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Letting Stuff Go!

Updated: Mar 7

The late comedian, George Carlin, had a humorous routine about people and their stuff.

In it, he laments that the only reason people need a house is to have a place to keep all their stuff

And when you get too much stuff, you have to move to a bigger house so you have more room to buy more stuff! And on it goes…

Sort and Pack

As a real estate broker, I can confirm that Carlin's routine is closer to reality than many of us might like to admit.

When meeting with potential sellers for the first time, they often comment about needing to sort and pack their personal belongings before putting their home on the market.

They're visibly overwhelmed by the reality of the chore at hand, especially those folks who are older, have lived in their home many years and are in the process of downsizing.

It seems that no matter the size of one's home, over time, it somehow becomes filled with stuff.

Storage Sheds and Stuff

In fact, some people have so much extra paraphernalia that they ultimately choose to acquire an additional storage shed or rent a storage unit to keep belongings safely intact.

In truth, there's just no completely painless way around managing an over-abundance of stuff.

If I'm being completely honest, I fully understand my clients’ feelings.

Boxes and Boxes!

I, too, need to face boxes of items that have been stored for years and never opened. Some of my boxes aren't even labeled.

Not knowing what is inside, I'll often think to myself, “I gotta get rid of this stuff.”

My daughters have established their own homes and for the most part, have no interest in the items that have been stored in my house for so many years. Additionally, they have no interest in any of the furniture we currently own.

Living on Love

When my husband, Scott, and I were first married we had very few household items and appreciated receiving any functional piece of furniture that a family member no longer wanted and passed our way.

But the young married couples in our family have a different idea of how they want their homes decorated, preferring trendy pieces from IKEA and online shopping sites rather than the solid wood furniture the older generation has accumulated during their lifetimes.

Sentimental Treasures

Very few items in our home have any monetary value, but there are a few sentimental furnishings that Scott and I hope to someday pass on to our children or grandchildren. Specifically, that list consists of two cedar chests, a caned rocking chair and a small cherry cabinet.

Other than those 4 furniture items - and possibly some serving dishes and silverware my daughters might want - I am faced with the daunting task of getting rid of years of accumulation.

I believe I should begin sooner rather than later while I am still physically able to move boxes and under no emotional stress to get the job done. 

Frankly, it's a job I'm not especially looking forward to, and procrastination is often easier than facing the daunting task at hand.

Speaking of procrastination, if you have never seen George Carlin's routine about stuff, I highly recommend you check it out and see if it holds true for you as much as it does for me!

In fact, watching Carlin's routine on YouTube seems like a solid enough reason to shut the storage room door and put my clean out project off for another day!

Full of Treasures

How about you? Is your house full of treasures you have accumulated over the years?

Have you ever felt the need to sort and pack your personal belongings before putting your home on the market? 

If so, we would love to hear your best tips to make the process easier!

Rebecca Zacharias is an experienced, licensed House 2 Home Realty real estate broker who specializes in Lake of Egypt and surrounding areas. Contact Rebecca by calling or texting (618) 521-6369 or emailing

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