Realtor Joanne Brodersen stands in front of a bungalow she is selling. A person downsizing from a multi-story house might find a bungalow fits their needs.

HOMEFINDER: Empty nesters look to downsize

Besides the physical aspect of moving, the emotional aspect is often a factor as well

For many parents whose children have grown up and moved out, they are left with a big house to themselves and are looking for a change. Making the decision to downsize and leave the family home can be daunting for some, but local experts say it does not have to be with the right help and information.

“It’s just such a daunting process,” said Joanne Brodersen, realtor with DFH Real Estate. “[But] it’s not as scary as it seems. With the right people helping you, that transition can be made much more smoothly than it appears at first.”

Besides the physical aspect of moving, Brodersen said the emotional aspect is often a factor as well, in terms of memories associated with the home. She advises going through items in the home and deciding what can be given away and what should stay when looking to move to a smaller place.

“There’s so many people that can use those things that are sitting in your house that have been collecting dust for the last 20 years because no one’s used them.”

Bill Ethier, managing broker president of Royal Lepage Coast Capital Realty, said one of the main challenges for many people who are downsizing is being used to the amount of space they had before.

He said most people who downsize are going from a single family home to a condo.

“It’s easier to go up in space because you acquire more stuff as you move up, but going down it’s making the decision of what to eliminate from your life.”

Another challenge for some people is having unrealistic expectations of how much space they can get within their budget, said Ethier. He said people often wonder how they are going to live in a much smaller home.

“Get out there and look at properties and do comparisons and get an idea of what a square footage is,” said Ethier. He added buyers should measure the rooms in their own homes in order to be able to compare it to homes they are looking to move into.

At the beginning of October, Brodersen organized a downsizing seminar, where people who were looking for more information and advice were able to come and hear from multiple speakers, including herself, a mortgage specialist and a financial planner. Another seminar will be held on Nov. 29, location to be announced.

“We find so many people are thirsty for this information,” said Brodersen. “If you know how it’s going to go, it’s not quite so frightening.”

For more information about the upcoming downsizing seminar, visit joannebrodersen.com or call 250-477-7291.

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