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Downsize your life, upsize your lifestyle

After all those years of hard work, raising your family and taking care of that big house in the suburbs, don’t you think it’s time for some rewards?

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The term ‘empty nester’ is sometimes associated with sadness and loss but it doesn’t have to be that way. More and more people are seeing the time of change as an opportunity to recreate themselves and live a brand new version of their life - one that focuses on lifestyle.

City life can be inspiring in your later years – with everything you need and more within walking distance of your apartment. Maybe it’s the beach, transport to the city or great local cafes and bars? Or the chance to take in some arts and culture - things you never had the time or money for before.

Timing is not always within our control but if you can sell the family home before you buy a new property and secure a long settlement period, you’ll be in a better position to know your options and make good choices about where to live next.  

There are things about your life that won’t change – like wanting to spend time with your children and grandchildren and maintaining your friendships. Consider how easy the new place is for them to get to, or whether you need a spare room so people can stay. If you have hobbies and activities, make sure you can find the facilities you need in your new location. If you play golf or volunteer somewhere a few times a week, it’s important to be able to keep doing this and make some new friends in your new neighbourhood at the same time.

Inner city apartments often have all the mod cons you’ve dreamt about and a few you didn’t even know you needed – from coffee machines to rooftop swimming pools, video intercoms to in-house gyms. Don’t get swayed by the shiny surfaces though – think about what you need in terms of space, convenience and practicalities, then choose accordingly.

Don’t forget that this is also an investment. Throwing all of your money at a glamorous apartment may seem like a great idea at the time but, if it’s a bad investment, you may end up in your kids’ spare room in your old age. Buy something that serves your needs as well as your desires. Also be sure you can afford the lifestyle you are committing to. You may have a smaller house to run but expenses might increase around things like parking, body corporate fees, transport and even groceries and eating out. 

There is a different energy to city life and it can certainly offer you a quality of lifestyle you may not have had up until now. Dinner and a musical on a Wednesday night maybe? Don’t mind if I do. A lazy brunch then the afternoon at the National Gallery – sounds perfect. Or maybe even just being able to stroll downstairs every day, to take a walk along the beach, or grab a coffee and the paper.

What does the new version of your life look like? If you are ready to buy and need some guidance on where to start, download our Home Buyers Guide and make some time to see your local First National Real Estate agent today.   

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