Dear Empty Nesters, I Can Help You Downsize!
Welcome to June! It’s a wondrous month for most kids, because it represents the last month of school. For so many parents, however, it’s a time of year when they fear how crazy their homes are about to get with the kids being in them more often. Needless to say, most parents have their hands full during the summertime. That is, of course, parents of school-aged children.
Empty nesters have the complete opposite dilemma. Their kids are all grown up and have moved out of the house, leaving them to resume lives as couples. For many parents of adult children, the transition to living without kids is a tough one. Their homes were designed to house a much larger grouping of individuals than just the two of them alone. So what to do? Many, as you are likely aware, choose to downsize.
What makes downsizing so difficult for empty nesters?
Most people find that they have homes full of no-longer-needed items. In other words, clutter becomes a major issue. Clearing the clutter, therefore, becomes an intimidating task. Hans Wydler and Steve Wydler lead the Wydler Brothers real estate team in Washington, D.C. They are practically experts in the field of helping empty nesters de-clutter during their downsizing processes.
“The first three things we tell empty-nesters to do to get their home ready for market is to de-clutter, de-clutter, de-clutter,” they share in The Washington Post, “It’s amazing how many things one can accumulate over a lifetime. As we age, we also tend to hold onto things as they connect us with our past. We know first-hand. We lost our dad almost 20 years ago, and to this day, our mom still refuses to throw out any of his belongings.”
What can help empty nesters let go of their belongings?
A couple of months ago, I highlighted the importance of photo preservation in the PhotoWise Blog. In doing so, I pointed out that capturing images of our prized possessions is often a great (and even therapeutic) way to hold on to your cherished items. In fact, the photos can often serve as replacements of the items themselves.
Interior designer, Kathia Emery agrees with this practice and lists it as an excellent method of overcoming the “emotional power our belongings have over us”. As reported by Bridget A. Otto on OregonLive.com, Emery has advised many of her clients to “take photos of the things they can’t take with them — the things they might feel guilty about letting go, such as their grandfather’s chair or a family piano.”
How can PhotoWise help empty nesters to downsize?
One of the ways we’ve been able to help with downsizing is through our in-home Photo Organizing service. I am happy to help you gather your photos from all of the albums, boxes, frames and nooks and crannies around your home and sort them into a nice organized and compact system. From there we often scan these photos so that the whole family can enjoy them.
Another option we offer to empty nesters downsizing is to create special photobooks with such titles as “Our Family Home”. In them we showcase photos that capture the various pieces of memorabilia, furniture and other belongings that used to reside in their older, much larger homes. I had one client who took photos of each of his kid’s rooms – untouched – before they renovated so that there would always be photographic proof of how each room was personally decorated by each child before they left home.
Dear empty nesters, let’s preserve those family keepsakes together! Contact me today to learn more about how I can help you to downsize!