What do you need? What do you enjoy?
I downsized from a 3 bedroom house to a 2 bedroom apartment with no study and no dining room, and learnt some lessons.
- You really cannot take as much as you think.
TIP: Count your cupboards, and the number in your new home. If there are half as many, you need to dispose of 50% of your stored ‘stuff’.
2. You will have an easier life if you leverage your storage space, rather than cluttering every bit of wall space.
TIP: If your new home is short on storage, look for alternative spaces. For example, pull out drawers under the bed.
3. You can take rubbish with you, but then you will still have rubbish.
TIP: All your rubbish will not fit in your bin so think ahead. Organise council roadside pick-ups, charity donations, a skip, or trailer or truck loads to recycling centre.
4. If you’re short on time you’re more likely to have to sort yet again when you unpack, so start early.
TIP: Tackle 1 room or 1 cupboard at a time. Have boxes or bags marked ‘keep’, ‘friends/family’, ‘sell’, ‘donate’, ‘rubbish’. If it seems overwhelming, get help early.
5. Kitchens are deceptive. We are better at packing items into kitchens than any other room (garages can come a close second).
TIP: Start with little used cupboards – you’ll find plenty that you no longer need.
6. Paid storage is a trap. A bit like gym memberships – they work well for the very disciplined, but often out of sight is out of mind. Both the excess items and the monthly payment can be overlooked, and you end up paying to keep things you do not use nor need.
TIP: Make a date and call in help, grit your teeth and make some decisions. You’ll be better off both financially and psychologically!
7. Choose 5 things in your house that give you joy.
TIP: Unpack them last and reward yourself by seeing them every day.
The temptation is to put off the hard jobs. My downsizing taught me to get help when I needed it!