4 Steps To Make Downsizing Easier

Dated: 03/01/2018

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4 steps to make downsizing easier

Compromising on space does not mean compromising on the future


FEB 28

Key Takeaways

Inman Connect San Francisco, Jul 17-20, 2018

Real estate agents know firsthand how emotional moving is for their clients. So, when their clients also decide to downsize to a smaller space, moving stresses are amplified.

Whether downsizing is welcome news or not, you will need  guidance during the move. Here are some steps you can follow to help your  optimize our downsizing process.

Step 1: Redefine their needs

When you are  downsizing, this should be your mantra: Compromising on space does not mean compromising on the future.

Downsizers need to ponder how they will create more joy in their lives with less furniture. Be careful of strong emotions to objects can be, so tune into what features of your current  home you want to keep instead of what objects you want to take.

Discuss what elements of our current space are most important to you. This can be done either room-by-room or in a general sense.

A smaller space will only define what physically fits in their home and not what makes it feel like one.

For example, having a large living room may feel like a necessity, but in reality, you may only need a dedicated space to unwind.

MoSCoW method

MoSCoW stands for “must have, should have, could have and won’t have.”

Make a list of what must come with you on the move and what simply won’t fit into your new home.

Scrutinize this list, or each make their own lists and collaborate to condense them.

Downsizing is a compromise, and though there will be some sacrifices, it will be worth it!

The replacement test

Another approach to identifying your most important items is the replacement test.

Pose the scenario of leaving everything behind from your old home, and ask what you would have to replace.

A great follow-up question for any item you would replace but still wouldn’t fit into their new home is: Can it be replaced with a smaller or more practical version?

Dividing the essentials based on needs instead of wants will help you create a functional living space instead of a stripped down version of your old home.

Africa Studio / Shutterstock

Step 2: Think creatively about their space

There is a lot to be learned from the tiny house movement in terms of making compromises about what’s on display and what’s in storage.

Here are some tips for clients looking to make more with less space:

  • Reserve kitchen counter space for frequently-used appliances, and keep the rest easily accessible.

  • Prioritize the activities they’d like to do more often. If you love to read, create a reading nook situated near a window or table that can double as workspace.

  • Invest in space-saving tools such as magnetic knife racks, hanging pots and pans, countertop cutting boards, shelving and drawer organizers.

  • Choose furniture that serves multiple purposes such as ottomans with storage, beds with drawers underneath, tabletop storage carts, vertical plant holders, space-saving spice racks and hooks for hanging brooms and mops on the back of closet doors.

  • Use creative storage like under-the-bed bins, shoe organizers and hanging closet shelves.

  • Look for the opportunity to customize unused spaces like creating storage under staircases, building recessed pantries or installing hanging bike storage.

  • Create comfortable outdoor spaces on patios or decks.

Segen / Shutterstock

Step 3: Help them put less in the moving truck

 Ultimately, decisions will need to be made about what to keep, what to toss and how to make things fit into a new space — and the moving truck— in creative ways.

To help prevent over packing, live by the phrase “measure twice, move once.”

When you have a sense of how much you need to get rid of to fit into their new home, the purging process can begin.

Here are some quick ideas to shed some extra moving weight.

  • Give books new life by donating them to schools or libraries.

  • Invite friends and family over for an apartment giveaway. Mark the items you’re ready to give away with sticky notes.

  • Hold a tag sale to sell the items the family doesn’t want.

  • Sell any remaining items on Craigslist, Facebook, letgo or eBay.

  • Recycle or donate furniture and clothing to Goodwill or a local clothing drive.

  • Put overflow items into storage.

  • Donate non-perishable pantry items to Move For Hunger through your moving company.

Ralf Broskvar / Shutterstock

Step 4: Show them downsizing is an investment

The element of downsizing that is what you can gain from the process. Downsizing is an opportunity for you to reimagine the way you live.

Gain a feeling of mobility that comes from letting go of old possessions, you regain time that was once spent on the upkeep of a larger home, and you save money in the process.

Downsizing can happen at many different phases of a your life.

From couples moving to an apartment in a city, to empty nesters ready to consolidate their lives and prepare for their next chapter.

To accommodate the needs of every homeowner, these downsizing steps can help facilitate a stress-free move.

Jenna Weinerman is the marketing director forUpdater. Follow her onTwitter.

Article image credited to Africa Studio / Shutterstock

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Lenore Smith Realty Group Inc .

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