More Tips Downsizing, Moving or Selling Home.

I have moved and changed residences many-a-times and for most of us, the progress is not something we look forward to. It seems as though each and every time we go through a move, no matter how much we plan and how much time, money or help we have nor how much or little of stuff we have, it’s never an easy process..

Moving or relocating itself can be soo overwhelming, a process because moving and downsizing, is a process within a process.

Here below : I’ve listed additional and more (then my last post) of general tips of the process, even though it’s kindly lengthy, but wanted to cover some-things, before one decides to move as it gets hectic during a move. Whether you are moving local, out of state into another residence or selling your home and moving, (if been at a residence for more than a couple years or already have a lot of stuff), the sooner you start your researching, the plan of uncluttering and downsizing process, the easier it will be to go through, the whole process.

1. First the uncluttering, this can consist of going through each closet, each drawer and each and every space in each room. Evaluating what all you have and what you can rid of, which includes all of what’s in all junk drawers, kitchen drawers, your clothes, your shoes and all your stuff, that means even going through your bathroom toiletries, any papers saved, important paperwork or documents saved, contents of file cabinets and everything all around your home. Cleaning out things that are garbage, or (old and outdated such as: food, spices, medical supplies, medicines, beauty products etc.) also things that are broken (either fix or repair them or if beyond repairing that you’ll ever find the time to do) and things you don’t really need or won’t be really needing (think in terms of what needs for your end goal and what path you are going onto). Separate things into groups, such as, garbage to throw away, items to be donated or given to others or things you could possibly sell.

2. As you start the process, re-organize all things according to what they are, where they need to be, put them or store them (for convenient usage or easy accessibility or if not being used that often, then store away). Example: kitchen (what goes into kitchen area) and what will go in each room, bedrooms, bathrooms, office, closet, drawers and if you have a garage as well. Also, any important documents saved or wanting to save (put in file cabinet or file boxes and on each file folder label the contents or what it is pertaining to.

3. Once de-cluttering is done, (you still may have to decide what you will need to get rid of or keep, if it’s going to your new residence, (always a good idea to take photos or measurements, when viewing or deciding on a new residence even in order to put furniture through doorways to see what would fit), then you’ll know what you’ll be bringing to your new residence. * While de-cluttering, you may also need to get a storage and figure out how large of a storage you will need for the things you want to keep in storage, until you move or for things that you may want to keep, but will not be taking to your new residence (maybe not right away) or you may need to clear out your storage if moving out of state and figure out what you will do with all of those items. You may also need to return anything you borrowed from a neighbor.

4. Get a calendar (especially ones that have large enough square boxes on it, so that you can write things on it. This way you can write down on the calendar the things you have to do and people, contacts or companies you need to tell you are moving. Also, block time off that you will be moving and this helps give you a time frame, keeps you organized and aware of all the things you have to do, get done and when..

5. When planning and before deciding on where to move, always investigate the area in which you’re moving to, the neighborhood itself, the nearby surroundings, including what and who is next-door to you. Going to the closest food store and shopping center at dinner time or whom is out walking after hours, can give you an idea of who visits or lives in the area you may want to move too. Think of safety factors for you and your family.

6. Once you make plans to move (you may need to clean or repair some things in your present residence before you move-out, (a more throughout cleaning can be done once all of your belongings are out). If renting, often security deposits are given back only, if things are clean and in order when you leave or if you are selling your home, you may need to get repairs, painting and things fixed that will be under inspection and take care of those. * When moving, or deciding to move there are all kinds of checklists you can make or find, here are some things to consider, months and weeks before you move. (other things to consider, during and after your move as you scroll down)

A. You may need to review your present lease and (within the terms of lease)plan to notify your current landlord and let them know the date you will be moving-out and coordinate it with the date your new residence will be ready to move-in. As well, you will need a plan if you are selling your home, de-cluttering it, staging it and anticipating a closing date. * You will need to plan ahead of what you will need to set aside before packing up, such as tools, necessities for yourself, children and pets. “Some right-away essential items” to keep in a separate area, later packed up and kept with you (more on that as you scroll down).

B. There will be several contacts you will need to coordinate with at least a week or 2 before you move, making sure to have transferred to your new residence and ready, when you get there.

1. You will need to fill out a change of address form at your local post office, but (now-a-days) it can be done online (you put the date to stop present mail and when to start forwarding your mail) done at the USPS website (united states postal service) you will need your debit card or your credit card and a valid email address to verify it is you.

2. Insurance’s for home residence’s may need to be changed.

3. Services to stop, start and be transferred, such as electric, gas, water (utilities), pest control, phone, internet, pool or lawn services, cable and (You may need to return the cable box to get refund or left with a charge for the box).

4. Let your employer know of when you will be at your new address, to update information so any important mail or tax documents go to correct address. Also let your employer know you need to schedule time to take off work to move, if need be.

C. Moving can have different costs:

1. You will need boxes to put all your things into, packaging paper (for breakable items and the proper packaging tape) grocery stores and liquor packaging stores offer free boxes, just ask them if they have any boxes.

2. You may need to hire movers, check for local reputable ones and get an estimate of the costs and ask questions. Get a folder or plastic bag to save all moving receipts in.

3. If moving by yourself, make arrangements for family or friends that can help you and decide what size rental or uhaul truck you may need and figure out the best driving route from your present address to your new address.

4. If you are moving out of state, you may need to research moving and shipping companies to help you. Make sure they have insurance and check your own auto insurance policy that might cover moving truck insurance and shipping assistance.

5. Make sure to also take your own vehicle in to update any services needed before your move (especially if you’re going to be moving out of state), you will want to have a thorough check of your vehicle, tires, oil changed to make sure your vehicle is going to be running well.

D. If moving with children, you’ll need to talk to your children about moving and having to move. You may need to research childcare and schools in your new community and register them for school and finalize any plans for childcare on moving day. If moving with pets, make sure to take your pet to the vet for a check-up before you move, get all medicines and updated vaccinations if they are necessary and ask for copies of their vet records, get new ID tags and update address on your pets microchip (if they have one).

E. Once you start collecting up boxes, get or purchase boxes that are sturdy and make sure not to pack each box too heavy, and tape them up well. Keep package tape, tools, scissors and some plastic baggies handy, for small items, such as screws, door knobs, keys, brackets and such, this will help find them when you need them or to put things back together.

1. Remember to pack up (in clear boxes so you can see in it or an Essential Bag), things you may need for yourself, any children and one for any pets with at least your first several days of being moved into your new place getting and settled. * For instance : pack up in that essentials bag, phone chargers, paper plates, plastic utensils, a set of beddings, towels and daily necessities or toiletries. When you first arrive at your new residence make your beds, so you’re not having to scramble looking for bedding and having to make it and find things, when you’re already exhausted from your hectic day. If traveling out of state you will need an essential bag and additional traveling needs-essential bag with things for the trip or ride.

2. If renting a uhaul or truck to move yourself: Pack-up the inside of the truck with the heaviest and largest items first in the back of the uhaul truck, then items such a night stands, lighter and smaller items as you pack truck up and work towards the front of truck’s back opening and don’t put anything that is fragile in the top upper cab space (if it has one), that could fall out and break. * Pack up heavier items in smaller boxes, such as books and for fragile things you may need just a little bigger box to make sure you have blankets, towels or bubble wrap, and packaging paper around the items, so they don’t get broken. Pack-up (in your vehicle, rental truck or in your storage) heavier boxes on bottom then lighter ones on top, make sure all boxes with fragile things in them are secured.

3. If you have smaller valuable items (jewelry and such) you should pack them to travel and kept personally with you.

F. When packing, try to pack up things that go in the same area or room (kitchen things, office things, etc.), use a marker to boldly write on each box, what room or area the boxes will be going into.

1. Specific color-masking-tape can be used on boxes, for each room or different colored labels can also be used, (in addition to the sturdy package tape used) this can help to differentiate the different areas the boxes will need to go.

2. Set aside a broom, mop, dustpan, duster, sponge, cleaning products, paper towels, and old rags for cleaning up when done packing and to have easy locating when you move-into your new residence to clean before putting all your things away.

3. Make sure to back-up all your files on your computer on the cloud or to an external hard drive and take pictures of your electronics (as where it is hooked-up) before you pack them up, so you’ll know how to hook them back up. Make copies of important documents and put them in a folder to take personally with you.

4. If there’s something specific in a box you want to remember, write what that item is inside the box, on the box. This will also help to locate it easier, later on. You may want to number each box as you finish packing them up (1st box # 1. and so on) and writing the contents as well, this way you’ll know how many boxes you have and could also differentiate specific numbers with what rooms or where they go. If shipping items, you may need to print off some moving box labels.

5. With in the last 2 weeks before you move out, re-evaluate what is in your refrigerator and freezer (eat-up, give away or get rid of what you can) and buy only last essentials that you’ll need so that you can clean everything out before you leave (so not to have a lot of food left and wasted). If moving local and there are refrigerated food you want to take with you, you can use some bagged ice and a cooler if need be.

G. You may want to research your new community that you are moving to and update your memberships to community organizations, subscription services, gyms, and clubs and you may also need to update your new address for any health insurance’s or if you receive social security. You may need to locate a new doctor, dentist or pharmacy and you may need to have medical records and prescriptions forwarded. Remember to make sure to say goodbye to your present doctor, dentist and pharmacist.

1. Important contacts to update once you get settled into your new residence or a few days before you move to your new address (depending on if you, will be needing to be ordering things right away or paying bills online) such as paypal, amazon, pet food company or any accounts that deliver things to you.

2. If you update information on bank accounts (make sure your debit and all credit cards match your address and zip codes as they have to match to be valid if using them to purchase online). You may want to go paperless and use online for bills-to pay. * My last move, we were such in a rush and had a little time left during the crunch time of moving, we hadn’t changed over or updated any of our bank information, debit cards, credit cards, none of our accounts online and we waited to the last minute to change your address online. It was a bit of a fiasco, we were lucky to be able to retrieve any important mail (as we had met the people that moved in to our residence after we left), but as far as our online accounts we had to just use our old address for a while to pay our bills online and until we can finish ordering the stuff that we needed to, from our credit cards and debit card and then just change the address it was going to so that we would get the items delivered to our new address.

H. Once you are all packed up and ready to move out: Everything should be cleaned up, the refrigerator and freezer should be cleared and cleaned out, take the garbage and the recycling out for the last time. Keep your phones charged. Have some cash on hand. Keep calm and organized as possible.

1. Once in your new residence, do a walk-through before putting things in place and setting up, making sure there’s no issues that need to be addressed. It may take a couple days to get acclimated to the new space, your new routine and where things should go. If you have small children or pets keep things childproof (such as sharp tools, cleaning chemicals etc.).

2. Locate the fuse box and water shut-off valves. The fuse box and water valve are two things that you don’t want to end up looking for when you really need them.

3. If needed, clean your new residence before putting things away.

4. Test the smoke detectors and A/C unit.

5. Change locks, if need be and get key copies.

6. Meet your neighbors

7. Re-locate local restaurants, eateries, gas stations etc. and learn roads and driving routes.

8. Settle in and enjoy your new residence!

C .Star. V

Downsizing to Uncluttering

I have had to unclutter and downsize many-a-times (lots of stuff, lots of children, big family, sentimental collector) and as anyone that has gone through this process can tell you, it is not an easy task. Yet, if you simply start with uncluttering, then cleaning, then rearranging and begin there, it may make the chore a little easier.

Now, uncluttering takes a bit of organizing in itself and ultimately some of the goals could be ; to actually know what you have, to know where your stuff is or locate all your stuff, to save you time and money from having to acquire or purchase more things that you already have, also to free up space in your home (and yourself) and to get rid of unwanted, unused, unneeded, broken, and otherwise useless stuff (even if they are liked by you) as things take up space and possibly restricting your freedoms.

We can often make the mistake in feeling as though, if we don’t have all of our stuff, not enough stuff or able to get more stuff, that we are not complete or not finished, but “The little kettle can boil the water just as good as the big kettle, yet the little kettle can fit in more places”. After or even during this process, many feel by “Downsizing and uncluttering often creates an upsize in their lifestyle, their potential, their freedom and their mobility”!

So, we will find that by re-organizing our things, we realize just how much we have and may not really need. Then, being faced with deciding what to keep around and what not to. The next decision is whether to keep the excess of things and where to put or store them. Some people choose a closet or room in their home (if large enough), others use a storage facility to store their excess and additional items. Often, we just need to get rid of a lot of stuff and that can be the most difficult (which has many putting off this process) and even though there are plenty of people with suggestions on how to figure out and decide what to keep and what to get rid of (and many good suggestions), honestly; it will all come down to your own needs and your own decision.

Uncluttering can be done once a week, everyday, a little bit here and there or every month or so. It just depends on each individual, as some people have began making a habit or routine of uncluttering their life and make efforts to keep it uncluttered (often by not buying more and more stuff) as less buying means less spending on things you don’t really need and being able to save to do or have more of what you really need or want.

Some of us, begin uncluttering because we are attempting to sell our home and must begin the process (not only to help in reducing the chore of packing later, but also to unclutter and clean-up all around for better pictures of the home). There can be a variety or reasons.

One of the best ways I have found, to help me organize everything and keep it that way; is to place anything and everything in its own spot or which I like to call, “its own home”. In other words, if I have or find around my residence things such as pencils, pens, sharpener, paper clips, scotch tape or such, these would all go in a desk or in an office area (a drawer in the kitchen may also have a few of these items for quick finding and use), but basically the bulk of different types of things collected or that I have, I organize them within their own place.

All Holiday decor, can be separated by holiday and put into plastic bins and can be put in a storage area, attic or storage facility for next use. As you find things or pick up things, take a moment and put it back into its ‘home area’ and so on and so on..(that way, when you may be looking for something or wanting something you’ll know where to find it). . It’ll also save you time later, if you put things you find (or come across each day or so) in a ‘catchall basket’ (big and small one) or in a specific area and then put it all away when or as you can…Then of course, sometimes you won’t have time or (you may find or collect something and you might not be home) to put the item back in the right place, you may have to hold onto it (put it in a bag or something) until you can get it into its proper place.

Often when we move from one resident to another, there seems to always be that daunting chore of going through all of our things (once again) deciding what we’re going to take, what we’re not, what is trash, what we could sell, may give to family members and friends or donate. Of course if you have been downsizing or uncluttering here and there, it will be a lot easier upon you. Yet, it’s one chore that never seems to get easier, no many how many times we do it and it never fails, no matter how much we can organize and unclutter we never seem to realize how much stuff we have or have collected.

Make the time to take time and start going through the things you have and have collected. You may find some-things you had forgotten you had and could use right now. You are living your life right now, so why not choose to use or do something with them right now? After all, you have wanted, collected and kept them for a reason! Choose to use them or if need to save something (as items kept to be given to family or friends), then give them as a gifts. You possibly could sell some things and you can always donate them; as someone else may really want it or have use for it (they may not have been able to ever acquire some-things) and that would make them smile or make their day to find an item of need or want. If you have ever went thrift shopping you’d know what I mean..

I have other tips and tricks on coping with the process of downsizing and uncluttering that I will post later, but for now I recall a saying that suggested we stop waiting to use and enjoy the things we have…

So yeah, Start downsizing to upsize your life and while you are at it, Go Ahead…Use the good-stuff and enjoy them now, there.. I gave you permission!

C .Star. V

UnClutter Yourself

 It seems as though if we have a lot of choices, it can get more difficult to choose the correct ones.  Yet, if we don’t have many choices, it seems as though we can end up making bad ones.

This all plays out, each day in our lives and we have to first grasp the concept that there really is no good or bad choice.. Well the results might end up good or bad in our opinion and of our thinking of what is good(right) or bad(wrong) to us; of course there is obviously the reality of right and wrong.

However, even though we all should have a good idea of what is actually ‘right and wrong’ (morally and legally), it may differ from each other since, we may not have been taught or learned in the same way . As there are different views and different opinions on what is good or bad . This can cause confusion as we use those aspects of good and bad before we make choice.

Subsequently, if we already live in a life with much chaos, clutter and distraction, we can be blindsided and easily steered into making choices that are not so good and that we may even regret.

All of us seem to live in a world of ‘have-to’s’ and ‘need-to’s’, meanwhile constantly trying to find a way of the ‘getting to’s’ with the ‘want-to’s’.

A good way to start setting up an atmosphere of creating a series of better choices and success is to start with uncluttering and re-organizing (some people call it regrouping) because doing this clears the mind, soul and space! The art of uncluttering, is not just limited to only material things we have around us, but also of the uncluttering of our minds. We all have different methods and ideas in doing so and again, there isn’t any good or bad way of doing it, but possibly a more efficient and successful way.

The 1st step could be to begin to get rid of excessive material things around ourselves and in our living space (at the least to go through, clean up, reorganize and put away or store), especially things that are just literally taking up space and not necessarily something that you will be readily using or needing for awhile. This will get you going in the right direction, then create (a go-to or place) for things ‘as a home to put items in where it goes’ and this also begins to help.

From there, we can begin to see some clarity, what’s really important to us, focusing on what we next need to in creating more actions that will begin to steer us in the right directions. All this will begin to help us achieve the things we want to, instead of spending time purchasing more things, collecting stuff we don’t need and spending time trying to keep things cleaned-up and less chaotic.

This will make it easy to figure out, more of what it is we really need.                 

One of the biggest dilemma’s I find in many people, is that they are constantly worried about not having something or not having enough of something. This is not only a common issue, but it is a very sensitive and personal one and it brings us into such a monumental cause in worrying, stressing- over and even hoarding. Yet, so much time and energy is spent purchasing, worrying, stressing-over and hoarding ; sadly most of ‘these things’ we won’t even ever use, many of the things will expire or go bad (by the time we use them) and other these things we will really, never need.

I suppose it all stems from the fear of not having or not being able to get them, but it would only seem logical to use the energy and time in doing something more positive, that will ensure you won’t have to fear about that anymore.. Such as surrounding yourself with positive, caring and loving people, making friends and groups to socialize with (maybe even to barter things with) and spend more time learning skills, having fun and enjoying your life, instead of worrying about things you may not have.

This may even include relocating yourself and moving to an area that’s accessible for things that you feel you’re going to need.       

Most importantly, nothing is guaranteed even if you were saving something or hoarding some things that you think you’re going to need or that you feel is going to save or help you in one way or another, it may not end up that way. Since by the time you need it, there might have to be another solution, in fact …one that you should’ve already been working on.

C .Star. V