Retirement Downsizing

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For some people getting rid of old possessions is an easy task. But for those of us who have an attachment to the things we have accumulated over the years, it can be very difficult. There are activities that I haven’t done in years, yet I still hold onto the things that I once used. For example, fishing, golfing, bike riding, playing guitar, photography, and metal detecting, just to name a few. Before I realized it, my age and lack of motivation made it harder to do a lot of the things I used to enjoy. I find myself watching TV and playing video games, when I’m not feeling well enough to do anything else. Not having a steady income doesn’t help either. I spend a lot of time worrying if my checking account is going to last until I am old enough to collect social security.

The things that I have sold on Ebay usually don’t amount to much. I often use the money to buy gear I need to fix things around the house. A lot of stuff just isn’t worth selling on Ebay because of the shipping and final value fees they charge. A better option for downsizing is to have a thrift sale. But that takes a lot of preparation. The next option is an estate sale, where you hire someone to come in and put your stuff up for sale. They come in (for a fee) and manage the sale over a 2 or 3-day period. In my mind that is the option of last resort. You have either passed away and your family is selling all of your stuff, or you are moving into a nursing home, and you need to sell all of your stuff. Either way, it is an act of finality.

I have enough old stuff to keep me busy for a while. But as time goes on, I find that some things don’t age well. Electronics and furniture go out of style very quickly. Sometimes it’s like living in a museum of things collecting dust. You can’t sell it and you can’t afford the recycling fee to get rid of it. Things like this accumulate over time and eventually you start to look like a hoarder. I can sympathize with the people who are hoarders because I know it doesn’t happen overnight. If you live in the same house for 20+ years, there is a good chance that it is filled with stuff you no longer need. I still have a few years left, so I will continue to evaluate my possessions, and try to part with them at a slow but steady pace.

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