Many people who downsize choose to do it in stages.
This is especially true in “elective downsizing,” but it’s not so true in situations where downsizing is due to life events (such as divorce, death of a spouse, a move to assisted living, or a move to start a new job). When downsizing is elective, the first time movers generally need to be called is when people are going through the preliminary stage of the process and they want to clear out the furniture and clutter that they don’t want or can’t use in their next home. If they’re listing their house for sale, they want to start the process of staging their home so it is ready for photographs for their agent’s website and for home tours by potential buyers. When the staging professional says that the room is crowded with too much over-sized furniture, he or she may advise the client to put a few items in storage. That’s another opportunity to hire a mover. Once the home sells, the bulk of the goods must then be moved to the new place, or to the storage facility for safekeeping until a new place is identified and ready for nre owners.
In forced or “urgent” downsizing situations, movers (or self-described “junk haulers”) may also be summoned to come and remove junk and clutter in the first stage of the downsizing process (in advance of an estate sale, for example), and then called again to move the homeowner to the new home.
In either elective or urgent downsizing situations, the last time a mover or junk hauler is called is typically after the estate sale is over and the homeowner has moved to the new home and what remains needs to be hauled away to Goodwill, to charitable organizations, or to the dump.
It’s wise to find a moving company that will give a discount for “multiple moves.” Of course, a moving company that’s able to move 3,000 square feet or more of items across the country will not be the same one that hauls junk to the dump. But start early to secure the services of a mover. Give them an approximately timeline for when their services will be needed, and keep that timeline in mind when planning the estate sale, the home staging process, and the ultimate move to the new home. Many estate sale specialists and home organizing professionals have existing relationships with movers, so it’s good to ask for their recommendations. Check out our Resource Directory of Downsizing Professionals for a list of moving companies in your area.
Storage facilities come in handy when people aren’t sure where they’re going.
It’s a common scenario these days: an empty-nester or a newly retired couple just wants to get rid of their house and travel for a couple of years, to decide where they want to retire. They don’t know where they’ll end up, and they’re not ready to sell all their furniture, so they opt for a storage company to keep their best furniture and accessories (like lamps, artwork, and rugs) in secure, dry storage. It’s best not to select a bunch of friends who will take a piece here or there for storing in their attics, basements, or garages. What a headache to collect it all when the travelers return and want to settle into a new home — and there’s no telling if it will have been kept dry, mold-free and pest-free where it was stored in their absence. Instead, storage facilities are a better bet for keeping items secure and in a climate-controlled environment. Many moving companies, home organizing professionals, and estate sale specialists know about the best storage facilities, so their recommendations can come in handy. Check out our Resource Directory of Downsizing Professionals for a list of storage facilities in your area.