July 19, 2024

Take the stress out of downsizing and move to a rental property in a retirement community

In Stress Awareness month[i], Dominic Stead, Property Director at the UK’s leading retirement rentals brand, My Future Living highlights that downsizing and renting in a retirement community is a stress-free option for retirees who want to move to a smaller home which is both affordable and secure where they never need to move again.

A recent survey by Hargreaves Lansdown[ii] showed that around a quarter (23%) of people plan to downsize in retirement, however, 31% say that can be put off as they are too attached to their home.  Others may fear change, plus a new survey from Pegasus shows the cost of stamp duty and the hassle of moving are the biggest barriers to downsizing.

Yet, according to Savills downsizers across England and Wales could unlock an average of £305,090 by moving from a four bed to a two bed home, analysis from Savills has revealed[iii].


Renting, Stead suggests, could yield even more for homeowners looking to sell.

Stead said: “Downsizing and renting in a retirement community can bring a multitude of benefits from freeing up capital in a home to fostering connections and being part of a sociable community.  It can make good financial sense and take the stress out of retirement for those that are concerned about money due to the cost of living or limited pension income.

“It’s an affordable way to move to retirement hot spots where property prices are high even for smaller homes, plus people no longer have to worry about the upkeep costs involved with owning a property. Being able to live independently and also be part of a community is the best of both worlds and renting is becoming a popular choice for some older people.”


One of these is Trevor Worrell, aged 67 years, who downsized to a one-bedroom flat in retirement development Marlowe Lodge in Croydon. After taking early retirement aged 40 from his job as a technician officer for London Underground, Trevor stayed living in Clapham for many years so he could be close to his father and look after him.

Originally from St Andrew in Barbados, Trevor enjoyed living in Clapham as it was an easy commute to his job. However, after 30 years, he felt it was time to slow life down and move to a smaller place which didn’t need so much maintenance and made the tough decision to relocate and rent an apartment in a retirement development in Croydon.

As a single man, Trevor enjoys the company of the other residents. He said: “There’s always something going on and I never feel like I live here on my own. We have film night and fish and chip night in the communal lounge every Friday. There are 24 of us at the development and we all know each other very well, which means there’s always a friendly face around and I feel like we’ve got our very own little community.”

Trevor enjoys the benefits of an assured tenancy which gives him peace of mind as he has protection from eviction and can stay in his home for as long as he wishes (providing he sticks to the terms of his tenancy), plus the freedom to give the required notice and leave at any time if he wants to.


Another resident, Glyn Jones, 71 years old, moved into Ida Court, a retirement development for over 60s in Woolston, near Southampton. One of the benefits for Glyn, who found himself living alone for the first time in many years, is the community element of living in a retirement development.

Glyn said: “I can’t believe my luck in having such a fantastic apartment. Even though it’s not in an area I’m overly familiar with I’m looking forward to exploring more. Although I had never considered renting in retirement, I highly recommend it, especially for those that want to downsize from a larger home. The community that I’m living in is really nice and I’m hoping I will stay here for a long time.”

For more information about My Future Living, please visit www.myfutureliving.co.uk.


[i] https://www.stress.org.uk/sam2024/

[ii] https://todayswillsandprobate.co.uk/23-say-they-plan-to-downsize-in-retirement-research-reveals/

[iii] https://www.ftadviser.com/equities/2024/02/23/homeowners-could-unlock-300k-by-downsizing/