How to Organize and Declutter Before a Move

Once you know that you’re moving, it’s time to start eliminating any items that you know you don’t use or will no longer need.  There is always so much to do leading up to a move that the more you can get done in advance, the better off you’ll be when it comes time to actually start packing.  Remember, moving is a time of transition - the ending of one thing and the beginning of something new. Transitions are often accompanied by a broad spectrum of emotions from happiness and excitement, to discomfort and anxiety.  At Consider It Moved, our philosophy is to help you lighten your load through this time of change. This often starts with organizing and cutting down on clutter before moving.  

Clutter and an excess of objects can have you feel smothered rather than spacious in your new surroundings and now is the time to create a new and clean space for a fresh start.   In addition to saving money in moving costs, another huge benefit of decluttering is saving time. Discarding one box of unwanted items means one less box to unpack and organize in your new place – literally lightening your load. Moving to a warmer climate?  It’s a good time to get rid of your heavy sweaters. If your kids have toys that are no longer age appropriate, it’s time to donate them.   

Beginning an organizational project like this doesn’t have to be overwhelming or cause you to throw your normal routine out of the window! Decluttering your home or office before a move is not only manageable but you may find that evokes feelings of freedom and spaciousness.  At Consider It Moved, we focus on decluttering as Step One in setting up yourself up to have a new environment with space for new opportunities.

Begin Right Away

If you want a more organized and decluttered environment in your new location, you should start working on this well before your moving day arrives as this process can take some time even with professional help. As with many tasks, getting started is always the hardest part. The best way to get going is to have a system – go through a certain category or a specific area each day. This is also a project that ideally will be done by your whole family.  It can be a great opportunity to connect and the new beginnings you are going to experience together. Children can be helpful in choosing between their own clothes, toys, and books – maybe even more than you expect!

Start Small and Be Prepared

When you begin sorting, organizing, and decluttering, try to start in a small space first, like a closet or cabinet. If you attempt to tackle a whole room, you may find it overwhelming going through many categories of things at one time. Working on a smaller section at a time can also help you avoid mental exhaustion.

Being prepared and having all the necessary tools and supplies on hand when you begin is super helpful. Some items you can use to help make this task easier are:

  • Boxes - You will save time and your project will be better organized when your “keep” or “pitch” items go directly into a box.

  • Markers - Note on the boxes what is inside.

  • Inventory List – Keep track of what you have gone through and where everything is going on a notepad or electronic device.

  • Garbage Bags – Items that will be thrown out go directly into bags and out your door.

The Decluttering Process

In order to make your organizational work more efficient and effective, come up with categories for your items.  The process will be much easier and less overwhelming if you look at one category at a time. 

Your personalized categories may include:

  • Clothes and shoes

  • Linens

  • Books

  • Papers and office supplies

  • Toys and games

  • Tools – kitchen and other utility

  • Electronics

  • Health and beauty products

  • Sentimental items

Go through each of the categories and consider marking items to move, sell, donate/dispose and store. Sometimes people find it helpful to have a temporary middle category to revisit at a later time, but if you can decide on the first go around it’s easier not to have to revisit a section.  

Deciding What to Keep

Deciding what to keep or part with isn’t always easy when going through items in your home, even for the most organized person.  Consider letting go of anything with the following characteristics:

  • Haven’t used or worn in a year

  • Duplicate items

  • Anything damaged or expired

  • Cannot use at your new place

These simple rules will help you to streamline your decluttering process. One thing to note is that sometimes items have a sentimental value that may supersede the above guidelines. Give yourself the gift of keeping the things that mean the most to you, while freeing yourself of unwanted items and baggage when moving into your new place and a new phase of life. At Consider It Moved, we are organizational and decluttering experts who can help you through this process.  The sooner you get prepared, the more time you’ll have to focus on what’s next.

Know What Options are Available for Disposing Items

If you’ve succeeded in clearing out the proverbial broom closet, you may wonder what to do with the items you don’t want to keep. There are a few options when deciding how to dispose of these items:

  • Donate or give away

  • Throw out or recycle

  • Sell

The type of goods you plan to get rid of will determine the best method. There are many places that accept donations of clothes, toys, and other items. However, before sending everything automatically to a thrift shop, you should make sure that those items are actually in usable condition (not ruined, broken, or extremely outdated). At Consider It Moved, we offer assistance with sorting, donating, and arranging for the sale of your items. 

NYC Pre-Move Decluttering Specialists

At Consider It Moved, we are dedicated to understanding your needs so that we can better support you in getting moved from one place to another.  From decluttering your current space pre-move to making sure there are groceries in your fridge on move in day, we provide the expertise and care that will have your experience be seamless. Contact us today as you begin this new chapter. Consider It Moved handles every aspect of your move with professional efficiency and reliability making things happen according to plan and supporting you during what could be a challenging time of change.  

Julie Subotky