This article first appeared on Shires Removals website
“I can’t believe it’s all clutter!” This has been said many a time when it comes to moving house, and realising just how much you own.
But who wouldn’t want to add thousands of pounds to the value of your property when you are preparing to put it on the market?
It can be as easy as decluttering and giving your home an affordable and welcome refresh.
State of the nation
Research has revealed that we actually store over five times more than our European neighbours.
Conducted by comparethemarket.com, they found that even when space in our homes are restricted, most of us find it really hard to get rid of our possessions.
While 1 in 2 Brits admit to holding onto things for longer than they should, 1 in 3 say they don’t like the idea of getting rid of their possessions.
It’s not only that we’re keeping more stuff, but the size of our average house has shrunk too – leaving us with less space for all our stuff.
And to top it all, we accumulate more than £9,000 of stuff in our homes that we don’t use.
Move without taking your clutter with you
There is every reason to declutter before you move home – it is less to pack. Less packing materials needed. Less to transport. Less to unpack. And less cost as a result.
A huge leap in house value!
A recent example of a stylish upgrade to a cluttered three-bedroom home appeared on TV Nick Knowles’ Big House Clearout on Channel 5. A family added an incredible £60,000 to the value of their £140,000 property by decluttering. From the storage under the stairs, to their dining room, garden shed, and bedrooms. There was a lot to clear out!
“Nick completely emptied the family home so that they could realise how spacious it actually was, and put their belongs in an empty hangar so they could sort through them and get rid of the unnecessary items.
In total, the family had amassed 5,000sq metres of products, including 412 books, 100 pairs of shoes, 124 music records, 317 DVDs, 232 CDs, 36 VHS and 793 socks, as well as 146 sets of plastic cutlery.”
“This family were completely taken aback with how neat, organised and spacious their house had become thanks to the refresh, as well as some tough choices concerning which items to bin.”
At the end of the show, they were shocked to see how different their house looked with 50 per cent of the clutter gone for good.
Accumulating clutter in your home
Clutter often builds up over the years, and many people live in their family homes for a long time. Children grow, the family size grows under its roof as new kids are born. Things are acquired, and before you know it, there is a good few years’ worth of considerable accumulation.
Hard to let go of stuff!
It is particularly hard to part with your memorable belongings if they have a sentimental value, or you are attached to them. But there comes a point where it can become untenable – for everyone!
But decluttering also gives you the chance to really see your home’s true potential, and to imagine new décor and a welcoming and attractive makeover – no matter your budget.
Call in the experts
One of our valued customers also happens to be a professional organiser! Caroline Watterson, of A Tidy Mind West Yorkshire , says, “As a Professional Organiser I’ve helped many clients to DECLUTTER and ORGANISE their homes.
Decluttering is very much about what’s in people’s heads as much as what’s in their homes and A Tidy Mind work with clients compassionately and with empathy.
It’s such a privilege for us to witness a client’s transition from chaos to calm. I could talk all day about the benefits of decluttering and living in an organised space: less stress and anxiety, easier daily routines, savings in time and money, increased productivity, enhanced relationships, improved sleep to name just a few.”
Why decluttering is so important when selling your home
Caroline adds that she’s a big fan of Kirsty Allsop and agrees that ‘One of the most common things that devalues a property is clutter.’
Decluttering prior to a move
“Moving home presents a fantastic opportunity to declutter. It’s the perfect time to consider if you use, need or love your possessions and which ones you want to pay someone to pack up and move. When decluttering for my last move, I discovered a suitcase full of old house magazines which I’d already torn all the bits I loved from, why on earth did I keep those?!” says Caroline.
Coping with the Overwhelm
Caroline understands ‘Oh too well’ the Overwhelm – and the importance of empathy:
“Decluttering a whole house can be overwhelming. The hardest part is getting started and knowing where to start. This is where I come in!
- If you’re doing it yourself I would suggest not putting it off and starting with a small bite size decluttering session.
- Set a 15 minute alarm on your phone or play your favourite tunes and tackle a small area such as a bathroom cabinet or a cutlery drawer.
- Once completed give yourself a pat on the back, you’ll feel empowered and motivated to carry on.
- Try to imagine yourself unpacking your possessions in your new home, are you really going to want those chipped cups (which you’ve been meaning to throw out for ages) in your lovely new kitchen?
- If downsizing after a number of years or selling up due to a bereavement decluttering can be extremely overwhelming and emotional. In this situation I work with clients at their pace and with the utmost respect for their belongings, which after all represent memories of a life lived.”
Heart over head decisions
A house sale is far more than simply bricks and mortar, they are a heart over head decision made in the initial 7 seconds of a viewing. If you want to stand out from the crowd your home needs to be clutter free, staged well and smell amazing.
Walk around your home and view it as a buyer will do.
- First impressions are key, is your entrance appealing?
- Are external and internal doormats are clean and presentable?
- Clear the clutter and the clear some more, be ruthless.
- Clear and clean worktops so they are gleaming in kitchens and bathrooms.
- Remove old towels and bathmats and present the new fluffy ones you’ve been saving for your new home.
- Make your house smell amazing by baking bread or putting a muffin in the microwave just before a viewing.
Just before moving day
In an ideal world, packing up your home would take place well in advance. But, as is often the case, there is usually a lot of last-minute packing that goes on!
Bennett’s has a Packing service as part of our full removals service to our customers. But the tough choices about what you wish to take with you to your new home are best made beforehand, in order to save yourself money and time – on both ends of your move.
If some of these decisions are far too hard to make, along with everything else going on with your move, you are welcome to make use of our secure storage facilities that have both short-term and long-term options.
We also assist with recycling and disposing of unwanted items of furniture. Just let our team know what your needs are and we can facilitate these.
Moving is a part of life. So the ultimate aim is to have a Faster, Easier, and Less Stressful Move all round.