Packing your house into a box is an overwhelming thought. A move to a smaller home after living in your house for forty years may seem impossible. With these ten rightsizing tips, the process can be simplified. And the fun of retirement awaits you!
1. Does it spark joy?
Ask yourself this question when you look at an item. If the answer is “yes,” then you certainly want to keep these things. Expert and author, Marie Kondo always asks her clients this question as they begin the process of rightsizing.
2. Keep your sessions short.
Start cleaning or thinning at least 3 months before your move. Plan for a few hours each day and be sure to add it to your calendar. Start slow so you don’t get discouraged. Start small: the panty, the closet or your guest room. Leave the attic for later.
3. Find a helper that will keep you honest!
Will you really use that old suitcase, lamp, cookie sheet or dust buster? Probably not, so she/he can keep asking you that question when the decision-making is difficult.
4. Work with a floor plan and templates.
Measure your new rooms and compare them to your current rooms. This will help you see how much space you actually will have and can assist you in deciding which pieces will fit in your new home. Do you have a kitchen table and a dining room table? Cut out both with our paper templates and you will easily be able to decide which one will fit best in your new space.
5. Divide your things into three.
Keep. Sell. Donate. Experts tell us that you should only keep one-third to one-half of what you have now. Gathering all like items together, such as clothing or kitchen items, will make it easier to decide which items to keep as you go through the piles.
6. No more home repairs, no more meal preparation.
Garages and kitchens can be great places to shed extras. Snow shovels, lawnmowers, garbage cans won’t be needed in your new home at Springmoor. A second set of mixing bowls or multiple serving dishes probably won’t be necessary either. Remember that you will be enjoying wonderful meals in our dining rooms and cafes. You will eat at least one meal a day that is prepared by our chefs. Those extra serving spoons or bread-maker probably won’t be used very often.
7. To sell or to donate?
Make a list of high-end items that you might want to sell or donate. Lists of antique dealers, estate sale companies and consignment shops can be found online with a little bit of research. Springmoor’s Endowment Committee is happy to help with any donations that you have. These donations are tax deductible and the funds will assist with expenditures that benefit all residents.
8. The OHIO rule: Only Handle It Once
Don’t forget that everything you put “in the box” will soon need to be taken “out of the box”. If you don’t want to touch it again or find a place for it in your new home, then put it in the trash or donate pile. Do you need it? Do you have room for it? Are you storing your children’s trophies or their old prom dresses? If they don’t want them, then you probably don’t need to be their storage unit.
9. Drawers and files
Ask a professional about which documents you need to keep. Find out which ones are safe to toss or shred. Outdated medications can be disposed of at a near-by pharmacy and old clothes can be given away.
10. Number your boxes for each room.
A color code will work too. Once you begin packing, use the same number for all kitchen boxes and then a new one for each additional room. A colored label can help you easily identify each box too.
By lightening your rooms you will quickly begin to feel a welcome difference. You will be surrounded by all of your favorite things in your new home. Springmoor looks forward to having you join our community and enjoy your retirement with your new right sized home!
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo
Susan Stanhope: Move Elders with Ease
Beth Wenhart: Carolina Relocation and Transition Specialist