Organizing and Decluttering Before Moving

Here are my top tips for decluttering before moving.

One of the best things about moving is that you are often forced to look at your stuff and declutter.

After all, if you’re going to pack anyway, you may as well get rid of clutter and unused items now rather than pack them and unpack them in the new place.

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Let’s look at some pre-moving decluttering tips that will make your move more pleasurable.

Start to Declutter When the Your Home is Listed

If you have a very cluttered home then you really should start to declutter before the house is listed.

Overly cluttered homes are much more difficult to sell, and you might find the listed price would be lower than a lovely clutter-free home.

By freeing up space in your home the buyer can see exactly what your home has to offer. They have more chance of being able to see their own stuff in your home.

How to Purge Before a Big Move?

A purge to me means going through your stuff and eradicating any belongings you have that are useless, broken, run-down or outdated.

Stuff that gets purged will usually just go straight out in the trash. It probably can’t be donated or recycled.

Examples of items to purge would be

  • shabby and broken pieces of furniture especially large items like sofas
  • clothing that is worn or damaged
  • childrens and baby clothes that no longer fit, but are too shabby to be donated
  • children’s toys that have been outgrown, but are too damaged to donate or sell
  • broken garden tools
  • appliances that no longer work or are useless
  • past their best Christmas decorations
  • old electronic gadgets like old laptops monitors and cables.
  • unused or broken pieces of sports equipment
  • shabby looking area rugs that still look awful after cleaning
  • old newspapers and magazines

Is the Item Worth Moving?

The crucial thing to ask yourself is “do you actually want to go to all the effort of packing and then unpacking items you don’t love into your lovely new home?”

A new home is your chance to leave behind all the clutter and mess and start a minimalist and simple lifestyle.

Declutter Checklist for Moving

Once you have had a good purge, its time to declutter. With purging it’s really fairly obvious what needs to go.

With decluttering you need to get rid of items that are still useful, so it is harder to make a decision about what items are to go.

Here are some categories of items that you might want to look at with a view to reducing, donating or selling.

  • house plants, these are a pain and messy to move as they are not robust enough to just get thrown into the back of a truck.
  • books are very heavy. Only keep hold of a few books that mean a lot to you, unless of course, you are a bona fide collector.
  • unwanted childrens toys the best can be donated or sold at a garage sale.
  • kitchen appliances, be honest did you ever use that donut maker? Declutter any appliance that is not used regularly.
  • unwanted child and adult clothes can be donated or sold.
  • hobbies like crafting come with loads of clutter, do you still want to pursue that hobby?
  • items for the yard like lawnmowers can go if they are either too big or too underpowered deal with your new yard.
  • sports equipment, golf sets, kayaks that are no longer used should go.

Ensure you Allow Enough Time

As soon as you know that you are moving, start the decluttering process. You can do it in two weeks but if you can do it in a year, that will make it even easier than doing it fast.

When you work in smaller chunks of time, you’ll make a big impact without killing yourself.

Start Using Your Stockpiles

Most of us tend to stock up on things like shampoo, laundry detergent, toilet paper, and so forth.

Go ahead and start using your stockpiles to whittle down this stuff.

You really don’t want to pay for space in a moving truck to move it.

Check Expiration Dates

On meds, food, and anything you want to keep, check the expiration dates. If it’s expired, get rid of it.

If you’ve lived in your home for a while, you may be shocked to find out that you’re using years-expired medications and that the mustard is four years old.

Get Out Your Boxes

You can do the box method for this if you have enough time. Give your kids a box or a garbage bag and challenge them to fill it up.

Give them a box for donations and ask them to fill it up to donate stuff. You get the idea.  

Use the KonMari Method™

As mentioned earlier, her method involves going through your items by category, starting with clothing and ending with mementos.

Using this method, you can get through your home in a few weeks without breaking a sweat.

But if you want to do the decluttering in a couple of weeks, you may do better with the box method.

Start a Donation Pile

Allocate a place in your home to gather up items to be donated. Get these items in your car as quickly as possible so it has left the home.

Next time you have a journey in the car drop everything off at a local charity that excepts items to sell.

Organize Garage Sales

Moving garage or yard sales are a good way to get rid of some of the useful stuff that you don’t want to take with you: the clothing you have not worn in years, kitchen items you never use, extra sets of things you don’t need or use.

If you start soon enough, you can have a series of garage sales based on where you are in the process instead of just one.

How Will Decluttering Before Moving Save Money?

If you want to help motivate yourself to let go of items in your home, just think about the expense of moving all the stuff if you are using a proffesionsl removal service. They will quote you for the move entirely on the amount of stuff you have in your home.

If you are going to move then you will find it costs more to either do numerous trips or It’s costly to rent a moving truck so the more stuff you can eliminate and consolidate before moving day, the better off you’ll be.

Your New Home will be Less Cluttered

One of the greatest advantages of having a good purge and declutter of all your belongings is the wonderful feeling you will have when you move your stuff into your new home, and it won’t start off cluttered.

and Finally….

It’s easy to put off decluttering simply because of the volumes and amount of work involved. But the hard work will certainly pay off on moving day.

Good luck with your house move.

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