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Retirement Living: Should You Downsize or Upsize?

As we approach retirement, we consider the many factors that can influence our financial, physical and emotional well-being. One of these factors is the size of our home. Should we downsize to a smaller, more manageable home to save money and reduce maintenance costs or to a larger one that accommodates our changing needs and lifestyle?

This article will explore the pros and cons of downsizing to upsizing your retirement and offer tips to help you make the right decision.

Downsizing for Retirement: Pros and Cons

Downsizing to a smaller home can offer many benefits for retirees. Here are some of the pros and cons to consider:


  • Reduced Expenses: Downsizing to a smaller home can help reduce your expenses, including mortgage payments, property taxes and maintenance costs.

  • Increased Cash Flow: By reducing your expenses, you may have more cash to spend on other things, such as travel, hobbies, or healthcare.

  • Simplified Lifestyle: With less space, you can simplify your lifestyle and focus on the things that matter most to you.


  • Emotional Attachment: Letting go of a home with many memories can be difficult and emotional.

  • Less Space: Downsizing to a smaller home means less space, which may not be ideal if you have family or friends who visit often.

  • Moving Costs: Moving to a new home can be expensive, especially if you have a lot of possessions to move.

Upsizing for Retirement: Pros and Cons

Conversely, upsizing to a larger home can also provide benefits for retirees. Here are some of the pros and cons to consider:


  • Accommodate Changing Needs: A larger home can accommodate your changing needs as you age, such as needing a first-floor bedroom or bathroom.

  • More Space for Family: Having a bigger home means you can provide more space for family and friends to visit and stay overnight.

  • Investment Opportunity: A bigger house can be a good investment because it might increase in value.


  • Higher Expenses: Upsizing to a larger home means you will have higher expenses, such as mortgage payments, property taxes and maintenance costs.

  • More Space to Manage: More space comes with more responsibility, which can be overwhelming and time-consuming.

  • Emotional Attachment: Moving to a new home can be emotionally challenging, especially if you have lived in your current home for many years.

Tips for Making the Right Decision

If you are considering downsizing or upsizing for retirement, here is some financial advice to help you make the right decision for your situation:

Evaluate Your Finances

Before making any decisions, evaluate your finances to determine what you can afford. Consider your retirement income, savings and expenses to determine if downsizing or upsizing makes sense financially.

Consider Your Lifestyle

Consider your current lifestyle and what you want your retirement lifestyle to look like. Do you want to travel frequently or prefer to stay close to home? Do you enjoy entertaining guests or choose a quiet, low-key lifestyle?

Evaluate Your Health

Consider your current health and any potential health issues that may arise in the future. Will you be able to manage the maintenance and upkeep of a larger home as you age, or would a smaller home be more manageable?

Consult with a Professional

A personal financial adviser can help you identify and understand your long-term financial goals and provide advice on how to reach those goals best. This can include helping you create a retirement savings plan, discussing different types of investments and giving advice on reducing debt and improving your credit. They can also help you create a budget tailored to your individual needs and financial goals.

Take Your Time

Don't rush into a decision. Take your time to weigh the pros and cons of downsizing or upsizing, and ensure you are comfortable with your decision before making any moves.


Overall, retirement living is a personal decision, and every individual should decide whether downsizing or upsizing is the ideal option for their lifestyle and financial situation. Downsizing can be a great way to save money, reduce stress and simplify life. It also allows retirees to minimise expenses and enjoy more retirement funds. On the other hand, upsizing may be a good option for those looking for more space, amenities and a higher quality of life.

Ultimately, retirees should consider their individual needs and financial situation when deciding whether or not to downsize or upsize. With careful planning and research, retirees can find the perfect retirement living situation that fits their lifestyle and budget best.

Swell Financial Planning offers financial services, including investment, insurance and more, to help individuals stay on top of their financial health. If you are looking for a personal financial adviser on the Gold Coast to help you better understand your preservation age and more, work with us today!


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