Downsizing? Here’s What You Should Think About
Are you considering making the transition to a smaller home? The decision to move, whether out of desire or necessity, can be an emotional one. After living in one home for many years, chances are you’ve accumulated a good bit of treasures, keepsakes, furniture and other things. Here’s how to make moving into a home with less space easy (and stress-free).
1) Consider your lifestyle. How do you want to live in your new home? What activities are important to you? Will you be entertaining? Do you want to have a home office? What about an exercise room? Decide first what you desire for your new home and design the space around that.
2) Space plan. Speaking of designing a space, it is highly recommended that you consider all the furniture pieces you plan to take and create a space plan. Measure the rooms and your furniture to determine what will fit and where it all will go. Be sure to consider scale of the furniture to rooms and door sizes to confirm pieces will pass through!
3) Edit.Edit.Edit. Now is the time to segregate everything you own into 3 categories: a) Must Keep b) Donate and c) Discard. Plan now for where you intend to store/display your ‘must keep’ items and seize the opportunity to minimize all the other things.
4) Maximize flexible pieces. In a small home, you will want to ensure you have as much flexibility as possible, so consider trading out that wooden coffee table for an ottoman with storage or the old tv stand for a sideboard. Consider free standing bookcases which can be moved from room to room to display books, treasures and other special mementos.
5) Get creative. Have special mementos or collections you prefer not to keep in storage? Why not frame them and display in wall groupings? With the right design, special things like christening gowns, grandmother’s dollies or children’s crafts can become wonderful works of art.
6) Talk to your children about items they may be interested in receiving. Photos, toys, books or furniture are all things to consider before donating or discarding. If the children want you to ‘store it for them’, kindly resist! This is the time for you to lighten your load, not to continue storing items you don’t need.
7) Don’t wait. Far in advance before you actually move, take the time to start sorting through everything (see #3 above for categories). This is an important process which can be time consuming, even emotional. You need time to carefully sort through all your belongings to decide what to keep, donate or discard.
Downsizing into a smaller home can be an exciting new chapter; a time to learn to live with less and enjoy it! And with smart planning, creativity and organization, it can be a stress free process.If you find you need an objective eye to assist with interior design, space planning or furnishings, give us a call, we are here to help!