This guest post was contributed by mentalhealthforseniors.com.
Chances are if you’re getting ready to downsize your home, the thought of moving may be a little overwhelming. It’s important to plan so that you have plenty of time to initiate a successful and healthful move. That means getting started with preparation and having a good, thorough checklist of what you’ll need to get done.
Let’s take a look at what you’ll have to consider.
- Start by decluttering and cleaning: Toss out old documents and old clothes you haven’t worn. If you haven’t touched it in a year, it’s unlikely you are ever going to wear it.
- Make a box of important documents, such as marriage certificates, property deeds, Durable Powers of Attorney, etc.
- On the date your new residence is unoccupied, consult with a cleaning service to get your new home spic and span for your arrival. This can include deep cleaning bathrooms, organizing closet systems and mopping floors. According to HomeAdvisor, the average price for a four-hour house cleaning is $116 – $223. Be sure to read reviews to get the most reputable provider in your area.
- Gather up all of your paperwork and keep it in a filing system or box you can use.
- Fill out a change of address.
- Use old bills to contact the utility company and ask for a change of address on your service.
- Update your address with important agencies including Social Security, Medicare, investment and retirement accounts.
- Be sure to find your new voting district.
- Update magazine subscriptions.
- The easiest way to start sorting is by going room to room and selecting things you absolutely love and ones you know there’s no chance you’ll be leaving behind. Get these items separated into a special area.
- From there, start an official sorting system. Make color-coded labels for items you’ll ‘keep,’ ‘maybe keep,’ ‘donate,’ ‘give to (blank) child,’ and ‘discard.’ Here are some questions to ask yourself in the process: Would I be devastated if I lost this? And if an item was lost would you replace it? If you answer yes, these items need to make the move.
- Packing may be something you want to save for the moving company. Get quotes before you decide whether you’ll be doing it yourself or hiring someone. A lot of this will depend on how much you plan to take with you.
- If you do pack, make sure to use appropriate packing paper and moving boxes. Use a marker to write as much detail as you can on each box.
- Make sure to pack an “Essentials” box that contains all the things you might need for a night or two such as pajamas, toiletries, a charger for your phone, your contract, keys, medication, fresh bedding and other necessities.
The Discard Pile
- Offer any nicer items to children or family members.
- Anything remaining items can go to a consignment shop or a Goodwill drop off center. Be sure to get a receipt for the tax deduction.
- You could also consider having a garage sale.
- Make sure to get multiple estimates from various moving companies before making a decision. Don’t just look for the lowest price, carefully review what their reimbursement rate is for damage and what their cost drops to on non-peak days.
- Be sure if you have a pet that you’ve planned ahead to have them boarded on this day. This will prevent an anxious dog or cat escaping the home.
Moving can be a stressful experience, but you don’t have to tackle it all. Consider leaving some things to Senior Moving Managers. These services can help with as much or as little as you like. This will help the process be as stress free as possible. One of the most important things you can do during your downsize is to take care of yourself. If things start to feel too stressful, make sure to take breaks or ask family members to come help you lighten the load. It’s important to get plenty of rest so that you can make your smaller house into a dream home.