Most people wonder if they can downsize and yet live a fulfilled life. Well, it all depends on your lifestyle and what matters to you. If you want to be successful in the venture, it’s imperative that you take stock of your assets or possessions, what you can live with or without, and where your money goes. After examining your expenses, you can make a judgment by considering your priorities.
Below are practical ways on how to downsize your life during uncertain times, such as after losing a job or during a global pandemic like COVID-19.
If you want to downsize your home, grab a pen and paper and take stock of your possessions. Create three titles on one page with the following headings: “must-have,” can replace,” and “can live without.” Then take rounds in each room and fill in the details, respectively. This is also helpful if you are packing up before downsizing your home or apartment as well.
Its only items that are a must for your daily life and can’t be replaced should remain when weighing in on downsizing. You may have to replace some items by purchasing multifunctional appliances and devices, including furniture. After moving from room to room, you’ll be surprised that a huge percentage of your possessions belong to the “can do without” list.
Change Your Mindset
Downsizing isn’t as simple as most people consider it to be. If you’re used to living life to the fullest, you will need a shift in mindset. If you let go of your unnecessary belongings, you’ll be able to free a significant amount of money, time, and mental space.
Digitize Whatever You Can
Books, movies, CDs, DVDs, and photos can take considerable space in your cabinets. You can digitize these items and create extra space in your home. Videos and CDs that have been gathering dust on your shelves can be turned into digital material to save storage space.
The same applies to books; you don’t need all those books on your shelves. Perhaps some you’ve never read in the past ten years. If you can’t digitize them, donate or sell them. Most of them can move fast at half price on online platforms.
Sell Some Stuff
After assessing what you need for your new life, you need to decide whether you are going to sell a few things or keep them. If you have enough time to downsize, you can sell some of these items on online sites such as eBay or Craigslist.
With the money you’ll generate from the sale, you can use it to purchase compact appliances or furniture. Craigslist is an excellent platform for selling larger items such as appliances, furniture, and home décor. If you can deliver the items to the required destination, making sales becomes faster.
On the other hand, eBay is a perfect avenue for selling collectible items such as comic books, old albums, and figurines. Before listing your items in these sites, take high-quality photos and create compelling descriptions for them. At this point, you should think and act as a salesman.
As for your used designer clothing, you can resell them in consignment shops. You can quickly locate such shops in your local business directory. Shop around and find shops that offer the best rates.
Think Quality & Multipurpose
When downsizing, think of quality over quantity. For example, you can consider purchasing high-quality multifunctional furniture for your home rather than many small pieces of furniture. This is especially important for seniors who may have limited living space to begin with.
Ottomans that offer extra storage space for pillows and blankets and nightstands with closed or open storage are perfect examples of such furniture. The same applies to foldable chairs and couches that can be converted into beds. When shopping for new clothing, look for durable and high-quality fabrics that require small storage spaces.
Be Cautious When You Go Shopping
If you’re downsizing to save money, you must be ready to make lasting changes in your lifestyle. In your new life, you can’t be buying anything you want. Whether you’re shopping online or in physical stores, you must avoid the temptation to buy things you can do without.
Any products that don’t support your simple life should be a big no in your shopping basket. Simplistic living means you must make tough choices and be ready to make considerable sacrifices in life. When shopping, go for the essentials only. This will help in minimizing your expenses and saving on storage space.
Use Paperless Billing
The paper bills you receive via mail take considerable storage space in your home. You must store them well before paying the bills and even after sorting the payments to act as evidence in case of any future disputes. Shifting to paperless billing is an excellent way of de-cluttering your home.
Purchase a Smaller Car
Downsizing from a bigger car to a smaller will significantly help to reduce your expenses. It will allow you to free some cash and put it towards other vital needs. A smaller car means lower registration charges, fuel costs, and car loans. Pick a cheaper car that meets your family needs.
One of the best options is talking to your car dealer to trade in your vehicle for a cheaper one. Some dealers will want you to stick with your brand. An excellent example of such a dealer is Hyundai; they have a friendly return policy for their clients. If you have several family cars, you can choose to sell one or more vehicles and use it for more useful purposes.
Moving Into a Smaller House
Living in a small or tiny house is one of the excellent ways to downsize. In this case, you have no option but to do away with most of your possessions since you don’t have extra space to store them. Such small houses are usually less than 1,000 square feet.
Actually, for the tiny mobile houses, they range from 100 to 400 square feet. This decision requires proper planning and the right mindset. Depending on the house’s size, you have to part with about 50-80% of your possessions.
In such a home, you must also think of being creative in maximizing the small storage space. For example, you can consider making cabinets and shelves to store your belongings.
Downsize and Live Your Dream Life!
Tough times call for tough decisions. It’s possible to downsize and still live the life you’ve always desired. When you start the process, you’ll be amazed to discover you can live without most of the things you consider essentials in life. Downsizing helps simplify your life, saves you money by reducing expenses, and enables you to live debt and stress-free life. In unpredictable and uncertain times, consider downsizing.