How Do I Downsize and Declutter

QUESTION: How do I de-clutter & downsize all my “collections”?

As I watch my parents try to downsize a house they’ve lived in for 30+ years, I’m learning a thing or two.

  1. Organize. The first thing to do is organize everything into 3 categories: Keep, Donate, and Trash. Don’t spend too much time wondering if your granddaughter wants a figurine your Aunt Betty had in the 40’s. Just put it in one of the 3 groups and then ask your family (later) to make sure everything is in an appropriate group. If they want something, ask them to speak up!
  2. Downsize. Don’t play around with this one- focus on the “donate” and “trash” categories. If you haven’t touched it in a year or more, why do you still have it? Trust me; you will not ever need that 70’s Hawaiian print shirt ever again. Get rid of it! And your kids don’t want the “heirloom punchbowls!”
  3. Sell. Yes, selling the house and moving is very important and might even be necessary at some point. Start the conversation with a real estate expert that you know and trust, it’s much better and easier if you start this conversation early