Five Steps to Smart Downsizing

At some point every adult thinks about downsizing, especially if kids have moved out of the house and people are close to retirement. The thought of downsizing can seem overwhelming and daunting. Harris Rosen offers hundreds of tips for all of life’s milestone moments in his popular book My Family Record Book available on Amazon.

Here are a few of his best downsizing strategies:

1.Begin to go through your possessions long before you are actuallu going to move. Dispose of what you can now by either using it, selling it, giving it away or junking it. But don’t move it!

2.For the items that are going with you, begin packing immediately and label each box with its destination so it ends up in the right place. Example: Kitchen: Mugs and glasses. The more detailed your labeling, the easier it will be to store it and eventually unpack it.

3.Color code where you can with tags, stickers or markers. For example, everything with a blue tag goes into one room, red tags another. This makes it easier for movers to keep the items together even if they can’t read your handwriting or speak a different language.

4.Create a photo album by taking a photo of an item, putting a photo on the box so you can see what’s inside as well as identifying bigger items, their condition and where they should go when they arrive. Including measurements, can be helpful for movers as well.

5.For items you are selling, consider the following: sell local so you know who you are dealing with; contact your local police department to see if they offer a natural ground spot with a camera for the exchange of money and items, measure and weigh the items you are selling so there is no confusion when they are picked up and never give out banking information for transfers or other reasons. Make the terms of sale very clear including no returns, and cash only.


Harris “Hershey” Rosen, a graduate of Harvard, has focused on controlling chaos since 1954. First as Financial Control Officer in the U.S. Army where he received a Letter of Commendation for improvement to the Army’s worldwide accounting system. Following that he ran a candy company for 40 years, developing a system for locating ANY item housed in five factories, covering 600,000 sq. ft.

Rosen has most recently written My Family Record Book to help others protect their spouses (and families) from the stress that occurs if one does not share knowledge critical to a functioning home. He is also the author of Creating A Guide So Your Loved One Can Go On Living! Information You Must Pass On.



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