In the end, the key to her decision was the big tree in the yard with low limbs that invited children to climb. After losing her husband of half a century last year, she'd thought seriously about selling the big house. A small condo would be so much easier to maintain.
Then, she remembered the holiday dinners: the hubbub when all her children and grandchildren were gathered around the table in the dining room laughing and talking. She remembered all the birthday parties. And she thought of her youngest grand-daughter, a toddler still too young to climb the tree.
And, suddenly, she wanted to stay in the house long enough to see that little girl perched on a limb, swinging her legs, like her mom had done thirty years ago. Every child in the family, she realized, had had that experience.
So she decided to stay – with some conditions. With help from my wife Diana, an interior designer, and FCG, she would simultaneously update her home while preparing to downsize. Her goal was to stay in the house for another five years or so before selling.
Together with Diana, they evaluated her furniture to determine what to keep and what to sell or give away. Diana advised her to keep pieces that would eventually fit in a smaller living space. Her special pieces were reupholstered in stylish new fabrics. Others were refinished.
She bought some newer furniture, but nothing oversized. That's so the new living room set could move with her to senior housing when the time came to sell the house. Together they picked neutral colors for the major pieces, knowing they could inject color and personality with lamps, pillows, art and accessories. They combed FCG for everything they needed.
Her home's interior got a fresh coat of clean white paint. If she needed to sell quickly, the white walls would be more appealing to young buyers than other colors that might be dated in a couple of years. She de-cluttered, knowing that she didn't want to burden her children with the task of sifting and sorting if something happened to her.
Every decision was a smart mix of practicality and personal style. She was downsizing to stay. It's a new concept we're creating here at FCG. Come talk to us about how we can help you stay in your home while keeping your options open for the future.