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We sold our house and we’re moving. It was very unexpected, but leong story short: we noticed a few quick sells in our neighborhood (for a lot of money), and my husband kept telling me stories of clients, who told him “people” knocked on their doors, and offered any asking price! Wow! Are things that bad in all those wretched, crime-riddled, police-hating states? Apparently so, because it’s not COVID that’s causing all these East and West Coast license plates showing up on our roads, it’s our once-beautiful major cities being burned, looted, trashed, and becoming un-inhabitable that’s driving the red-hot relocation and housing boom.
So we tentatively dipped our toe, threw out an insane asking price, and within twenty-four hours, had five showings and two offers above listing price. We took the all cash offer and ability to lease back cheap for two months. Our heads are spinning, but thank you Democrats for driving people to my beautiful, police-loving, calm and sensible state. We were able to fund our retirement three and a half years earlier, and are in the process of building a new house in a new area (of course it’s the same state and not Portland!).
With many blessings comes many headaches, sometimes migraines. Let’s start with the insane rental market while we wait for our build. Crazy, price-gouging rent amounts and five-page applications (each one for a fee and each family member has to fill out and pay it, even though a married couple is moving together) have consumed our thoughts. Everything gets rented within days, just like homes going pending within days. I don’t want to be homeless, so I filled out the insane applications twice and paid two fees for one house, non-refundable if we fail to qualify. The only question they don’t ask is your blood types.
So I’ll get to downsizing. We’re old enough and we have moved enough to know how much of a headache it is to purge and pack. Yet, all “our stuff” demanded to be dealt with. Ok, I’m the saver, the sentimentalist, the ‘I might need this later’ half of the arrangement. So five boxes belong to my husband, his clothes, music equipment, and tools, and the other sixty-five boxes are mine.
What are your weaknesses? Mine are books, anything Christmas and photos. Boxes and boxes and boxes of all three: the heaviest items known to man. I could have collected interesting feathers or stamps. My aching back in protest created moments of insanity where I just threw things in boxes and marked donate, just to get relief. I donated huge containers of dishes (many vintage), books, clothes, baskets, trinkets, garden supplies, furniture and I felt good about it (after), that three different charities can make money off things I have enjoyed for years and didn’t really need.
I should have been doing this for years. I can really embrace the digital age now, after hauling huge, heavy bags of personal files to be shredded, and 15-gallon trash bags full of just paper. Fortunately, UPS offers a shredding service for cheap. It’s funny, but the things that mean so much to us probably don’t mean that much to others. Those local antique shops loaded with memorabilia from yesteryear are still collecting dust, just somewhere else. New generations want new things.
Letting go frees up our time to do other things – I get it. It’s a hard lesson for us pack rats. My neighbors’ open garage doors reveal that same sentiment. As we get older, it’s also physically strenuous to purge, pack and move. So do yourself a favor, review and purge your belongings regularly, and donate to help others. Sort those priceless photos and send them to relatives now. You know you won’t fit into those shorts next year if they don’t fit this year. Let it go and buy some new ones. You’ll thank me later.Published in