worked in the downsizing industry for over 20 years we encounter this question. Anecdotally people tend to approach downsizing as a reactive (rather than proactive) resolution to a sudden change in their circumstances i.e. health, wealth or mobility. Although Gordon’s is equipped to provide best in class services to support a reactive situation, our hope for soon-to-be clients is that more are proactive and partner with us sooner i.e. months and even years before they actually plan to make their downsizing decisions. Why? Well, in addition to the obvious benefits such as health and wellness; not having to research major life choices directly after a life changing event (i.e. the death of a spouse), reduced stress and having more control over the timeline; we at Gordon’s provide support and professional advice as soon as we are engaged and throughout the rest of your downsizing journey. In other words, you get our expert support and advice for more time with no increase in cost.
At Gordon’s, we work with clients every day who are embarking on their downsizing journeys, and it can be a difficult one, fraught with emotional, financial and physical obstacles and challenges - you don’t know what you don’t know...and what you don’t know can cost you time, money, and possibly your health.
When considering when to downsize, we recommend that potential and/or existing clients reflect on the following questions?
Do I want easier access to more social activities?
Do I want to live near others of similar age and experiences?
Do I feel lonely or isolated in my current living situation?
Am I tired of making all meals and performing household chores?
Am I having difficulty maintaining my ideal lifestyle where I am?
Am I worried about being alone if I fall or become ill?
If “no” are the answers to many of these questions then we infer our clients feel safe, socially stimulated, well looked after, well fed, and not overwhelmed. In these instances, staying put may be the right decision for them. However, if the answers to the above questions are a resounding “yes” and they have the financial security (in liquid or real estate assets) to commit to a retirement living community, then perhaps it’s time to consider embarking on a new adventure. Gordon’s has a team of trained professionals ready to remove the physical barriers (how to manage the move, sale or donation of additional items no longer needed, and preparation and sale of property) that prevent many from making their move sooner.
Given that the keys to longevity revolve around remaining healthy, safe, intellectually stimulated and fulfilled, and having a purpose in your life, whatever living environment allows you to enjoy those things is the right one for you.
If you are interested in learning more about how Gordon’s can help you smoothly transition to a simpler lifestyle when you are ready, visit our website here for more information or contact us today for a free no obligation consultation. We help. You move on.