How Packing Helped Me Purge and Earn Money
If you're wondering why it's been so quiet this week over at Tall Girl Meets World, it's because I've been packing up my current apartment to get ready for my move to Toronto. I always forget how much work it actually takes to pack up clothes, books, kitchen supplies, and everything else I've accumulated. I don't even want to think about moving an entire house!
However, my week of packing has allowed me to really go through everything I have here and decide if it's important enough to keep. I thought I'd share my tips on smart packing with you guys, especially if you're heading off to university or college soon, or if you're moving apartments like I am.
The one thing in my room that takes up the most space is definitely clothing. I have a closet, a wardrobe, and a dresser all FULL of clothes. I only wear about half of these clothes. So, every season I usually go through my clothes and if seasonal items didn't see any wear, they're gone!
Luckily, it's the end of summer, so it's the perfect time to purge seasonal clothes. Start by going through your summer clothes. If you didn't wear a certain piece this summer, there's a huge chance that you won't wear it next summer either, so say goodbye to it. I was able to donate two full bags of clothes!
Then, start on your fall and winter clothes. Try them on, and if they don't fit or you know that you won't wear them again, clear them out of your closet. Once you’ve separated these clothes from the ones you’re planning to keep, what do you do with them?
I create two piles from my unwanted clothing. One pile is full of pieces that have hardly seen any wear that I sell to consignment shops or on Facebook buy & sell pages. This is a perfect way to get some extra cash to save up for books and tuition, or for those perfect fall pieces that you'll actually want to wear. The other pile of clothes that have been worn a good amount of times, but are still wearable, are donated to a clothing drop-off spot.
Textbooks (and Books in General)
Now that you've cleared some space in your closet, it's time to make room on your bookshelf. When I finished packing yesterday, I found an entire bag of textbooks that had been hidden away in my room, taking up a ton of space.
I went online to my university's book requirements for the fall to see if I could sell any to current students. Unfortunately, universities constantly switch up the textbook editions and required readings, so only two of my books were on the required book list.
Luckily, our university has drop-off spots where you can donate your old textbooks, and they are sent to help educate students in developing countries. This is a perfect way to put all your old textbooks to good use, rather than tossing them in the recycling.
In terms of novels and non-educational books, check your neighbourhood or city to see if there are used book shops. If you bring your old novels there, sometimes they will buy them and give you cash right on the spot. This is another way to gain some extra spending money.
If you have nice furniture, but have no need to keep it for your new place or limited space, try to sell it to your landlord. In turn, he or she can rent out a furnished room for a higher price, so if the furniture is in good shape, they'll likely be interested in this offer. It's a win for both of you! Note: this probably will work best if you currently live in a student apartment.
Another option you have is to sell furniture through local classified ads. If you're living in an area where there are many renters, you should be able to get a high level of success with this. Sometimes people are coming from far away or they don't want to rent a truck to move all of their heavier objects, so they'll turn to people in the neighbourhood to furnish their rooms, and this is where you come in.
Does anyone even use the word knick-knack anymore? Regardless, you know exactly what I mean. You know those movie stubs you have stuffed into every purse or those notes you have from your first year psychology class that you took as an elective three years ago? Recycle them!
If you have no use for something, then clear it out of your room. Otherwise, it will just add an unnecessary clutter to your room. This will also add extra weight to your packing, and you'll want to move as little as possible.
After studying abroad for four months with only one suitcase and a duffle bag, I discovered it's a lot easier to live on a little than I initially believed. It's so easy to become attached to the things you own because they hold a certain memory. If you absolutely can't bring yourself to get rid of something, make use of it by creating something like a memory board or box, and putting all of your little knick-knacks in one contained spot. I keep all cards and hand-written notes in their own box, so I can go back and read them every once in a while.
While I still have a hard time deciding if something should stay or go, it's always nice to have a clean space free of clutter. I've become much better in the past few years at letting go of things I no longer have use for. If I see something that evokes a great memory, I'll write it down in my journal so I can clear the clutter but keep the memory fresh.
What are your best packing tips? Do you have any other ways that you earn extra cash while clearing out your old stuff?