If you’re downsizing to a new house, the prospect of squeezing all your belongings into a smaller space can be daunting, but we’ve got some hints on how to tackle downsizing and make your move easier.
We’re not all blessed with a minimalistic approach and most of us accumulate a significant amount of stuff over the years. In a large house this may not be a such a problem, but if you’re moving to a new house that’s considerably smaller, you need to face up to the reality that not everything will fit in. The last thing you want is to move to a smaller property, cram all your belongings in, only to find you can’t move around easily.
Fear not, as we’ve got some helpful tips on how to downsize when you’re moving to a new home that will make your life simpler and make moving so much easier too.
Make a wish list
Before you start tackling the possessions in your home, make a wish list of essential items. These are the things you simply can’t live without. Although with this process you also need to be realistic – remember these are the things you need, not necessarily the things you want – so you can’t put everything on the list. If you’re struggling, rope in family or friends to give you an objective opinion on what to keep and what to let go.
Give yourself plenty of time
When you’re moving to a new house always allow yourself as much time as possible to go through your belongings and thin them out, as well as start packing them up in labelled and categorised boxes. Ideally give yourself 2-3 months to sort through everything from the garage and attic, to the kitchen and bedrooms. It inevitably takes longer than you think, but also you’ll give yourself more time to find new homes for the items too.
Sell, donate and recycle
We all know the saying “one man’s rubbish is another man’s treasure”, so when you are decluttering and sorting, don’t just throw everything in the bin. You can utilise auction sites like eBay and Gumtree to make some extra cash and donate clothes, crockery and other household goods to friends and family or charity shops and shelters for a new lease of life.
The other important thing is to stay calm during this process, parting with so many things is inevitably going to be tough, but taking a methodical approach will make it more manageable. Tackle one room at a time, going through every drawer, box, shelf and cubby hole, getting rid of anything you don’t use regularly (i.e. you haven’t used in the last year or so).
Make a plan
Another great way to visualise what will and won’t fit in your new home, is by drawing a floor plan. You can play around with furniture layouts virtually to ensure that you don’t end up with cluttered rooms and too much furniture.
With these handy hints, moving to a new home that’s smaller doesn’t have to be such a nightmare, which is a relief as so many people need to downsize as they get older so it’s good to know it can all work out fine.
It can be an emotional wrench to move from a family home where you’ve lived for years but if it means you can manage better it is worth down-sizing for all sorts of reasons such as no longer having stairs to climb to go to bed, having a more manageable garden or being closer to shops and a community.
The vast majority of older people (97%) want to stay in their own homes as they get older so downsizing to a more manageable home makes sense and makes this possible for longer.
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