Maybe you have too much space that you’ve filled with a bunch of extra stuff. Too many bills, an empty nest, and/or you want to invest more of your money elsewhere. Whatever your reason, you’ve decided it’s time to move out of that house and into an apartment.

Apartment living has plenty of perks—from no longer having to worry about maintenance issues to zero HOA fees. 24-hour fitness on-premise anyone? But it’s difficult to adjust to any new living situation and the need to downsize can make it a pretty intimidating experience.

Learning to Let Go

While you may be accustomed to living in a house, moving into an apartment will likely save you money in the long run—especially if your rent costs less than your mortgage, affording you extra cash to pay off other debts faster.

The most challenging part of moving out of your house and into an apartment will be any mental hurdles you encounter. You have made countless memories while living in your house, after all. You’ll have to part with the things and stuff that once served you well. What’s that popular phrase everyone knows? Saying goodbye is always super smooth sailing? No, saying goodbye can be akin to learning how to sail in the Bermuda Triangle. You know parts of this will be difficult. Brace yourself.

How to Decide What Goes?

Once you have set parameters on what you’re looking for in your next apartment, you can speed up the process of downsizing. If you know you’re going to be furnishing a one-bedroom apartment, what to keep and what to give away becomes crystal clear—at least furniture-wise (get rid of that glass table with the sharp edges collecting unclear smudge marks every time you look at it). Any additional bedroom furniture, other than the one bedroom, can go. Will your dining room table set fit in a 700-square-foot apartment? If you’re not willing to part with your current set, what size living area does your new apartment need to have to accommodate it? Be sure to measure all of your must-have furniture pieces to make sure everything you want to take with you can fit into your new space.

After you settle on which appropriately sized pieces of furniture you’ll be taking with you, consider using the KonMari Method to quicken your downsizing pace. The KonMari Method—developed by professional-organizing consultant and best-selling author Marie Kondo—encourages a distinct chronology: start with clothing, then move onto books, papers, miscellaneous items, and end with sentimental items. Using this thoughtful method, you keep what speaks to your heart and discard what no longer sparks joy. You thank discarded items for their service and let them go. If you want a quick dose of inspiration, consider watching an episode or five of Marie Kondo’s Netflix show.

Home Downsizing Checklist

Refer to this checklist at any point during your downsizing mission to see if you’re forgetting anything:

  • Know what style and size apartment you’re moving into
  • Measure all the furniture pieces you want to take with you
  • Prioritize multi-functional furniture pieces (especially in smaller apartments) and freestanding storage options/shelves
  • Evaluate what clothing you want to keep and what to discard
  • Go through all of your books, papers, miscellaneous items, and sentimental items
  • Consider any included amenities in your new apartment community
  • Picture what you want your new apartment to look like if you’re ever stuck in your decision-making process
  • Getting organized is your best bet when planning to downsize your home. Nothing feels insurmountable once you’ve broken the largest task down into manageable steps. If you’re reading this article, you’re already planning ahead. Go on and live that minimalist lifestyle you’ve been dreaming of. Minimize to optimize your new space!

Have any of your own tips to add? Email us at live@ferndalehaus.com to let us know. Looking for a spacious new apartment in Ferndale? Make sure to view our floor plans.

Read the original article at Apartments.com.