As a realtor, mom and homeowner with three grown kids I see how much stuff we buy and hold on to. As I look at my MIL and her new place I am hit with the reality that time goes by quickly and if one doesn't take responsibility of getting rid of clutter it burdens others. Having gone through this with my own parents in Florida 3 years ago I recognize this burden and don't want to put it on my kids. Although not the primary care person for my in-laws I helped a bit but my SIL shared most of this burden.
I have a basement filled with boxes of stuff that we no longer need or most likely will never use. When I go to a clients home the first thing most need to do is declutter as a step towards getting ready to move. Although many of us are tempted to pack and move things to our next locale it is always best to get rid of as much as possible. In Margareta Magnusson's book The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning. she shares her techniques of carefully and thoughtfully divesting of her things so as not to impose on her offspring.
Millenials get it and every fall there is a local event in Allston called Allston Christmas. Most college students return to the area around September 1 and this is a popular lease term start. Those moving leave their unwanted furnishings out for others to take and repurpose.
For those a bit more settled and in suburbia there are many places where one can discard unwanted items such as Community Councils and Transfer Stations in town. There are also services available to help get rid of the junk. We used GotJunk this past week to dispose of the last remnants of my MIL's home that had made it to each of her prior locations as her new place now includes furniture.
There are many great books out on how to start decluttering and getting rid of things. A recent book I just read by Gretchen Rubin Outer Order, Inner Calm was a great kick start for me to launch a deep purge in my kitchen. I am hoping to continue this process as the colder weather approaches. If you need any further ideas on how to tackle this process feel free to reach out to me. I have a network of professionals who also help facilitate these projects.
Wendy is a Realtor with Coldwell Banker Needham and also works on Cape Cod during the warmer parts of the year. She loves walking her dog, traveling, reading, exercising and keeping up with friends and clients. She also loves coffee and will happily meet anyone interested at a local Starbucks near Needham and Mashpee.