Moving is a stressful and chaotic time. You want to make sure that everything goes as smoothly as possible. Planning ahead will make the move easier for you and your family. A great way to do this is by decluttering before moving day. This will lower the number of items you need to pack, and it can also be a great way to generate extra income or even find new homes for your belongings. Here, are some tips on what you should keep, what you should sell, and what you should give away before moving day.

Tips on decluttering before a move

Getting organized is the first step in decluttering your stuff before a move. When it comes to your belongings such as clothing, shoes, and accessories, employing the 3-box system is a great start. Here is how it works:

Get 3 boxes – one for keeping, one for selling, and one for giving away or donating to charity.

1. Take inventory of all the items you own.

Anything that is broken or missing parts, throw it away. Keeping these items because you think you will fix them someday is not a good idea. They will just take up valuable space and can encourage hoarding as a habit.

2. Be realistic about the amount of space you have.

Will your new house have storage space? Is there a garage or attic to store your winter wardrobe, athletic equipment, exercise bike, weight bench, or etc? If you are downsizing from a larger home to a smaller one, you may have to make the decision to part with some of these items due to lack of space.

3. Donate items you have not used in over a year.

If you have stuff that you haven’t used in a year or more, donate it to charity. Sometimes you buy something and plan to use it, but for one reason or another, never do. A great dress that is too small for you will fit someone else. Hanging onto items that don’t fit because you plan to lose weight and wear them someday is unrealistic. They will just take up unnecessary room in your closets, creating more clutter.

What to Keep

When deciding what to keep, ask yourself these questions:

Does it fit?

Do you need it?

Do you use it regularly?

Does it have value or meaning to you?

Keep the items that you currently use, are important to you, or have sentimental value. That includes important documents, photographs, memorabilia, clothing, personal items, jewelry (valuables).

What to Sell or Give Away

Picking the right place to sell your possessions is essential. After all, you’re going to need a place to put all those boxes when the time comes to move. After you’ve made a list of what you want to keep, be sure to look for the best possible home to sell your unneeded possessions.,

You can sell almost anything! There is no better way to make money than by selling old family items. Try selling items on the classified ads and through Craigslist. If you don’t mind taking the time to research and find the best place to sell items, you could even try eBay or even selling unwanted items at a local garage sale. If you can’t sell an item, re-home it to a friend or donate it to a local thrift shop.

Things you can sell on Facebook Marketplace , Craigslist, or in the classifieds:

  • Exercise equipment
  • DVDs, video game systems
  • Children’s bikes, roller skates, etc.
  • Clothing that no longer fits
  • Furniture – dressers, desks, washer/dryer
  • Appliances – coffee makers, waffle irons, chest freezers, microwave ovens

What to Get Rid Of

Extra items – you don’t need two coffee makers, 3 microwaves, and a ton of sheets or towels. If you’re moving into a smaller place, you won’t have room to store any of that.

Clothes and shoes that don’t fit. Any items that you, your spouse, or children can’t wear anymore. Sell them or donate to charity.

Broken furniture and appliances – If you haven’t fixed it by now, you’re not going to. Let’s face it.

Outdated electronic devices – unless you’re a classic video game collector, there is no reason to hang onto outdated electronics.

Expired food, pantry items, medicines, and cosmetics should be discarded. Go through your refrigerator and get rid of all the takeout food sauce packets you’ve been collecting as well. You’ll always get these items when you order food, so there is no reason to pack them.

Stacks of old newspapers or magazines. You may have started collecting newspapers for the coupons, or for the cartoon strips, but they really don’t have a purpose after you have read the stories. They tend to attract mice and pack rats. If you don’t want to throw them away, you can put them in the recycle bin.

Collections you no longer want. Fads come and go. At one time, everyone was buying Beanie Babies, Cabbage Patch Kids, and porcelain figurines. For antiques and collectors’ items, pay a visit to an antiques dealer or advertise for private owners.

Make sure that what you are bringing with you will fit in your new space and be used. We tend to accumulate stuff over time, and it may be surprising that you have collected so much over the years. It can be hard to part with things you have had for so long but donating them to someone who can get some use out of them now, is a good thing to do.

Decluttering before the move will ensure that your belongings will fit in the moving truck and have a place in your new home when they arrive. A helpful tip is to label each box according to the room it goes in for easier delegating. When they come off the truck, they go right in that room to be unpacked, which makes the job of unpacking a lot easier.

If you need help, contact us for help organizing your stuff for the move, or when you get in your new home.