Royal Moving and Storage

We get it. Moving can feel like a daunting task. The thought of packing up your entire life into boxes is, frankly, overwhelming.

But what if you could turn this challenge into an opportunity? An opportunity to declutter your life and start fresh in your new home. Sounds pretty good, right?

In this guide, we’ll provide practical advice and strategies for decluttering your home before the big move. We’ll help you sort through your belongings, decide what to keep, and figure out how to responsibly offload items you no longer need.

Whether you’re a first-time mover or you’ve done it 10s of times, this guide will help you streamline the process and create a clutter-free environment in your new home. Let’s get started.


The Benefits of Decluttering Before a Move

Before we dive into the how’s, let’s talk about why decluttering pre-move can be so beneficial.

  • Ease stress. Decluttering can help reduce the stress and anxiety associated with moving. It allows you to focus on the essentials, making the process less overwhelming.

  • Save some money. Leaving the things you don’t need behind can help you save money. By reducing the volume of items you need to move, you can cut down on moving costs (packing materials, cost of transportation, etc.).

  • Make some money. Sell items you no longer need and earn some extra cash. This money can be used to cover moving expenses or to buy items for your new home.

  • Sustainable living. By donating, selling, or recycling items, you reduce waste and consumption. This is a small step toward living a more eco-friendly lifestyle.

  • Fresh start. Decluttering allows you to start fresh in your new home. It helps you create a clutter-free environment, which can lead to a more organized and peaceful life.

So, what do you think? Ready to get started?

When to Start Your Decluttering Journey

Starting your decluttering journey early is crucial. It’s not a task you want to leave until the last minute. We recommend starting as soon as you decide to move. This gives you ample time to sort through your belongings without feeling rushed.

Remember, this is not a one-day task. It requires time and patience. You need to go through each item and decide whether to keep, donate, sell, recycle, or discard it.

It can be an emotional process to go through memorabilia and decide whether or not it deserves a place in your new life. So, start as soon as possible so you have plenty of time and space to make decisions that feel right for you.

Room-by-Room Decluttering Strategies

Decluttering can be overwhelming if you try to tackle everything at once. A room-by-room approach is more manageable.

Start with one room and don’t move to the next until you’re done. This way, you can see your progress and stay motivated.

For each room, start by removing items that are clearly trash. This includes broken items, expired products, and anything else you can’t use, sell, or donate. We highly encourage you to recycle what you can as opposed to just throwing everything in the dumpster, but we will get to that later.

Next, sort the remaining items into one of the following three categories. This will make it easier to decide what to do with each item.

  • Keep
  • Sell
  • Donate

The One-Year Rule

When deciding what to keep in each room, use the one-year rule. If you haven’t used an item in a year, you probably don’t need it. This rule is especially useful for clothes, kitchen gadgets, and other items that are easy to accumulate.

Of course, there are exceptions to this rule. Seasonal items, sentimental items, and emergency supplies, for example.

The key is to be honest with yourself. If you’re keeping something “just in case”, consider whether it’s worth the space it takes up.

Donate, Sell, Recycle, or Trash?

Once you’ve decided what to keep, it’s time to deal with the rest.

Items in good condition can be sold or donated. Selling items can give you extra cash for your move while donating can help those in need.

  • Ask your friends. If you have friends in need, offering your no-longer-needed items to them before donating or selling them is always a nice gesture.

  • Where to donate. Goodwill and Grey Bears are both great places to donate. But there are lots of other charities out there, too. Pick your favorite, load everything into the back of your car, and drop it off at a center near you. Make sure to check your charity of choice’s donation guidelines first.

  • Where to sell. Consider a yard sale, eBay, or Craigslist. We’ve heard good things about Facebook Marketplace as well. Keep in mind that selling items online can take time. Yet another reason to start your decluttering process ASAP.

Now that you’re down to the items that you don’t feel are in good enough condition to donate or sell, it’s time to decide how to get rid of them. Recycle what you can and dispose of the others responsibly.

  • A note on recycling. Recycling should be your go-to for items that can’t be sold or donated. Many cities have recycling programs for electronics, furniture, and more. Do the planet a favor and use those resources.

  • To the dump. For items that can’t be recycled, make sure to dispose of them properly. Check your local waste management guidelines for more information.

Maintaining a Clutter-Free Life in Your New Home

Now that you’ve successfully decluttered your life, you can pack everything up in moving boxes and head on over to your new life. Once you’ve gotten there, we challenge you to maintain the clutter-free lifestyle you’ve just worked so carefully to curate.

Our biggest tips?

  • Unpack thoughtfully. It can be tempting to rush through the unpacking process to settle into your new home as quickly as possible. Try to avoid this. Instead, we encourage you to unpack one room at a time in a thoughtful, organized way.

  • One in, one out. As you carry on living in your new home, try to keep the “stuff” to a minimum. One great way to do that is to follow the “one in, one out” rule. For every new item you bring in, let go of an old one.

Remember, a clutter-free home leads to a clutter-free mind.

Closing Thoughts on Embracing a Clutter-Free Philosophy

Decluttering is an important part of the packing and moving process and it’s more than just a one-time event. It’s a lifestyle choice that can bring peace and simplicity to your world.

Embrace this philosophy as you move into your new home. Remember, less is often more.

With a clutter-free home, you’re ready to start fresh and enjoy your new space.

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