Have you thought about the possibilities of “Rightsizng” your life? What would life be like without the burden of home maintenance? How great could life be with new opportunities, activities and new friends to share them with? Do you feel stuck after being in your house for 20, 30, 40 or more years not knowing how to get started?
The process of downsizing, or what we like to call “Rightsizing” can be accomplished with a good plan, organization and determination along with a host of resources to help you along the way.
1. Don’t go it alone! Ask for assistance from friends, family or professionals to help you along the way. Setting aside a time to work with someone will help you to stay focused and on task.
2. Start early! It’s never too early to start the process. Starting early and staying with it will get you where you need to be when move day arrives. Make decisions now so someone else won’t have to make those decisions for you later.
3. You come first! Make a wish list of the pieces of furniture, art and collectibles that are most important to you that you would like to take to your new home. Have a secondary list for other pieces that are not priority that you would like to take but are not essential. We like to call these the “must have” and the “maybe’s”.
4. Start behind closed doors! Choose one area of your home a month as you work your way through the house. Small steps are suggested when starting out. Pick one drawer, one cabinet, or one closet at a time from the room you will focus on that month. Walking down into the basement or up into the attic and thinking you will tackle it all in one day would make most of us turn around and run the other way.
5. Box it up and get it out! Identify the things you use every day and box up items you have not been using. Inventory and label the contents of these boxes. If after 6 months you have not removed anything from the boxes that you have stored consider donating or discarding them. Most likely these are not items you will need to move with you.
6. Gifting to family and friends. Invite over your family and friends and have them tag items they might like to have. You can do this even years before you move with a little piece of paper taped to the back or inside of an item with their name on it. (if you can use it they do not get it ☺). Give them a collage as a holiday gift, a photo album of their childhood or mementos from a special occasion to take home with them. Don’t let them leave empty handed! Hold on to those things that have the most sentimental value or find other ways to store them that do not take up as much space.
7. Ask “Do I really need it?” If it is not usable, wearable or fixable, it is time to let it go. That includes expired medications, outdated foods and clothes that are several sizes too big or too small.
8. Use up what you have! If moving is in your near future you should curb your bulk shopping sprees. Eat up the items in your freezer and your canned goods. Use up the rolls of paper towels and plastic wrap, and restock once you have moved. Save on your moving cost! Discard anything you do not need. The bottom line is the more that needs to be packed, the higher the cost of your move.
9. Plan your new space. Where do you spend the most time in your house? Consider this when looking for a new place to move. Get creative with your space, planning it to scale so that it works best for your everyday living. Focus on function first and then blend in safety and aesthetics.
10. Don’t wait too long! The one thing we hear most often from our clients after they have moved is, “I should have moved five years ago!” Start Rightsizing today! Enjoy all that life can be and PLAN a better move to create a smooth and organized experience that will “MOVE“ you.
TAD Relocation is a progressive leader in the Professional Move Management industry striving to remove the emotional and physical burden of moving and relocation. Founded in 2000, TAD Relocation, formerly Transitional Assistance & Design (TAD) offers a variety of services to active adults and seniors that help make home relocations and the otherwise overwhelming and traumatic experience of downsizing go as smoothly as possible. TAD Relocation is an accredited member of the National Association of Senior Move Managers (NASMM) and has assisted with more than 4,000 moves. Susie Danick, the founder and co-owner of the Gaithersburg, Maryland-based company is a Registered Nurse with a background in design. Ms. Danick is also a Past President and former Board Member of the national association’s Board of Directors. To learn more, visit www.tadrelocation.com.