If you have been wondering if downsizing from your larger house to the more compact lifestyle of a retirement community is the right step for you then you are not alone. According to a survey done last year, 52% of Ontario baby boomers (people born between 1946 to 1965) consider big cities unfit for retirement. And so, a majority are considering downsizing and moving out.
The thought of downsizing can be a daunting one, particularly when you don’t know where to start. At Gordon’s we’ve been helping clients in the Kingston area downsize for over 25 years and we have managing the process in a stress-reduced way down to a science. We help clients: plan where to move, what to move, manage the packing, moving and unpacking for them, and help them handle disposal of any remaining contents they can’t take with them, preparing their property for sale, and finally listing and selling their property. Over the years, we’ve learned that the following five tips are key for navigating the downsizing process with ease.
It is often remarked that moving is a stressful experience for most people at any age. But particularly when you are older and you don’t have the energy to do literally “the heavy lifting”, making the decision to downsize can be extremely daunting. From our experience helping thousands of clients downsize over the years, here are three ways to reduce stress when downsizing:
At Gordon’s, having worked in the estate services industry for well over 40 years, we’ve seen a variety of complex estate stakeholder dynamics. Respecting the gravity of these complexities and knowing how to recognize and navigate each situation productively, supports long term family harmony and positive outcomes for the estate and its stakeholders. Ignoring these complexities, or hoping things will change can have an equally negative outcome. Below are three typical scenarios, that may sound familiar, along with general guidelines of how to navigate them.
Topics: Estate Management
“How much are your services going to cost aside from the real estate commission?” is a question that we hear on a daily basis when meeting with potential clients. It’s natural that people want to know how much our assistance with their move and/or personal content management needs are going to cost. One answer is - probably less than trying to manage the work yourself in fragments. And - what will it cost you if things aren’t managed well? Managing the contents and move well, which are often aspects with the highest complexity are precursors to a smooth real estate closing, which is the real pay off. In other words, how much is a smooth real estate closing process worth to you? Let me elaborate...
There are various types of appraisals that one may require at various times in their life. At times we criticise the fact that an appraisal is not worth the paper it’s written on, but that is typically a misunderstanding. Essentially, there are different reasons why one might wish to have an appraisal completed and different types of appraisals serve different purposes. Below is a general discussion of different types of appraisals and their purposes in order to inform your broader understanding.
Most of us think of an appraisal as a professional assessment of what something is “worth” in monetary terms. In general terms this is correct, however let’s discuss the various approaches to conducting an appraisal or assigning value and the implications of each. Three main approaches to assigning value, ordered from typically highest to lowest relative valuations, include: replacement value, fair market value and liquidation/auction value.
We’ve all heard stories of the garage sale that served up a $250,000 painting for a dollar. Anytime the downsize or estate settlement process takes place without the involvement of an Appraiser, the risk of losing potentially valuable things forever goes up. The fact is, that the vast majority of people downsizing or managing an estate are told to throw out hundreds of items averaging $50-$100 in value because the team of experts they’ve hired to guide them through the processes don’t include specialists who are qualified in personal property valuation. Just like you don’t hire a plumber to fix your car or a mechanic to build you a house, unless the professionals you partner with to assist with your downsize or estate settlement projects are appropriately qualified, you could be missing out on unrealized value.
When taking on the Estate Trustee role, should you “Do It Yourself” or hire third party partner(s) to help manage your responsibilities? The answer to this depends on a lot of factors about you and about the estate in question. It is important to do a little self discovery and situational analysis before deciding which path to choose. Here are some factors to consider when making your decision:
Topics: Estate Management
This is a question I get from time to time - typically when an estate or downsize seller has a familiarity or a relationship with one or more real estate agents already. The fact that a client has been considering agent 1 or 2 for awhile is not a surprise. With what some say is over 48,000 agents in the GTA alone, most people know at least one.
And with the vast majority of real estate advertising being spent on agent promotion - rather than property promotion, it is not uncommon to get the impression that only a select few in your community can get the job done right. Fair thought.
At Gordon’s Downsizing & Estate Services, one of the services we offer is helping customers manage what to do with their extra personal belongings when they downsize. We build and execute a personalized plan for each customer to accomplish this task. When there is a volume of items to be dispersed we typically use an online auction service, www.MaxSold.com to do so, as this method generates maximum value for our customers.
From time to time customers ask us whether they can remove an item from their auction once it is open and the short answer is “No, it’s not a good idea.” and this is why...