Keep or Not To Keep? 7 Downsizing Tips Before Moving
Moving homes can often feel like a game of Tetris, trying to fit your belongings into a new space that may not hold them all. For the residents of Shreveport, LA, where the average home size might be smaller than sprawling suburban dwellings, this challenge is quite common. The art of downsizing becomes not just beneficial but necessary. Before the moving trucks roll in, it’s crucial to decide what comes with you and what doesn’t. The decision to keep or not to keep can be overwhelming, but with a few smart tips, you can navigate through your possessions with ease, ensuring your new home is filled only with items that serve a purpose or bring joy.
It’s interesting to note that according to[SA1] a recent study, the overall storage solutions market has seen an increase in the number of people renting storage units. This trend suggests that more residents are finding value in having a separate space to store their belongings, either short-term or long-term, as they settle into their new homes or decide what to do with their possessions.
You can find many storage options in Shreveport that can provide a temporary home for your belongings until you’re ready to decide their fate. When looking into temporary solutions online for your extra belongings, search online using keywords such as storage Shreveport LA to go through a variety of local storage options and select one that suits your needs. Whether it’s heirloom furniture too large for your new place or seasonal gear like camping equipment, keeping them in storage keeps them out of your hair until you’re settled and ready to deal with them.
Let’s dive into the seven tips that’ll make downsizing before your move a whole lot smoother:
UNDERSTANDING WHAT YOU REALLY NEED
Before you start packing, take a moment to think about what you use on a daily basis. Chances are, there are many things that you own but haven’t used in months or even years. Start by making a list of essentials — things you use every week if not every day. This includes kitchenware you use regularly, the clothes you wear often, and the furniture you actually sit or sleep on. If something hasn’t been used in over a year and has no sentimental value, it’s probably not essential. Be honest with yourself: if you haven’t missed it by now, you likely won’t miss it in the future.
A handy guideline in downsizing is the one-year rule: if you haven’t used an item in the past year, you probably don’t need it. This rule helps you quickly decide on clothes, kitchen gadgets, and other household items. But there are more measures you can use. Ask yourself if the item is replaceable. If it’s easily replaceable and you haven’t used it lately, it may be time to let it go.
THE ART OF LETTING GO: SENTIMENTAL ITEMS
Sentimental items are tough to part with. They carry memories and emotions that make them feel irreplaceable. But here’s the thing: it’s the memory that’s important, not necessarily the item. To ease the process, consider taking photos of these things before you let them go. Create a digital photo album so you can revisit those memories without physically holding onto each item. Another tip is to choose a few special pieces to keep and find a proper place in your new home for them. As for the rest, they can be gifted to friends and family who will appreciate and use them.
FURNITURE FIT: MEASURING FOR YOUR NEW SPACE
Furniture can take up a significant amount of space, and there’s no point in bringing a piece that won’t fit. Measure your new space and your furniture. Sketch a quick floor plan or use an online tool to see what will fit where. Sometimes, it might just be a matter of selling your current pieces and finding something more suitable for your new home. Local buy-and-sell groups are excellent for this. They allow you to find new homes for your pieces and perhaps find smaller, more suitable replacements that better fit your downsized lifestyle.
SELL, DONATE, OR DISPOSE: CLEARING OUT THE EXCESS
When you come across items that aren’t essential, sentimental, or fit for your new home, decide whether you can sell, donate, or toss them. Selling items can be done through local online marketplaces or a traditional garage sale. This can be particularly helpful if you’re looking to make some extra cash to fund moving expenses.
Donating is another great option. There are several charities that welcome pre-loved items. Not only are you clearing space, but you’re also helping those in need. And for those things that are neither sellable nor donatable, proper disposal is key. Make sure to dispose of items responsibly, recycling wherever possible.
PACKING WITH PURPOSE: ORGANIZING AS YOU DOWNSIZE
As you sort through your belongings, organize items into categories: ‘keep,’ ‘store,’ and ‘let go.’ Keep the items you need and love, store those you’re unsure about and have room for in your budget, and let go of the rest. Use clear labeling on boxes to keep track of what’s what. It’s also helpful to pack a box of “essentials” with items you’ll require as soon as you arrive at your new home, like toiletries, a few dishes, and your bedding.
ENVISIONING YOUR NEW LIFESTYLE
Imagine your life in your new, less cluttered space. Think about the benefits you’ll enjoy, such as less cleaning and maintenance and more time and freedom. Keep this vision in your mind as you make decisions about what to keep. Remember that every item you choose to bring into your new home should support this new, simplified life you’re creating.
SEEK HELP WHEN NEEDED
Finally, remember it’s okay to ask for help. Downsizing can be a big job, and it’s often not something you can do all by yourself. Whether it’s friends and family or a professional service, having someone to help you make decisions or just do some heavy lifting can make all the difference. There are services and experts who specialize in helping people downsize and move, so consider reaching out for their guidance.
Downsizing before a move is like preparing for a new chapter in a book. You’re setting the stage for new experiences by clearing out the old. By understanding what you truly need, letting go of what you don’t, ensuring your furniture fits, clearing out the excess responsibly, using practical rules to guide you, organizing your belongings, envisioning your new lifestyle, and seeking help when needed, you can turn the page smoothly.