How to Declutter and Downsize Before Moving Day

How to Declutter and Downsize Before Moving Day

When it’s time to pack your bags and move somewhere new, you’ll probably notice something: you have a lot of stuff.

The more things that you have, the longer it will take to move. If you’re moving into a smaller place, you may not have room for all of it. 

You’ve decided it’s time to purge some of your belongings. But what’s the most efficient way to do so?

We’ve put together these junk removal tips for homeowners to take the stress out of moving day. Grab your garbage bags, roll up your sleeves, and get ready to downsize!


Avoid Getting a Storage Unit

We all know how difficult it can be to let go of something we’ve attached sentimental value to. In this post, we aren’t encouraging you to get rid of everything you enjoy. Instead, we’re advising you to take a closer look at it—doing so can save you time and money.

If you have a hard time parting with your things, you may consider renting a storage unit. But these often come with a higher cost than they’re worth. Ask yourself these questions:

  • How much will it cost to rent the unit for one year?
  • Are the items I want to store easily replaced?
  • How many years will it be until I move again?

If there’s something you need that you can’t fit in your new space, a storage unit may be a good option, but try to find a less expensive alternative.


Get an Early Start

If you leave packing until the last minute, you might be tempted to make rash decisions just to get it all done. Decluttering is important, but you don’t want to throw away something that you might need.

Set aside at least a month or two to organize and downsize before moving day. If you aren’t pressed for time, you’ll feel more comfortable making decisions and packing boxes.

Moving can be hard work. Space it out so that you aren’t spreading yourself too thin.


Create a Sorting System

You’ve pulled out all your drawers, dumped out their contents, and now you’ve got a giant stack of stuff to deal with. Where do you begin?

Start by making 3 designated piles:

  • Things to donate

Clothes that don’t fit, books you won’t read, and hobbies you’ve given up—these are all items that can be passed down or donated. If you have some items of high value, you may want to host a garage sale.

  • Things to throw away

Some things just can’t be given away—they’re better off being recycled or thrown away. No one needs that broken DVD player or the speakers that won’t charge. You may need to rent a dumpster for all of your garbage!

  • Things to keep

When you’re decluttering, make sure you don’t throw away everything. You’ll need some furniture in your new place!

It’s important to hold onto the items that are meaningful to you, like family photo albums. But you need to draw the line somewhere (do you need to keep every Christmas card that you received last year?).

By sorting your items into piles, it will be easy to tell what needs to go where. It might take some work, but it’ll be worth it when moving day arrives.


Set Aside the Essentials

Here’s something you’ll thank yourself for later: a box of essential items. Set aside the things you’ll need immediately after you move—things like your toothbrush, bathroom products, clothing, and your cell phone charger. By making these items easily accessible, you won’t need to dig through boxes just to find a pair of socks. 


Check Expiration Dates

No one wants to throw away an unopened carton of almond milk or a tub of yogurt. But if that item expired a few months ago, it’s probably time to pitch it.

If you’re having trouble sorting through your pantry, check all the best before dates on your goods. Anything that’s expired can be tossed.


Imagine Your New Place

Ask yourself: does this item belong in my new home? If you can’t envision a place for it, you may not want to take it with you.

Decluttering makes organizing your pantry easier, and it even benefits your mental health. You’ll feel a restored sense of calm and control when you start cooking in your new kitchen.

Think about where you’ll store belongings in your next home or apartment. You may need to purchase a vertical storage unit to place your books, framed photos, or other mementos. 


Moving day can be exciting, but it can also be a source of stress. Need help? Contact Careful Movers. We’ll make your move that much easier. Call us today and we’ll provide a quote.

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