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Downsizing? Plan For Your Pet, Too

If you’ve decided to downsize, you’re not alone. The National Association of Home Builders reports that new home size has been decreasing since 2016. People downsize for many reasons. You may want to spend less time on maintenance so that you can travel, or perhaps you’re retired and planning to age in place. Having a pet can complicate your moving strategy, but it’s still doable with some planning. The Michelle Thomas team presents some tips to help you strategically plan your transition.

Get Your Home Ready

Before you put your house on the market, it’s essential to do some prep work. Consider listing your home in the spring if you’re not pressed for time. According to experts, homes listed in April sell at a higher price.

Research the local housing market. Analyze sales in your neighborhood and see how your house compares in square footage and features. Of course, your real estate agent can help you set the best price, but you will go into the process with some knowledge.

Your house needs to be in show condition at all times, meaning you need to do deep cleaning and maintenance. Consider calling in professional cleaners, especially if you have pet stains or smells. While you’re tidying up, declutter your shelves and cabinets, removing photos and personal items so that buyers can focus on the house.

Downsize Effectively

Moving is stressful, and your pet may sense your emotions. Be sure to pace yourself. Declutter and pack one room at a time to avoid getting overwhelmed.  Sell or donate items you won’t need in your new home.

You may not have space for some treasured mementos. If you’re struggling to let go of sentimental items, consider memorializing them with photos and written memories of what they meant to you.

Choose a Home You and Your Pet Will Love

If you consider your pet’s needs as you shop, you will both be happier. Some amenities to look for are:

  • A fenced-in yard
  • Hardwood floors
  • Proximity to a reliable veterinarian
  • A mudroom for storing litter boxes and pet supplies

Your real estate agent can help you find amenities within your budget. If you haven’t been pre-approved for a loan, now is the time to talk to a lender. Learn about the best mortgage rates today, regardless of whether you’re obtaining a VA, FHA, or conventional loan.

Help Your Pet Through the Process

Moving can be anxiety-inducing for your pet. To help him stay safe and comfortable, keep your pet in a quiet room on moving day. Once you’re in your new house, introduce your pet slowly to the unfamiliar surroundings. Create a home base in one room with his bed, food, and toys. As he becomes comfortable, open up a room at a time.

Take Care of Other Duties

It can be easy to overlook some essential tasks when you’re in the midst of the moving hustle. Set aside time for important details, such as notifying your bank and credit card company of your new address and forwarding your mail. Inform your utility company as soon as you have a move-in date.

Don’t forget to set up an internet provider. When choosing a company, examine its coverage area and the average maximum speeds in your state. If it’s available, consider fiber optic internet service. It offers customers nearly 10 times the speed of DSL service. Ask your provider if you can bundle TV and internet services to save money.

With some thought and planning, you can find a home that lets you and your pet enjoy the benefits of downsizing without sacrificing comfort and happiness.

Are you ready to start looking for that perfect home? The Michelle Thomas can help you find what you’re looking for. Reach out today by calling 239-860-7176.

Article provided by Penny Martin (

Image via Unsplash

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