Downsizing to a smaller home

Downsizing to a smaller home is a great opportunity to go through your things and do some spring cleaning - especially when there isn't room to take everything with you.

Your Home
5 min read
Moving home can be pretty crazy at the best of times, but if you’re downsizing to someplace smaller, there’s even more to factor in. 

Downsizing into a smaller home is a great opportunity to go through your things and do a bit of spring cleaning – especially when you know that there really isn’t room to take everything with you. That’s why we’ve put together this list of tips to help you decide what stays and what goes in the build-up to moving day.

Question everything

The first thing you need to do is separate the things that you use a lot from the things that you don’t use very often. Go through every shelf, cupboard and drawer and sort out the must-haves from the don’t-needs. If you can pack it away for three weeks without needing it, do you really need it at all? Assessing your items this way will help you prioritise what should make the cut, and what needs to go. You can then begin to pack things away into boxes in preparation for moving day.

Measure up

Moving to a smaller home doesn’t just mean cutting back on clutter, it can also mean that your furniture might not fit. To make sure you don’t run into any unpleasant surprises, it’s a good idea to have a floor plan of your new home, as well as the dimensions of each of its rooms. Measure each piece of the furniture that you plan to take with you, and use your floor plan to work out which of your things will fit and where.

You’ll also want to measure doorways and any other entries that could make it hard to move items into place. Once you know where everything fits — or might not fit — you’ll be able to assess which things might need to be moved to a different room, donated to charity, or even put into storage for a short while.

woman sorting items while downsizing home

The storage situation

Storage catches a lot of people out when moving to a smaller house; it’s likely you won’t have as much storage space as you’re used to. Getting a clear picture the storage situation in your new home before you move in will help you make realistic assessments of where your items will go in your new home, and will also help you to decipher just how much of your stuff you can take with you. Be aware that if you need to buy or install more storage space in the new home, you’ll have to allow for this when you’re planning where your furniture will go.

Big items first

On the big day, it’s a good idea to move the bigger items into each room first, including storage items like cupboards or cabinets. This means that you’ll have a better idea of how much space you have leftover in each room to adjust for more mobile items like chairs or small tables. Don’t fall into the trap of unloading all of your furniture in one room with the intention of sorting it out later – move things to their respective spaces as you go, especially in a smaller space.

Ready for the next step? These packing hacks will make your move easier.