How to: Downsizing Your Home

Downsizing Your Home

Is it time to consider downsizing your home? Retirement is just around the corner, your children have fledged the nest and your house is now starting to feel a little bit too big for just yourself. Although it can be a daunting process, with the right planning, it can be an exhilarating and liberating experience.

Because it may be difficult to know where to start, we’ve put together some useful tips to walk you through the whole journey:

1. Determine your lifestyle needs

Now that you don’t have to worry about whether you’re within walking distance to prestigious schools or the safety of your neighbourhood, its time to think about what you want. Consider what kind of lifestyle you would like to live moving forward— would you enjoy having the ocean at your doorstep; or would you prefer living in an apartment close to city amenities such as museums and lots of restaurants?

During this decision process, sites like Liveable are extremely useful to help prioritise your needs, as well s to offer suggestions about what suburbs may best suit your ideal lifestyle.

2. Assess your new home

Once you’ve decided on your new home, scrutinise the blueprints and find out exactly how big each room is. This is a vital step to decide which large pieces of furniture to bring with you.

If you simply can’t visualise how big a certain area is, a handy tip would be to compare the size of your new rooms with rooms of similar dimensions in your current house. For example, your living room-to-be may be approximately the same size as your current bedroom. By comparing the two, it may give you a clearer idea about exactly what furniture can fit where.

3. Be practical when decluttering

When looking at what to bring with you, be practical. For example, if you’re moving to an apartment, you won’t need appliances like your lawn mower or ladder anymore. In the same vein, if you’ve been hoarding clothes that no longer fit or don’t wear anymore, consider giving them away to charity instead of letting it clutter up your new home.

Of course, things get a little less clear cut when it comes to sentimental items. Although it may be difficult to throw out the badminton trophy your son won in the fourth grade, it is important to take a step back and think: will I really miss this item? Perhaps keep a couple of sentimental items that you hold close to your heart, and take a snapshot of the remaining memorabilia that do not make the cut.

4. Ensure furniture serves a multi-purpose function

Living in a smaller area means that you will no longer have the luxury of having very many pieces of furniture in your house. However, having less possessions does not mean that you will have to compromise on comfort.

When shopping for new furniture or when choosing what pieces to bring over to your new home, try to pick out multi-functional pieces. For example, opt for a dining table that you’d be comfortable to also use as a study desk. Sofas that can be converted into sleeper beds will also come in handy, especially if your new place does not have a spare guest room.

5. Colour code your boxes

Packing your life away into a couple of boxes can get messy. To help with the process, it will be useful to implement a colour-coded system to organise your belongings. Mark the boxes with kitchen appliances with a red marker, boxes with your bedroom belongings with a blue marker, and so on so forth. Although this takes a little extra effort during the packing phase, it will make unpacking in your new home much more efficient and fuss-free.

How to: Downsizing Your Home

How To: Make Your Student Accommodation Feel More Like Home

636060609028134440-1662337188_cover.jpgStarting University is a milestone that many strive to reach; and when University finally rolls around the corner and the day comes for students to move out of their homes and into student accomodations, although exhilarating, may still take some getting used to.

This is because often, people don’t realise how accustomed they have grown to living in the comforts of their own home. Hence, when faced with a 180 degree change— a barren dorm room that looks as if has been churned out of a factory production line— it may seem a tad bit unwelcoming.

Now you may choose to leave your accomodation in this sorry state; after all, its likely that you’re only going to be slumming it out for the first year or so in here. However, don’t let the temporary nature of your living situation stop you from getting cozy in your new place. Believe it or not, your dorm is where you will be spending a huge bulk of your time— whether catching up on your weekly readings, or coming home dead-drunk from a night out, it will more often than not, become your sanctuary.

Thankfully, it really isn’t difficult to add a personal touch to your living space. Decorating doesn’t have to be expensive or wildly time consuming, but could make a world of a difference when it comes to making your student accomodation feel more like home.

Customise your bed

A cosy bed is one of those little luxuries that make you feel immediately comforted. With your bed being one of the most prominent features in your room, splurging on some new bedding is a smart investment. A new duvet cover with matching pillow cases can help to give your room some personality.

Often, your bed also serves as a couch to lounge on throughout the day. To up the comfort-factor, throw on some additional cushions or line them up against the wall. After a hectic day of socialising, you’ll be glad to be able to come home to an inviting bed.

Adjust the Lighting

A little lighting can go a long way. Switching the bulbs of your lamps to those that give off an orange glow is known for its ability to transform a cold space into one that is illuminated and filled with warmth.

Cheap fairy lights can also be purchased and draped across the walls of your room to add to the atmosphere. If you feel that fairy lights are too feminine for your taste, perhaps go for some paper lanterns or small coloured lamps that can easily be bought from Kmart or Ikea.

Don’t be afraid to decorate

Not only will posters add some colour to your blank walls, but they could also act as a great conversation starter when meeting new people in your first year.

Alternatively, decorating your walls with pictures of family and friends may act as a source of comfort when the homesickness kicks in. It will also act as a constant reminder to keep in touch with old pals when life gets a bit hectic.

When decorating the walls of your dorm, some good advice is to forgo the Blu Tack and instead, use Washi Tape to ensure that zero residue is left behind. Washi Tape can be purchased in a variety of different patterns and colours to suit the style of your room.

Invest in some scents

Never underestimate the power of scent. Often overlooked, it has the ability to conjure up familiar or heart-warming memories. Trade the unpleasant musty smell typical with dorm rooms for scents that remind you of home.

Although many student accomodations don’t allow for candles, essential oil diffusers are a safe alternative. Aside from keeping your room hazard-free and smelling fresh, they are also known to help with congestion during the pesky hay fever season.

A tip for those who are more prone to homesickness: purchase the same fabric softener or detergent that is used back home. This will give you a surprising whiff of familiarity and comfort throughout your day.

Add a bit of greenery to your room

When buying supplies to decorate, don’t hold back from picking up some flora to liven up your room. Cacti are the standard no-brainer option to go to, as these sturdy little plants look attractive while requiring almost zero effort to maintain.

 

Now that you know the tricks to help make your student accommodation more like home, Liveable can help you find your ideal place to live.

How To: Make Your Student Accommodation Feel More Like Home

How you can afford to move out of your parents basement

Are you a young millennial looking to move out of home, but not quite keen on giving up your morning coffees and weekly avo smash? There are ways you can afford to move out of home while still enjoying this small luxury.

Follow the 50-30-20 plan

This plan is an easy rule of thumb to follow when learning how to budget.

It states:

  • 50% of your savings should be spent on “Needs”, such as rent
  • 30% should be spent on  “Wants”
  • 20% should be saved for a rainy day

This is a smart way to start living within your means and ensures that you always have a balanced budget. Of course, once you get the hang of it, feel free to shake things up and customize this rule according to what you see fit.

Live with roommates

Living with roommates makes economical sense, but some of us may be wary to do so. After all, we’ve all heard at least one “annoying roommate” story, whether its about the girl with no sense of any personal space or the guy who comes home absolutely hammered every morning at 3am. But it doesn’t always have to end in misery.

When it comes to living with roommates, its important that some house rules are laid out. Aside from ensuring that your temperaments match, agree on matters such as how much contribution is expected towards household bills and cleaning habits. By being honest about what is expected from each other, its a lot less likely for conflicts to arise.

Find a suburb outside the city

Living on the outskirts of the city centre doesn’t mean that you have to settle for less. Using Liveable, we churned out a couple of suggestions that take into consideration how far the suburb is from the city, whether there are things to do in the area and last but not least, its affordability.

For example, in Sydney, both Summer Hill and Ashfield are less than 30 minutes to the city via public transport. Costing an average of $246/week and $229/week respectively for shared housing, these suburbs are also convenient, with a high number of restaurants, bars and supermarkets in their vicinities.

Cook more

Put down Deliveroo and close your Ubereats app. That’s right – instead of collecting that piping hot pizza, pick up a bag of groceries instead.

Not only will this save you heaps of money, but restaurants and commercially prepared food are notorious for being high in fat and salt. By taking the time to prepare yourself a hearty home-cooked meal, you’ll get a peace of mind knowing that your food is more nutritious and healthier for you in the long-run.

How you can afford to move out of your parents basement