Downsizing is a daunting task at any time in your life, however, the older you get and more items you collect the bigger this task becomes. At Crate It Storage we provide downsizing and storage services to many seniors in the Calgary area and wanted to put together a list of tips for downsizing specific to seniors.
You can probably think of at least a handful of items off the top of your head that you can give or throw away right now. To be more effective and get into a flow of things, start in your smaller rooms first that contain items with the least amount of emotional attachment. Laundry rooms and linen closets are good places to start. When going through items in your home, consider what you’ll really need? If you’re going from a 4-bedroom home to a 2 bedroom one, you likely only need 4 sets of sheets and the rest can go.
Eliminate items in rooms you won’t have in your new home.
If you’re moving to a condo or townhouse, and are giving up your office, 2 car garage or third bathroom you’ll need to eliminate most of the items in these spaces of your current home or find somewhere new for them. Depending on just how different in size your old and new places are, relocating these items to somewhere new can prove to be a challenge. Items like gently used office furniture, and storage shelving are more valuable when re-sold than old couches or furniture.
Only make yes and no piles, eliminate the maybes.
When you’re going through years of stuff in your home, there are going to be things you feel sentimental about. You may be tempted to create a maybe pile and intend on going back through them at the end but don’t. When you get to the end you don’t want to end up with a pile bigger than both your yes and no piles and find all you’ve done is relocate your clutter from one spot to another. Moving does cost money and the more you have the more there is to move. Decluttering before you move is sure to save you money too.
Reduce your collections.
It can be hard to let go of the snow globes you’ve collected on vacations, or your always growing spoon collection but in your new place, you won’t have room for all of these items. Reducing these collections can be difficult, however, to make it simple choose one or two of your favorites and photograph the rest. Having these high-resolution photos will be better than having these items packed away in boxes where you’ll never see them. You can easily add these photos to a photo book to enjoy them for years to come.
Give legacy gifts now, instead of later.
When decluttering, you’ll likely come across items you plan to give to members of your family eventually. Consider giving these legacy gifts early to save space in your new place-especially if they are items that will just sit in storage anyways. You’ll benefit from being able to watch your loved ones enjoy these items for a longer period too.