Are you ready to downsize? Know someone who is? A well organized move can make the difference between chaos or a peaceful transition.
There are ways to plan for a stress-free move. Follow our Downsizing Checklist to start on the right path:
1. Start the discussion early: For some, the decision to move may not be a welcome idea. Plant the seed early to start discussing the benefits of downsizing.
2. Determine what isn’t moving:Next is the time to do some space planning and decide what you don’t want to move. Decisions can be made to sort into the following categories:
- Pass to family/friends
3. Contact a Realtor: Ask for referrals, find someone you enjoy working with!
4. Declutter and stage: Time to get the house ready for sale. Consider decluttering and staging if your home needs an update.
5. Book moving company:Make plans for truck rental, moving assistance, or hire a moving company.
6. Packing:Purchase packing supplies, enlist the help of family and friends, or hire a Professional Organizer to get the job done quickly.
7. Update address:Be sure to notify utility companies, services and personal contacts.
8. Moving day:Assign one person to be in charge of all questions of what is going where.
9. Unpacking: Make the transition as smooth as possible by unpacking right away.
If you are stuck or require assistance anywhere along the way, call a Professional Organizer – we are here to help!
You can be outdoors but remain shaded at the same time!
The garage and storage areas are typically dumping grounds for the whole family. While it might seem like this no man’s land usually gets to a point of no return, there is hope for returning it to its original state of glory.
Here are some tips on how to transform your garage into an organized and – most importantly – functional space. Perhaps a space in which you could even fit your car? Imagine that…
Join Forces. Blast the music and ask your partner, kids or consider a work exchange with a neighbour or friend.
Collect Supplies. Gather trash bags, gloves, tape, containers, cleaners, paper towels, rags, labeller, vacuum, broom and dustpan. Lay them out and have them at the ready before you start, so that you don’t lose momentum.
Collate Items. Tackle one section at a time and organize like with like.
Purge. Decide and divide items into further categories: what needs to be kept, donated, sold, trashed, returned, repaired or recycled. If you need a dumpster, get one or share one with a neighbour.
Create Zones. Form general areas: sports, garden, tools, seasonal, travel, home, electronics, etc. Create a flow in your garage, keeping the most commonly used items easily accessible.
Make a Path. Always ensure there is a safe and clear path to get what you need. This rule applies to any organizing project. Consider marking out ‘clear’ zones with painter’s tape on the floor.
Get Vertical. Your walls are a great way to store your items so that they’re easy to see and take up less space. Use pegboards, good quality shelving and aim to keep things off the floor to make sweeping a breeze.
Look up. Use the ceiling to store ladders, skis or bikes.
Label Like Crazy. The secret to staying organized is to label—especially if you expect others to put things back.
Make It Easy. For those who seem to ignore labels, clear containers are your friend. They help folks find what they need quickly and put it away easily. Spend a little extra on quality, stackable containers. Add adequate lighting or sensor lighting.
Move It out. Complete the job and get rid of everything that needs to be removed.
Make a Profit. If you’ve got a lot of useable items left over, set up a yard sale so you can make some cash fromyour old goods! Consider Craigslist, Kijiji, eBay or Etsy to reap a little reward for your efforts from saleable items. Set a deadline for selling, after which you’ll donate any unsold items.
Avoid Hijacking. Set up an area for donations, so you can practice the one in, one out rule to prevent a garage hijack from occurring again. Post and communicate house rules to keep it organized.
Moving is a stressful job, but when you’ve been living in the same home for many years it can seem almost overwhelming. With so much to pack, even getting started can be daunting.
Organize Anything has compiled some simple tips to help you make packing an easier task.
- Sort it. When moving to a smaller place it is impossible to take all your things. The first step is to make decisions on what you will need and want in your new home and let the other things go to charity, to relatives, or in the garbage. It is a lot of work, so you may need a hand sorting through everything. Once you have decided what you will be taking with you, you are ready to pack.
- Pack it. Keep the boxes light. Don’t try to cram everything in as few boxes as possible. This will make everything harder to move. Even if you are getting movers, you may need to move boxes around when you are unpacking. Try to keep the boxes less than 50 pounds. Stuff socks, towels, pillowcases, etc into free holes in boxes. You will require less packing paper and fewer boxes! Don’t over-pack boxes. This risks damaging your items. Mark which end goes up to avoid any damaged goods. If you plan on putting items in garbage bags, make sure they are heavy duty so they don’t rip. Avoid confusion with actual garbage by using clear bags. Use your luggage to carry other household items. Keep as much as possible in the proper place (i.e.: clothes in dresser drawers, silverware in tray) so you have less to unpack.
- Track it. Write down what’s in every box. Label the box by number and in a notebook write down everything that you put in the box. Be specific. Say coffee mugs instead of kitchen stuff. Label all boxes; small or large. If you have to take down and reassemble furniture, put all the nuts and bolts into a bag and tape the bag to the piece of furniture.
- Color-code it. Color-coordinate your boxes. Use colored stickers, tape or sheets of construction paper and be sure to write down in a notebook what each color means. You can have a different color for each room, or have one color for your new home and another for things that are going into storage or elsewhere. You can color code boxes containing breakable items with a bright color so movers know to take extra care with these.
- Move it. Moving day can be long and tiresome. Make sure you stick to your routine as best you can, including proper sleep, meals, and medications. Plan ahead to make sure you are able to eat and take your medications at the proper times. Keep important items and records with you, this includes your list with what’s in each box. If you can’t afford to lose it, keep them separate from your moving boxes.
- Unpack it. Look at all the boxes! To make this task manageable take it one box at a time. Look at your list of boxes and pick the ones you’d like to open starting with the ones that contain the most important things to get you into a daily routine- frequently used kitchen and bathroom items are a good place to start. This is a great time to have a friend or family member come visit. They can help you set up things to your liking and keep you company as you unpack things. Don’t worry, you can have them over again once you are all settled in. As you are finding a new place for your belongings you may realize some things you need to buy. Start making a list and take a break from unpacking to go to the store. Take it a few boxes at a time and make sure you take time to eat, take medication and sleep at your regular times.
A move is a lot of work, especially for one person, so be sure to get help with each step along the way. Friends, family members, cleaners, movers, and professional organizers can help make your move effortless and stress-free!
What’s your best or worst experience moving? What did you learn from it? Let us know in the comments section below!
If you’re going to be moving this spring and you’re overwhelmed with where to start, let us help! Organize Anything provides step-by-step support with your move of any size. Check out our website for more information.
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