Whether you’re moving to another state, or just down the block, packing can be an ordeal. And when you’re in the process of a move, you may find yourself wanting to purge a lot of items.
“Ask yourself why you want to keep the item. Is it for sentimental reasons? Does it spark joy? If it’s not for any of the two reasons above, chances are you can get rid of it,” says Allison Dunn of Organized Spaces by Allie.
However, while downsizing is great and wanting to have a clutter-free zone is everyone’s goal, you may throw away items you want or need later on—just because it feels good in the moment. If you’re feeling like you want to toss it all, take a break, then regroup and try and take stock of what you’re packing and what you want to get rid. “Choose the ‘best of’ items and corral and sort like items rather than randomly tossing things out,” said Angela Kantarellis, founder of AKorganizing.
To further help you get through that purge mood, here are four things you should absolutely never throw out while moving:
1. Items you might upgrade.
While tossing a bunch of things with the plan of buying replacements sounds great, it can also be expensive. So think twice before you might be literally throwing money away.
“Moving is expensive enough as it is so don’t get rid of that old pot and think now is the time to buy the new Le Creuset,” says Ann Lightfoot, professional organizer and co-founder of Done & Done Home.
While you might end up throwing out or donating these items shortly after you move into your new place, you’ll enjoy having them during the transition. You also won’t have to go to the store immediately after moving in. “Now might not be the time to buy a couple of new sets, for example,” Lightfoot says. “You’re going to be so grateful to have sheets of any sort when making your bed after a few long days of moving.”
2. Important documents
Although it can be really tempting to recycle those piles of papers instead of packing another box, those stacks could hold something really important like your lease, needed receipts, mortgage papers, contracts, or tax return forms. When preparing for your big move, remember to go through all your papers—and if you don’t have time to go through them, at least bring them with you. Then, when you have time, go through these documents and organize them so they’re clearly labeled in a file—easily accessible for when you do need them.
3. Sentimental objects
A childhood relic, a favorite item of clothing, photographs, and mementos from a trip are the kinds of things you can’t replace—ever. So don’t underestimate how much you’ll regret throwing away these things, even if you think you won’t miss them in the moment. Instead, toss them in a box and delay the decision for when you’re not down to the wire in the packing process.
4. Utility basics
While it can be tempting to want to toss brooms, mops, and cleaning supplies, try to hold off! In the long run, these items can be really helpful and you’ll end up spending more money than you’d think on replacing them.
“Things such as extension cords, hammer, screwdrivers, pliers, flashlight, tape measure, packing tape, paper towels, an all-purpose cleaner, vacuum, broom, mop and a box cutter will be like a moving first-aid kit,” Kantarellis said.
5. Storage bins
You’ll probably underestimate your storage needs in your new space. While you might want to throw out storage bins, boxes, and even Tupperware, you’ll be surprised at the opportunities to repurpose them in your new space. And even if replace them as time goes on, you’ll be happy to have them as organization helpers once you move in.