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RE/MAX Suburban

Tips for Downsizing Before a Move

Moving can be stressful regardless of your future plans, but if those plans include a smaller home, the stress can be increased exponentially. Moving to a smaller place often means downsizing, which can be taxing and emotional.

Donate the Easy Items First
Saving the easiest part for last is an understandable technique; after all, eating dessert first can seem a little indulgent. However, when it comes to the stress and emotional toll that downsizing can take, creating little wins can give you momentum for when difficult choices come. Start with the easy items—donate the things in your home you know you can live without. This will give you space to pack and downsize and get a lot done right away—with little effort.

Pack Essential Occasional Use Items
Those special wedding photos or that sentimental item of your grandmother’s may be essential to keep, but they don’t need to be used day-to-day. These are the ideal items to pack up right away. This can help you visualize how much stuff you have already and help you ruthlessly create space when going through the rest of your items. 

Pro tip: label and pack your boxes, but do not seal them yet. This will allow you to remove and replace any items if you need to make room for more important items.

Go Digital
A digital photo frame can take up the space of a large filing cabinet full of photographs with a significantly smaller footprint. Traditionally when downsizing, you had to choose your favorite photos and hope family might be interested in the rest. Now it’s easy to digitize everything and keep it safely stored in the cloud. Keep things simple for yourself, and use a service that will do the work for you so you can focus on the rest of your move.

Swap Your Future for Multi-use Items
When trying to make the most of your space, multi-use furniture is key. Donate or sell your current bulkier items and instead opt for furniture pieces that can serve multiple purposes. Items like a sofa bed or a dining table with storage can help save space in your new home while adding style and function.

Measure Your New Space
Downsizing, like any part of a move, can become overwhelming. If you feel stuck and are not sure what else you can part with, take a moment to measure and visualize your new space. Use a measuring tape to truly evaluate how much room you will have; planning without measuring first can add a lot of undue anxiety, so don’t skip this step.