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How to Decide What to Keep When Moving

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Moving is an event that most people experience during their lives. While transitioning to a new house or apartment is an exciting time and something to cherish, it is also a complicated process. It is important to relax and enjoy the journey, but there are decisions along the way that can help prioritize property and save you money in the long run. Below I have listed a four-step process that can help you, the mover, decide what property to load in the truck or POD and which property to leave behind.

1. Examine What You Have

Oftentimes when preparing for a move, people start packing before assessing the personal property as a whole. It’s crucial to understand what you have in your current assets arsenal, down to each little kitchen appliance. The first step of being organized is getting a grasp around the moving process and what needs to be done. As you are taking account of each and every item in your house, mentally decide how important each item is to you and possibly what value it holds. If you are attached to something and it would be expensive to replace, it should have a head start to the moving van. Account for everything, and get a general sense of what you and the movers are working with.

2. Designate a Place for Irreplaceable Stuff

Items of sentimental value should come with you on the move, as should other items that are expensive to replace. Designate an area of your current house to start gathering these possessions that are sure to be part of your new home. Anything related to family will most likely be set aside in this step of the process, as will newer appliances, personal documents, jewelry, valuables, and classic artwork.

If there is absolutely no question about whether a specific something you own can be left behind, this step should be the last time it is thought about until you arrive at the new residence.

Getting a jump on the organization of these items will save you the trouble and time later on, as you need to take them anyway. Anything special should be tucked away with this group, as goods can get lost throughout a move if not grouped accordingly.

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3. Designate a Place for Replaceable Stuff

When making a move, particularly a large scale transition, replaceable items should usually be left behind. Everyone has trouble getting rid of things, but that is the reality of making a move. Additionally, change can be good and a new home is a convenient opportunity to change your surroundings even further.

Even more so, rented moving trucks are not cheap. It is not financially viable or practical to take items that can be easily replaced in the new location. More weight and required space equates to increased moving manpower. Examples of these objects include indoor houseplants, old clothes, dated kitchen appliances, irrelevant documents and paperwork. This step of the moving process will allow you to declutter and separate you from possessions you don’t truly need and are able to live without.

Don't just trash the items you are leaving behind, instead consider donating or recycling. Contact your county department for solid waste to find recycling centers, look on websites like Craigslist for free junk and debris removal or post your unwanted items on a website like Freecycle. There are plenty of people willing to pick up your junk for free as some of it can be recycled for cash. If you are considering donating, some charitable organizations will pick up your donations for free.

4. Use Your Imagination

Now that the items you must take and items you will leave behind have been designated, the only step left in the process is to imagine the possibilities for your new home. Of the items that are left, what can you picture fitting in or being necessary for your new life? Go through these choices with the future in mind. Do your best to ignore past attachments and understand you are moving forward. If you can visualize an armchair in your new living room, mark it for the moving truck. If you have a lawnmower but no yard in your new location, sell or donate it. This step requires you to utilize imagination and careful selection as you are the only one who has an idea of what will be ideal for your situation.

Deciding on moving to a new location is already a huge process, and there is no reason to complicate the physical part of the transition. Breaking down the organization of property can simplify your move and keep money in your account when you arrive at your new stomping ground.

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