Downsizing in Style
Posted Date: 7/1/2012
Meadowbrook, PA—July 1, 2012—The kids have moved away, so your once-crowded home feels like a mansion. You don’t feel like mowing the lawn in the summer or shoveling the snow in the winter. Steps to the bedrooms suddenly feel like you are climbing Mount Everest. If you have any of these symptoms, you have “downsize-itis” or the desire to downsize to a smaller condominium or apartment for stress-free, hassle-free living.
But downsizing doesn’t mean you lose your sense of style or the little luxuries such as walk-in closets from your full-size home. In fact, your new home might even be better.
“The apartments and condominiums in our 55-plus community are both elegant and affordable,” says Holly Ballay, sales manager for The Villages at Pine Valley, an active adult community in Northeast Philadelphia.
She continues: “Our homes feature exterior stone detailing; large bay windows and some with balconies; gorgeous landscaping; designer, fully-applianced kitchens; and many custom appointments and finely-crafted interior details.”
And yes – the models also have that little luxury of the expansive walk-in closets.
But after moving into your new luxury, low-maintenance home, what’s next?
Mary Gillen from Builders Design, an interior merchandising firm for The Villages at Pine Valley, says your home can look like those in the glossy pages of a magazine while being multi-functional, comfortable, and grandchild-friendly.
Gillen suggests top tips to decorate your smaller space.
- Cut the clutter! Don’t downsize your new digs even more by keeping the clutter from your previous home. To minimize the mess, just save a couple keepsakes and store other personal or household items in a desk with a drop leaf front or in neat and tidy shelves in your closets.
- Stay in scale with your space. Eyeing that over-stuffed sofa in the magazine but afraid it won’t fit? Gillen says you can order that comfy couch while keeping in scale – you might just need to trade in those end tables for stylish, standing lamps.
- Accessorize with accents! To make your space appear larger, neutral furniture and walls work best. But you can add a splash of color with bright toss pillows, drapery panels, artwork, fresh or even faux flowers.
- The all-purpose room. Is it a bedroom? A study? An activity room? Gillen says it can be all three. Create a multi-function second bedroom or den by adding a pull-out couch for your grandchildren or other visitors; a desk with a drop leaf front to play, then store games; and a flat-screen television mounted on the wall for movies and favorite television shows.
- More mass with glass. Transparency is key when super-sizing your space. And Gillen says, it’s super simple – don’t mask those large bay windows with heavy drapery. Let in the light so your space looks even larger. And replace your wood end or coffee tables with glass. Remember, it’s all in the eye of the beholder!