People often ask me why I don’t move into a smaller place with less maintenance. Believe me, before I moved to my present home, I gave that question a great deal of thought. I used to live in a large four bedroom, four bathroom , two-story house that sat on a large city lot. When my two kids were still at home the space was perfect, but I knew once they left, I too would make some major changes.
I often thought that I would love a centrally located condo in downtown Toronto. It made sense in that both my kids lived in the city, and I truly love all that a big city has to offer. At the time, my eighty year old mom was still living, and I knew she was more comfortable having me nearby, but that was not the only consideration in my decision to stay where I was already living.
All my friends live close by, and I knew if I moved away, I would see a lot less of them. It was an important factor in my consideration. We do things together several times a week, so my lifestyle would have changed dramatically. Yes, I could make new friends, but at this point in my life, I am rather attached to the ones I have had for many, many years. I was definitely not prepared to trade them in.
About a year after my kids moved out, I decided to look at some local condos and townhouses. It would definitely be a lot less work to move into something smaller, and the financial benefit was a given, but I could not get used to the idea of being attached to my neighbor, having little or no yard, and rules…lots of rules.
So, I decided to simply down size to something more manageable. I hunted and waited until I found the perfect fit for my lifestyle. It ended up being a detached, two-story in an old neighborhood of my city. There was plenty of work to do to make it just right, but I loved every bit of it. It is less than half the size of my previous home, but plenty of room for my needs and best of all a nice yard to putter in.
My plan is to stay here until I can no longer manage by myself which I hope is never. People often remind me that the stairs will be a problem, that I only have one bathroom on the second floor, that the yard is too much work, and on and on.
There has been a lot of buzz about “granny pods” recently. They look like small cottages constructed in your children’s backyards. It allows for independent living, but your family is close by to help out as necessary.
I’m afraid this is not an option for me; although, my son has offered his garden shed. He owes me after turning my shed into an art studio when he was in high school. There was no electricity! No problem! He ran an extension cord from the house for lights and an electric heater ALL winter. I don’t want to talk about my electric bill, but trust me, he owes me big time.
Another option that has come up in conversation with the girls is”cohousing”. Apparently, this new trend is becoming quite popular. Statistics show that seniors who cohouse with friends live ten years longer than their normal life expectancy. Socializing is a key component to a long life. About a year or so ago, my friends suggested to the owners of our favorite pub that they build apartments upstairs. That way we could live together, and not have to go far from home for wine. I think we were on to something before it became a trend.
So, where do you plan to live as you get older? I guess no one knows for sure what lies ahead, but it is nice to have lots of choices. For now, I plan to stay right here in my own little piece of heaven and enjoy.
Oh, by the way, if you are thinking of making a move and you are in the Toronto area, I happen to know an amazing real estate agent. Give her a call!
Thanks for reading,
Penny xo ♥