One of the best times to get rid of all you excess belongings is when you are about to move. Then you will be going through absolutely everything you own and will have an opportunity to evaluate the need for each and every thing within your excessive collection of material objects.
Let me also add that by decluttering your household prior to your move, you will not only save money for the packing and transport of unnecessary items, but you will create more space in your new location, giving you a truly fresh start.
There are several ways to consider what can be eliminated from your belongings. One good way to begin your cleaning process by asking yourself “when was the last time I actually used this?” If you haven’t used something in the past year, chances are you don’t really need it. Unless it is a keepsake (and please don’t make the mistake of assuming that everything from your past is a keepsake) then you can be pretty sure it is a candidate for throwing out (or else donating and even selling, if it is in good condition).
WHERE TO BEGIN?
Decluttering is a process just like packing, so take it step by step and room by room.
Bedroom – begin with your closet. Get rid of old shoes, out-of-date clothing (unless that is your thing). Remember, thinking your old clothes/shoes will “come back into style one day” is a trap. Statistics on fashion cycles suggest that designs recycle approximately every 25 years. So, unless you have a warehouse for storage, it would probably be best to toss it and wait for the return of that particular fashion so you can merely pick it up again in the store – and new at that.
Kitchen - Do you have a catch-all drawer in your kitchen for old cooking and eating utensils, crumpled take-out menus (perhaps from places that probably no longer exist) or empty writing pens? Now is the time to eliminate any or even all of those type of items.
Also, access how many pieces of dinnerware you actually need. If you have a huge collection leftover from times when you threw dinner parties, but find you haven’t entertained in that manner for years then you may want to consider getting rid of them and getting a slimmed down version of dinnerware such as a small Corelle collection. Home Depot has a 16-piece collection for under $50.
Don’t forget that mismatched collection of plastic containers (which probably includes a load of “grocery store Tupperware” (aka empty margarine or sour cream containers).
Bathroom – If any place in your house is a place to gather clutter, it is the bathroom. Those cabinets underneath the sink and even the linen closet can be potential magnet for such things. These places warrant a good investigation for unwanted items.
Look for expired medicines, out-of-date vitamins, practically empty bath products (shampoos, conditioners, body washes, old bars of soap) that have been shoved to the side for the new ones.
Access the condition and amount of your sheets and towels. Are they worn out? Do you have more than you really need?
Storage Areas – Oh, man! These areas can be a real mess. We all have them. It might be a huge garage, an attic or just a dedicated closet. Moving is definitely the time for decluttering those type of areas.
Consider things such as old paint, unused or half-used hobby or craft supplies. Another category is old electronics. You can only use so many electronics and I can tell you for sure, those old computers are not coming “back in style.” They are dinosaurs 5 years after you purchase them.
Books - I have to add a word about books. I have been a collector of books all of my life. I was taught to read a young age (3 years) and my love for books has never stopped. However, I recently got rid of 100s of books, simply because most everything is now available digitally. Now there are many schools of thought on this, but I will point out that when I got rid of those books, I didn’t get rid of all of them. I kept many important ones. Collecting books is still valid. My only suggestion here is to access whether the information contained within the book is viable. That together with your current interests should dictate what ones to donate (I can never say “throw away” when it comes to a book.)
Call Missy Donaghy with Interiors for Seniors for a FREE consultation 321-279-3301.
Interiors for Seniors is proud to have been chosen as one of the top 100 moving blogs on the Internet.