My friend Ronique Gibson of Stagetecture, LLC, has graciously provided this helpful information for when, and if, you or your loved one must relocate or simply must get rid of some of the things accumulated over a lifetime. Read on and please take a moment to check out Ronique’s great website!
Downsizing homes can be an emotional move for all family members. Whether it’s for financial reasons, a college student moving, a family member has passed, or moving into an assisted living facility, downsizing can be painful.
My family and I recently downsized from a 3600 square foot home to a 2100 square foot home. For my husband and I, it was a move that needed to happen. Between the hours commuting, the gigantic house that was hard to keep up with, and our suffering quality of life, it was time to move. For my two teenage sons, it was not a wanted move. Leaving friends and getting smaller rooms were not on their agenda’s.
Fortunately, there are some upsides to downsizing, and the experience can be made less emotional with some helpful tips.
1.) Clutter vs. Importance: Often times, living in a larger home enables you to hold on to everything! Take some time and go through your belongings. Consider giving items to a charity, donating them to neighbors, or having a garage sale. If you know the size of the space you will be moving to, envision where your belongings will go . If you can’t clearly see a space for it, consider finding it another home.
2.) Seek Help: You don’t have to do this alone. If you need help physically, or emotionally, ask a family member or friend to help you. If moving things is too emotional, due to a traumatic event, consider hiring a professional. A Senior Move Manager can help elderly, and provide non-emotional and non-attached moving assistance. Even college students have a rude awakening when they realize how much they can’t bring to college! Often a call to the university for some dimensions of the room, or a trip to the university helps out tremendously.
3.) Start early: Consider a strategy to your move as soon as possible. This way, the emotional side of packing, and sifting through belongings has a specific timeline. Often times, when we leave the move time open-ended, we tend to procrastinate and in turn bring on more emotional stress in the end.
4.) Justify your move: Instead of looking at the negative aspect of your downsize, remain optimistic. If it’s for financial reasons you’re moving, think of the money you will save to pull you out of your financial hole. If a loved one has passed, the move can signify a new chapter in your life. Don’t forget the past, but focus on new memories to be made in the next home.
Downsizing can be tough life changing experience. I had a colleague tell me she refers to it as “rightsizing”. It’s making your next home the right sized home for your life, finances, and family at this particular time. This may be your first move, or one of many. Either way, be comfortable with your decision, and know that life is always changing. This just might be the change that you and your family need.
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