If you are preparing for a local move to a new home across town, don't take all of the existing clutter with you. With a little time and a self storage locker for a staging area, you'll get a clean, clutter-free start in your new home. Here is how to use this technique to move and get rid of what you don't need or want.
Find a Convenient Storage Unit
Research storage units between your current and new homes. Secure one mid-way or, if that isn't available, choose a unit closer to your new home. You may decide to keep items in storage for a while after you move so a facility closer to the new home will be convenient. Contact your local storage unit, like LoDo Self Storage & Moving Center or another location, to find out which will work best for you.
The First Phase of Decluttering
This can be a quick pass through your house and personal items to determine how to handle items that won't be moving with you. You'll get a chance to do this again later, so don't worry about evaluating every single item you own. During this phase you'll categorize items one of three ways:
- items to dispose of through a garage sale
- items to donate to a charity or thrift store
- items to be thrown out or put into the recycling bin
This step removes a lot of obvious clutter and reduces the number of items you'll actually have to move to your new home.
Sorting the Items to Be Moved
Now you can focus on what will move with you. This is where the storage unit becomes useful. You don't need to move everything to the new house with you. If it's mid-summer, you don't need the artificial Christmas tree in the new house. It can stay in the storage locker until you need it. Classify items to be moved into these three categories:
- items that you aren't entirely sure about giving away
- items that you won't need at the new house for several months
- items that you'll want in the new house right away
The last category of items will end up boxed to be taken to the new house. The first two groups need only go as far as the storage locker. Using this technique to move gives you more space in your new home that you can gradually fill in with items you are keeping in the storage unit.
Packing and More Decluttering
Now you're down to the final set of items that you will pack up for the move. This gives you one more chance to evaluate whether you really want to keep or move something to the new house. For example:
- Do you really need three full sets of flatware? Give two away and pack one for the move.
- Do all twenty pairs of shoes need to go with you or can you keep ten pair in storage and take the other ten with you?
As you pack, you can scale back even more the items that go with you.
Post Move Activities
Once you're in your new home with the minimum personal items that you needed for the move, you can evaluate how to use the free space. Some of your options are:
- Bring everything into the house from the storage locker.
- Rotate items between the storage locker and your home to periodically change up your wardrobe or the decor.
- Leave items in the storage locker and continue to use it as a holding area until you can go through everything again.
By using this staging technique to move, you'll get to see what your new home looks like without all the clutter. Then you can decide how best to deal with your remaining personal effects.