More on Estate Clean-Outs

The article below is from Michelle Munson at “Art of Downsizing”.  The article has some great advice for cleaning out a loved one’s estate.

Why Putting Your Parents’ Things into a Storage Unit Is a Bad Idea

It’s human nature to want to take the easiest way out. And who would blame you? Easy is just so much more convenient! In many cases, the easy way is also the most efficient. Unfortunately, with an estate clean-out, the only way to avoid making more work for yourself in the long run is to be extremely thorough in the beginning. Give up any ideas of a quick and easy way through the process and accept the idea that you need to deal with it now.

When your parents pass, you may be put into the unenviable situation of grieving while trying to put their affairs (and belongings) in order. Sticking your parents’ possessions into a storage unit might seem like a simple and effective form of estate clean-out. But it only delays the inevitable while costing you more money.

Remember that you’re not alone in this process! Call on your surviving family, your friends and Art of Downsizing. We can help by providing extra sets of hands and a calm, sensible head for handling the estate clean-out details and drudge work.

More Stuff Equals More Problems

During an estate clean-out, it may be rather tempting to throw stuff into a storage unit and forget about it, especially if you are in a hurry to put the home on the market. But storage units often lack proper weather-resistance, which can put your parents’ items in danger. Storage units, no matter how well sealed, can’t protect the value of your parents’ items when the once pristine vintage sofa succumbs to temperature changes, insects or just neglect.

If you’re storing items that you don’t care about, then you should just get rid of them now and save yourself the expense. If you’re storing items you do care about, you should know that items put in storage units often depreciate in value. So, it’s far better to bite the bullet and sell it all before time decreases its monetary value.

An Avoidable Financial Drain

With an estate clean-out, you’re basically deciding between two things: losing time or losing money. Sure, it’s a large undertaking to go through everything your parents owned, but allotting a few weekends to the large task ensures you’re done in a timely manner and the items are treated with care. And with a few extra, caring hands on board, the task doesn’t have to be so daunting. That’s the value of an estate sales service. We can do this for you and provide you with a complete inventory for probate or taxes. We’ll can also leave the house empty so that it is ready to be shown to potential buyers in it’s best, uncluttered light.

Storage units drain your funds while the stored objects lose value. Unless you can attend to the unit sooner rather than later, the items inevitably collect dust while money drains out of your wallet. Looking at it big picture, you’re much better off taking a few days out of your schedule for a complete estate clean-out. Don’t take the easy path of storage when dealing with things now makes so much more sense, emotionally and financially.

A Worthwhile Switch-Off

Put the cash you were going to send for a storage unit into hiring an estate sales service like Art of Downsizing. We’ll get the job done with the least amount of stress for you and make money for the estate instead of draining your inheritance. We provide a clear voice, giving you options to get the task done while honoring your parents’ memory. We listen, help you plan and handle all the details.

That nagging feeling that comes with having unfinished business disappears. You can relax knowing that you’ve taken care of things in a respectful, yet practical way. You can continue to grieve if you need to, and you will have some extra cash in your pocket!

Thanks to Michelle Munson of “Art of Downsizing”  for this thoughtful article.  She can be reached at, or 828-772-5959.