It’s so easy to accumulate stuff, right?  Gifts, sentimental items, clothes that will fit again after you lose the baby weight, toys that you can hand off to friends just as soon as they decide to have kids.  

It’s also really easy to forget that you have all those things boxed up and left in the garage for the infamous “someday”.  

Well, now you’re moving, and guess what?  It’s time to just let those things go. This is the not-so-easy part.  There’s some attachment issues, we hear you- and we’re here for you.

Today we’ll discuss the whys, whats, and hows of getting rid of all that unnecessary stuff so you can start afresh in your new home.  And we’ll make it as painless as possible.

Why You Should Get Rid Of Unnecessary Things Before The Moving Company Arrives

There are plenty of reasonable reasons to either toss out or give away items you no longer use before you move.  The one we’ll talk most about is money.

Cost of Moving

Moving to a new home will cost you.  Generally you’ll spend anywhere from $2,300 to $4.500 depending on house size and distance of move.  

  • Save some bucks.  It just makes sense to look through your things as you’re packing and decide what’s worth keeping and what’s worth donating/throwing away/selling.  This is pretty much a no-brainer. The less stuff, the less cost.  

Pile your things, be organized, separate items into “toss” (yes, that bin of HDMI cords, cables, and wires will never be used, I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that’s a scientific fact), “keep”, “sell”, and “donate”.  And, hey, if you’re having trouble with where to put some of your stuff, make a “?” pile and you can figure those things out later.

  • Get some bucks.  Okay, now we’re talking- you don’t have to donate, you can sell, too!  Think big like garage sale, or take advantage of the many splendid apps that allow you to get rid of your stuff swiftly, like letgo, OfferUp, and Facebook Marketplace– to name a few.  
  • Save some energy.  Also, consider all the space you’ll save in the moving vehicle, as well as the time you’d use unwisely on things you don’t need.  No having to box those unneeded items up, carry them out, and push them into a van for you. They say time is money, so don’t waste it on things you don’t need.   

But after all of this money talk, which is very practical, let’s talk for a sec about the proven fact that clutter causes stress.  You don’t need that to start your life in your new space, so don’t bring it with you.

What You Should Get Rid Of Before You Move

Now that you know why it’s a good idea (I’d argue, a GREAT idea) to get rid of your unnecessary items when you move, let’s talk about what you should be letting go of.

We touched on this some above, but it’s time to get really focused on dividing and conquering, and you start that by separating items into categories and doing so room by room.  Let’s break down how this should go:

  • Start in the rooms with the most stuff.
  • Sort starting from your largest stuff (furniture, rugs, artwork, TV) to smallest (candlesticks, framed pictures, small appliances) and put each item into the categories you designed (keep, toss, donate, sell, ?), if any items are too large to move, use a sticky note to show its category. 
  • When it comes to the things you’re not sure if you should take, ask yourself a few questions: is it outdated, have I used this in the last 6 months, is it outgrown, do I really like this, do I have one of these already, is this in proper working order/will I ever fix this?  This will help you decide if you really need it.

How to Get Rid Of Your Unnecessary Things Before You Move

Okay, well done, you’ve got yourself all sorted and you’re ready to start getting rid of all that stuff you no longer want.  

How are you gonna do it?  Well, because you had the good sense to categorize what was trash, donate, and sell, you’re off to a great start.

  • Sell it online or through your apps.  Depending on how much you want to sell (and look to see how much other people are selling comprabe items for), this might be a great option for you.  It’s quick and easy, in most cases you can use your phone to snap a picture and you’ll be walked through setup with no hassles. Besides the apps discussed about, think about ebay, Craigslist, and Nextdoor.  Make sure the items you want to sell are clean and they work, be honest, and price accordingly.
  • Sell it in a garage, moving, or estate sale.  If you want to get rid of a lot of stuff, fast, this is a good bet.  People dedicate their entire weekends to finding great deals at sales like this.  Advertise with some signs a day or two prior to the sale date(s), start your sale early in the morning, have a lemonade stand, be friendly, and keep it safe for children (keep steak knives out of reach).
  • Give it away.  This one is pretty easy- give it to friends, family, or donate it to a charity you believe in.  If you’re concerned about your things making it to the charity you want it to, check out Charity Watch for more insights on this.  
  • Toss it.  It may be hard to get rid of some of your things in this manner, but if it’s broken, dangerous, or unusable it’s not good to anyone, so throwing it away is a smart move.  Keep recycling in mind here, too.

The Takeaway

While all your awesome stuff really showcases who you are and what you like, if it’s no longer relevant to your quality of life, it’s a safe bet that you no longer need it.  

We’re not saying get rid of your wedding dress, but just maybe you can donate your sophomore year homecoming dress?  Sentimentality stands for something, so just trust your gut and you’ll get through this unscathed.  

And if you have any questions or comments in the meantime, we’re happy to help you achieve the best moving experience possible, so give us a call.