The big banks have set the finance world abuzz with their recent out of cycle rate hikes, but there’s one group of buyers for whom it’s all a storm in a teacup – and that’s downsizers.
Downsizing.com.au recently caught up with Amanda Gould – award-winning buyer’s agent from HiSpec Properties. Many of her clients are looking to downsize, and as Amanda points out, most paid off their homes in the 70s or 80s so they certainly don’t need to take a mortgage to buy their new downsizer home.
Quieter market conditions aren’t impacting downsizers either. Amanda explains, “Today’s downsizers are cashed up. They’re not at all concerned about property values softening – the fact is, they’re sitting pretty."
Amanda points out, “Downsizers are often selling large family homes that are worth several millions of dollars. If they have to pay an extra $50,000 or even $100,000 for the downsizer home they love, it’s not a problem. That can make downsizers very competitive bidders at auctions.”
Among Amanda’s clients, she is seeing a strong preference for single storey homes. “The clients I work with are often moving from a big family residence, and they’re keen for a single level semi, duplex or apartment.”
Downsizers often show a preference for proximity to restaurants, cinemas and shops, which can be the cornerstone of a leisurely retirement lifestyle. “One couple I helped into a downsizer home in Mosman love the fact that their favourite café is just a few doors away from their new home,” says Amanda.
While empty-nesters can have a range of drivers for downsizing, there are some common threads in the type of properties they opt for. “Downsizers love the freedom of a 'lock and leave' property,” Amanda notes. “Penthouses and sub-penthouses offering great views are popular, and we almost always see demand for 2-bedrooms or above.”
With no need for a mortgage and a generous choice of quality properties to pick from, it’s no wonder many empty-nesters are choosing to downsize before retirement. Who says you can’t enjoy the good life before hanging up the work boots!
Greg Oddy is Director of Sales and Marketing at Seniors Housing Online and Downsizing.com.au