We get it. The impulse to bring every possible thing from your old home when moving can be very strong.
But you would actually be doing yourself a disservice in the long run. After all, moving is one of the best opportunities for decluttering. And if you’re already suffering from packrat syndrome at your old home, why bring that same energy into your new one?
Here are 12 things you shouldn’t bring to your new home when you move.
1. Expired Items
Be ruthless when going through things with expiration dates. That means spices, condiments, medicine, and even beauty products. As much as you love your products, they could be harmful (or even fatal) to your health, so save yourself the hospital bill and leave expired items behind in the move.
2. Things That Could Go Digital
CDs, DVDs, paper documents and photos all have the potential of going digital. Rip, scan and donate. It may take a little big of effort and/or money, but it’s worth it for the physical space.
3. Rarely Worn Clothes
This one takes a lot of self control, because we have all wondered, “but what if?” when it comes to one-time-only items like costumes and bridesmaid dresses. If you’re still not ready to ditch the item entirely, consider putting it into storage for now.
4. Unused Gadgets
We’ve all been there; one day, you wake up and think you’re going to be a professional bread maker. So you buy a bread maker. But weeks pass, and you’ve maybe made two loaves of bread, and now that clunky bread maker is taking up space in your kitchen cabinets. It hurts, but be real with yourself about the appliances and gadgets you actually use. If it’s only once or twice, it’s probably time to say goodbye.
5. Things That Harbor Bad Memories
Still holding on to some letters from your ex? What about that shirt you wore for a really bad job interview? Moving is also a time of starting over, so do yourself a favor and let go of the things reminding you of the bad times.
6. Forgotten Magazines or Books
Unless you’re planning to use your old magazines for arts and crafts, it may be time to part ways with that load of three-year-old Entertainment Weekly rags. Even better – donate your magazines and books to your local library! Check eBay sold listings to see if you might be sitting on a potential gold mine first though.
7. Borrowed Items
Don’t take the things you’ve borrowed from friends and neighbors to your new home with the intention of “returning them later.” Chances are that you’ll probably be too far away, or busy with your new home to remember. Instead, put these borrowed items into a designated “return” box, and take care of business before you move.
8. Documentation You No Long Need
While the intent behind keeping cards, RSVPs, and thank you letters may be good, your home will suffer. Hold on to the things that really matter, and ask yourself – do you really need to hold on to that wedding invite from 2015? You know, the one you didn’t even go to?
9. Temporary Furniture
You may have some leftover “temporary” or flimsy furniture from college, first apartments, or even second apartments. Now is not the time to keep them. Your new home should be filled with purposeful, intentional furniture that makes it feel like a permanent residence, rather than a place that brings back memories of your dorm room.
10. Unused Sporting Equipment and Musical Instruments
Instead of buying something for keeps, opt for renting equipment when you actually use it. If you’re not a hardcore mountain biker, for example, you’ll probably end up saving money by renting a bike, rather than shelling out 2k for a top-of-the-line bike you’ll only use once or twice. Plus, this will help you save space in your garage. The same goes for instruments – book a piano room at your local church or university, or rent out a guitar to scratch that musical itch.
This one only applies if your move is long distance. Meat, eggs and dairy should obviously go. Consider donating or giving away your plants too, if you’re moving to another state or country.
12. Multiple Versions of the Same Item
Do you have six different USBs? Three of the same screwdrivers? Realistically, you’ll probably only ever need one of each, so cut down on your duplicates.