Purging Tips Downsizing Before Moving Abroad

Many older people who are considering retiring abroad and moving overseas have lived in the same place for a long time. Moving out of one home and into another is always a complicated process, but it can be especially challenging if it involves leaving a long-established family home and moving abroad.

A few downsizing and purging tips can help retirees get started. If you’re moving abroad within the next few years, now is a good time to start thinking about reducing clutter, sorting and deciding which items you’ll take with you when moving overseas and which items you’ll leave behind.

Purging Tips When Retiring Abroad

Start early if you can. This will allow you the time to move at your own pace. It’s better not to rush the process–rushing will only turn cherished memorabilia into a source of unnecessary anxiety. If possible, begin a year or more before moving overseas and work in scheduled blocks of time. Two hours every few days, for example, will give you enough time to fully process your sorting decisions, make thoughtful choices and dwell on photographs and memories.

Secondly, develop a sorting system and start with large items. It may be a good idea to move through the house one room at a time. In each room, deal with the larger and more complicated items like furniture before you move onto books, photos and knickknacks. This will give you a greater sense of accomplishment and keep you motivated.

Thirdly, sort items into groups depending on how you will dispose of them. Gather items that will be donated to charity and group them together. Keep clear lists of the items that you wish to give to friends and family members. Maintain a short list of items that you will keep. Before you decide to keep something, ask yourself, honestly, how much you will need it after retiring abroad.

Purging Tips: A Final Note

Don’t allow yourself to become overwhelmed. Enlist help if you need it or if the sorting process is becoming an insurmountable burden. If you’re unsure about what to do with certain items, create a separate list that you can go back to later, and make decisions when you’re in a better frame of mind.