empty room after decluttering and downsizing

How to Declutter and Downsize

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Our Downsizing Journey

In 10 years of marriage, my husband and I have always lived in this house. We have been married before so each of us had loads of stuff from our "befores". But now we are facing a move and downsizing.

We are downsizing from 5 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, a full apartment in the basement, a pool, detached shop, and 3 acres! Too much home, too much space, too much acreage. Too. Much.

Downsizing Wisely

The key to downsizing is to rid your life of what you no longer need without ridding yourself of what you do need. Sounds simple, right?

The two most critical things you need for downsizing our time and thoughtful planning. If you are short on time, or not planning for the desired result, mistakes are bound to happen

Here are some tips I will be using during our upcoming move to a smaller home.

1. Downsize big items.
We know we won't have as much space, so keeping a full dining room full of furniture and a kitchen table just doesn't make sense. Better to sell what we won't be using before we move instead of paying to move things we know we won't use in a new home.

2. Take small items with you.
It's always a good idea to declutter your home from time to time. And when you're about to make a move, you might be tempted to get rid of lots of things you'll actually need when you're in your new space. Here's how to manage the small stuff.

Separate things into must-keeps and maybe-keeps. Keep items you currently use or use seasonally. Also keep anything that has sentimental value or practical purpose. Sell or give away what no longer has a practical purpose for you.

3. Discard the "might be useful one day" items.
That box of tech gear and cords that you've kept forever...get rid of it! If you haven't used something in a year, you don't need it! If you can't see a use for something in the coming six months, time to get rid of it.

4. Plan your future storage.
Know what your must-have things are, and determine how much space you'll have for those things. This will help you make decisions about what you can keep from the nice-to-have items.

5. Follow the one-year rule.
When I retired from the corporate world and begin working from home last year, I no longer needed business suits, dress pants, and jackets. I've already donated most of my corporate clothes, but I plan to go through all our closets using the one-year rule. This will ensure we don't take unused clothing items with us to our new home.

How to declutter and downsize. When you choose to collect experiences rather than things, you never run out of storage space. #declutter #downsizing #sunflowerdesigns2018

Use the one-year rule in every area of your home. Whether you're planning a move, or you're just trying to minimize the clutter, the one-year rule is the most useful way to pare down things.

Next week I plan to share more helpful tips for decluttering and downsizing, and let you in on our progress.

How to declutter and downsize. When you choose to collect experiences rather than things, you never run out of storage space. #declutter #downsizing #sunflowerdesigns2018

Have you recently downsized or moved? What are your best tips? I'd love to know. Join in the conversation over on the Sunflower Designs Facebook Page.

Helping you create a beautiful home is what @Home With Sunflower Designs is all about. Each week we offer suggestions on ways to add beauty and simplicity to your surroundings, so that you and your family can enjoy your home. Until next time… #livecreatively!

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Sunflower Designs helps you create a beautiful home one wreath and one space at a time.

Ann Bryant, Owner & Designer
Follow our blog @Home with Sunflower Designs

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