How do you know when it’s time to downsize and relocate?

Part of being a Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES) is taking the time to truly understand a family’s needs before putting a plan in place. It’s so much more than just buying or selling a home – it’s considering whether the time is right to downsize and relocate to a smaller space. This process involves considering various factors related to a senior’s physical, emotional, and financial well-being.

Here are 12 signs and considerations to help determine if it’s time to downsize that I often share with my clients:

  1. Physical Ability: If daily tasks become challenging due to mobility issues, health concerns, or the size of their current home, downsizing to a more manageable space might be beneficial.
  2. Maintenance and Upkeep: If the current home requires a lot of maintenance and upkeep that is becoming burdensome, downsizing to a smaller place with lower maintenance demands can be a wise choice.
  3. Financial Considerations: Evaluate if the cost of maintaining the current home (property taxes, utilities, repairs) is straining finances. Downsizing can help reduce monthly expenses.
  4. Emotional Well-being: If the senior is feeling isolated or overwhelmed in a large house, moving to a smaller, more social environment (such as a retirement community) could improve their emotional well-being.
  5. Safety Concerns: If the current home poses safety hazards (stairs, slippery floors, difficult-to-navigate spaces), moving to a safer, more accessible living situation might be necessary.
  6. Proximity to Family and Medical Care: Consider the proximity to family members, medical facilities, and services. Moving closer to these resources can provide peace of mind.
  7. Unused Space: If a significant portion of the current home is unused or underutilized, downsizing can help avoid wasting space.
  8. Future Planning: Think about the long-term needs of the senior loved one. A downsized home might be easier to manage as they age, and it could also be more suitable if they require assistance or care.
  9. Desire for a Lifestyle Change: Some seniors want to downsize to simplify their lives, reduce stress, and enjoy retirement without the responsibilities of a larger home.
  10. Sentimental Attachment: While emotional attachment to a home is valid, it’s important to consider whether sentimental value outweighs the practical benefits of downsizing.
  11. Decluttering: Downsizing often requires decluttering and letting go of possessions. If the senior citizen is open to this process, it can lead to a lighter, more organized lifestyle.
  12. Legal and Financial Considerations: Consult legal and financial experts to understand the implications of downsizing, such as selling a home, dealing with property taxes, and managing any inheritance or estate matters.

Ultimately, the decision to downsize should be based on a combination of these factors, the individual’s preferences, and their unique circumstances. Involve the senior in the decision-making process and seek input from family members, friends, and professionals who can provide valuable insights and support.

If you have questions or would like to discuss the process of exploring whether it’s time to downsize and relocate and how to get started, contact Atlanta Seniors Real Estate any time.

The easy way to enhance your curb appeal

Whether you are planning to sell your home or you want to age in place and enjoy your home for years to come, flowers can alter the perception of a home. Vibrant blooms will enhance your curb appeal and draw prospective buyers to your house, or the blooms can simply create lasting joy for the homeowner.

Consider landscaping with plants that will bloom year-round — it just requires a little planning but delivers a big return.

A recent AARP article provides practical tips on how to make the most of your outdoor space including:

  • Contact your local extension service to get a soil test.
  • Make needed adjustments to the soil and evaluate the planting area.
  • Choose plants that will work best in your environment.
  • Consult the U.S. Department of Agriculture’ ‘s plant hardiness zone map.
  • Consider native plants that are essential to pollinators.

Click here to read the full article with more tips for planting and maintaining your flower garden.

Consider aging in place with home modifications.

Real estate agents sell houses and help people find houses but, on occasion, I’ve advised clients that their best move may be no move at all. If you love a home and are able to age in place, that may be your best option. I’ll be here to facilitate a sale or purchase when the time comes, but I am committed to always doing what’s best for my clients.

Fortunately for all of us, there are a lot of wonderful organizations who are experts in helping families right-size and make adjustments needed so that seniors can safely age in place.

Senior relocation company Caring Transitions created a brief guide to “Bringing Rightsizing and Age in Place Modifications Together.”

(Posted with permission from Caring Transitions of Northeast Atlanta) As we age, it’s important to consider how our living space can support our changing needs. Aging in place home modifications can help seniors maintain their independence and stay in their homes for as long as possible. Combining these modifications with rightsizing, or downsizing to a more manageable living space, can create a safe and comfortable environment for seniors.

  1. Assess Your Home for Safety and Accessibility.
    Before making any modifications to your home, it’s important to assess your current living space for safety and accessibility. This includes identifying potential hazards such as loose rugs, uneven flooring, and narrow doorways. You should also consider the accessibility of your home, including the placement of light switches, electrical outlets, and other fixtures. By identifying potential safety and accessibility issues, you can create a plan for making the necessary modifications to your home to ensure a safe and comfortable living space for seniors.
  2. Prioritize Modifications Based on Needs and Budget.
    When it comes to combining rightsizing and aging in place home modifications, it’s important to prioritize modifications based on both needs and budget. Start by identifying the most critical modifications that need to be made to ensure safety and accessibility in the home. This may include installing grab bars in the bathroom, widening doorways, or adding a stairlift. Once these critical modifications have been made, you can then focus on making additional modifications that will enhance comfort and convenience. Remember to consider your budget when making modifications and look for cost-effective solutions that will still meet your needs.
  3. Consider Universal Design Principles.
    When combining rightsizing and aging in place home modifications, it’s important to consider universal design principles. Universal design is the concept of designing products and spaces that are accessible and usable by people of all ages and abilities. This means incorporating features like zero-step entrances, lever door handles, and adjustable height countertops. By incorporating universal design principles into your home modifications, you can create a space that is not only safe and comfortable for seniors, but also for visitors and family members of all ages and abilities.

Work with a Professional to Ensure Quality and Safety.
When it comes to combining rightsizing and aging in place home modifications, it’s important to work with a professional to ensure that the modifications are done safely and effectively. A professional can help you assess your home and determine which modifications are necessary to create a safe and comfortable living space for seniors. They can also ensure that the modifications are done in compliance with local building codes and regulations. Additionally, a professional can help you select the right products and materials to ensure that the modifications are of high quality and will last for years to come.

As seniors age in place, it’s important to make modifications to their homes to ensure safety and comfort. Design for aging in place includes home modifications such as grab bars, non-slip flooring, and wider doorways. These modifications can help seniors maintain their independence and reduce the risk of falls.

In addition to home modifications, age in place home care can provide assistance with daily tasks such as cooking, cleaning, and transportation. Rightsizing and aging in place together can also be beneficial, as it allows seniors to declutter and downsize their living space while still maintaining their independence. Caring Transitions offers professional guidance and support for these transitions, as well as assistance with estate planning and other services. By incorporating these strategies and seeking professional help when needed, seniors can age in place with peace of mind and improved quality of life.

If you are interested in Caring Transitions for relocation or estate liquidation services, contact Mike DeLeon.

When a realtor tells a senior NOT to relocate.

As a Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES), many of my consultations with older adults who are thinking about downsizing and relocating, (a good 10-15% of them) will lead to a discussion about aging in place.

Aging in place can also be about helping clients find a forever home to move to in a new location, which is conducive to the needs of the person and may even help them stretch their finances, depending on how they chose to finance the next place. In some cases though, I consult about staying put… Many wonder why I would do that instead of finding them another home to move to.

Well, the answer is simple… because sometimes the home is already their forever home, IF, and only if, they consider a few changes to ensure the home is better suited to their current needs. My goal is never to move someone who doesn’t need (or want) to move.

Here’s a case study as an example: I visited a lady who had a 2-story home with a guest bedroom and small bathroom on the main floor, and 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms upstairs, which included the owner’s suite. The space was open and spacious on the main level. She had recently become a widow and had paid off the mortgage as instructed by her late husband’s final wish. She loved the community she has lived in for 20+ years but thought it would be best to move to a smaller house. As we talked and did the research, we concluded that the equity in her house would not quite cover the purchase of a forever home and she was not willing to go back to having a mortgage payment of any amount.

The plan of action I suggested was to:

  1. Get quotes to remodel the guest bathroom on the main floor allowing that to become a true main level owner’s suite, accessible for her to live in as opposed to having to go up and down stairs every day.
  2. Get quotes to update the entrances to the home adding accessible features including universal design touch-ups that would allow her to age in place in the current home and not have to experience moving from a place and location she loved and could afford to keep. 
  3. Revisit after getting quotes to discuss the options again and consider if she would need additional information to fund the renovations or if moving would be back on the table as an option and how to do that without costing her too much in monthly expenses.

    My role as an SRES Realtor was simply to advise and refer contractors or remodeling companies that would incorporate the ADA/universal design features, as well as staying in touch to provide additional information until the homeowner had made their decisions.

We sometimes provide services without financial gain.

We always say real estate is more than property, it’s about the people!

We are available to answer questions you or someone you know has about aging in place or finding your next home. Contact us any time.

Additional Resources: AARP article on stylish updates for aging in place.

Moving? Use a Senior Real Estate Specialist.

If you’re planning to buy or sell real estate, it’s a good idea to consider working with a senior real estate specialist or SRES like Atlanta Seniors Real Estate.

Here are a few reasons why an SRES will be beneficial:

  1. Experience: A senior real estate specialist has extensive experience working with clients who are 50 years of age or older. This means they understand the unique needs and concerns of seniors when it comes to real estate transactions.
  2. Knowledge: SRES designees have received specialized training in senior real estate, including topics like reverse mortgages, age-restricted communities, and estate planning. They are equipped to provide expert advice and guidance on these topics.
  3. Connections: Senior real estate specialists often have strong connections with other professionals who work with seniors, such as estate planning attorneys, financial planners, and senior living communities. They can help you build a network of resources to assist you in making informed decisions.
  4. Advocacy: A senior real estate specialist can serve as your advocate throughout the real estate transaction, ensuring that your interests are protected and your needs are met.

Overall, working with a senior real estate specialist can help ensure a smoother and more successful real estate transaction, especially if you or a loved one is a senior.

A Guide to Senior Housing Options

It’s time for a move — perhaps it’s downsizing or moving into housing that offers a level of care that you or a loved one needs. There have never been more options for senior living than now, but with so many choices can come quite a bit of confusion.

The list includes:


  • Retirement/Active Adult Communities
  • Senior Apartments
  • Senior Cohousing


  • Assisted Living
  • In-Home Senior Care
  • Active Senior Housing
  • Independent Living
  • Continuing Care Communities
  • Congregational Retirement Communities
  • Nursing Homes
  • Specialized Care
  • Hospice

How do you know which type is right for you? Do you know the questions to ask? is out with an update to its Senior Living Guide. They do a great job of explaining the differences between different options. Then, when it’s time to sell your home and relocate, contact a Senior Real Estate Specialists like Atlanta Senior Real Estate to help you with options in your own community.

>>Check out the Guide and look for options in your area.

3 Reasons to use a Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES)

Real estate transactions for seniors are unique. There are factors to consider that don’t affect younger buyers and you may not have thought about.

Senior Real Estate Specialists (SRES) are trained to evaluate and help you understand implications for seniors including the points below (from

  • How using pensions and other retirement accounts in real estate transactions work.
  • The positive sides and the potential downsides of using reverse mortgages.
  • SRES agents are trained to spot mortgage and other loan schemes that are designed to trick and scam seniors out of their finances or even their homes.
  • SRES agents will help you understand estate planning and how Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security affect your property and finances as you age.
  • There are unknown pitfalls of Medicaid, such as their right to recover costs spent on your care even after you die in some situations. An SRES can walk you through scenarios that include your rights and what can happen should you have liens or unpaid medical expenses, most notably through Medicaid Estate Recovery.”

RetirementLiving’s 3 primary benefits of using an SRES:

  1. An SRES understands senior housing options and what they have to offer including Universal Design and other accommodations.
  2. An SRES prepares you for the financial consequences of senior real estate transactions such as how pensions and retirement works in real estate transactions.
  3. An SRES has a wealth of resources to assist you with your relocation including senior relocation companies, senior housing advisors, financial and legal organizations specializing in working with seniors etc.

>>Read more.

>>Contact SRES Atlanta Seniors Real Estate for a complimentary consultation.

The 2023 Real Estate Market

What do real estate professionals think is in the housing forecast for this year?

Insider talked to real estate and real estate technology professionals about what they anticipate for 2023 when it comes to both commercial and residential real estate transactions and development. Among comments – big growth expected in the southeast, more emphasis on housing affordability, and watching to see how inflation impacts buyers and sellers.

It’s good information and interesting perspective about what lies ahead for all of us whether we are in the real estate business or you’re a home buyer or owner.

>>Click here to read the full article from Insider.

Hot housing markets for 2023 is out with its real estate predictions for 2023 and one Georgia city makes its top ten list of housing markets positioned for growth. Augusta, GA ranks sixth on the list. The article recognizes that remote work is allowing families to seek out affordable housing in cities with strong economies as alternatives to larger and more expensive locations.

(Excerpt from

The move toward affordability will continue in 2023, as high prices and mortgage rates drive buyers to find lower-priced homes. The top markets expected to perform well next year offer a solid mix of local economic conditions, proximity to larger employment centers, and critically, more affordable housing. Even in an environment where families are finding that their dollars no longer stretch as far as they did just a few months ago, cities like Hartford, El Paso, Louisville, or Chattanooga offer a larger share of affordable homes for a median income.

In the Top 10 metros for 2023, about 23% of housing inventory is affordable at the median income level, a noticeable improvement from all the other markets. When considering all other markets and excluding the Top 10, only 17% of available homes for sale are affordable to a household earning the median income. And that affordability picture worsens considerably in the 10 metros where sales and price growth is expected to be weakest in 2023. In these areas less than 4% of inventory is financially attainable to a family earning the local median income. 

>>Click here to read the article including its Top 10 Housing Markets Positioned for Growth in 2023

Is now the time to buy a home?

I read an article recently and it sums up my entire feeling about the real estate market right now and actually the type of response I have given to customers who ask… Is now a good time to buy a home? 

Yes, it is. In fact, winter and spring 2023 will likely be the best window homebuyers will have for the next several years.

Here is what’s really going on in the housing market – and why now is the time to buy if you’re qualified.

Interest rates are better than you think

The historically low interest rates seen in 2020 and 2021 were remarkable. Rates in the 2% range are almost unheard of for a mortgage. But the COVID-19 pandemic was a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence. It was inevitable that rates would increase again in time, which they have.

Some homebuyers may wonder whether they missed the boat or whether they should wait for rates to drop again. Rates aren’t going to go back down to the 2% and 3% range, so if you weren’t able to buy then, you have to take your lumps and move on. But 7% is actually a pretty good rate for a home. And if rates drop again, you can refinance your mortgage to take advantage of it. If they increase, however, you’ll be glad you locked in your loan at 7%.

Either way, the sooner you buy, the more time you have to build equity in the home. That’s significant because home equity is a cornerstone of wealth-building in the U.S.

Housing prices aren’t going to crash

Like interest rates, housing prices were unprecedented during the COVID-19 pandemic. They soared in many places across the country, leading some people to believe that prices would ultimately crash. That’s unlikely, however. Price increases have slowed, but home values increase over time …home sale prices in the U.S. have consistently trended upward since the 1960s.

Rather than waiting for a price crash, take advantage of the fact that this is a buyer’s market and that sellers are more likely than they have been in years to negotiate on price and other concessions.

source: Fairway Independent Mortgage