Helping your parents downsize – gently

Isn’t it strange that we spend all our working lives striving to buy bigger and better homes for ourselves and our families, only to then reach a point when we realise that, actually, we need somewhere a bit smaller and more manageable?

You might have parents who are going through that process at the moment. Perhaps you and your siblings have all flown the nest and now the house where you grew up is just too big for them on their own. All your parents may really need now is a spare bedroom for occasional overnight visitors; they might be looking to invest in a bungalow so that they are prepared for a time later on when they can no longer easily manage the stairs.

Downsizing is a necessary and sound enough thing to do, but you might already be looking around your parents’ existing home and wondering what on earth you’re going to do with all the stuff they own! Their home will be filled with a lifetime of memories – yours and theirs – and simply throwing away or giving to charity all the household items that will not fit into their new little house would be awful.

No, taking the decision to move in the first place will have been hard enough; getting rid of all but the bare essentials would be a step too far at this stage.

Have you ever tried to go through old drawers, cupboards and wardrobes without becoming engrossed and spending hours relieving and talking about the memories those possessions stir up? Well, if you have a deadline to work towards (ie. moving day), you’re just not going to have time to do all those memories justice. Yet a smaller house will, of course, have less storage space – so what do you do?

How about looking into self storage, When your parents reach the packing stage, put all the things they need with them into one pile (to take to the new house) and all the rest into cardboard boxes to take to storage. Once in a self storage facility, you can all take the time you need – and that your memories deserve – to sort through everything and decide which things you can safely dispose of, and which your parents want to keep.

Those items you want to keep could be shared out between you and your siblings, or simply kept in self storage for as long as your parents choose. Morespace can offer safe and secure self storage in St Neots and other areas of Cambridgeshire, where you can store your parents’ belongings for just a month, or for as long as you need.

Putting your parents’ belongings into storage gives you the option of hanging onto furniture and other household items that might be useful at a later date – and it gives you all time to sort through them properly, at a decent pace.