How to declutter your home before you PCS

Donation boxes
Donation boxes

How to declutter your home before you PCS

by Elizabeth Jones
Stripes Okinawa

Recently find out that you’re about to PCS, and your house is in desperate need of a purge? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there! Finding the time and motivation to start is the hardest part. Once you have that down, follow this room-by-room guide to make your decluttering mission a breeze: 

Living Room: 

  • DVDs, CDs, media players and game systems you don’t use anymore or need to replace.
  • Random wires and cables that don’t have homes.
  • Shabby throw pillows and blankets you no longer need.
  • Toys your children or pets have destroyed or don’t play with anymore. 


  • Appliances you’ve only used once or not at all since your last move.
  • Extra sets of utensils, plates, bowls and cups taking up space.
  • Old cookbooks that are collecting dust.
  • Kitchenware that doesn’t match anything else.  
  • Worn down pots and pans.  
  • Excess travel coffee mugs and water bottles.  


  • All the beauty samples you haven’t used.
  • Shower curtains that are worn at the bottom or can’t be cleaned.
  • Old beauty appliances that need replacements (hair dryers, straighteners and curling irons). 


  • Books you have no interest in reading at all or ever again.
  • Paperwork that you truly don’t need.
  • Mismatched cards and envelopes.
  • Extra gift and wrapping materials. 


  • Jewelry that you don’t wear anymore (unless it’s an heirloom).  
  • Outgrown, holey or tattered clothing and shoes.
  • Clothing and shoes you haven’t worn in a year.
  • Socks without a match.
  • The random things that have been stuffed under your bed since you moved in. 

Entire home: 

  • Any decorations that are broken or need an upgrade.
  • Broken lamps and extra lampshades.
  • Cheaply made or worn furniture that you doubt will survive the move.
  • Extra or old sheets, blankets, comforters, covers, pillowcases, quilts, tablecloths or towels.  

Now that you know what to get rid of, you need to figure out how you’re going to do it: 
Sell it 
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure! You can sell your things by having a garage sale, posting items on local Facebook for-sale pages or on websites like Ebay. 
Donate it 
Maybe some of your stuff isn’t worth any money but there are still people out there who would be happy to take it in. Depending on the items, look into donating to homeless shelters, animal shelters, libraries, book drives, Goodwill or any other thrift shops.  

Toss it 
If it’s broken, torn or useless for anyone to use, then throw it away. For example, old newspapers and magazines, broken dishware and torn clothes are items better off being tossed out.  
Don’t wait until the last minute to start the decluttering process. The last thing you need is to be overwhelmed and end up taking more than you need on your PCS move. Get a head start to save time and money and lessen the stress load.


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