Design your future lifestyle by rightsizing with intention

By Keisha Telfer
November 06, 2020

Before March, Edward and Judy couldn’t have imagined that a global pandemic would bring about the lifestyle change that they had been dreaming about. After living in a large family home in Toronto for the past 30 years, the couple knew it was time to move but had been dreading the conversation about downsizing,despite their children’s constant inquiries. When COVID-19 started making major upheavals in everyone’s lives, the last thing they wanted to do was think about moving when everything felt so out of control.

If this is a story that resonates with you, you’re not alone. A lot of adults with empty nests don’t want to think about downsizing even in the best of times. However, when it comes to the transition to a new lifestyle, you have more control than you think, especially now. Transitions Realty was created to guide empty nesters and retirees through this process, to help build their dream lifestyle and give them confidence and clarity on their future – it’s called Lifestyle by Design.

Founder Keisha Telfer says although things around you may be uncertain, this is the best time to start that rightsizing conversation.

“The pandemic is fueling demand for detached, single-family homes to accommodate the new normal of working and learning at home for growing families,” she says. “They need more space for home offices, study areas and outdoor recreation. This presents a unique opportunity to unlock the value in your home and design your future.”

If you’ve been considering downsizing, you probably know there are lots of options, developments and communities to choose from. But, with so many choices, how do you know which one is right for you?

“You have to do your research and really think about what you want in your future,” Telfer says. “Space to entertain for the holidays, or access to outdoor living – it’s all up to you.”

Here is a breakdown of three of the main options at your doorstep:

Master-planned communities

On the surface, these might seem the same as lifestyle or active adult communities – mainly because most lifestyle or active adult communities are planned. However, master-planned communities are not specifically geared toward empty nesters and retirees, but instead appeal to residents of all ages, lifestyles and family composition. Because a portion of the residents are young families and working couples, they tend to offer activities and amenities that appeal to families with children. The family-oriented activities ensure young visitors are easily entertained and will keep them coming back. This makes them good options for empty nesters who still wish to be part of a diverse community, host gatherings and have family visit. Of course, many of the communities typically offer traditional adult activities such as golfing, hiking, biking and skating, as well.

Braestone Estates in Oro-Medonte, as featured in the previous issue, is a prime example of a master-planned community that attracts residents of all types from working couples, to families to empty nesters and retirees. The community is nestled among rolling hills with stunning views and the easy-going feel of country living. The houses are newly built with ample square footage and the latest technology.

Active adult lifestyle communities

These modern communities are more in line with what we might traditionally think of as a retirement community. But this is not your grandma’s retirement home – these are built and planned with adults and their active lifestyle in mind. They are geared towards people who want to enjoy a carefree, active life with people of a similar age. As the name suggests, the amenities within the communities are suited for adults and include popular year-round activities such as golf, tennis, skiing, snowshoeing and hiking.

Cobble Beach, just outside of Owen Sound, is an active lifestyle community designed to feel like a golf resort and beach club. The focus of the community is the world-class Cobble Beach Golf Links and spa. Residents have full access to the steam room, whirlpool and tennis courts, as well as the fitness centre and outdoor plunge pool. It truly feels like living in a resort.

Traditional downsizing

This is the option that most people are familiar with and is exactly as it sounds. It’s the process of moving to another, often smaller home. It’s the option that provides the most freedom in your choices. As you can imagine, the possibilities are endless and you have total control over the type of home you buy – anything from a one-bedroom condo in downtown Toronto to a custom-built dream home in the country.

All of these options have pros and cons, and can be found in cities and towns throughout Ontario. With so many choices, it’s easy to become overwhelmed.

To help you get started, Transitions has developed a tool to identify opportunities so you can envision your future. If you are ready to create your Lifestyle by Design, visit the website at and download the free Rightsizing Workbook.

About Keisha Telfer

Keisha Telfer is President and Broker of Record, Transitions Realty. Keisha is a real estate expert and a co-founder of Transitions Realty. She provides valuable support and direction to clients considering a major downsizing or rightsizing lifestyle transition. You can contact her directly at 647.948.7415.

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