Empty Nesters: What to consider before making the decision to downsize.
By ANNA USHER.
Older homeowners on the lower north shore have become the strongest players in the current property market, thanks in part to a new incentive allowing them to take advantage of the spring selling season.
The federal government’s downsizer scheme kicked in on July 1, which allows people over the age of 65 to contribute up to $300,000 from the sale proceeds of their home directly into their superannuation fund.
The limit applies per person, meaning a married couple can deposit up to $600,000.
The scheme is designed to encourage baby boomers to sell properties that no longer suit their needs, by providing a tax advantage when surplus money is invested into super.
But although it seems like an attractive proposition, there is plenty to weigh up before making a decision to downsize, according to McGrath agent Piers van Hamburg.
“Moving from your family home, into a smaller low maintenance space can be a very difficult thing to get your head around,” he tells Mosman Collective.
“With so many memories attached to a house, it is often overwhelming on a number of levels.
“Which is why so many older people procrastinate when it comes to selling their property.”
"moving from your family home, into a smaller space can be a very hard thing to get your head around"
- Piers van Hamburg
Piers said older home owners must consider factors like finances, health, location, lifestyle, family, and friends, before putting the ‘For Sale' sign up in the front yard.
“I’ve dealt with numerous older buyers and sellers over the years - and over that time I’ve observed some common patterns,” he said.
“Mostly, it takes a very long time for people to work up the courage needed to market their home.
“It’s a monumental decision and sometimes I spend years getting to know my clients before they're ready to sell.
“Looking after downsizers during what is a highly emotive stage of their lives - and ensuring they’re across every part of the process is critical.”
With this in mind, Piers has gathered a group of local experts, to host a free information night at Sergeants Mess on Tuesday, September 4.
“Home owners, and especially baby boomers want to be educated on how to make their next property move with confidence and ease," he said.
As the Director of McGrath Lower North Shore, Piers will share his expert opinion on the best time to sell your home, preparing your property for market, the best sales method to use – and how to achieve the highest price.
Joining him will be buyer’s agent Peter Kelaher, Director of PK Property and a representative from Bell Partners to explain the federal government's new downsizers incentive.