Are you planning on downsizing? Here are simple tips for decluttering to downsize your home to help make the downsizing process easier.
Downsizing can be a scary experience (been there myself), but a great way to save money on housing in this market or make life easier with aging.
Decluttering your home as you downsize is one of the most important steps for working your way into a smaller home without a ton of stress trying to fit everything into a smaller space.
Let’s take a look at how to get started decluttering for downsizing and some tips to make the experience better than you could ever have imagined.
If you are decluttering to downsize your home, you will need to part with things you no longer need or use, declutter furniture, condense sentimental items and consider storage unit. You should also involve your family, have a positive attitude and sell some of the stuff to make money.
Why You Should Declutter When Downsizing
Most people have a lot more stuff than they truly need and the bigger your home is the more stuff you tend to fill it with.
When you choose to downsize your home, odds are you are looking at some difficulty taking everything you own and fitting it into the new space you have.
When you declutter before downsizing you reduce the amount of furniture, clothing, nicknacks, and other items that tend to multiply over time, making it easier to fit into your new space without feeling overcrowded.
Having too much stuff in a smaller space can make the things you may now feel comfortable with feel overwhelming quite easily. Clutter can lead to stress that can make your new home feel a lot smaller and a lot harder to live in.
Decluttering as part of your downsizing journey can relieve that stress and make your move a lot more comfortable.
How Much Decluttering Should You Do When You Downsize?
The first step to figuring out how much you need to get rid of is to take a look at just how much you are downsizing.
If you are condensing down to a one-bedroom you really do not need the furnishing and linens for a multiple-bedroom house and this would be the first place to cut down.
If your kitchen will be smaller you will want to declutter extra small appliances, dishes, and cookware. This will help make more room in your future kitchen so you do not get overwhelmed when trying to cook or bake.
If you do not know what your living arrangements will be after downsizing it can be a bit harder to get an idea of just how much you should declutter with downsizing.
But you can still get a head start now and start decluttering down to what your ideal downsized space would be. This will give you the best opportunities to make the downsizing transition as easy as possible.
How to Declutter and Downsize – 7 Simple Downsizing Tips
#1. Start by Looking for the Things You Do Not Actually Use
To do this go room to room and box up items you are unsure on if you use enough to justify keeping and you are willing to part with.
Don’t worry, you will not be getting rid of these items right away. If you discover you go through more plates or something than you think you can simply get them from the box and keep the new number that better fits your needs.
This is a great decluttering tip for all situations but it can really make a difference for people looking to move to a smaller space needing to choose what comes with them and what doesn’t.
#2. Declutter Furniture
The biggest thing that will make the most difference when downsizing is to declutter your furniture.
Smaller living spaces cannot hold as much furniture as larger ones and can feel overwhelmingly crowded when you move everything to your new space.
When looking at your furniture you want to clear away things that do not add much value to the space. This may require you to make some changes to the furniture you have now. Selling what you can to replace with more practical pieces.
Look for furniture that can double as storage such as a storage ottoman in place of a regular one to help you make the most of your reduced space.
#3. Consider a Storage Unit
If you are not ready to part with something when moving into your new space you may want to think about a storage unit.
The trick here is to limit your time using the unit to allow you to use it for helping to sort out what you really use when you do not have much time to do so before your move.
If you haven’t gotten it out of the storage unit in six months it is time to get rid of it and move on because you didn’t really use or need it.
#4. Condense Your Sentimental Items
Decluttering sentimental items like family photos can be difficult because of our emotional attachment to such items.
Family photos can be digitized to help make room without having to get rid of them. If you do not have room for all of your photos on the walls you can get a digital frame to hang. This will rotate between all of the ones you decided to declutter so you can still enjoy them without taking up as much space.
#5. Include Your Family
Whether you are moving with your entire family or just your spouse make sure anyone else living in your home that will be in the new home has a say in what you are decluttering.
This is particularly important if you have children who are part of the downsizing journey with you. By allowing them to be part of the process you keep it from being overly dramatic and prevent yourself from accidentally getting rid of that one thing they will remember 20 years from now.
#6. Think of Clearing Away the Clutter in a Positive Light
When it comes time to start getting rid of things it can be a bit traumatic to watch everything you have collected over the years disappear. But the attitude you have while doing it can make a big difference.
Don’t think of everything you are getting rid of as losing something but instead think of the space and peace of mind you will be gaining and the time you will be saving cleaning.
#7. Make Money Selling Some of Your Stuff
One of the ways to dispose of your decluttered items as you downsize is to sell them. Apart from garage sales, there are many places online you can sell your clutter to make some money. Here is a detailed blog post on how to make money selling clutter.
Final Thoughts on Decluttering to Downsize
Remember to have fun while decluttering, give yourself grace when it comes to letting go of memories. You can also use this opportunity to make some money decluttering or help the homeless with things you no longer need so some good comes out of decluttering rather than simply filling the landfill.