Tempted to make the move?

Ask your­self...

Good Housekeeping (UK) - - Gh Spotlight -

How long will it take?

On av­er­age, it takes 91 days to sell a house, but this can vary sub­stan­tially de­pend­ing on the mar­ket and where you are.

How much will it cost?

If you’re down­siz­ing, you could make money. You may profit from the sale of your big­ger house – on av­er­age, down­siz­ing from a four-bed to a two-bed house can save £1,605 a year in bills, ac­cord­ing to Homeshift. But do make sure you fac­tor in other costs.

Don’t for­get about fees for sur­vey­ors, es­tate agents, so­lic­i­tors and re­moval costs, as well as main­te­nance and ground rent, if you are mov­ing into an ap­part­ment. Set a bud­get and stick to it – 40% of peo­ple spend more than they’d ex­pected on new homes.

Stamp Duty is costly. If you’re buy­ing a house worth £350,000, you’ll pay £17,500, 5% of the to­tal price. As for Cap­i­tal Gains tax, un­less you’re sell­ing a sec­ond home, you won’t be charged this.

You may also need to spend money to get the house how you want it, cau­tions Mar­lene Outrim at UNIQ Fam­ily Wealth. ‘Peo­ple tend to un­der­es­ti­mate how much they may spend on putting in a new kitchen or bath­room. If you’re mov­ing be­cause of poor mo­bil­ity or frailty, think about any mod­i­fi­ca­tions you may need and in­ves­ti­gate what fi­nan­cial sup­port you can get.’

Will it af­fect my chil­dren?

The short an­swer is prob­a­bly not. The long an­swer is… Any­one who owns their home when they die gets an ex­tra al­lowance of £100,000 on top of the £325,000 tax-free in­her­i­tance limit on es­tates. This in­cludes peo­ple who have down­sized or stopped own­ing prop­erty af­ter 8 July 2015.

Don’t for­get about the emo­tional im­pact, says Gary Watt at Just Fi­nan­cial Group. ‘There’s of­ten an emo­tional at­tach­ment to a prop­erty and grown-up chil­dren can feel as if they’ve not been con­sulted. I al­ways ask clients to bring their adult chil­dren to any dis­cus­sions about the fam­ily home.’

If your chil­dren are likely to have kids of their own, you may want to con­sider whether mov­ing away will make it harder to see your grand­chil­dren reg­u­larly.

Should I con­sider rent­ing?

Sell­ing your home can be a good way to get funds for re­tire­ment and lots of flex­i­bil­ity. It could give you more avail­able cash to help adult chil­dren with de­posits or take once-in-a-life­time hol­i­days. But there are risks to rent­ing, warns in­de­pen­dent fi­nan­cial ad­viser Scott Gal­lacher. ‘There’s a dan­ger that your pot of money is go­ing down while you’re rent­ing – 25 years later, you could have no money or house.’

If you’re think­ing of sell­ing your home, contact an IFA through un­bi­ased.co.uk and talk through your op­tions. Then ap­proach an es­tate agent to find out what your home is worth and what you can af­ford to buy or rent with the pro­ceeds.

Sell­ing your home can be a good way to get funds for re­tire­ment and lots of flex­i­bil­ity

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