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11 things to do before you downsize your home, according to an expert who gets hired by seniors to help them declutter

Business Insider Logo By Laura McCamy of Business Insider | Slide 1 of 12: 
  
    Americans are increasingly
    looking to downsize
    their homes.
  
  
    Although downsizing can be
    liberating, there are several things you need to do before you
    can move into a smaller home.
  
  
    We spoke to an expert who told
    us 11 things everyone should do before they downsize.
  

  The number of Americans downsizing
  their homes is skyrocketing.

  Forty-six percent of baby
  boomers who sold homes in 2017 were in the process of
  downsizing, 
  according to a Zillow report, and a full 12% of the home
  buyers between 45 and 64 were doing the same, according to the
  National Association of Realtors.

  Whether it's because of retirement,
  kids leaving home, a drop in income, divorce, or another reason,
  it often makes financial sense to find a smaller and more
  economical place to live.

  
    Read more:
    
  My husband and I bought our home, but if I had to do it all over
  again I'd choose to rent instead
  
  

  But before you make the move, a
  lot of work needs to go into downsizing, including the tedious
  process of deciding which of your possessions to keep and which
  ones to give away.

  That process can be painful, but
  it can also be liberating, said Karen Shinn, a senior move
  manager and cofounder of Downsizing Diva, a Toronto business that specializes in
  helping seniors declutter their lives. 

  Shinn shared 11 steps everyone
  should take before they downsize, and it's a useful lesson for
  anyone looking to part with things they don't need.

  • Although downsizing can be liberating, there are several things you need to do before you can move into a smaller home.
  • We spoke to an expert who told us 11 things everyone should do before they downsize.

The number of people downsizing their homes is skyrocketing.

Forty-six per cent of baby boomers who sold homes in 2017 were in the process of downsizing, according to a Zillow report, and a full 12% of the home buyers between 45 and 64 were doing the same, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Whether it's because of retirement, kids leaving home, a drop in income, divorce, or another reason, it often makes financial sense to find a smaller and more economical place to live.

Read more: My husband and I bought our home, but if I had to do it all over again I'd choose to rent instead

But before you make the move, a lot of work needs to go into downsizing, including the tedious process of deciding which of your possessions to keep and which ones to give away.

That process can be painful, but it can also be liberating, said Karen Shinn, a senior move manager and cofounder of Downsizing Diva, a Toronto business that specializes in helping seniors declutter their lives.

Shinn shared 11 steps everyone should take before they downsize, and it's a useful lesson for anyone looking to part with things they don't need.

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