Moving On: What You Should Do With Your Old Home



Whether you are moving into a smaller home, relocating into a retirement community, or transitioning into assisted living, it can be an emotional and stressful situation to leave a house that you’ve lived in for years — and in some cases, decades. No matter where you are moving, however, you need to figure out what to do with your old home. You don’t want to let it just sit unoccupied and be a waste of space and money. Let’s take a look at some of the common options of what you can do with your home when it’s time to move on.

Why You Might Want to Rent Out Your House

Renting out a house seems like a great idea to many people on paper. A stream of income is very attractive, especially if you are on a fixed income these days. However, becoming a landlord isn’t the best choice for everyone. Do your research and figure out if it’s a realistic and favorable option for you. Remember that if you keep your home, you will still need to pay property taxes, insurance, and all the upkeep costs.

Do you still owe money on the house? If so, you might not want to hang onto it. As you age, you don’t want to be paying mortgage payments on two properties. Do you have the time and energy to be the property manager? If not, then you will need to hire someone to do the work for you. The Balance indicates property managers often get 4 and 10 percent of the rental income.

Why You Should Consider Keeping It in the Family

Another option is you can keep the home, but allowing someone else in your family (or a close friend) to live in it. This is sometimes a good option, particularly if it’s not a good time to sell in your geographical area. You can wait out the market, let a loved one live in it for now, and put your home up for sale at a later date. This is also a nice choice if you were planning to give the home to a relative upon your death. You can perhaps make an arrangement where they don’t have to pay you any rent and you’ll still pay the insurance and taxes, but they’d be responsible for any upkeep,repairs, and maintenance on the house and property.

Why Selling Your Home May Be the Right Choice

If you need cash flow, then selling may be the answer. If you have equity in your home, proceeds from the sale of the home can go toward the cost of your new residence. Also, if you are in great financial shape, you could use the money for travel or leisure. Selling the home may be tough at first, but getting rid of the home may also be a very emotionally freeing experience. Having fewer responsibilities and worries as you age can be a big plus for many people.

How to Reduce Moving Stress

Moving can make you feel stressed, sad, and out of sorts. Allow yourself to feel all those feelings, and when it’s time to physically move, get a little help.

Enlist your family members to help you pack. It can be a great opportunity to reminisce about days gone by as you pack up photo albums, knickknacks, and heirlooms. For moving and transporting boxes, don’t do the heavy work. Instead, call professional movers to help with the physical move. The national average cost of hiring movers is $1,081. You can hire movers to do a full-service move (including packing and unpacking), or merely transport your belongings from one house to the next. When you arrive in your new place, don’t think you need to unpack everything in a day or two. Unpack the necessities and the things that mean the most to you, and then give yourself sometime to adjust to your new surroundings.

Many people move when they get older, whether it’s for financial reasons,health concerns, or family factors — and every one of them experience some degree of anxiety and stress. However, with some research and help, you can make the proper decision about what to do with your old house and make your way to your new home happily and healthily.

Article written and edited by Jim Vogel

Photo via Pixabay