The thought of moving into a new home can trigger many emotions. At first the excitement of a new home, the many ideas for decorating, new neighbors to get to know, wonderful new areas to explore and all the fun things about the move make this a very exciting time. Once the contracts are signed and a move-in date established, anxiety over how to pack up and clear out a home can set in. This will be particularly difficult if the new home is substantially smaller, or if a long distance move is planned. And then there is the sentimentality that will come over you as begin to pack up and start remembering the past. How to decide what to take, what to leave, how to dispose of items, how to pack and how long it will take to pack are all common issues with a whole house move. Don’t let the difficult issues deprive you of the satisfaction that moving/decluttering/downsizing can bring. If you are organized, and maybe with some help, you will find that clearing out your home can be very empowering.

When we moved out of our family home after 27 years, I was surprised at how quick and easy it was to figure out what was coming with me to the new house, and what was not. The wedding and Christmas gifts that you never used, old furniture from the basement that you were going to one day refinish, the kids old clothes and toys – all were either donated or consigned. Our town’s “Put and Take” area at the Transfer Station was so happy to receive all these things. Local Salvation Army and Goodwill donation centers also eagerly accept gently used items of all shapes and sizes. You know what they say – one woman’s junk is another’s treasure!
Momentos and family heirlooms were all stored in labeled boxes. Storing these items in boxes reduced their bulk and removed any decision making about if an item should be taken or not. They all were moved! Plus I think it will be fun for future generations to look through these family time capsules in the future.



Clearing out one room at a time helps to see progress, rather than tackling the entire house all at once. Work room to room and soon you will see more boxes than household possessions. Don’t forget to label the boxes so you know exactly where that box will go in the new house!

There are many articles on the internet on how to pack up a house, including YouTube videos. Try the website The Spruce for several good articles on moving and packing (, or if you are looking for professional help, the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals ( has lists of professionals by zip code. Or look me up on the web at a free one-hour consultation.
Good luck and don’t forget to have fun!

Jody Kablack
Moving Consultant/Organizer
Jody Kablack is a moving consultant/organizer living in Central Massachusetts. She spent over 25 years as a land use planner, helping municipalities and residents navigate complex regulatory issues around development and construction. Her organizational and problem solving skills combine to make her a natural in moving or re-organizing anyone’s home.