Living in a house is quite a different experience than living in an apartment, especially if you’ve spent your entire life in a big home. The organization of space is not the same, and there are fewer things that you can fit into an apartment.
That is not necessarily a bad thing, but it will take some adjustments and downsizing.
We are all guilty of mindless hoarding of unnecessary stuff. After some time, you will find that the spacious room you once liked has now become a chaotic mess of piled things.
Decluttering is one of those processes that can quickly become stressful and overwhelming if not done the right way.
Follow these tips for stress-free downsizing!
Organizing and downsizing take a lot longer than you think, particularly if you have a big house and need to move into a much smaller apartment. It takes time, so don’t attempt to finish it a few days or even a week before moving.
Begin with the process at least a couple of weeks before your move. You don’t want to wait till the last moment just to start stressing over something that could’ve been finished by now.
Start with collecting packing supplies. You don’t need to buy anything expensive, or even spend money on this. Ask for cardboard boxes at The Home Depot, Walmart, Target, or any other big market. Usually, they will even be happy to get rid of them, while you save some money (and the environment!) for using “second-hand” boxes. For fragile things, like glasses or ceramic plates, you can always use towels, drapes, or your wardrobe. That way, you’ll save a little bit of space, money, and the planet.
Once you’re ready to pack, it’s time to decide whether you want to make a DIY move or opt for professional movers. It all depends on how much sturdy furniture you have and if you have someone to help you.
Figure Out Your New Space
Downsizing means that some adjustments to the new space will be necessary. Get the exact sizes of your new apartment and some photos, and try to sketch out the organization of your furniture. See what will fit, what will need to go, and if there is anything you need to purchase.
It’s best when you have a plan set before the move. That way, you will know exactly what should be in which corner; you can buy some furniture on time and avoid anxiety.
Keep in mind that you will probably need to get a little bit more creative with space usage once you transition to your apartment. Invest in some small furniture pieces that will help you organize better, like cubbies, small shelves, and items that have dual uses.
Declutter and Purge
Once you start decluttering, the best method is to sort your stuff into three categories: gift/donate, sell, and keep. It’s much easier to see how much stuff you’ve collected and where it will go once you move if you organize them from the start.
Another option is to have a garage sale (if you have the time). This way, you may recoup some of your initial investment by selling some of your less valuable goods and donating the remainder if the items are still in good shape.
According to this Plano moving company rule of thumb is to get rid of everything you haven’t used in the last year. Of course, sentimental items such as notes from deceased grandparents or a family heritage dish set only used every few years are excluded.
Even the most ardent minimalists may overlook the occasional emotional memento. To be on the safe side, don’t classify too many things as “sentimental” only to make room for them in your storage unit.
Consider a Storage Unit
When you’re downsizing from a house to an apartment, chances are you’ll need a storage unit. Of course, it all depends on the amount of furniture and things you have, and how much of that will fit your new home.
If there are items you can’t bear to live without, consider getting a storage unit for your additional items instead of cluttering your new apartment.
Don’t Let Downsizing Get You Down
If you start on time, plan, and think everything through, you will save yourself a lot of headaches when it comes to moving. If you can drive a moving truck, you have the option to rent one, or you can simply hire a professional team to help you move.
Don’t hesitate to get rid of things you don’t need, and consider renting a storage unit for all the furniture you may need later.
Even if you’re used to living in a spacious house, you will find that apartment life has a lot of perks. Maybe your friends will be closer; you could host game nights. And the best part? After a game night, there will be a smaller mess to clean!