Moving on a Budget
The time has come to make a move and you don’t have the luxury of hiring a Professional Moving Organizer to help you sort, purge and donate. Nor do you have the funds to hire a national moving company who can just pack it up and take it away to your newer, smaller home. Yet, you have a home full of "stuff". Regardless of how our “stuff” came to us, you are now at the point that you need to deal with it.
Step 1: You are going to need help… if you don’t have family members near by, enlist your friends and neighbors. Start in the garage and work your way inside. Or, start in the basement and work your way up. Or, start in the attic and work your way down. Wherever you start, throw out obvious trash first… like empty boxes (be sure to recycle!), anything ripped, torn or missing pieces.
Step 2: Have three empty moving boxes that are medium sized (do NOT put books in this size box – the box will be too heavy to lift) and mark them as follows: Donate; Keep, Give back to original owner.
Now, methodically go through the room from left to right and make a decision on each item. The goal is to have 3x or 4x as many boxes to Donate as you have to keep. If you have furniture, get some different colored post-its, decide on a color for donations and mark them appropriately.
Do this for each room in your home. If you have books, pack them in small book boxes. For items you are keeping, pack them as you go from room to room. Be sure to keep heavy things on the bottom of a box, lighter and more delicate items on the top of a box.
And, don't forget to use plenty of cushioning material (couch pillows, sheets, blankets, towels, unprinted newspaper etc.) to minimize breakage.
Step 3: Call your local waste management company to haul away all the trash. If they don’t provide this service in your community, do a search on the internet for a local hauler, or call 1-800-gotjunk.
Step 4: Call the Charity of your choice and have them come by and pick up your donations. You may have to call two or three different charities to finish this step.
Step 5: Call 2-3 local moving companies to get a quote to move what you have left. TIP – don’t call the moving companies until you have removed the trash & donations as you won’t get the best price. Movers know that most people say they are going to get rid of more than they actually do, so the mover will add 20-30% more to their price. However, if you have already removed the donations and trash, the mover will have a more accurate picture of what needs to be moved.
Of course, if you do have the luxury of hiring a Professional Moving Organizer, PHA would be glad to be of help!
A special thanks to Carol Ann Palmieri of Al and Cal Realty Group for suggesting this topic to me!!