Whether your kids are off to college or on to their own homes or you're just ready for less space to take care of, downsizing from a house to a condo can be scary.
You're not alone though. More and more people are choosing condo living, and the condo market is booming, especially in places like Myrtle Beach.
Condo living can come with some significant advantages over having a stand-alone home to take care of. Less upkeep, more opportunity for upgraded finishes, and buildings with amenities like gyms, saunas, pools, and lounge areas are all a big draw to condo living. Or maybe you're ready to take the plunge to a beach condo.
Keep reading for some tips on how to successfully downsize from a house to a condo without going crazy!
Condo Living 101: Where to Put All That Stuff?
There are some obvious differences between houses and condos, and one of them is less space, whether this is general living space or storage space. While you might have had several bedrooms, bathrooms, a den, and an office in a house, you might only have one or two bedrooms and bathrooms in a condo.
You probably had storage space in your house, whether that be in a basement, attic, or garage. Your condo might offer you some storage space in the basement of your building or garage, for example, but certainly won't have the abundant space that many houses do.
Don't let this dissuade you though. Downsizing is a great opportunity to purge all of those items you've been holding on to for years. Just because you have the space for it in your home doesn't mean you need to keep it!
Here are some tips for downsizing and getting rid of some of that stuff.
1. Purge as much as possible BEFORE you move
Nothing is more annoying than packing and moving items to a new home to later realize you don't want or need it. It's time and resources on your part to pack it and move it, so try to get rid of as much as possible before you move. It will save you time and money.
You can find lots of tips and tricks to help with this process.
2. Get creative with storage
There are many different decorative storage solutions, including baskets, storage ottomans, beds with drawers built-in, and organizational tools to maximize your storage.
If you did a good job purging before you moved hopefully you'd be able to find a place for everything (or at least you won't have as much to get rid of since you already purged much of your unneeded things!).
3. Re-Home sentimental items
You might find that you have something that you just can't bear to part with, but you don't have the space for it, or it just doesn't work in your new home. Re-homing it with your kids, relatives, or friends who will love it as much as you do might be a lot easier for you to stomach than having to donate it or sell it to a stranger.
4. Digitize as much as possible
CDs, DVDs, pictures, videos, and essential documents take up a lot of space. Space you might not have in your new condo. To keep these items but save yourself some space, consider digitizing them. Relevant documents can e scanned and saved to the cloud or on a computer hard drive (certain hard copies should be kept though, like social security cards, birth certificates, and marriage certificates).
There are also different companies who offer digitizing services for your pictures and home videos. Digitizing allows you to keep all of these items but eliminates them in your physical space.
Condo Living 101: Making Friends
Now that you've purged, moved, and unpacked, you might want to make friends in your new building. Here are some tips:
5. Make friends with the mail carrier and delivery drivers
Some condo communities might allow mail and package carriers to bring packages right to your door. Befriend them, and the chances that your packages always make it to your door will grow.
Having your stuff waiting for you, rather than having to trek across town to pick it up, or lug it up in the elevator is much more convenient.
6. Take care of the manager or maintenance workers
If your building has a door person or manager, making friends with them is a great idea. They might be more likely to sign for large packages and will generally look out for you. Show your appreciation in simple ways, and they might be more likely to go out of their way for you!
Refer to number 5 here. Be nice to the person you'll have to see day in and day out on your way in and out of your building!
Condo Living 101: Navigating The HOA
7. Run for office
Becoming a member of the HOA is much better than being in disagreement with them! If there are things you don't like, run for a spot on the HOA and work to change things.
Even if you don't run for office, attending meetings and voicing your concerns in a constructive manner can work in your favor too.
8. Follow the rules
If you decide that running for a spot on the HOA isn't for you, you should still make yourself familiar with the rules and regulations of the HOA. Don't be that resident that is constantly breaking the rules and angering your neighbors.
On the flip side, when your neighbors have done something against the rules, talk to them first. Chances are, you can resolve the issue neighbor to neighbor without making a formal complaint against them to the HOA. You'd want someone to give you the same courtesy.
Don't let condo living and downsizing scare you away. Whatever the reason, moving into a condo can be the start of the next chapter of your life.
Check out our site for Myrtle Beach condos for sale and start downsizing today!