Anyone who’s ever moved house will know what a mammoth task it is.
Property viewings, application forms, finances, and the emotional ups and downs of leaving an old home to set up camp somewhere new, all combine to make finding a new home a stressful life experience.
By the time you’ve finally decided on the property that will become your next family home, you’re likely to be so exhausted that the only suitcase you’ll want to pack will be the one you take with you on a jet plane somewhere hot and exotic to have a darn good relax!
But you’re not on the home straight yet; once you’ve found your new property, next comes the fun part; packing!
Moving home is an exciting occasion, and deserves to be celebrated as such. So rather than the thought of the packing, moving and unpacking that’s about to follow filling you with dread, here are my five top tips for clearing clutter from your home, to make moving day a breeze.
Prepare well in advance
From the moment you decide that you’re going to move home, even if you haven’t found somewhere to live yet, start decluttering. In the early stages, this doesn’t even have to impact your life in any way, shape, or form. Empty a draw here, clear a shelf there; take a couple of items out of your wardrobe at a time.
You’ll be surprised how much you get done without even thinking about it once you start noticing the clutter that’s around you all the time.
Reserve a zone to store boxes without interrupting your life
There’s nothing worse than starting to pack too early and tripping over boxes for weeks on end. The permanent feeling of living in a half-packed house will make you feel agitated and will lead to you throwing everything in boxes that you don’t need to take with you, just to give yourself some sense of normality.
Allocate one area of your home to store boxes without interrupting your life.
I recommend a study or spare bedroom which you don’t use every day. Having things packed up and moved out of sight will keep some order in your home until there’s no putting it off any longer.
Remember that even if you’re selling your home, you can still reserve an area that is restricted to everyone but you, so don’t worry about potential viewers being put off by your organised chaos.
Consider the size of your new space
If you’re downsizing, there’s no point in you packing everything up and taking it with you only for it to end up in storage for months on end, or never unpacked at all. If you’re moving to a smaller property, it’s important that at this stage you only pack what will fit and give the rest to charity or take it to the tip.
Put a ‘last-used’ restriction on items before packing them
I recommend one year. If you haven’t worn an item of clothing in a full 12-month cycle, send it to charity. If you have items in your kitchen that are doing nothing more than gathering dust that you haven’t used for a year, be ruthless! The chances are that if you haven’t used them in your existing home in the past 12 months, you’re unlikely to use them in your new one either.
Hold a garage sale
A garage sale is an excellent way to remove some clutter and make some money in the process, and as you’re moving anyway, there’s very little you need to do to prepare. Bring items down to the garage as you come across them, put some signs up in your local area and on the day, open up the doors and let the clutter escape! Make a promise to yourself that anything you don’t sell will go straight to the charity shop instead of moving with you.
Measure spaces in your new home to consider where everything may go
Once the settlement has taken place, and there’s no going back from your move, arrange with the agent to go to your new property and take some measurements. Viewing big empty spaces, or spaces with other people’s furniture in them can be deceptive, so it’s important that you know that all your furniture will fit before the removalists have lugged heavy items from one property to another.
Move in stages
Once the removal truck is booked, and the big items are taken care of, if possible, take over smaller boxes and the bits and bobs you can carry yourself well before moving day. Set up the kitchen, the bathroom, and even unpack some of your clothes and put them in the wardrobe. Little and often will take the stress out of moving day and make it feel much less like the enormous task it has the potential to be.
If you’re short on time and the thought of moving is more overwhelming than exciting, let me help you cut the clutter. Call us to reduce your moving day stress, so all that’s left for you to do is relax and make your new house your home.