Lots of people downsize on their home. Sometimes people do it when the kids move out of the house and it doesn’t make sense to have three extra bedrooms and a rec room. Sometimes people downsize when they can no longer do the maintenance on a regular home. And other times, people downsize because by downsizing on their main home, they can afford a vacation home as well. Whatever your reason for wanting to downsize, it’s wise to have a plan and know what you really want from your new home. To help you get the most out of cutting back, here are a couple of suggestions on what you should think about when choosing a new, smaller home or simply decluttering the house that you plan to keep.
1. Getting Rid of Things
When you move from a larger house with a basement, attic, and lots of walk-in closets to a place with less square footage and less storage space, you’ll need to find new homes, or just throw out, things that you’ve had stashed away for 20 years. In the article by Forbes “Tips For Moving Into a Smaller Space,” Laura Gaskill has a few tips that will make the decluttering process a little easier. She suggests that you make a list of the things that are essential to you, get rid of things that are broken or for some other reason you should have gotten rid of years ago anyways, and cut out duplicate items. When you make a list of what you absolutely need, you know that you won’t be throwing out items that you’ll later regret having thrown out. Also, keeping things that you haven’t used in the last five years is something you should be doing anyways, and you need to remember that you won’t have room for duplicate items in your new home. For heirloom pieces, Gaskill suggests that you that you offer them to family members.
2. Downsizing Without Moving
Even if you don’t plan on moving, but you just want to cut down on the clutter, you can use the above steps, but there are even more ways that you can make your house more organized. Huffington Post’s “7 Ways to Declutter and Simplify Your Life” has several tactics that you can use to make your home more streamlined. One suggestion is to take the cleaning and clearing process room by room. It makes the task more manageable, and you can even do just one room a day. They also suggest getting a friend to help you because another person who isn’t emotionally involved will be able to help you see when you don’t actually need something, and it doesn’t have enough sentimental value to keep.
Whether you’re moving to a new place or staying in your current one, getting rid of things that you’ve had for years can be an emotional and overwhelming process. But if you have a plan, it will be that much easier to distance yourself enough that you can make decisions that will make your life easier and happier.