Thirty percent of the Chisago County residents are between 45-65 years of age. Many of their lifestyles are changing and they are considering downsizing.

The top 10 reasons my clients give for downsizing are:

  1. House, yard or lake is too much work and too large.
  2. Want to move closer to children or grand-children.
  3. Spend more time traveling or have a second home in a warmer climate.
  4. Move to an urban community.
  5. Maintenance expenses are too high.
  6. Desire one level living.
  7. Desire a more socially active community.
  8. Get closer to health care.
  9. Loss of a loved one.
  10. Divorce.

 Downsizing your home opens a new chapter in your life, and gives you the opportunity to declutter your home and decide what is truly important to take to your new home. It is also a great time to assess your financial situation to determine the equity in your home, your other assets, and if buying a smaller house, townhome, condominium, or renting is the best option for you.  Your health is another important consideration. Many of my clients have had a recent hip or knee replacement so one level living important to them.

 The size of your new home is also a major factor. To some of my clients downsizing doesn’t mean less square footage. They sell their home on the lake and move to the convenience of one level living with a better floor plan. I have also had people sell their big house in the suburbs and buy a small house on the lake, but most of my clients decide they can comfortably live in 1200-1400 square feet, after they declutter, donate, and sell a few things.

 There has been an increase in new one level living housing in Chisago County over the past few years to accommodate the baby boomers, which includes townhomes, detached townhomes, and single family homes. There are also 55+ communities that offer one level townhomes or condos for rent with optional services such as meals, transportation, health club with pool, and health care.

 Some sellers have concerns that their house won’t sell because of deferred maintenance items and they don’t have the money to make repairs, or they don’t have help to declutter, pack, and organize their new home. Some sellers fear that their family members won’t agree with their decisions. Although, these concerns that can seem overwhelming, an experienced real estate professional can work with you and your family to make the best decisions for you and discuss the available resources to transition from your existing home to your new home, where ever that may be.

 Ask the Real Estate Agent is a weekly column by Cheryl Kempenich of Coldwell Banker Burnet, who lives and offices in the Chisago Lakes Area. Submit your questions to All information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed. For legal assistance consult an attorney.