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The pressure is on! You've got to downsize and there's too much to do. Don't panic, these tips are a great way to prioritize the work and get it done.
1. Declutter 90 Days Before the Move
In the month leading up to your move, it’s too late to do a proper job of decluttering and removing everything not coming with you. Start three months in advance, and aim to finish before the last month in your old home. It helps to start planning your furniture and other large items first. If you know you’re moving from a three-bedroom home to a two-bedroom home, don’t move three beds, three dressers, and three bedside tables to your new place. It costs money to haul big furniture, and if there’s nowhere to put it, you’ll just have to pay for a storage unit.
2. Consider What to Keep & What to Pass On
Smaller possessions allow more room for error. The last thing you want to do is throw away things you’ll need to repurchase. For example, if you’re moving locally, just throw all your cleaning supplies in a bucket so you don’t have to buy them all over again. As you sift through your belongings, create four piles: keep, sell, donate, and trash. You need time to organize a garage sale or online classified ads to sell your belongings — one more reason to start several months before you move. Check out the info about ReStore below to avoid those donation runs and possibly several runs to the dump. Follow the one-year rule: If you haven’t used something in the last year, donate or sell it. It’s tempting to hang onto things you once loved but no longer use or think you might use someday. But the truth is if you haven’t used a particular item in the last year, you’re unlikely to use it in the next year. Or ever.
3. Digitize Everything You Can
Scan your most important documents and recycle the rest. Old video cassettes, CDs, DVDs, photos, and crucial paper documents can be digitized and saved to the cloud or a local hard drive to free up space. You can fit your most important documents, such as birth certificates and social security cards, in a single folder. You can convert DVDs and CDs to digital files. You can also get rid of a dozen boxes of paper, discs, and videos simply by going paperless.
The piece of paper the photo is printed on isn’t what’s valuable. It’s the photo itself, which doesn’t need to take up space collecting dust in an old album. Store it digitally to free up space without losing your fondest memories.