My parents are looking for a retirement property. My in-laws are also downsizing. This means all I hear about is moving. It wouldn’t be so bad if it wasn’t for the fact that none of them really know what they want to buy.
My in-laws are slightly better, in that they know they want to stay close to where they currently are, but just get a house with a smaller garden. Not a smaller house, just a smaller garden.
Deep down, I don’t think they are quite ready to make the move yet, for whatever reason. They have had a few different houses over the past 30 years, moving into their current home – a nice four-bed semi just a short walk from a small market town centre – about 12 years ago.
After spending quite a while perusing the market, they finally decided to get their home valued and were pleasantly surprised with what it was now worth. To be in any position to go for their ideal property – whenever it may materialise – they decided they needed to have theirs on the market.
But with a few large caveats. There was to be no mention of it on the estate agent’s website and there was to be no marketing material sent out about it. It was strictly only to be put before highly vetted buyers who the estate agent truly believed were suitable purchasers.
MI5 may have had to carry out some background checks before the secret papers were handed over! All hell broke loose when details of the house were spotted on the website that first day! Luckily no such mistakes have been made since.
There were a few viewings initially and then someone wanted to put in an offer. Oh dear. Apparently they didn’t look right, so the offer was flatly refused. And now the house is back off the market.
Confused? I am and I hear about it on a daily basis!
My parents have slightly different problems. They have lived in the same house for nearly 35 years. Having grown up in the centre of London, they moved out to the suburbs just before I was born.
My father has always had an idyllic dream of living in a little country village, with just a pub and a corner shop for company. What he doesn’t quite see yet – but we all clearly do – is that this would be so far from his comfort zone that it is entirely possible they would be looking to move again within six months.
So their biggest problem is deciding – and agreeing – on exactly where to move to. In preparation for this epiphany, whenever it comes, they have been frantically decluttering for months now.
Or should I say my siblings and I have been forced to frantically declutter for months now.
Every time the phone rings I get a pang of fear that they may have cleared out yet another draw and found a new stash of my diaries from 1986 that they want me to pick up.
I have somehow managed to clear out 13 years of school books and three years of university notes and condense them into a few small crates that luckily fit in my loft. Their de-cluttering has meant the clogging up of my home that’s for sure.
But at least when the time comes and they have finally found their ideal retirement location, there won’t be much left to shift in and out of the removal van.
So although it seems that moving may be a joyous, fun occasion, I can promise you that it can also have it headaches! Is there anyone else going through this who can offer advice on how to steer our way through the choppy waters ahead?