10 Storage Sacrifices You Have to Make When You Live Solo in a Small Apartment

published Aug 24, 2016
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(Image credit: Esteban Cortez)

Although scoring your first solo apartment can be a wonderful thing, you still have to prepare yourself for the daunting task of packing—and fitting into—a presumably much smaller place than you once shared with your roomies. The fine line between “holding onto” and “hoarding” means it’s finally time to decide which of your housewares are truly worth keeping—a process that can be almost as exhausting as moving itself.

To make your life (and move) a little easier, we’ve compiled a list of household items that are a lot more expendable than you probably think, in hopes that you will treat your brand new solo pad like the storage-savvy, grown-up space it deserves to be.

1. Obsolete technology

Look, we know you love your broken Super Nintendo and your collection of Dawson’s Creek on DVD, but do you really need them? The rise of online streaming and download services means you can have your favorite music, movies, shows, and video games sent straight to your personal electronics, sparing you the trouble of lugging—and explaining—all of your old Hanson CD’s.

2. Old Bedding

While you might be married to the idea of moving your beloved bedding into your new apartment, unless it’s real chenille or Missoni Home, we’re not in support of it. A brand-new bedroom calls for fresh set of sheets, pillows, and blankets, plus it’ll help lighten your rapidly growing load of post-move laundry.

3. Unused Clothing

True, that romper with the pom-pom sleeves does look adorable hanging up in your wardrobe but let’s be real, you haven’t worn it once in the past year and you probably won’t ever. If the same goes for more than a quarter of your closet, then you’ve got some serious explaining, selling and donating to do.

4. Dated Magazines

We love collecting and cataloging all of our old magazines as much as the next woman, but truth be told, unless your new place has built-in bookcases or a library, it’s time to let the bulk of them go. Sort through your fave old issues and hang on to a choice solid few, or better yet, just keep and frame the covers.

(Image credit: Adam Stewart)

5. Crummy Kitchenware

A good rule of thumb when packing up your kitchen is that if it’s made out of plastic, its gotta go. Not only is plastic super porous and filled with toxic chemicals and carcinogens, it’s also really not a good look for you and your new grown-up apartment, either.

6. Seasonal Decorations

Ok, so your treasured Christmas tree ornament from high school might make the cut, but when it comes to moving your stash of seasonal decor, that’s about it. Getting rid of holiday gift-wrap, stationary sets, and other dated decorations should be a no-brainer, especially since they’re cheap, easily replaceable, and super unsightly (for at least eleven months out of the year).

7. Worn-out Furniture

As much as you think hanging onto your worn-down sleeper sofa will save you money down the line, all it’s really going to do is create more work for you on moving day. Unless it’s 100-percent paintable, coverable, and of course, still attractive, you’re better off just buying a new futon or loveseat—since they’re not much more costly than a U-Haul and/or cute slipcover, anyway.

8. Curious cords

Let’s play a quick game of “guess what the mystery cord belongs to!” If you can’t quickly find mates for your vast assortment of elusive computer wires, chargers, and adapters, what makes you think it will magically happen once you move? Throw them out now and save yourself a box or two.

9. Unopened/ Old Mail

While it may seem painfully obvious, you’d be surprised at how many unopened credit card applications and long-paid-for bills you’re actually still holding onto. It’s time to buy an inexpensive shredder and get all those pesky papers out of your life for good, or even better, enroll in online bill paying and save some trees while you’re at it, too.

10. Sports Equipment

We know this one seems a bit controversial, but the reality is, unless you use your mini-stair stepper and exercise ball on the regular, it’s better to find a new home for them sooner than later. Sports equipment is heavy, homely, and incredibly hard-to-move and store, so your best bet is to loan it to a friend with a bigger abode or enroll in your new neighborhood gym.

Re-edited from a post originally published 8.24.2016 – TW