Did you know that more people want to downsize than purchase a massive home?
That’s right — and downsizing comes with benefits ranging from lower house prices to improved accessibility.
Whether you’re downsizing out of choice or because of circumstances beyond your control, choosing which of your possessions to let go can be tricky. You’ll also need to decide what you’re actually going to do with everything that you want to dispose of.
Luckily, we’re here to help.
Keep reading for ten practical tips on downsizing your possessions before you move to a smaller home.
- Remember All The Benefits of Downsizing
Deciding to downsize can be emotional, and you might find yourself resenting the fact that you’ll have to discard some things.
The wrong mindset will make the process much harder, so try and focus on the positives.
Downsizing might allow you to live in a property that’s easier to get around if you have mobility issues. It’s a good way to save money and keep your place organized, and it can also help you to live a calmer, more minimalist lifestyle.
Make a list of all the good things about downsizing and keep it close by while you’re sorting.
- Figure out How Much Space You’ll Have
Exactly how much smaller is your new home than your current place?
Take a look at the floorplans to work out how much you can keep and how much you need to discard. It might help to make sketches, deciding roughly where each item of furniture will go.
Some things will quickly become clear — a tiny guest room might mean there’s no space for that king-size bed.
You should also look at all the storage space in your new home, including cupboards, closets, spare rooms, and attics. This will help you work out how many smaller items you can keep.
- Start by Sorting out Items in Storage
Do you have a storage room you very rarely go in?
Start there, since it’s likely to be full of things you don’t actually use and don’t really need to hold onto.
You might find old hobby items, clothes that don’t fit, and leftover DIY supplies. Let go of anything you won’t use within the next year.
If you’re lucky, you might even find some forgotten items that you can donate or give away.
- Think About What You Use Most Often
What does your current daily routine look like, and which items are most important?
If you cycle every day but rarely use your treadmill, it makes sense to keep your bike but lose the running machine.
Other items like your favorite reading chair might be essential to your daily routine, while certain ornaments or side tables might be disposable.
Think carefully about what’s essential to your everyday health and happiness.
- Keep Items With Sentimental Value
Downsizing doesn’t mean letting go of cherished possessions.
Make sure you allocate space for sentimental items like old letters, trophies, children’s toys, and ornaments. Do be selective though — you probably don’t need to keep every scribble your child did as a toddler.
Think about creating curated memory boxes that you keep in an accessible area, rather than throwing everything straight into storage.
- Consider Giving Items Away to Family Members
While it’s often said that millennials don’t want to take furniture and other items from relatives, it’s still worth asking before you sell or donate.
Did your son just move into his first studio apartment? He might love your old sofa for his living room!
Does your daughter love upcycling? She might have some cool ideas on how to modernize your old dressing table.
Don’t make your relatives feel obliged to take your stuff, but let them know that the offer’s there.
- Donate Unwanted Goods to Local Charities
Many charities accept everything from old furniture and appliances to board games and decorations.
If you don’t want items that are in good condition to go to waste but can’t be bothered to sell them, donating to charity is a convenient option. It’s also a great way to support a cause you believe in.
Some charities offer a free collection service for large items, so be sure to ask.
- Hold a Garage Sale to Make Some Extra Cash
Want to make a little extra pocket money to help you decorate your new home?
Holding a garage sale is an excellent way to shift lots of unwanted belongings and make some spare change while you’re at it.
Try and choose a sunny day and advertise for a while beforehand to make sure plenty of people attend. Keep prices low if your priority is clearing out as many items as possible.
- Put Things You’re Unsure About in Storage
Are there a few things you don’t have room for but can’t bear to let go?
If you’re really stuck, consider putting these items in storage for a few months, then re-evaluating.
By then, you might not even miss the item, and could be ready to get rid of it. Alternatively, you might realize it’s something you can’t live without and find a way to make space for it.
- Organize Your Possessions as You Sort
Want to make the moving process easier?
Make an effort to organize your possessions to get a headstart on packing and unpacking before the movers arrive. Use boxes to categorize items, and label them clearly.
Sort possessions by room where possible to make them easy to unpack in your new place.
You can do all this sorting while you’re clearing out, so it’s a good way to kill two birds with one stone.
Why Downsizing Your Possessions Doesn’t Have to Be a Bad Thing
Downsizing your possessions can feel hard, but it’s often a good thing.
You’ll work out what’s actually important to you, hold onto only the most precious items, and feel less overwhelmed by clutter.
Selling and donating items helps you make money and support worthy causes too.
Ready to arrange your move? Contact us for a quick quote today.