After retirement, many homeowners plan to sell their current, larger home and downsize. While there are many benefits to downsizing, it's good to take a few steps before you place your house on the market. Here are 4 things to put on your 'to-do' list. 

Assess Repairs. The chances are that you've been living in your current home for a number of years. And like any aging asset, the house and property could probably use some updating and repairs. Go around your property with a handyman or contractor to assess what needs fixed before you list the house. 

Do Select Upgrades. While you probably should spend a lot of money making your house match up to the finest, newest models nearby, you'll find benefit in some simple updating. This could include inexpensive things like repainting or replacing an aging garage door. Or you could wisely use funds to modernize windows, add a bathroom, or open up the floor plan. 

Meet With an Accountant. Selling a longtime home can cause some tax trouble if you're not careful. If you bought the property many years ago for a lot less, your 'basis' investment in the home compared with current selling prices may leave you liable for capital gains tax. Consult with an accountant or tax preparer to determine your potential tax liability and how you can increase the basis using capital improvements over the years. 

Talk to Your Kids. Be sure your kids and you are all on the same page when it comes to the final disposition of your home. You may not be aware of adult children's attachment to a family home or their desire to purchase it. On the other hand, holding on to a home without realizing that your children have other plans can keep you in a location you don't need to be in. 

Be Realistic. Housing markets differ and individual houses vary, so you can't expect to get the same price for your property that anyone else got for theirs. For this reason, you should consult with a local real estate broker to determine a realistic listing and sale price before you begin. This will help you logically determine how much to put into updates and how much you will have to work with when choosing a new home. 

To be sure, selling a well-loved home can be a challenging task. But by taking these steps before listing with it, you can help ensure a smooth transition and a better sale as you work with your real estate broker