Growing Pains: How to Downsize Your Home With Ease
Expand Your Life by Shrinking Your Footprint
Maybe you’re looking to downsize your now-empty nest because you don’t need so many rooms now that your kids have gone off to college or are living in their own homes with their own kids. Maybe you’re looking to shrink your carbon footprint by living a more austere life and shrinking the size of your home is your next step. Maybe you’re just looking to save money on energy bills, property taxes, and the like.
Regardless of the reason, you’re in good company. According to a recent Nielsen report, as much as 54% of baby boomers are looking to downsize their home in the next decade. One wonders if the 46% who are looking to stay in place or are still seeking their dream home (looking to upsize) are doing so because of the perceived pains associated with downsizing. But downsizing can be more freeing than it is painful. Let’s take a look at how to do it without hurting yourself.
The Bare Necessities
Downsizing in anticipation of a move doesn’t have to be the most painful thing you’ve ever done. But, you don’t have to take our word for it — trust the moving experts at Merchants Moving and Storage in Boise, Idaho, who have outlined a three-step process to make de-cluttering your life in anticipation of a downsizing move much easier.
They recommend examining everything you currently own while doing a thorough cleaning of your current space. Concentrate on identifying the bare essential items you currently have — those things that you would have to purchase within three months of moving if they went missing.
Keepsakes and Heirlooms
Next, identify those items that do not have any direct usefulness for you, but that have either emotional or intrinsic value. No expert would advocate throwing away your great-grandmother’s mantle clock, your firstborn’s baby shoes, or that mid-century modern couch that could fetch you a couple thousand if you can find the right buyer.
But if you’re like most people, the majority of your home is not stuffed with items of high emotional or monetary value. Many of your knickknacks could be sold at a garage sale or on ebay, or donated to a charity for resale.
The Final Cut, Free Your Life and Your Mind (and Heart) May Follow
If you’re looking to downsize, it’s most likely that paring down your physical belongings will have to be a part of the preparation. If you approach the process with a clear head and do your best to keep in mind that freeing yourself of unnecessary physical belongings is not only a necessary part of the process, but may also help you to transition mindfully and emotionally into the next stage of your life, then the process itself can be a joyful one.
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