Downsizing the Family Home—What to Save, What to Let Go

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The nest is empty. You know those silver-plated serving dishes that you received as wedding presents eons ago: the round platter, the tea tray, and the chafing dish? There is no point in keeping those pieces any longer. You don't use them and you’re moving from a 3,500-square-foot house to a 1,700-square-foot apartment. You must downsize! In this case, take the advice from Disney's Frozen; Let it go. Sell those unused items and get some cash. But before you start financing that favorite vacation from the profits, take off the rose-colored glasses. There's just not as much value in things as we think; not even if that silver platter has feet.

In downsizing you need to shrug off any hurt feelings if your children don't want your items. They do not want grandma's china (it can't go in the dishwasher), and people are eating out more.

In conclusion, downsizing can be frustrating, but just remember: Johnny is settled in his apartment, Angela is happily married, and so a simple solution is to keep the things you cherish or use, and simply get rid of everything else. Good luck with your downsizing!

Listed are sources to help guide your decision:

Downsizing Your Home with Style: Living Well in a Smaller Space by Lauri Ward

Moving On: A Practical Guide to Downsizing the Family Home: How to Get Rid of the Stuff, Keep the Memories, Maintain the Family Peace, and Get On with Your Life by Linda Hetzer

Make Space for Life: Hundreds of Ideas and Practical Solutions to Declutter Your Home and Stay Uncluttered by Angella Gilbert

Elder Care Alliance. "The Upside of Downsizing"
HGTV. Real Estate Tips. "Should I Downsize My Home?"
Money Crashers. "Why Downsizing Your Home Can Save You Money"
Lifehacker. "How to Downsize Your Home Without Losing Your Mind." "Eight Things You Can Discard to Downsize Your Life"

In the News
The Richmond Register. "The ins and outs of downsizing your home"
Fox Business. "A 3-Step Downsizing Plan for Seniors"

Yolanda Hardy
Smithfield Branch  Library