In our latest post, we discuss easy ways to downsize your house without all the stress. Learn tips on downsizing your home
Downsizing your home can be beneficial no matter what stage of life you are in. Having all that extra stuff can feel cumbersome and overwhelming.
With each year that passes, it seems that most of us gain more and more stuff. Many of us have closets filled with items we aren’t using, and things stored away in the attic that never see the light of day. Many people buy a home when they are first starting their family, ensuring they have enough space for everyone. But as the years pass and the kids eventually move out on their own, they find they are living in a house that is too large and filled with too much stuff to manage. Below we offer some great tips for downsizing, making it easier to sell when you are ready.
Tip #1 – The One Year Rule
You might have heard this rule for your closets. Turn all the hangers backward, and anything still backward in a year should be given away. These are the items you don’t wear, but that are taking up valuable real estate in your closet. While you might have one or two sentimental items, try to keep these to a minimum. You can also apply this rule to other clutter-prone areas of your house. Think kitchen gadgets, craft supplies, old DVD’s, and so on. If you haven’t used it in the past year, the odds are pretty low that it will get any use in the future.
Stick to one-year rule: if you haven’t used something in the last year, give or sell it. It’s easy to hold on stuff that you once cherished but don’t need or hope you could need someday. But the fact is, if you haven’t used a particular item in the last year, you ‘re unlikely to do it in the coming year. Or forever, really. In addition, you can make extra cash for your step by selling unused things. Selling products online can be a perfect way to get started.
Tip #2 – Repurpose And Give
You likely have many things you are keeping due to sentimental value. While it is more than ok to hang on to some of this stuff, having too much can weigh you down. Maybe your kids or grandkids would love to have your old Chrismas ornaments that are lying around in the closet. Things such as old toys, clothes, and artworks can find new homes with people you love. This way you can find joy in knowing they are being used and loved, without taking up storage space in your house.
It is not only practical to repurposed, but it is also an enjoyable activity where your family will collaborate as a team. Turning the grandpa’s ladder into a bookshelf and his outdone silverware into cabinet pulls for the kitchen, then roll up and turn that grandfather’s clock into a shelf.
If your downsized house does not fit a few boxes of paper work, there is definitely no space either for antique furniture for the family. But what choice do you have?
You could give it to extended family who have more rooms, or offer it to a charity who can auction it off if it is valuable.
Tip #3 – Look Through All The Boxes
Sure, this might seel like a lot of work. But for many people, they will find that all kinds of random possessions have accumulated. They will only end up keeping one or two things, giving away or throwing away the rest. You might be surprised at what has piled up over the years!
Tip #4 – Assess Your Furniture
Do you need the massive sectional sofa anymore? Is the giant coffee table still a necessity? Think about your future new space, and what kind of items will fit nicely. You can ditch the entertainment center, and instead, hang the TV up on a wall. You can opt for a smaller couch, dining table, etc. You can sell these items, and use the cash toward new furniture for your new space.
Consider how well your furniture and other belongings fit in if you downsize your home. Measuring the size of the rooms means ensuring that you don’t spend time and money on moving things that don’t fit into a new space. Is a king bed going to fit in the new bedroom? Is the dining room large enough to match your table and chairs with enough space to pass around? Remember beauty as well. The couch and the easy chairs that looked fantastic in your old living room would have crowded the new one. A stuffed room could feel suffocating. It can also be risky, narrowing paths through your home that should be free of objects to make it easier to move between areas.
Tip #5 – Digitize Where It Makes Sense
Piles of papers all over the house. Does this sound familiar? It seems we all have a stack of papers (or 5) that we are going to get around to dealing with. Make that time now and toss or shred anything that is no longer needed. You can scan in old bills and receipts if needed, and opt to go paperless for future statements. Make a rule to deal with mail as it comes in instead of letting it pile up everywhere.
Today, there are so many convenient ways to store documents and photos electronically in order to free up space in your home. You can do it yourself at home with a scanner or a digital organizer, or you can find a company that can do it all for you. It’s worth the time or small fee to clean up the clutter.
Tip #6 – Get Rid Of The Dupes
Do you need 4 sets of wine glasses or will one set do? Do you need two desks in the office or can you share one? There are many instances where people buy 2 of something, never using both at the same time. Take an inventory and keep your favorite items, giving away or selling the other items.
An old saying goes: Your item is worth whatever you think it is worth as long as it’s not for sale. If you want to sell that, it’s just what somebody’s going to pay for. It’s a trap to think that getting a reserve ensures you get the price you want for an object. In fact, what it really means is that you’re not selling the item when you need a house empty to close. This is all right for those who just want to keep the object, but in the scope of downsizing this strategy, you can add effort and stress that you don’t need. It also means making harder decisions on how to sell or otherwise dispose of valuable items or possibly pay years of storage fees.
Tip #7 – Organize Everything
Before moving, take the time to organize all of your belongings. Group books, glassware, clothing, and other items. This will make packing and moving simple when you decide to go. Label all boxes and only pack similar items together.
A well-planned move is typically a easy move, so get organized. Start by listing all the tasks you need to perform and the timeline you need to complete. Knowing what you’ve got to do, and the time you’ve got to do it, makes the whole thing a lot simpler.
Don’t wait to make a call. Start planning your early downsizing and set targets. For couples and families, make sure they ‘re all on the same page to get rid of disagreements and broken feelings down the road.
Don’t let the extra stuff crowd your home and clutter your spaces. By reducing your clutter, you can go a long way to making your home more relaxed and pleasant, which lowers your stress levels and helps you to find what you need when you want it. We all know that a messy home will lead to stress.
Tip #8 – Hire A Pro
Yes, there is such a thing. You can hire a professional organizer to help you clear out the clutter. They can offer objective opinions if you are debating holding on to an unused item. They will help you get your belongings in order, making an eventual move a breeze.
You ‘re not going to have to DIY your downsizing operation. In reality, in a month’s time, you would almost certainly need some support. That may come in the form of family and friends offering extra sets of hands, but most likely you’ll still need professional support.
A full-service moving company may also have a range of different kinds of support, from skilled packers to transporting furniture where it needs to go. Just make sure you get a quote for each piece of your moving puzzle.
Want to learn more about downsizing your home in the Oklahoma City area? Local House Buyers is here to help you! Contact us today to learn more! 405-395-2085
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