Top 5 Tips for Downsizing

December 13, 2017 at 11:21 AM

Whether it’s because the kids have all moved-out, or you’re preparing for retirement, we know moving from a larger home with lots of stuff into a condo can be tricky. However, for many people, one of the advantages of condo-living is it provides the opportunity to streamline your space and live a more organized life. Knowing this is one thing, actually doing it may seem daunting.

Don’t worry, Options for Homes has got you covered - here's how to make the transition as smooth as possible.

5 simple steps to make downsizing easier

1. Carefully consider your new space

Not only are you entering a new physical space, but you’re coming into a new mental space as well. If you are simply too overwhelmed at the time of your move to make hundreds of small decisions, just make one: rent a storage unit for 6 months to keep things you’re just not sure about. This gives you time to emotionally detach from items so that you can give careful consideration to what you want, and what you’ve found you don’t need. Access Storage has facilities near every new Options development. Mention Options and you will get a 10% discount at Access Storage. Contact reception@optionsforhomes.ca for more details.

2. Start packing early

Start packing up one room at a time, and give yourself the time to go through all your things. Remember that you’re not only downsizing, but also trying to simplify your life.

3. Be decisive

For starters, if you haven’t used something in over a year, it’s time for that item to find a new home. Also, look for items that serve the same function. Did you know that the kitchen is the room where we tend to have the most overlap? You probably have multiples of the same exact utensils. Why keep so many? Choose. Be decisive about what stays and what goes.

4. Recycle wisely

Now that you’ve decided what you really want, what should you do with what you won’t be keeping? You can certainly sell what you don’t need at a garage sale, or you can donate your items to a worthwhile charity or non-profit! Here’s a list to help you choose an organization:

  • Canadian Diabetes Association has been around since 1985, and leads the fight against diabetes through prevention and awareness, helping those affected by diabetes, and by increasing research funding for a cure. One hundred per cent of the proceeds raised by Clotheslines goes towards supporting the Canadian Diabetes Association with diabetes research, education and advocacy. Clothing, footwear, blankets, pillows, sleeping bags, toys books and household items can be donated to them. To arrange a free pickup, call 1-800-505-5525 or visit http://www.diabetes.ca/how-you-can-help/clothesline
  • Children’s Book Bank provides free books and literacy support to children in low-income neighbourhoods in the Toronto area. Children’s books for newborns up to age 12 can be donated and dropped off at 350 Berkeley Street, near Gerrard Street East.
  • Furniture Bank helps transform empty spaces into homes and provides furniture to families in need. To get a pickup quote, visit http://www.furniturebank.org/furniture-pickup-request/ or call 416-934-1229 Ext. 2.
  • New Circles is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing clothing and skill building opportunities to individuals. Clean, gently worn clothing can be donated at 161 Bartley Drive or call 416-422-2591.
  • Oasis Clothing Bank is a non-profit that helps individuals that are on the road to recovery and accepts gently used clothing and houseware items. To find the closest location near you, visit http://www.clothingbank.ca/fnsec_locations.inc.
  • Pegasus Thrift Store is dedicated to supporting adults with developmental disabilities and autism. Clothing, jewelry, antiques, books and household items are accepted. To donate, please contact info@pegasustoronto.ca or visit their store located at 931 Kingston Road.

5. Be selective

Once you’ve settled into your condo, be mindful of what you continue to bring into your new space. You want to break the habit of bringing things home just for the sake of having things. Why add clutter to your space and life? If you don’t have the space to store large quantities of products, first, limit how much you buy. Secondly, you can join a lending library where you can share everything from tools to musical instruments. Also, there are many great blogs and books about living minimally. One that we personally like is: “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo.

Try any of these tips and we’re sure it’ll make you love your new clutter-free condo even more!