You know you actually spent enough time dealing with your own clutter. But what if you need to handle somebody else's clutter too?
You need to make decisions about items that are not yours. Not always an easy task.
I myself never had to clear out a house before. But I've seen my parents deal with my grandparent's household goods.
There are a couple scenarios:
- when your parents move to a smaller house, now the “birds” have flown the nest.
- after somebody's death
- when you want to help someone to declutter her/ his house
- if your partner comes to live with you
- or the opposite when you’re going to live by yourself again because of a break-up
In all these cases, you are going through the belongings of someone else.
And yes, in some cases also through your own things. Nevertheless, decisions have to be made. and that can be a hard pill to swallow sometimes.
Especially when you have to clear out the house of a loved one, after his or her passing.
You too can have fond memories of the things your loved one owned. It can be truly difficult.
You don't just want to talk or get rid of something items. But you can't keep it all, right?
At this point, you ask yourself two questions:
- if he/she had to choose to keep or get rid of this item, what would he/she do?
- is this item of such value you to me, emotionally or financially, that I want to keep it?
Of course, there's more involved and maybe more people even,
but those two questions can help you initially to decide what to do with the item. Some things are easy to part with, whilst other things are pretty challenging to donate or throw away.
If you come to the point of parting with some items, you need to ask yourself how. Where are you going to go with the items?
- you could give them to other family members
- you can give them to charity or bring them to the thrift store
- find a place where they play bingo and need prizes
- the school kitchen could possibly use the pots and pans
- you can always sell items online or at a garage sale
- you can bring books and magazines to the local library
- you can use items to serve as gifts, for example, give a vase with a bouquet of flowers (and tell them to keep the vase!)
- if you know someone who is going to move out of the house to study or to move in together with their boyfriend or girlfriend, maybe they can use some stuff
There is so much you can do with another one’s household goods. Tossing out good usable items is always last resort if you asked me.
One last tip: remember, your kids also have to go through your stuff one day. Don't make it too hard on them and start decluttering now!