GON Articles
How to Manage When Your Parents Downsize and Leave You Everything There comes a time when parents, by necessity or choice, move into a space that requires less maintenance. Inevitably, that means that some family heirlooms need a new home. When the time comes, follow these tips to make sure that your entire family can share a piece of family history. Write down memories A lot of times, furniture carries more emotional value than financial. Cement the legacy with a written memory before offering to donate to your extended family. Perhaps the dining table is most memorable for having hosted Thanksgiving dinner with four generations, or the swing on the front porch was handmade by a family member. Each piece of furniture has important family memories that should accompany it to a new home. Make copies of any family photos that feature the piece prominently and include them when moving. That way, your family gets more than a piece of furniture or antique rug; they get a valued piece of family history with a legacy that speaks for it. Allow family members to choose mementos It can be emotional packing up and discarding items from a family home. If possible, leave plenty of time to process the items and your associated emotions, so you don’t end up giving away something you regret later. Talk with immediate family members and attempt to figure out a fair system of dividing things among family members. Invite the immediate family and allow each person to identify any heirlooms that hold emotional or financial value. Once the immediate family claims the items most important to them, open up the offer to extended family. Sell collections instead of piecemeal Your parents invested in and kept many items like china, crystal, and sterling that still hold value. Help them benefit when they sell off belongings they've accumulated over a lifetime by selecting items to sell online. Don’t count on eBay or Craigslist to get the best price, though. Many times you’ll get more by selling to collectors who understand the significance of the collection as a whole, or its place in history. For example, Replacements, Inc. specializes in hard to find and discontinued china, and an independent art gallery may consign signed paintings for a cut of the profits. Organize an estate sale If you are left with a household full of items, seek advice from professionals. It’s too hard to let go and price each object when each belonging is tied to a memory. Estate sales professionals can help you value, organize, price, and process a successful sale. Mid-century modern items are popular right now, so those may be more valuable than you anticipate, but other pieces you consider antiques may be no more valuable than secondhand furniture. Arrange for long-term storage Inevitably there will be objects and furniture that you want to keep in the family but need to store temporarily. Perhaps you expect your children to need furniture when they move out in five years, but don’t have room to store it until needed. There’s no sense paying monthly storage for items you won’t need for several years. It is more efficient to convert outdoor space to storage with a backyard shed or caravan shelters than to pay extended rent on an offsite unit. Caravan shelters and sheds add to your property value, don’t require a permit to build and are easily convertible to a guest house or workshop in the future. Conclusion Downsizing and distributing family mementos can be emotionally charged, so the best way to make sure the entire family shares equally is to stay organized. Avoid family rifts by carefully sorting through the objects and associated memories before giving everyone a chance to choose favorite items. When necessary, store items or ask for professional advice.
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How to Manage When Your Parents Downsize and Leave You Everything There comes a time when parents, by necessity or choice, move into a space that requires less maintenance. Inevitably, that means that some family heirlooms need a new home. When the time comes, follow these tips to make sure that your entire family can share a piece of family history. Write down memories A lot of times, furniture carries more emotional value than financial. Cement the legacy with a written memory before offering to donate to your extended family. Perhaps the dining table is most memorable for having hosted Thanksgiving dinner with four generations, or the swing on the front porch was handmade by a family member. Each piece of furniture has important family memories that should accompany it to a new home. Make copies of any family photos that feature the piece prominently and include them when moving. That way, your family gets more than a piece of furniture or antique rug; they get a valued piece of family history with a legacy that speaks for it. Allow family members to choose mementos It can be emotional packing up and discarding items from a family home. If possible, leave plenty of time to process the items and your associated emotions, so you don’t end up giving away something you regret later. Talk with immediate family members and attempt to figure out a fair system of dividing things among family members. Invite the immediate family and allow each person to identify any heirlooms that hold emotional or financial value. Once the immediate family claims the items most important to them, open up the offer to extended family. Sell collections instead of piecemeal Your parents invested in and kept many items like china, crystal, and sterling that still hold value. Help them benefit when they sell off belongings they've accumulated over a lifetime by selecting items to sell online. Don’t count on eBay or Craigslist to get the best price, though. Many times you’ll get more by selling to collectors who understand the significance of the collection as a whole, or its place in history. For example, Replacements, Inc. specializes in hard to find and discontinued china, and an independent art gallery may consign signed paintings for a cut of the profits. Organize an estate sale If you are left with a household full of items, seek advice from professionals. It’s too hard to let go and price each object when each belonging is tied to a memory. Estate sales professionals can help you value, organize, price, and process a successful sale. Mid-century modern items are popular right now, so those may be more valuable than you anticipate, but other pieces you consider antiques may be no more valuable than secondhand furniture. Arrange for long-term storage Inevitably there will be objects and furniture that you want to keep in the family but need to store temporarily. Perhaps you expect your children to need furniture when they move out in five years, but don’t have room to store it until needed. There’s no sense paying monthly storage for items you won’t need for several years. It is more efficient to convert outdoor space to storage with a backyard shed or caravan shelters than to pay extended rent on an offsite unit. Caravan shelters and sheds add to your property value, don’t require a permit to build and are easily convertible to a guest house or workshop in the future. Conclusion Downsizing and distributing family mementos can be emotionally charged, so the best way to make sure the entire family shares equally is to stay organized. Avoid family rifts by carefully sorting through the objects and associated memories before giving everyone a chance to choose favorite items. When necessary, store items or ask for professional advice.
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GON = Get Organized Now!  Over 20 Million Fans! Since 1997 over 20 million people’s lives have been positively impacted by the simple, life-changing, organizing solutions taught by Maria Gracia in her speeches, articles, websites, videos, interviews, books, social media posts, and in her highly praised, GON in Five Minutes!  newsletter. Click Here to Discover How Maria’s ‘Repetitive Reminders’ Can Help You Become More Organized . . . Automatically! “Maria, your newsletter is the ONLY organizing newsletter I ever read…I just love it! I’m more organized than I’ve ever been! Your newsletter keeps me on track!” -- C. Lewis Click Here if You Want the Best Organizing Advice Ever -- for FREE! 4 FREE Bonuses!
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