There is no getting away from it, moving house is one of the most stressful things in life.
If you are a regular mover, perhaps needing to relocate frequently due to your job, you might have got moving off to a fine art. Even so the sheer cost of hiring a removal firm can seriously dent your bank balance.
If, on the other hand, you have lived in the same location for a number of years you are likely to have acquired ‘stuff’ and lots of it. From your loft to your cellar and all the rooms in between ‘stuff’ rapidly becomes all-encompassing and whether you need it or not, will need to be sorted through and perhaps re-cycled, sold or simply dusted down.
Simply emptying the loft is enough to drive many couples to the brink of divorce particularly when one is a hoarder and the other a ‘devil may care’ thrower away. Each sentimental item, once a decision has been made to keep it, will take up valuable space when the removal men come, meaning that the magpie mentality can cost serious cash particularly when too many items push the Tardis like qualities of the average removal truck.
Like packing for the most nightmarish of holidays, the only thing that can help in this situation is a list and some long range planning. Systematic clearing of the loft, cellar, cupboard under the stairs, or even the tops of wardrobes cannot be started soon enough. Bag it, bin it or sell it NOW or face the consequences.
The more enterprising amongst us may even make so much cash on their pre-loved (now loathed) items that they might actually pay for the cost of the removal! It’s a lofty target (no pun intended!), but if you leave it to the last minute then you are literally throwing money away in a bid to lighten your load.
I’m as sentimental as the best of them with sealed boxes containing baby clothes, teddies, items of furniture from a bygone age and books leaving very little room to manoeuvre, however I happened upon a little trick which made it easier for me to let go. Photographs. Best of all photographs which take up no room and are stored forever in the cloud, should I happen to need them (but I probably won’t).
Pictures of the kid’s cute little outfits, achievements at school, best artwork and even forgotten teddies (shhh don’t tell) were my way to solve the problem. Once the appropriate evidence of existence had been obtained, it was off to ebay, charity shops and err the local tip. Yes it was hot, dirty work but the result … loft space!!! In fact I began to wonder if we needed to move at all now we had all this extra room.
That, coupled with finding an affordable domestic removal company made our relocation if not painless, then certainly not as painful as I had been anticipating. From now on I have decided to ‘travel light’ and get busy with my camera instead of shoving things I am not sure what to do with into a dark cobwebby corner. Gone are the days of procrastinating (well, until tomorrow at least). I no longer put off making decisions and instead do my best to wage the war on clutter before it becomes a ‘stuff’ mountain.
It is also reassuring to know that some affordable domestic home removal companies do exist to help you deal with the bulk. It is worth getting a quote from a few different companies as costs can vary hugely.
Now which box did I put my camera in?
Nick Wilson is a keen blogger and a member of the team at Affordable Removers, a UK based removals company.