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5 Tips to Packing a Lifetime of Memories

Posted by Jeff Sallan on Wednesday, January 16th, 2019 at 7:38pm.

Many people choose to downsize after they kids have moved out or after retirement. Often, the equity homeowners have in their home is substantial enough, they want to cash in and purchase a home that better aligns with their lifestyle. But packing a home that that has 20+ years of keepsakes can be overwhelming.

When going through a lifetime of memories before you sell a home, whether that's your own home or a parent's, you may struggle with what to keep and what to donate or throw out. Before you get lost in the boxes of photo albums, check out this list to help you organize. 

1.  Take Pictures of Keepsakes. Do you have albums filled with old concert tickets? Collections of coffee mugs? If your purpose in having these collections is for the memories, consider taking pictures of the items instead. 

2. Choose One Item. It's easy to keep whole collections of things, until you have to move them, that is. Do you really need 12 Cabo San Lucas t-shirts to remind you of your family's annual vacation to Mexico? Instead of keeping all 12, choose one, favorite shirt as a keepsake. Instead of keeping your mom's entire tea cup collection, one set will still hold those memories, and you can take pictures of the others. 

3. Consider Updating. Sometimes we keep things just because we already have them. Is your dishware a complete set? If not, it's a great time to donate it and purchase a new set for the new house. You may have a lot of wonderful memories of the family sitting around the dining table, but if the table has seen better days and doesn't quite fit the space in your new home, you can update to something that fits your new space.

4. Consider Your Lifestyle. If your new home will be smaller than your current home, but there's a community gym, you may not want to move your home gym. Some parents keep their kids' bedrooms just as they were when the kids lived at home. In the new home, a study or craft room may be more appropriate. 

5. Enlist Help. If you find the process overwhelming, ask your kids or neighbors to help you pack. Grown kids can decide what of their own memorabilia they'd like to keep and what they'd like to donate or throw out. Have a close friend you trust help you pare down your own things if necessary. 

5. Choose One Item. It's easy to keep whole collections of things, until you have to move them, that is. Do you really need 12 Cabo San Lucas t-shirts to remind you of your family's annual vacation to Mexico? Instead of keeping all 12, choose one, favorite shirt as a keepsake. Instead of keeping your mom's entire tea cup collection, one set will still hold those memories, and you can take pictures of the others. 

 

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