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Getting Ready To Move House – Should I Be Decluttering?


After weeks (or is it months?) of limbo when nothing seemed to happen in the long chain I’m involved in with my house move suddenly it’s all systems go and panic has set in as everyone wants to exchange and move before the start of summer. At the beginning of the year we all knew when summer was but it seems to have been the effect of the Easter school break recently that has given everyone renewed impetus. I have spent all morning on the phone chivvying estate agents, mortgage providers, solicitors etc. and just generally keeping the lines of communication open. This is the 4th house we have tried to buy in nearly 18 months (yes, 4th, really) and after our “3rd time lucky” house failed to be lucky I have given up keeping my fingers crossed – now I just want it to happen.

I have lived in my current house for over 20 years and when we first decided to move it was with a mixture of excitement and sadness. We reminisced about the parties we’d had, the fun, the long hot summers in the garden (well maybe that’s an exaggeration) and the fact that our children have never known any other home. But as time has dragged on the sadness has waned and we are all just eager to get on with our new lives in our new home now.

I have started a bit of decluttering, bought packing boxes, had estimates for the removals and even spoken to some builders about the work I want to do in the new house but I can’t make any commitments yet – I can’t even make a proper start with packing up my belongings as I haven’t yet signed the contracts. For any of you living outside England you might be unfamiliar with the system where you can agree to sell your existing house and agree to buy a new house but it can be months before this agreement becomes legally binding for both you and all the other people involved in the chain of house sales and purchases.

This system has been the source of many a failed house move but I am consoling myself with the fact that during the time we have been waiting for all the legalities to be completed the mortgage interest rate with our chosen provider has fallen by 0.5%. Great news! But as my husband sagely pointed out we won’t be saving ourselves 0.5% worth of interest payments if the purchase falls through as we won’t be paying for that particular mortgage at all.

Realistically, I no longer have any hope of moving in before the warm weather arrives given that it is only a few weeks away and we haven’t yet exchanged contracts but after all the waiting I’m sure I can wait a little longer and it might just give me the chance to do some more decluttering so there is less to pack and less to unpack in the new house. If I can get into the decluttering habit now there’s a chance that we might all be able to live an organised, clutter-free life in our new abode (well, I can dream).

I’ve been reading some tips on clearing clutter and it seems the most important thing is to remember that a lot of the material possessions we own don’t have any sentimental value and no longer have any practical or decorative use – most possessions are just stuff filling up our homes. The decluttering tips also suggest that tackling the clutter gradually is more effective if you don’t want to be overwhelmed by the enormity of the task and give up before you make any progress. So I am determined to sort as much of my junk as possible in the coming weeks.



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