Although the prospect of starting a new chapter in a new home is very exciting this can often be over shadowed by the overwhelming task of having to downsize, pack boxes, move, unpack, and then settle in. To all of our soon to be incoming residents I hear your pain! We are in the middle of yet another, well I should say, we are “procrastinating” about another office reshuffle here at head office. And as much as we know it needs to be done, and will in fact be better, it is still a bit of a task to both plan the new layout and then motivate everyone to get their moving caps on. So this got me thinking, instead of moving I might procrastinate a bit longer and come and write my blog instead!
The truth is though, moving is a big task and we are very mindful of the amount of organising and coordinating it takes our residents and also of the stress it can bring. For those who have family around them to lighten the load it is certainly easier but if there is ever need for further support and assistance, Oak Tree will do whatever we can to help your move remain as smooth as possible. This is why we have pulled together our very own downsizing formula:
The Oak Tree downsizing formula:
When moving into an Oak Tree Retirement Village, most people need to consider downsizing their belongings. Often this can be a daunting task simply because of the shear size of the job at hand. We understand this at Oak Tree and have interviewed several of our residents to find out how they tackled the task. Here are their helpful tips
1. Go Through Each Room and Ask Questions
First, start with the areas of your home that you don’t use much, such as your garage, shed, the laundry room or spare room. It’s easier to get rid of belongings from rooms that are mostly used for storage.
And as you go through each room, ask yourself some questions about each item:
- When was the last time I used this?
- If I do use it, how often and why? What purpose does it serve?
- Do I own another item that can serve the same purpose as this one?
- Is this item something I love? Does it have sentimental value that can’t be replaced?
- Can I get by without it? Would I have to replace it if I choose to get rid of it?
- Is it in good shape? Will it last for a long time?
- Does it need repair, and if so, how much will that cost and is it worth the price?
- Do I know someone else who would benefit a lot more from its use?
- Does it serve a purpose in this new life that I’m moving to?
2. Start thinning out your belongings in advance.
Take some time each day, or one morning each week, to go through that jammed wardrobe or overflowing filing cabinet.
3. Have a look at the layout of your new Villa.
This will help you decide what furniture to take with you
4. Talk to other Residents
A great way to meet your new family. Pop into the village and chat to other Residents and see how they have fitted out their Villas.
5. Once you get to the packing stage, use a colour-coded system to organize all of your boxes.
Choose a colour for each room and mark the boxes destined for that room with a coordinating colour sticker. You can also do the same thing numerically; for example, if room No. 1 is the kitchen, then all boxes marked No. 1 will go there.
6. Label three bins To Keep, To Sell and Charity (bins should be manageable when full).
For the average downsize, keep only one-third to one-half of your belongings,
7. Have a garage sale. Give away, throw away, or recycle everything else.
Sell anything that would possibly be of use to someone in a garage sale. You can also try selling them to any second-hand or thrift stores in your area or why not consider the trading post or e-bay?
8. Get an objective opinion.
If you can’t decide whether to keep or kiss that dusty ’70s-era sewing machine goodbye, it might just be the kick you need.
9. Remember your goal
As much as downsizing may seem hard, remember you have an easier, care-free way of life awaiting you at Oak Tree – look forward to meeting new friends, enjoying new activities and feeling secure and comfortable in your new home.
10. Start a new chapter in life
One of the best ways to settle into your new home at Oak Tree is to invite your friends and family around to see your new place. Remember – whilst you are making some changes to your life it does not mean you are forgetting your old life. Think of this simply as the next exciting chapter.
In ten simple steps its all nearly done. Now we just have to actually put them into practice. At least it will be well worth it in the end. For both you, and all of us here at head office. Next time I write I’ll be saying hello from my new office space!