peter walsh space audit

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Mistake #2: They Skip Doing the Math

The single biggest misstep Walsh sees when couples move: not packing for the space they're moving to. "People pack up everything in their current home," he says, but their new place may have less room or smaller closets or no attic. To avoid having too-big furniture that doesn't quite fit the living room or boxes piled up in the garage, Walsh recommends doing a "space audit"—a detailed method of measuring that ensures everything you unpack in your new home has a spot to be placed or stored away.

To determine how much room you have in your new home for the things you own, start by measuring the rooms and creating a blueprint. Then, take down more specific details like the amount and size of the kitchen drawers, the height and width of the closets, the number of display shelves in the living room, the position of doors and windows, and so forth. "For example, if you currently have 10 feet of hanging space for clothes but in your new home you only have 5 feet of hanging space, then it is obvious that you need to reduce the volume of hanging clothes you have by 50 percent," says Walsh. "This sets clear limits for the number and volume of things that you can keep and that will fit, which, in turn will help limit the amount of clutter."