How to Downsize Your Home

Minimally decorated apartmentWhether you’re retiring from full-time work or simply want to spend less on housing, moving from a big house or apartment to a smaller one is a highly efficient way to save more money every month. By downsizing your home you’ll not only be paying less for your mortgage or rent; you may discover that, with limited space, you spend less overall on household items. Follow these downsizing tips to reap the benefits of more efficient living.

Make an Inventory of Your Belongings

A detailed inventory of everything you own will not only give you some perspective on just how much stuff you have that you probably won’t need – it will also come in handy for filing an insurance claim in case of theft or damage, and for packing and keeping track of your stuff during your move. Use a spreadsheet to document your items with an accompanying description and inventory number, then take a photo and label it with the item’s inventory number. You can keep everything handy in your Dropbox or Google Drive. Your insurance company might also provide a free inventory tool.

Decide What You Can Live Without

Decluttering is a vital step when moving from a large home to a smaller one. Now that you have a detailed personal inventory, you can easily categorize items by belongings you must have, things you could stand to give away or sell, and items that can easily be replaced if necessary after you move to your new home. Determine the room dimensions of your new house or apartment and take your measurements into consideration when deciding which furniture to keep.

Organize While Moving, Not After

In order to ensure that you can keep your new space clutter-free, everything you own should have a place where it can be stored or put out of the way as soon as you unpack it from its moving box. Move your largest furniture first to get a better idea of where small items are supposed to go. If you realize that something you brought with you doesn’t have a space in your new place, now is the time to save yourself a headache and get rid of it.

For more tips about how to manage a move from a larger home to a smaller one, contact us. We’ve been in this business for decades and have learned a thing or two about downsizing your home.

10 Ways to Keep Kids Entertained in Cleveland

Boy wearing a Cleveland Indians uniform leans against a fence looking bored.We all love our kids and love having them around, but some things (like packing and moving) are just easier when they’re occupied with something else. Here are ten family-friendly places in Cleveland where you can send your kids with your spouse, a family member, or a baby sitter, freeing you up to focus on moving. Best of all, they’re all inexpensive or totally free.

  1. Headlands Beach State Park

If the weather is nice, pack a bag with towels and sunscreen and send your kids to Headlands Beach State Park for the afternoon. Its mile-long natural sand beach is the longest in Ohio, giving curious kiddos plenty of room to run and explore.

  1. Lake Erie Nature and Science Center

The Lake Erie Nature and Science Center draws over 180,000 visitors per year and offers over 2,300 programs, from planetarium experiences to nature hikes and wildlife encounters. Admission is free every day of the week.

  1. Cleveland Museum of Art

The Cleveland Museum of Art has a staggering collection of classic and contemporary artwork to see, as well as family-friendly special events and arts and crafts classes. The Open Studio meets for three hours every Sunday afternoon for a free, all-ages period of imagination and creation.

  1. Cleveland Children’s Museum

Admission to the amazing and imaginative Cleveland Children’s Museum is only $12 per adult or child. The museum’s wall-to-wall interactive exhibits encourage children to climb, explore, create, and pretend, releasing their inner scientist, artist, or engineer. Outside food is allowed, so send your kids with a packed lunch.

  1. Cleveland Museum of Natural History

The Cleveland Museum of Natural History isn’t just a fun place for kids – it’s a center for world-class scientific research. Your children are bound to come home a little smarter, and exhausted from looking at the museum’s collection of over five million specimens and artifacts.

  1. Edgewater State Park

The 147 acre Edgewater State Park consists of pet- and swimming-friendly beaches, a fishing pier, picnic areas, and walking and cycling trails. Kids can explore on their own or with the guidance of outdoor recreation staff. Activities include archery, boating and paddle sports, footgolf (a combination of soccer and golf), and much more.

  1. Preston’s H.O.P.E. Playground

This playground is free and open to the public, and accessible to children of all abilities. The over 60,000 square feet of playground equipment is designed to be usable for children using special equipment like crutches or wheelchairs.

  1. Memphis Kiddie Park

The Memphis Kiddie Park was founded in 1952 and has since become a Cleveland landmark of fun for kids of all ages. It costs $2.50 (the price of one ticket) for each ride, and you can save a lot of money by buying a book of 25 or even 130 tickets that never expire.

  1. Cleveland Public Library

The Cleveland Public Library is an amazing local resource. On top of a staggering collection of books for children of all ages, your kids can take part in classes and workshops to learn about computers, technology, music, and foreign languages.

  1. Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is free to Cuyahoga County residents on Mondays. Along with 183 acres of exhibits, visitors can enjoy educational events and programs for children of all ages, like the Inside Tracks program that gives visitors a behind-the-scenes look at animal care, behavior, and conservation.

For more tips about family entertainment in Cleveland, contact us. We’ve been in the area for decades and can offer personalized recommendations. We can also tell you about our Cleveland moving services.