I recently asked my kids this question and chuckled at their responses. Their answers varied based on proximity to family, beautiful scenery, or entertainment options. I also have several part-time employees who are college students, and it's common for me to hear all the reasons why they don't like where they are and how great it would be to live somewhere else.
Contentment Not Found in a Location
Over the years my company has moved thousands of people all over this great country. If there is one thing I've learned about relocating folks is that contentment is not found in a place. We have moved many people to their perfect retirement home in Florida or Arizona only to move them somewhere else a few years later. We have moved several clients to a larger, newer home only to move them to a even larger, newer home a few years after that. We have even moved several folks to a new location because they wanted to be closer to family or friends only to be disappointed by unrealized expectations. Still others move to advance their careers and make more money and then do it all over again a few years later. Don't get me wrong... none of these reasons are bad. Many people greatly improve their lives by moving; and as a business, we want people to move.
A Tale of Two Homeowners
This idea of contentment not being found in a location is illustrated with two different couples whom I know.
The first couple had been very successful in their careers and purchased a beautiful property in Florida to retire. When they arrived at their new home, they bragged for hours about all of the rich and famous people in their neighborhood. They were enamored with what everyone else had, and it was clear they wanted more. Everything they owned was pristine. Interestingly enough, they were ready to move only 2 years later. Apparently, they had become lonely and bored and wanted to try something else.
As I have reflected on these two couples I was struck by their differences. The first couple placed a high value on houses and things. The other couple placed a high value on relationships and contentment.
What Truly Has Value?
As we pursue our goals and dreams, it's important to remember what truly has value in our lives. Being in the moving business has taught me valuable lessons about pursuing the right things.. The more I pursue the intangible things like solid relationships, contentment, and faith in God, the more I find joy. I hope that gives you something to think about no matter where you choose to move.
Whether you are gearing up to retire, are a new empty nester, or are simply considering your options with an upcoming move, you may want to consider downsizing.
REASONS TO DOWNSIZE
The truth of the matter is that larger homes cost more money. Are you currently mortgage broke? Do you have money set aside for other things? Perhaps you know you should be saving for retirement or your kids’ education or setting aside money in an emergency fund, but there never seems to be enough left over at the end of the month. Plus, maybe you’re still struggling to get a grip on old debt.
What if you reduced your mortgage by $500 a month and put that cash towards other financial goals? Dave Ramsey, the money guru of Financial Peace University, suggests that you could make real headway on getting rid of debt, fund an emergency fund, boost your retirement fund, and you could even pay off your new mortgage early!
Larger homes not only cost more in financial resources, but they also take more of our time resources. Time to maintain, to clean, and to organize our stuff. With a larger home, most of us tend to acquire more stuff. This stuff, of course, also takes time to maintain…and money, too!
If you’re asking yourself right now, “Yes, but what do I do with all of the stuff that I already have?” More and more people are saying and believing that “less is more!” If you believe it, then sell your stuff. Convert it to money!
It seems like more and more people are stressed out about many things. Stressed out by working harder to pay bills; stressed out by spending too much time taking care of their lawns, their homes, and the stuff living in their homes.
Many people are downsizing to alleviate the stress that comes from the time and financial demands that stem from too much home and stuff.
EVALUATE YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES
If “stressed out” describes you, start asking yourself why. What things can you control that may alleviate your stress? Your job? Your schedule? Your possessions? Your house responsibilities?
What would you like to be different in your family?
Do you want more time and money vs. more home and stuff?
What are your priorities?
Although some people are looking at ways to downsize their home and their lifestyle, there are several reasons that others are looking to increase their living space. What about you? Are you wondering whether it's time to increase or decrease your living space?
If you're already planning a move, assess your needs now by considering the following:
If your family is growing or if you plan on a growing family, then upsizing into a larger home may help make life more comfortable.
Open flow space
Interestingly enough, even for retired couples or empty nesters, some people are simply looking for more open space. More space is ideal for dinner parties and other gatherings.
Out of Town Family / Friends
In some cases, homeowners have many family members or close friends who live far away. If you’re often serving as host to these guests, you and they may appreciate having an extra room or two when they visit.
Special Housing Situation / Need
If you’re looking for a specific housing need, then you may need to upsize as a result. Perhaps you need an office on the main floor – or maybe even an office with a separate entrance. Perhaps you’re looking for separate quarters for an aging parent or a live-in nanny. Due to health circumstances, many are looking for single-level living to eliminate stair usage.
Moving anyway? Assess your needs now
If you’re planning a move anyway, now would be a good time for you to take a serious look at what your wants and needs are for your new home.
However, don’t forget to consider how much you can really afford.
Declutter BEFORE Moving
Who wants to make moving more unpleasant than it sometimes can be? The answer is obviously “no one,” but many people make this mistake unintentionally.
Although some people hire a moving company to also pack their belongings, most people keep the packing task to themselves. If this is you, why pack more belongings than necessary? Use these tips to know what items to ditch before you make a home switch, whether it’s a local or long distance move.
THE TWO BIG QUESTIONS: WHAT? and HOW?
What are you going to eliminate? And how will you eliminate? Those are the questions!
What to Ditch
Most of us cling to our stuff because we’re sure something will come in handy sometime; or, of course, there are always those items that carry sentimental value. Our stuff is personal; your stuff is personal. And because it’s personal, only you can assign value in the end. Use these tips as simply guidelines to help you decide what to ditch and what to keep.
Determine the clothes that you don’t wear. It sounds simple enough, but too often we simply keep wearing the same clothes and yet our closets continue to feel like they’re bursting at the seams…because they are. Realize that your unworn clothes are taking up space and could be with someone else who really loves them.
A general rule of thumb for ditching clothes is this:
Consider ditching everything except special books or collector’s edition DVDs and move to digital copies. If you are committed to keeping your physical discs (audio, video), switch to a disc binder and ditch the cases. Some one else or another organization might appreciate the extra books and media.
MAKEUP and EXTRA TOILETRIES
Your stash of extra soaps and shampoos are generally easy and inexpensive to replace. Regarding your makeup, keep the essentials and toss any expired or undesired products.
TOWELS and LINENS
Place all of your kitchen utensils in a container. Then think back over the last month to the items that you used, and place only those items back in your drawer. Aside from seasonal kitchen utensils, you can likely ditch the rest.
Encourage your kids to donate what they don’t play with anymore. Moving forward, consider storing some toys in different boxes, switching out toys on a regular basis. This will possibly lessen the desire to continue to purchase new toys if “old” toys become “new again” toys every now and again.
How to Ditch
Aside from actually throwing away your stuff (and there will be likely be stuff that simply needs to find the trash), here are some other ways to ditch your items.
The cheapest way to sell is to use free online classifieds and social media.
Regardless of the online method you use, take the time to include clear photos and complete descriptions (size, dimensions, and condition) to eliminate long email or messaging exchanges.
Keep the items that you have listed in your garage to avoid having strangers enter your home. It’ll also be easier for buyers to pick up larger items.
ONE-SIDED "STUFF" SWAP WITH FRIENDS
Most of us dread the thought of a garage sale complete with organizing, pricing, managing the sale, price haggling, and the like.
However, it's always fun to have an excuse to get together with friends, so consider inviting your friends over for a one-sided clothing/furniture/kitchen swap. Have friends come over to look through the items you've set aside to ditch. Your friends will be grateful, and you'll have less items to move.
And the good news: you don't need to set up and price any items!
Even if you choose to sell some items first, take whatever is left to a donation center. You could also consider marking down certain sale items to FREE, especially to avoid hauling larger items to a donation center.
We Can Help
Most people consider the packing and unpacking to be the worst parts of moving. Cluttered boxes can be discouraging, so use these tips to move fewer things and to reduce your stress.
Kearney Moving Service is a full-service moving company. Hire us to do your packing for you!
Article adapted from the article "Packing for Your Move: Eliminating the Clutter" from wheatonworldwide.com.
With all of the bad news out there I wanted to give you a little good news. I regularly hear people say that "young people don't know how to work anymore." While there is some truth to this, I have found that our society still has young men and women that have amazing values and a great work ethic.
Who hasn't heard the phrase "Midwest values"? If you live anywhere in America, then you've heard it, and you likely have some clear thoughts about what those specific values are. A survey completed by a Silicon Valley, California, business technology expert shared his survey results, and the survey's top response was WORK ETHIC.
At Kearney Moving, one of our company's core values is a strong work ethic. At the heart of our company are Midwest values and our Midwest work ethic. Our desire is to encourage and promote an energetic "I'm on it!" attitude because we truly desire to serve our customers with humility and efficiency.
So what about you? When you think about Midwest values, what specific values come to mind?