Downsizing but don’t want to give up space for visitors and for the grandchildren?

The family home is getting too big to maintain and you’ve been looking at your downsizing alternatives. You’ve found the

The family home is getting too big to maintain and you’ve been looking at your downsizing alternatives. You’ve found the perfect unit to downsize to, in the perfect area, close to all the amenities you need and family are close by. You’re going to downsize. You get back home, look around and wonder where is the space to accommodate our visitors or grandchildren if they want to stay?

This is a common concern for a lot of people. How can you make it work? You probably currently have enough space for the visitors and grandchildren to have their own rooms when they stay. How do you deal with not having as much space when you downsize to your unit?

It’s always good to think about the reasons why you are downsizing in the first place. The reasons will be varied, but mostly because you can no longer, or wish to no longer, maintain the yard and garden, the housework and everything else that goes with managing a larger home. It was okay when all the family were living there. But not many of us want to be cleaning and maintaining unused spaces.
A few things to think about to be able to downsize and still have space for your guests:

• Set up a space in your spare room. This is in most cases the study. You can set up your home office space with desk, chair, filing cabinet and have the sofa bed in the same room. You have a lounge chair for your reading day to day and an overnight space for guests when they stay. Be sure to leave some space in the cupboard for your guest’s belongings.
• Change your lounge suite to include a sofa bed. Lounge by day, bed at night. This is quite a popular idea.
• Large lounge/dining areas in units are good, as they can accommodate the family, and you can still cook the family meals and get everyone together.
• Large patio spaces are great for entertaining.
• A smaller kitchen and larger entertaining spaces is the way to go.

When downsizing it’s good to rethink your spaces to work smarter for you. Have everything you need to live comfortably set up as you would like it, and work the other things in around this. There is no need to spend an extra sum of money for that extra room to accommodate a guest 1 night out of 7. This is thinking smarter. In the case of grandchildren, having a camp out in the lounge room would be a dream come true.

There is always a solution. With so many organising products and solutions on the market, the problems of space can be easily solved. You don’t have compromise on the things you enjoy just because you’re moving to a smaller space.
Embrace and enjoy.

Are you downsizing? Or have you recently? How did you or will you have space for visitors? Tell us below.

Originally published here

  1. We down sized down to a One bedroom Granny Flat with large front and back decks. We bought a large comfortable sofa bed for when the Grandchildren visit, and a couple of blow up beds. We have a full size kitchen, a large bathroom, and lounge, we have never been happier, my housework takes about of an hour 😄👍

    • I down sized to a 2 bedroom unit and love it, I’m glad I did as I don’t see much of the Grandkids these days as they now have other interests.

    • Trish you are so right , as our Grandchildren as they have got older we do see less of them, luckily we still have 5 younger ones that love to visit. That is why I love Facebook as the older ones keep in touch with us on it.

    • Yep we downsized 5 years ago, never regretted it, but sometimes the big house was great for the overseas family.

  2. Great advice and it works very well, as my Grandkids have grown though I have discovered that the space is not used much these days unless I have a friend stay because the Grandkids out grow staying over as other interests take over for them.

  3. We downsized 6 years ago from double storey brick to low set brick. We still have 4 bedrooms, office, lounge/dining, rumpus, and 2 bathrooms. But our new house is half the size of the old one because the rooms are about half the size. So I can clean the whole house in one morning instead of 2 mornings and we can still accommodate the children and their friends when they come to visit. This is the perfect solution for us.

    • Did you buy an existing building, off the plan or did you have input with the design? I ask because we really have stalled with us both having differing views on how to proceed. I was thinking of just selling,and renting until the perfect existing property came on the market whereas my husband want to buy off the plan.

    • Judith Leeming We bought an existing property. It took 2 years of looking to find it. We then auctioned our house and were luckily enough to sell and the house we wanted was still on the market. Meant to be I guess.

    • Ta – lots to think about & as we’ve seen heaps of times on Escape to the Country, there’s always a compromise.

  4. For me, one of the reasons I would not want to downsize is because looking after animals and property keeps me active! I think sitting around in a small space with no yard work would be bad for your health!

    • Marlene, I agree with you, we have to keep moving, I love gardening, at 72 yrs of age it keeps me fit especially with every thing else around our house to do. We just lost our beautiful walking mate, my shadow.

  5. We downsized about 18 months ago, to a 2-bed roomed apartment in the City.
    Sleeping arrangements are never a problem – kids will sleep on the flooring ( camping) and adults on a couch – these days though people often don’t stay over, because one is the ” dedicated driver” ……… previously that was always a reason for sleeping over, because they’d been drinking

  6. Lol …I will go and stay with them, if it’s too much for me to look after my home and my finances are tight, how will I accommodate others.. then the huge clean up of sheets and towels when they leave. I certainly fid not have my kids staying at my parents all the time and the very rare times I did we had blow up beds in the lounge room with sleeping bags which I suuplied and the kids loved it, when they got to teenage years they only saw my parents on special occasions, because life changes and everyone has other commitments. I know of people who sold up to move across States to be close to their kids and grand children and in less than a year the kids moved again. If you want to downsize do it, everyone else will fit around it, if it does not suit them then they will be able to find other accommodation. I always stay at a hotel or B&B or caravan park when visiting friends, it’s more comfortable for me and they don’t have to worry about accommodating me and my stuff then washing everyhing after I am gone.

  7. We downsized 3 years ago from a large home with a huge garden back and front a pool, double garage etc to a villa, have 3 bedrooms (yes they’re smaller), no family room but a big entertainment space and thankfully a much smaller garden, still plenty of room to entertain. We have put in two raised 3 metre long planters where I can and do grow herbs and some vegetables. Best thing we ever did AND we are now only a short distance from our 2 grandchildren. 😊

  8. Australia The only country in the world where you are forced to sell everything to keep living doesn’t seem worth it really !!!

    • That’s not correct, at the moment the principle home is untouched, and you can have quite abit before you are not eligible for aged pensio n… however any other investments above the assets test you need to use before eligible fo any income support. Having said that although it seems unfair, see how broke other countries overseas are now? As long it helps the economy to grow for future generations. . i am happy to support myself.

    • Unfortunately my house in a Rural town will only sell for around 50 – 60 thousand not much point for me to down size have no super due to being married to a Alcoholic and suffering domestic Violence and now fighting Breast Cancer I can only work part time with a part Disability Pension I worry what will happen when I finally am unable to work I have never had a holiday as my ex spent it all on booze Never mind just have to soldier on with not much to show for a life time if work Not looking for sympathy but with all these cut backs I start to think is it worth fighting the Cancer Havnt got much to look forward to

    • Angie – your post made me so sad – best wishes – love and happiness to you – hope you receive some support! Hugs

  9. Downsized 7 years ago to an apartment with large garden. Have vege patches 9 fruit trees. Had chickens too but the rats came!! Bit much. Lifestyle and parties didn’t change just got smaller. two bedrooms 2 bathrooms (essential) have the grandchildren to stay, family friends etc. no big house to clean heat and cool. Love it.

  10. And just how often in a year do you actually get visitors who stay overnight or for a few days.

  11. We downsized to a smaller home. Three bedrooms and two bathrooms. One bedroom is a study with a sofa bed, not yet used,however we have had overseas visitors staying,double bed in third bedroom. Family live fairly locally so haven’t needed to put them up.

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