I have finally gotten our worldly goods down to the basics for living in our townhouses. Trips to the dump and to Good Will have slowed. Yesterday several pieces of furniture where picked up and hauled away. Oh, there are still some small pockets of stuff I haven't finished getting through. But we are close. If were were to move now, of course, I am sure other things would not come with us because space in a two bedroom condo will be more limited.
But ... where to go. That question still haunts us.
Our search continues to limit us to elevator buildings or first floor units. We are further limited by location and condition. Not all locations are acceptable for a variety of reasons. But the issue of condition (how well maintained, how clean, appliance issues, etc. etc. etc.) still remains a large stumbling block for me. We are looking for a 'move-in-ready' property. My definition of move-in-ready, means that I can move in and not be faced with major condition expenses in the first year. Our house will be move-in-ready by my definition. In fact, it would be several years before someone would need to take action on anything ... unless they simply want to change the paint color, upgrade my new kitchen counters or purchase other appliances in a different color. I personally find those kinds of changes wasteful if the item functions well and is clean. But I understand about differences in taste. Some "move in ready" places, however, the appliances are so old and so dirty (and some have external damage) ... they would need to be replaced before I moved in.
I don't want people to think I am a persnickety housekeeper. My appliances are not always clean, for years I lived with clutter, some of my carpet is original, and many dust bunnys use this place as a postal address. But if I sell this townhouse, those short comings will not be someone else's problem. I'll take care of them before I show this house to perspective buyers.
In the two and a half months of condo searching ... and visiting a few properties that came close to what we were looking for, only two condos hit the market that were perfect and they were right in my neighborhood. Two units out of hundreds. They got snapped up quickly.
So my husband and I have started to qualify every moving conversation with the possibility that we will stay here. It would mean some major expenses to retro-fit this townhouse to be user friendly for seniors. Two stair lifts would be a very expensive addition to a house that is too big for us now. When you live in a 3 level town house and each level has things you use in daily living - it adds up to two stair lifts. But it is an option down the road.
Fall is the 'finish line' for us on moving. We can continue to live with uncertainty for that long. We can continue to expend the energy that is required on multiple levels to make a move happen until we reach the finish line. At the finish line, we will be in another abode ... or not! Either way, we are ok with it (cause I am not doing this again next year.)
We are lucky that either choice is a good one.