This is especially true as family members leave the nest to start their own families.
Aging too can play a part in the decision to downsize.
If you’ve been thinking about moving to a smaller home you’re probably thinking about all of the things you’ve accumulated over the years and wondering how in the world you’re going to make it all work.
While it can be more exhausting than a “regular” move, it is possible to downsize without ramping up your stress levels…you just need a plan.:
1. Begin by taking an inventory
Sort out your belongings and separate them into 3 categories:
- ⬥ What you’re going to donate/give away
- ⬥ What you’re going to throw out
- ⬥ What you’re going to sell
Don’t try to do this all at once. Take one room or area of a room at a time and spend 30 minutes to an hour or so each day until you’ve sorted through everything.
While you’re figuring out what to keep and what to get rid of, think about what’s needed versus what you “want” to keep.
Send an email to your friends and family members and include photos of what you’re getting rid of so they can get what they want. Give them a deadline to encourage a response.
This way, nobody can say they weren’t told you were getting rid of the chipped English dinnerware that they’d always admired.
2. Limit duplicates
Get rid of anything that you have multiples of, keeping only what you like the most.
Your kitchen will probably be the main location you’ll find duplicates. Unless you entertain regularly, you probably don’t need extra silverware, spatulas or drinking glasses.
Toss out any food items that are past their “use by” dates such as spices, or ingredients that you used once and never used again. This could significantly reduce your load, making the move that much easier.
4. Use the power of “free”
Those items that aren’t worth the effort of selling on eBay are the perfect choice for this option.
Simply put a sign out on the curb or in your yard with the words “free” in bold letters.
Depending on where you live, you could get rid of everything overnight!
This strategy works well for cabinets, books and different types of furniture such as wood chairs or end tables…items that are easily stowed in someone’s car or truck.
5. Sell your stuff
Remember the old adage, “one person’s trash is another one’s treasure”.
For those items that still have value but that you just won’t have space for hold a yard sale.
Get together with your neighbors and hold a neighborhood-wide garage sale to really draw in shoppers.
Kids clothes, toys, furniture, lawn equipment and tools are some of the best items to sell, which reduces the number of remaining things you’ll have to deal with after the yard sale is over.
What doesn’t sell in your yard sale can be sold online via eBay and Craigslist, or if you don’t want the hassle of dealing with these sites you can donate to your local thrift store and potentially have a tax write-off as well.
Other online stores besides the two giants include:
- ⬥ Furniture, decor, etc. for local buyers
- ⬥ Name brand clothing and accessories
- ⬥ Vintage records, stereos, etc.