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3 Steps for Downsizing | Highlands Realty Inc

Moving can be bittersweet, especially if you’ve spent years in your current home. However, as your kids grow up and move out, you may find that you have too much house for your current needs. If it’s time to downsize, whether due to family changes or health concerns, it can be sad leaving your house full of memories but also exciting because of the change to a new place. 

Over the years, many of us gather clutter that downsizing can be an opportunity to get rid of and start anew. Filling your new place with the things you really love will make it feel like home, and our three-step downsizing plan will help you do just that without sacrificing your meaningful belongings. 

Step 1: Make a Plan

Find out your new home’s rooms and the size of storage areas by measuring these spaces. You can use this as your guide to how much you’ll be able to fit in your new place. Remember that it’s better to underestimate than overestimate to minimize cluttering your new space. 

Furniture is a good item to begin with, as it will give you an idea of how much space will be available after moving in your large furniture pieces. Plan to take it one step at a time by deciding what to keep and what to get rid of room by room rather than the entire house. 

Step 2: Sort Your Belongings 

As your going through each room with your keep and get rid of piles, ask yourself the following questions if you’re unsure if you can let it go. 

  • Have you used or worn it in the past year? If not, you likely won’t need it after you move. 
  • Do you have multiple of items? If you have multiple of certain appliances, like coffee pots, or other household items, you don’t need to keep more than one since you only use one at a time. 
  • Does it still work? If you have non-working items, from lamps to radios, throw them out rather than thinking that you’ll fix them “one day.”

When sorting your items, only keep a yes pile and a no pile. Creating a maybe pile only means you must sort through it again soon. Also, for good condition items in the no pile, ask if friends, family, or neighbors could use them. If not, consider donating them or having a garage sale before you move. 

Step 3: Find Ways to Save Memories

Downsizing doesn’t mean you’ll lose all your memories or keepsakes. For treasured items or family heirlooms, you can pass them on to children, grandchildren, or friends. If there’s no room for certain good memory items, such as the Grand piano that no longer gets played, consider taking photos of those to look back on the memories without holding onto the items. 

Speaking of photos, instead of packing up all your photo albums that are never looked at, digitize the photos to more easily share with family and save the space of bulky albums. You can add your precious photos to a digital frame or use the photos as a rotating slideshow on your computer, tablet, or TV. 

If you’re a crafter, you can give keepsakes a new life by creating a scrapbook with letters, photos, or tickets and a quilt with a collection of favorite T-shirts. Or, you can combine these special items in shadowboxes for displaying and always having the joy of the memories nearby. 

While downsizing is an emotional process, and you may find items you forgot about, it’s also rewarding to move into your new home with all the things you truly value. Give yourself plenty of time when sorting through your items and enjoy reminiscing about the memories the items and photos bring back. Although space limitations may not allow you to move everything into your new place, you’ll always have memories from the good times throughout the years. 

If you’re looking for a new home that fits your changing needs or need help selling your current home, contact us for expert advice and real estate agents who put you first. 

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