Downsizing your home? Over time, we tend to accumulate lots of things over the years. downsizing can be beneficial no matter what stage of life you are in. Having all that extra stuff can feel cumbersome and overwhelming. In our latest post, we discuss easy ways to downsize your house without all the stress.
With each year that passes, it seems that most of us gain more and more stuff. Many of us have closets filled with items we are not using, and things stored away in the attic that never see the light of day. Many people buy a home when they are first starting their family, ensuring they have enough space for everyone. But as the years pass and the kids eventually move out on their own, they find they are living in a house that is too large and filled with too much stuff to manage. Below we offer some great tips for downsizing, making it easier to sell when you are ready.
Tip #1 – Give yourself plenty of time
Give yourself plenty of time for this process because it will inevitably take longer than you expect. Take your time, and do not try to sort through your entire house in one day or weekend. A couple of weeks to a month is a more realistic timeline. Take it one room at a time and take breaks throughout.
Tip #2 – Giveaway, Sale, Or Donate
You probably already have things you want to get rid of but avoid diving into such a big room at the very beginning. You have years and years of things to sort through. Start in an area with little emotional attachment. The laundry room or linen closet are good options.
Sort your possessions into four-Pile
- Giveaways: These possessions will go to friends and family.
- Sale items: If you want extra cash have a yard sale or list items on selling apps.
- Donations: anything your friends and family did not want donation to Goodwill or The Salvation Army.
- Trash: items that just do not have any more life in them
Understand your needs. You likely have many things you are keeping due to sentimental value. While it is more than ok to hang on to some of this stuff, having too much can weigh you down. This way you can find joy in knowing they are being used and loved, without taking up storage space in your house.
Tip #3 – Look Through All Nooks and Crannies
Sure, this might seem like a lot of work. But for many people, they will find that all kinds of random possessions have accumulated. They will only end up keeping one or two things, giving away or throwing away the rest. You might be surprised at what has piled up over the years! If you’re moving to an apartment or townhome, you might not have a garage or office space. Nearly everything in those spaces will need to be sold, donated, tossed, or relocated to other rooms.
- The basement and attic
- Sheds and garages
- Spare rooms
- Out-of-the-way-kitchen cabinets
- Linen closets
- Bathroom cabinets or shelves
If you decide to keep any items that will not fit inside your new home, make sure you have enough storage at your new place or consider renting a storage unit.
Tip #4 – Assess Your Furniture
Do you need the massive sectional sofa anymore? Is the giant coffee table still a necessity? Think about your future new space, and what kind of items will fit nicely. You can ditch the entertainment center, and instead, hang the TV up on a wall. You can opt for a smaller couch, dining table, etc. You can sell these items, and use the cash toward new furniture for your new space.
Tip #5 – Purge Your Paperwork
It seems we all have a stack of papers (or 5) that we are going to get around to dealing with. Make that time now and toss or shred anything that is no longer needed. You can scan in old bills and receipts if needed, and opt to go paperless for future statements. Make a rule to deal with mail as it comes in instead of letting it pile up everywhere.
Tip #6 – Get Rid Of The Dupes
You’ll find this is especially true in your kitchen. You have two or three spatulas and ladles, a couple of oversized stock pots, and four different sized cookie sheets. Now’s the time to reduce the clutter. Do you need 4 sets of wine glasses or will one set do? Do you need two desks in the office or can you share one? There are many instances where people buy 2 of something, never using both at the same time. Take an inventory and keep your favorite items, giving away or selling the other items.
Tip #7 – Organize Everything
Before moving, take the time to organize all of your belongings. Group books, glassware, clothing, and other items. This will make packing and moving simple when you decide to go. Label all boxes and only pack similar items together.
Tip #8 – Hire A Pro
Yes, there is such a thing. You can hire a professional organizer to help you clear out the clutter. They can offer objective opinions if you are debating holding on to an unused item. They will help you get your belongings in order, making an eventual move a breeze.