Downsizing for the Big Move

Downsizing for the Big Move

I’m often asked how I did it.  How did I go from 2600 sq ft to 600 sq ft?  Where is all your stuff?

Downsizing is a one of the first things to do when getting ready to move aboard.  You will need to make the most of your space when moving on to a boat. There are several strategies you can use. From optimizing existing spaces to creating storage solutions, there are many ways to make the most of your small living area..

First, you have to come to terms with what stuff you really need. We have found we don’t “need” near as much as we thought.  While looking for help in downsizing, I came across a really good rule of thumb.  If you are on the fence about whether or not to keep something, ask yourself this:  Can I replace it in less than 20 minutes for less than $20?  I started using this rule and quickly realized I needed to up the parameters and so my rule was if I could replace in in less than a week for less than $100 it was out.

We got rid of a lot.  My kids are thankful that they won’t have to do this once we’re gone!  I used several sources for selling things that we no longer needed or wanted to store.  My top three were Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp and, my personal favorite Poshmark.  These sites are all incredibly easy to use and most items can be posted directly from your phone. I used Facebook Marketplace and OfferUp for items that could not be easily shipped.  Poshmark makes shipping super easy since they provide the shipping label and you can use the free Priority Mail packaging from the post office           .

We were constantly entertained by what things sold.  Our experience reinforced the saying “One man’s trash…”  My philosophy was to list it for a limited time (usually 1-2 weeks) then donate it.  I sold over $1000.00 of random household items.  This doesn’t include the big stuff, like furniture and electronics.

During the peak “sell off” period, I tried to set windows of time for people to pick up items they purchased.  If you don’t do this, you’ll find yourself sitting around waiting on people a lot.  As pick ups got farther apart, I set up a drop box on my porch and trusted people to leave the money for items they picked up if we weren’t at home.  I am happy to report, I was never cheated!

It took me about 60 days to sell off and pack up.  By the time we moved out of the house, we had consolidated everything into two PODS. We did also agree to have a storage unit in St. Augustine while we settled into boat life. I was unsure of what I would need.  After about 8 months, we were able to get rid of that unit and are now self-contained on Naut2Late.

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