The Golden Downsizing Rule: Get Rid of Stuff

Posted by A&A Editor

There are any number of reasons to downsize and move to a smaller home, but the number one rule here is, to do so, you’re going to have to get rid of some stuff.

To assist you, here are some things to ponder:

  1. Take photos of things inside your home before you start to choose what stays and what goes. You can use it as a tool to help decide what to take with you.
  2. Discard items that are in bad shape. 
  3. Don’t over-save for the next generation – they probably won’t want your crap. If you feel the need to assist them, take the amount you would have paid for storing the items, put it in the bank and offer family the money for the items they may want – or want to purchase.
  4. Give with no strings attached – meaning, don’t get heartbroken if you give someone your valued lamp and it isn’t on display when you visit.
  5. Research charities and other causes that may have use for the things you no longer need.
  6. DO NOT acquire more things, especially to replace those you’ve discarded.
  7. Cherry-pick your faves from any collections you may be hoarding.
  8. Research the space that you’re moving into and be realistic about what you can fit in and bring with you.
  9. Purge your paperwork.
  10. As soon as you’ve decided to downsize, start to sort through your belongings immediately. The sooner you do it, the less pressure there is and you can make the right decisions for you and your needs without undue pressure.

OneSource Moving Solutions owner Danielle Carriere also advises against sticking belongings in storage.

“Sometimes our clients have a storage unit and want to go back to it, but 90% of the time, they never ever enter the storage unit again,” Carriere observes. “They spend thousands of dollars storing stuff that they never touch again, so we try to discourage storage if we can.”

Carriere says her firm offers space planning for clients, but also stresses that everything is customized to each individual, so they don’t have to take a full-service package where everything is taken care of, if they want a more hands-on approach.

“We do have partial service. They can ask for space planning or disbursement. People can customize what they want and what they don’t want. We are there to make sure everything they need gets done.”