Downsizers loving the simple life
THE kids have fled the nest, you're ready to give up the farm and that five-bedroom house for two is proving more work than it's worth, so what next? It's time to downsize.
Every day, retirees are swapping their spacious family homes for smaller, more practical abodes - and for Dawn and Ted Cashman, it was one of the best things they ever did.
"It's fantastic. We adore it and are so content here," Mrs Cashman said.
The couple moved from their property in Bingara that boasted three huge bedrooms, dining area, bar and two lounge rooms on a half-acre block, to a smaller two-bedroom home with enough room for the two of them and beds to spare when the kids come to visit.
The Cashmans moved into a villa at Oak Tree Retirement Village in July last year, and have been in their current villa since March.
"Even moving here, we thought we had downsized enough, but we had so many boxes and about two thirds of them went (to the op-shop)," Mrs Cashman said.
"It's just amazing to see other ways you can downsize too."
The couple agreed it was the convenience of being able to pack up and leave for holidays without the hassle of maintaining their large property that made downsizing the right choice.
"It was just too much; the gardens and cleaning the whole house," Mr Cashman said.
LJ Hooker residential homes and land consultant Judy O'Neill said the Cashmans were not alone.
"It's most definitely a trend," Mrs O'Neill said.
"A lot of people come to Warwick from the coastal areas if things get too racy for them, and we find a lot of people (downsizing) from the bigger properties.
"I think it all just gets too much for people."
For those still hanging on to the huge family home, whose kids have moved out, Mrs Cashman had one piece of advice.
"Sell it, get rid of it and don't leave it too late - enjoy it while you can," she said.