A long-time client, Carolyn Bowden, has been kind enough to share her thoughts about why she and her husband chose to downsize from a larger home to a significantly smaller rented apartment while they were both still very independent.
I strongly feel it’s far better to honestly consider and realistically prepare for possible health adversities far in advance. Life is more enjoyable this way. Buying long-term care insurance is an important part of doing this, and so is preemptively downsizing, as the Bowdens have done.
I admire Carolyn for making this considerate, preemptive move and am grateful to her for offering the share her experience with my readers.
What follows is a quote from the recent column she wrote.
“My husband and I moved in November 2013 to a Senior “Independent” Living Residence for adults (only) over the age of 50. Our 2 bedroom, 2 bath apartment is just 1026 square feet with a balcony. This meant we could only take with us 1/4th of the contents of our home. We do have a small, 3 by 8 foot storage room outside our apartment, and we selected to park our car in a car port instead of one of the small garages. Our apartment is on the top floor, at the rear of the building on the north side.
The month before our move, I would walk our house and “grieve” over what I was leaving behind. Our new home has amenities, such as, granite counter tops, an attached garage and a beautiful view of the adjacent park behind our home. We lost items like our sterling, Lenox china and crystal, which were sold in an estate sale, along with family treasures going back over 200 years. The children have their own “treasures”. I consoled myself by envisioning what had been mine, would now be in “new” homes and my hope was that they would be appreciated and enjoyed.
I am excited with the intimate apartment and have discovered how much easier it is to maintain. Our is more carefree now. In some ways, we have fewer decisions. For example, I only have one set of tongs, 3 sauce pans, and 3 skillets, etc. It is like living in a small cottage, except that I do not have the white picket fence with climbing roses.
We are renting now. How nice it is to just pick up the phone or email when maintenance and repairs are needed! We bear no unexpected expenses. There’s no need to wait for repairmen to arrive. There is no expiration of service warranties to deal with. I am so very happy!
However, my husband is not as comfortable with the changes. He misses his recliner, his view of the park where there was always something of interest to see. He can no longer open the door to venture outside and check out the yard and trees. But, he is trying. He is pleased with no longer having major home repairs and expensive maintenance of the yard.
It is my thought that this time next year he will be more adapted. Thoughts of what we left behind will be just memories. We will be busy moving ahead.”