According to the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute, more than half of Australians aged 55+ are open to downsizing. This is in response to lifestyle changes such as children leaving their home and, most importantly, health.
Australians have some of the biggest houses in the world.
With the kids gone out into the world, the home feels empty and a lot bigger than it used to be.
A study by the Australian Bureau of Statistics reports that young men leave their home by 20.9 years of age and women by 19.8 years.
Though downsizing can be cathartic, it is not as easy as it seems.
There are several things you need to do to downsize your home, and without a plan, it can be very difficult.
However, our team of removalists on the Gold Coast have put together their advice on how to move house when downsizing.
Effective Downsizing Tips
When you move, one of the first tasks you need to handle is to downsizing your possessions.
According to the KonMarie method by Marie Kondo, get rid of anything that does not evoke joy in you.
You can also choose to donate anything that hasn’t used in a while.
Take an Inventory of Your Possessions and Categorize
Start by taking an inventory of items and sort them in different piles of keep, donate or discard.
Instead of tackling room by room, organise it by category.
This process helps you identify stuff that you haven’t used in recent times.
A point to note: This applies only to the sorting out process and not for packing.
When it comes to packing, you need to do it room by room.
So, if you are sorting out your clothes, scour every room and closet until you have every room sorted out.
Sort through Every Category and Cut Down Everything Ruthlessly
If you are moving to a smaller home, you probably do not need everything you have accumulated over the years.
It’s time to ruthlessly sort and give away stuff that you haven’t used in the past year or so.
Are you waiting to lose weight and wear those jeans you got a decade back? Donate it!
Retain everything with a sentimental value, but that doesn’t include your chipped mugs, torn books and broken things.
Leave the used and threadbare items behind and bring the good stuff with you.
Donate/Give with No Strings Attached
Once you donate your possessions, do not look back.
Do not think about where it went or how it is being used.
Maybe they are using it for themselves or acquiring it for their friends.
The more you wonder about it, the more reluctant you’ll be to let go of your possessions.
Sell Everything That Doesn’t Fit in Your New Home
Not everything needs to be donated.
You can sell items in good condition and make some money for them.
Set them aside, and you can look at them later and decide where and how you want to sell them.
For your furniture and decor, you can place ads in Gumtree or Facebook Marketplace.
Once you decide to downsize, stop buying until the process is complete and you’ve moved to your new home.
If you can’t help but acquire, let go of one thing for every new item you buy.
Make sure you retain only your favourites.
Go Digital and Purge Your Unnecessary Paperwork
Ditch the paperwork when you downsize.
Old bank statements, tax returns, expired warranty cards, manuals for appliances you no longer own.
Throw it away or digitise it with a scanner so that all of it can be available online.
Be ruthless when you discard the paperwork. Retain only those documents you definitely need.
Consider Alternate Storage Options
Even after downsizing, you may find that you still have more things than you have a place for.
In this case, you may want to look at long term storage options at a storage facility, or expanding the amount of storage that’s available in your new home.
Wall-mounted shelves are the most popular option.
You can also make use of the space below the beds, under the stairs and on top of your wardrobes.
Other options are ottomans with inbuilt storage, beds with drawers, and crawl spaces.
They can help hide the clutter while making better use of the hidden areas.
Moving house can be challenging at the best of times, and when you’re downsizing it can be even tougher.
Talk to our Gold Coast removalists and ask about strategies that can help you downsize your possessions to fit into your new home.