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Anybody Supersize instead of downsize?
Old 10-15-2011, 05:28 PM   #1
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Anybody Supersize instead of downsize?

We are moving but instead of downsizing, we upsized to a property double the size of what we've lived in for the past 30 years.

Rather than trying to part with all the stuff with all the memories, we decided to take them all with us, and have room for lots of freinds and family to visit us.
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Old 10-15-2011, 05:55 PM   #2
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Sounds like fun! Now you'll need to think of what you can do with all that extra space. Maybe a home gym, a "man cave", a hobby room, a workshop..... lots of possibilities.
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Old 10-15-2011, 06:03 PM   #3
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Pretty much, yes. After my divorce, I bought a simple 3 BR split level. Over the next few years, I struck in rich in the tech boom stock option bonanza, and decided to splurge on building my retirement home in the mountains. I put aside cash for the construction, but around the time it was being finished, the bubble burst. I kept the house but kept working, and circumstances took me out to Texas for what I knew would be about 8 years. I bought a comfortable 3 BR ranch there, keeping resale very much in mind. Now I've retired and am back in my retirement house, which is twice as big as either of the other ones, and also a lot bigger than what I had when married. I like the space for my pool table, trains, extra rooms for guests, etc, but if there's a next house, it'll be a lot smaller.
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Old 10-15-2011, 06:22 PM   #4
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I had aways wanted to live on the water so I bought a three story waterfront house at the right time . It is definetely larger than we need but we've enjoyed it and having a separate guest suite makes it ideal when guests come . We will downsize as soon as the market improves and we figure out what we'd like next . If you have married children & grandchildren that extra space is nice especially around the holidays . 2,000 square feet would be ideal .
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Old 10-15-2011, 07:52 PM   #5
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My aunt and uncle did that. Spent their working lives in a rather modest house in the northeast. Retired to Florida and bought a wonderful large house and are loving it.

As for us, the inverse is in store. Closing on our 2,700 sf home on Monday and have moved into a 1,900 sf home. It is hard getting used to the smaller space, especially since DW is bit of a packrat.
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Old 10-15-2011, 08:33 PM   #6
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Yes, my DW is a collector. She refuses to give up much of anything, and we have the resources to make that happen, so why should we not? And as has been said, having almost a bed and breakfast makes it easy for friends and relatives to visit without them being underfoot in any way.
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Old 10-15-2011, 11:35 PM   #7
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We found our "dream house" a couple years before I retired, and we've kept the previous house as a rental.

The lot is nearly 3x bigger-- 15,688 sq ft instead of 5402. We're still trying to get it down to a minimal amount of yardwork...
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Old 10-16-2011, 04:44 AM   #8
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We up-sized too, from ~1,000 sf to 1,700 not including the two-car garage (What a luxury that is! No more heat-soaked car in the summer or scraping ice in winter.)

At first it kinda felt like the two of us bouncing around like a couple of bb's in a boxcar but we got used to it. If/when there is another move we'll definitely downsize, but it has to have that garage. That got us spoiled fast.

One of the options for the house was an intercom system and I laughed at that since I thought they were always more of a status thing than any practical value. It turns out that if DW is in the master bedroom on the first floor and I'm in the shop in the basement on the opposite end of the house she can yell as loud as she can and I don't hear a thing. (Some might say that's a good thing but we won't go there....)
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Old 10-16-2011, 06:55 AM   #9
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After observing a number of people downsize and spend more on housing my DW and I are inclined to stay in our 4BR house. We had considered moving south but feel very comfortable. We are centrally located for family members and our house is somewhat of home base for family functions. Throw in the lake house down the road and it would just be too much work to downsize. Of course things happen and this plan could be thrown out the window tomorrow.
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Old 10-16-2011, 09:09 AM   #10
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At first it kinda felt like the two of us bouncing around like a couple of bb's in a boxcar but we got used to it.
I made a comment to spouse that our renovation has helped demonstrate that we could still learn to live closer together in a 2BR/2BA apartment like we did in the "good ol' days". Her response was along the lines of "I don't think so". Apparently she regards the livingroom and the study as her turf in exchange for letting me have the familyroom (currently out of commission for renovations) as my territory.

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One of the options for the house was an intercom system and I laughed at that since I thought they were always more of a status thing than any practical value. It turns out that if DW is in the master bedroom on the first floor and I'm in the shop in the basement on the opposite end of the house she can yell as loud as she can and I don't hear a thing.
This story may be apocryphal, but one celebrity couple bought a mansion so huge that they'd lose each other. The deal was that if one heard the other calling then they'd both muster in the kitchen instead of trying to localize & rendezvous with repeated calls.

Of course today they'd just whip out their cell phones and send a text...
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Old 10-16-2011, 10:20 AM   #11
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We went from 1,600 sq ft in our last home to 2,400 sq ft in our current home, which we built for retirement.

Not supersized at all, but larger than what most think about this time in life.

Heck, our first home was around 700 sq feet. We have no desire to go back to those days ...
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Old 10-16-2011, 10:30 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by thoreau View Post
We are moving but instead of downsizing, we upsized to a property double the size of what we've lived in for the past 30 years.

Rather than trying to part with all the stuff with all the memories, we decided to take them all with us, and have room for lots of freinds and family to visit us.
We've lived in a large house for the last 14 years now, about half of this in retirement. No plans to move until we're too old to handle this. It's just too beautiful a local with access to a state park behind the house. DW is an artist and she needs a largish space for that plus she is now the breadwinner as she sells her art, though we could never get by on just a starving artist income. And we need a lot of wall space for all the extra art. DS comes to sponge off visit with us occasionally.

When we cannot handle the property maintenance we'll have to come up with another life plan. One year at a time.
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Old 10-16-2011, 11:01 AM   #13
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A good friend of mine bought into one of those neighborhoods with upscale townhouses when he and his wife became empty-nesters and decided to sell their free standing colonial. It's not an "over 55" neighborhood, but very similar to one: all the exterior maintenance is taken care of (for a fee). But the funny thing is that in the course of doing this "downsize" they actually increased the square footage of living space. Not really a bad idea in their case as their kids all live reasonably close and there's plenty of room for grandkid sleepovers.
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Old 10-16-2011, 02:36 PM   #14
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Too much house means there is always someth8ng to do. And having something to do to keep living means living longer. The last time that any of us had everything taken care of for us we had something else important to do---getting a college education.

Almost everyone I know that went into a full assisted living quarters seemed to fade away much faster. Having to cut your own firewood for heat, and put it in the stove, and make your own food, and do other things means keeping your mind active. An active mind is an active body, and a longer life.
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Old 10-16-2011, 02:45 PM   #15
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Almost everyone I know that went into a full assisted living quarters seemed to fade away much faster.
And then there's my mother, who was happily ensconced in an assisted living highrise for 26+ years.... Actually it was continuous care, since it had different levels of care including assisted living, skilled nursing, and so on.

I think that sometimes we tend to associate hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living, and such facilities with death, because older people who are failing in health do go to such places. But then there's the old maxim about correlation not implying causation.

You make a great point about the need to stay physically active, though. I couldn't agree more. She did go down to the gym classes held in the gym at her assisted living facility regularly.
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Old 10-16-2011, 03:11 PM   #16
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Too much house means there is always someth8ng to do. And having something to do to keep living means living longer. ...
Right on there. I do my own gardening including pick work in adobe clay to plant things. Am also designated handyman. DW needs pests removed, she just calls Lsbcal. I don't do dead (or live) skunks though -- farmed that one out.
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Old 10-16-2011, 03:16 PM   #17
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To each his/her own. Six years ago I went from a 3500 sq. ft. house on two acres in a woods to a 1800 sq. ft. on a small lot that takes me less than two hours to mow, trim and blow. My only regret is, I didn't do it sooner. The more you own, the more you are a prisoner of your possessions, just my two cents.
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Old 10-16-2011, 05:33 PM   #18
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We are leaning towards buying a modestly bigger home (2200-2400 sq ft) than the one we sold earlier this year (1870 sq ft.), but since we moved from an old home (built in 1925) in an expensive state (NJ), our housing costs will be lower. We are currently renting.

A newer house will mean less maintenance than the older home and the yard will definitely be smaller. And the car will fit in the garage!

We found that our old home used space a lot more efficiently - no huge master bathrooms (it had 1.5 baths), walk-in closets or laundry rooms (the basement). It also had a full, unfinished basement & tall, walk-up, but unfinished attic. The 2nd & 3rd bedrooms were bigger than the ones we see in the homes we are considering.

Our original plan was to down size to a town home, but we decided against it. We will revisit that plan in about 10 years.
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Old 10-16-2011, 05:49 PM   #19
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My wife and I are moving to a resort area in New England. We definitely want people come and visit us. But people won't come and visit us in our retirement if they have to feel underfoot or feel they have no privacy. With this house we can offer lots of privacy; we can even offer visitors their own outside door to come and go from.

The house we purchased has double the living space of our current house and twice the garage on twice the acreage. But most of the acreage is pine trees so the mowing is less, but not more than about 25 minutes with a riding mower. And....we can literally close 1/2 the living space in the winter so that we don't have to heat it. For us its all about sociability and interacting with others.
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Old 10-16-2011, 05:57 PM   #20
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We downsized then re-sized.

Six years prior to retiring we downsized from 2,800 to 2,350 SF. We had zero grandchildren when we designed the new house and now have five and three of them spend significant time with us.

We converted a screened porch to a grandkid room, and are now back very close to 2,800 SF...
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