Clearing the Clutter before Moving

Almost two years ago, my husband and I left our home of thirty years to move into our retirement dream home. Or so we thought. Three months ago, we were taking a walk in our neighborhood and discovered a neighbor had put their home up for sale. My husband wanted a three-car garage. Our present home only has a two-car garage. We put an offer on the new house and will be moving in a few weeks. When we left our family home, we were both committed to clearing the clutter. It isn’t easy to do, but I am so glad we didn’t move boxes of stuff, because we didn’t want to do it at the time.

Do you have a home full of stuff you don’t use, don’t need, and don’t want? What are the reasons for not clearing the clutter? You may keep it because someone special gave it to you. You believe you may need it sometime. You’re saving it for your children, who may or may not want it. It has sentimental value. It may feel like the task is just so overwhelming, it’s easier to box it up and move it than sorting through.

Last year, my mom moved. She has moved five times since my dad died twenty years before. When I went to help her, she still had boxes of receipts from the 1970’s. With the last move, I had to do the bulk of the work because she has dementia and couldn’t make decisions. Do you want to leave this task to your children?

I have a friend who married a second husband. She moved into his home with all his stuff. Most of her possessions ended up in boxes in the garage. Now, he is in a home suffering from Alzheimer’s and she has the responsibility of clearing the clutter all by herself.

While I’m not thrilled about packing and moving my household again, I’m so glad my husband and I were brutal and getting rid of years of possessions before we moved here. In the end, you can’t take it with you. Somebody sometime is going to face the job of clearing the clutter from your home. If you start now, you will be glad you did. Whether or not you’re moving into your retirement dream home, commit to decluttering your home.


About Cathy Severson

Cathy Severson helps baby boomers find more meaning and purpose in their lives and work. Get your copy of her complimentary e-book Guide to Retirement Activities a comprehensive look at work, volunteering and leisure based on an individuals’ personalities. Call for a complimentary 20-minute consultation to answer your most pressing concern. 928.775.4949 or email Cathy at

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