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As a downsizer, finding the perfect home that fits your personal needs and lifestyle is an important part of the process. 

For many years, most downsizers in Ottawa followed a similar path – selling their family home and moving into a condo, townhome, rental apartment, or even retirement community. With limited options for housing in less-urban areas, this transition often meant moving closer to the city centre. 

Understandably, this route isn’t always the most appealing for downsizers who live in rural or suburban communities. 

The good news is that downsizers today have more choices than ever – including those who live away from the city centre and wish to stay close to home. As Ottawa’s outskirt communities flourish, diversified housing options are beginning to become available. 

In addition to more options for non-urban compact living spaces, there are a few unique alternatives to traditional downsizing that may suit certain homeowners looking for greater convenience. 

Are you thinking about moving to a smaller home as part of your retirement planning? Click here to explore our current listings and get a sense of what’s available on the market. 

What Does it Mean to “Downsize in Place”?

Most people are familiar with downsizing, the process of transitioning from your existing home to a smaller, more manageable living space. However, you may not be familiar with the term “downsizing in place”.

In short, downsizing in place is the idea of downsizing to a new home without leaving your current neighbourhood. Historically, this process has been far more accessible for residents of the city centre, as there are simply more options for compact housing and retirement living in urban areas. However, as Ottawa’s rural and suburban communities grow, new options for downsizing in place are steadily becoming available there too.

Looking for insights into Ottawa’s diverse suburban and rural communities? Explore these local neighbourhood guides. 

Alternatives to Downsizing 

For downsizers looking to shrink their living space without leaving their current home, there are some unique alternatives to traditional downsizing worth considering. 

Though not for everyone, one particular path that is gaining momentum around Ottawa is secondary units. Secondary units allow downsizers to stay in their current home by creating a separate living space in the property which is then rented out to a tenant. 

Creating a secondary unit can be a big undertaking both emotionally and logistically. However, for downsizers who are determined to stay on their current property, it is an option. And as many of Ottawa’s non-urban communities are growing at a healthy pace, there’s ample opportunity for attracting new-coming renters or even other local downsizers.  

If you’re interested in adding a second unit to your home, don’t forget to work with a real estate agent. As a dedicated professional, your agent can help you navigate relevant bylaws and regulations, connect you to trusted local contractors, and even help you source high-quality tenants. 

Suburban Living

Depending on where you already live or how far you’re willing to go from your current neighbourhood, downsizing in the suburbs could be a great fit. 

In addition to a laid-back, easygoing lifestyle, Ottawa’s suburban neighbourhoods offer a high level of convenience. Everyday necessities like groceries, home supply stores, restaurants, and healthcare are all nearby. Not to mention public transit, which is particularly helpful if you don’t own a vehicle. 

One of Ottawa’s fastest-growing suburbs, Barrhaven, is a great option for downsizers as it features many amenities and offers some great green spaces for those who appreciate outdoor recreation. 

If you already call the suburbs home, finding a great place to live that’s close to your roots and priorities may be easier than you think. 

Successfully transitioning to a new home is far from a one-size-fits-all process. Check out these downsizer-focused resources from our blog to get a better sense of your options.  

Working With a Real Estate Agent

Beyond the logistics of selling your current home and searching the market for your next one, downsizing is a highly emotional transition. Like any move, the best way to navigate the process is by working with a real estate agent who specializes in supporting downsizers. 

If you’re looking to downsize from your current home, but feel anxious about sacrificing your current lifestyle or access to friends or family, we can help. Our services are personalized to each client and never prefabricated. 

Whether you’re looking to downsize in place, or are interested in something different, we can help you achieve your real estate goals and ensure you receive a seamless experience along the way. 

Thinking about downsizing? We’re here to help. Send us an email or give us a call.