10 Tips for Downsizing

Whether you are “spring cleaning” or making a move to an active senior community such as Cornwall Manor, here are some helpful tips:

1.    Start early! It’s never too early to start sorting through your things and making a plan.

2.    Set up a station with four boxes – share, donate, shred and trash.

3.    Start with the rooms you use the least. Once these rooms are done, it will give you space to begin putting the things you want to dispose of.

4.    Create lists. Lists help to keep you organized. Include lists of “to do” (such as change of address notifications and notifying utilities) as well as belongings you want to keep or sell.

5.    The more you give away or trash, the less there is to move and unpack. Ask yourself- “when is the last time I used this?” If the answer is more than a year – don’t keep it!

6.    Tell people that you are downsizing. The adage “one man’s junk is another man’s treasure” is true! There may be relatives, friends or neighbors who are in the market for your furniture, old movies or clothing. The more people who know – the more you can pass on your things.

7.    Start sorting through documents such as tax and other financial records. Invest in a shredder and shred confidential documents. Check with your financial advisor or accountant about what you should keep and for how long.

8.     Check out services that specialize in helping people – especially seniors – to downsize, pack and move. Get references and talk to clients that have used them.

9.    Keep memories such as photos and mementos in a “memory box” or scrapbook or have your photos put on a DVD or on your computer.

10.     Stay positive! Sorting and getting rid of “stuff” is a good thing. And if the end result is a move to a new community – then you are starting a new adventure!

Moving to an active senior living community such as Cornwall Manor has many benefits. As a resident you will enjoy a maintenance-free lifestyle – so there is no need to keep your snow shovels, lawn mower or ladders! And if after your downsizing process you still end up bringing too much – relax. There are shops at Cornwall Manor that accept donated furniture, clothing and household items. All proceeds are used for a charitable purpose – so it’s a win-win for everyone!

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