Packing up and moving on? Now is the time to let go of the clutter and embrace the fine art of consolidating and culling your possessions.
De-cluttering before your move means less to pack, an accurate inventory for removalists and a house full of possessions you really want. A practical way to get started is to evaluate each room in your new house and get a clear understanding of what you want to put in each space. If it helps, take photos of rooms and storage spaces and list which items will go where. This will give you some perspective on how much you need to cull and the motivation to get started.
Set some game rules
Get the whole family involved in the cleanout and pick a time that works for everyone. Cleanups can easily turn into trips down memory lane, so try to set a timeframe for the day. Choose your item, make a decision and move on.
Make your piles
Move everything into three piles: purge, pack and donate. As you’re sifting through your possessions, ask yourself a few questions. When did I last use this? Do I really need it? How easy is it to replace? Keep an eye on the progress of each pile. Your ‘purge’ and ‘donate’ items should be growing steadily.
Evaluate and congratulate
Once you’ve moved through the entire house, bag up your ‘purge’ and ‘donate’ piles and return your ‘pack’ items to their places. You might feel nostalgic about some things you’ve parted with. Talk about it and congratulate yourself on getting through the work.
Online auction houses and classifieds are your friends
Check your ‘purge’ and ‘donate’ piles to see if there’s anything you could sell ahead of moving day. It’s a good feeling sending your special items back out into the world, plus it’s extra cash in your pockets. Online auction sites and classifieds like Gumtree and eBay are full of people hunting for unique bargains. Post a fair offer and some good photos and you should have no shortage of buyers.
Donate what you can't sell
Donate everything else that is still in good condition to charity. Non-profit donation networks like Freecycle are a great way to donate to your local community and support environmental sustainability. The best part is that you’ll know all your beloved old clutter has finally found the right home.
The final clean
Now that you’ve decluttered and downsized, your last, final clean before you move should be much easier. Be sure to be thorough. Make a list of everything that needs to be cleaned so you don’t miss any essentials that could impact that all important bond. You could also hire a professional cleaner to do the final clean – just be sure to check that they have done all that’s required before you hand back the keys to your real estate agent.