Arriving at the decision to downsize your current home can be a daunting one. Firstly, you are deciding to embark on a new chapter, secondly, it’s something new (which is scary and somewhat risky), thirdly, you are moving away from your home, which I’m sure has many precious memories. However, as hard as nostalgia can be to break away from, there are usually some pretty strong drivers that have led you to this decision. I’m sure you have many unaccounted rooms collecting dust and adding to your cleaning schedule, or maybe you have those dreaded stairs that no longer serve your purpose, as your kids have left the nest. We understand the challenges this decision imposes which is why we are here to help. Whether you’re nervous about making this decision, re-entering the property market, or deciding on where to begin. Whatever your drivers are, we have curated a beginner’s guide to downsizing, no rightsizing.
Benefits Of Downsizing
So, let’s begin with the obvious, why it’s actually a great decision to downsize. The first decision you should make is what property is right for you. Whether it’s a house, townhouse or apartment, each offers different benefits and features suited for different needs. To help you decide we’ve broken down what you need to consider, when making this decision.
When thinking about where you want your next purchase to be think logically and use this checklist:
- Is it close to family?
- Are you close to amenities (supermarkets, doctors, post office)
- Is it close to public transport and/or freeway/highway access?
- Does it have any good parks within walking distance?
- Is it close to restaurants/cafes/bars?
- Are you part of any clubs/hobbies? If so, are they close?
If you are going to downsize and give up your home, you want to at least relocate to an amenity-rich environment. Surround yourself with all the things that are important to you so you can live a more convenient lifestyle. Choose a suburb you want to immerse yourself into, whether it be socialising at sports clubs, spending more time out dining or more time outside, enjoying parkland and going for walks. Think about what you want and what you enjoy and then go for it!
It’s no doubt you’ll be downsizing to a more manageable home. Maybe a single-story unit, apartment, or townhouse would be better suited to your lifestyle. You may want to start spending more time outside rather than maintaining a larger home and yard. That’s why purchasing a smaller property is a great option. You don’t have as much maintenance to worry about it, you don’t have to walk up and downstairs and less cleaning! You can decide whether you want a garden to maintain, a courtyard, or maybe you want a cosy balcony. Also, if you’re purchasing into a multiplex residency with more than 2 dwellings, there will be a body corporate or owners corporation in place. This body will manage the common areas, leaving you with more leisure time.
Benefits Of Downsizing To An Apartment
You can rest assured knowing that you won’t have random people lurking around your apartment building thanks to private and secure access. Most apartments come with secure entrances and car parks, only enabling those with passes to enter. Additionally, apartments provide intercoms, so you know who is ringing your doorbell (perfect for ghosting spruikers).
Smaller, Low-Rise Apartment Developments
Offer many advantages such as a sense of community. As there are fewer apartments in the building, which means you’re more likely to bump into your neighbour. Also, as you all share a common space you undoubtedly bump into each other from time to time.
Smaller apartment developments are usually all (if not a majority) owner-occupied. Meaning you don’t have to worry about short term tenants and noisy or inconsiderate neighbours.
Apartments offer convenient lifestyles. Residents can enjoy living in superb locations, with less maintenance. If you choose the apartment lifestyle, you can decide if you want to manage a courtyard or balcony. In addition to this, you will also have less rooms and space to manage meaning more time for hobbies!
Government Grants & Incentives
At the moment there are a host of government grants and incentives available for all owner occupiers.
2. Off-The-Plan Concession
Will allow you to save more in the earlier stages of construction. As construction progresses, the dutiable value of the property will increase and the more duty you will have to pay. Dutiable value is calculated on the number of levels of the project (which determines the land value) + the level of construction (if construction has commenced). For apartments with up to and including three levels, the dutiable value will be 40% of the sale price. Apartments with four or more levels’ the dutiable value will be 25% of the sale price. It is important to note that this concession deals with dutiable value, rather than focusing on the contract price. The off-the-plan concession calculations change at different stages of construction. When a project is in the planning or pre-construction phase and you sign your contract, the dutiable value will be calculated from the land value and the number of levels in the building. As the construction commences and continues the value of construction gets added to this amount, thus adding value to the property and increasing the amount of duty that is to be paid. It is also stressed that this concession is only applicable to owner-occupiers.
For more information regarding off-the-plan savings and government incentives, we advise you to speak to a sales consultant.
In the 2021 Federal budget, the government announced a huge benefit for those looking to downsize. You can make a one-off voluntary super contribution of $300,000 (per person). The conditions are: you must be over 60 years old and have owned your house for at least 10 years.
Low Interest Rates
The RBA (Reserve Bank of Australia) has maintained the low-interest rates of 0.1%, stating that they expect the interest rates to remain this low for the next three years. So, what does this mean for you? This means that you’re able to borrow more money and pay less interest on your loan, ultimately leaving you more money to spend. Taking out a loan while interest rates are low means you don’t have to stress about high-interest loan repayments.
With this guide, you’re ready to start your property hunt! Don’t be afraid to jump right in and start exploring. If this guide has you thinking about purchasing an off-the-plan apartment, don’t hesitate to get in contact with a member of our friendly sales team, who can help answer any questions you may have.