Relocating to a new community is a big change. Even if you aren’t downsizing and will have the same amount of space you are used to, now is the perfect time to organize your things. Clearing out clutter before your move can make the transition easier and help you feel refreshed and renewed once you unpack.
Use this quick guide to learn more about how professional organizers can help you prepare for retirement.
Why you should declutter your space
Did you know that having too much stuff can increase your stress levels? According to Mayo Clinic, people who describe their homes as being restful tended to be less stressed. People who described their space as cluttered or disorganized tended to show signs of chronic stress. Cluttered spaces can also make it harder to focus and could trigger irregular sleep patterns.
Your retirement should be as stress-free as possible. In addition to getting rid of old junk that you don’t need, you will need to set about 15 minutes a day aside for light cleaning. If you don’t think your daily mess can be cleaned in under 15 minutes, it may be a sign that your home is too cluttered, and you should consider the help of a professional organizer.
How to choose a professional organizer
Not every professional organizer offers the services you need. Some organizers will offer you general tips while others may help you pick and choose which items you should take with you when you move. If you are worried about hoarding or need additional assistance, you may need to contact a specialist. If you find that getting rid of your clutter is an emotional process or it has become stressful, you may be able to find a professional organizer with mental health training.
Don’t be afraid to ask a professional organizer about their approach prior to hiring them. You want to work with someone that makes you feel comfortable. This will also help you set expectations for your organization’s project. No one wants to think they are having someone over to help them alphabetize their collectibles only to have them throw half of them away.
Always ask for a cost estimate up front and know how you will be charged for services. Some organizers will offer free initial consultations, which is a great time to ask about fee structure. Other professionals may show up and charge you by the hour. Either way, you should have a good idea of how much you will be charged and how long the project will take before the organizer begins.
Depending on your area, you may be faced with dozens of options for professional organizers. If you want to make sure you are working with someone with a reputation for getting the job done well, ask for references and ask if they have any certifications. Many organizers are Certified Professional Organizers and belong to the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals. Others may have had specialized training in interior design or chronic disorganization. This can help you narrow down your choices.
Learn what you can and cannot take with you
Before you visit with your professional organizer, contact the community you will be moving into. While there are few restrictions on independent living communities, you may have some restrictions if you need assisted care.
In addition to knowing community rules in advance, a community representative may be able to help you narrow down your packing list. They can help you better understand the types of activities offered on-site or in the area. Never be afraid to ask questions about the lifestyle the community offers and adjust your packing list accordingly.
How to get rid of stuff you no longer need
After visiting with a professional organizer and talking with a community representative, you may find you have a lot of stuff to get rid of. While some of it can likely be thrown out, you may have some items that are valuable or that hold a lot of memories.
Here are some things you can do to make sure these items go to someone who will appreciate them:
While getting rid of these items can be tough, it is important to remember the benefits of being organized. Consider how much better your environment will be once you move into your new, clutter-free home. One way to do this is to visualize your new space and the items you have in it.
Examine the floor plans of your new space and get a clear idea of the life you want. This will make it much easier to toss unwanted clutter that doesn’t fit in with your vision of a well-organized space.
INGLESIDE AT ROCK CREEK
If you’re one of the many retirees who are choosing to downsize and move into an Independent Living community, we invite you to visit us at Rock Creek.
We offer spacious homes with weekly housekeeping, and all interior and exterior maintenance is included. Choose from our many leisure, educational or cultural activities, stay in shape at the fitness center or take a swim in our heated pool. Enjoy delicious and nutritious chef-prepared meals as well as all the opportunities to make new friends. We’re here to help you live an engaged retirement life.
Call (202) 905-0018 if you have any questions or would like to schedule a personalized tour today.