Sell It Now or Your Heirs Will Throw It Out Later

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In preparing a place for sale sometimes it’s our job to clean out homes of elders who have passed away. And when we go through all the stuff it really hits home how many things we surround ourselves with that have no value. Why not sell some of the things you won’t ever use and your kids will complain about having to throw away? Buy gold or silver coins with the money, or shares of stock. I’ll bet they would like that better than your cassette player.

It amazes me that the things I think have value really only have value to me. How can that be? I just bought it in 2005, that’s like yesterday. My wife reminded me that 2005 is actually 11 years ago, but that can’t be possible! Is it really true that the songs we sang in church that were so cutting edge when I was younger are now only in the “Traditions” service? How does time fly by so fast?

It’s sobering to think that someday my heirs will be picking through my treasures and keeping very little. This is even truer if they live far away – it’s just not worth what it would cost to move it. In selling homes in senior communities I’ve seen this happen over and over. The parents’ taste in furniture, appliances and just about everything isn’t the children’s taste. They don’t want the flower print loveseat. I’m glad I don’t have a flower print loveseat, mine is beige and that never goes out of style, right? Except it does, now it has to be grey and my heirs won’t want it so into the trash it will go.

Remember “Spring Cleaning”? No one does that anymore, but I suggest we resurrect the custom. It will keep us from hoarding more and more things by forcing us to clean out what we don’t actually use. And after you’ve thrown enough stuff out, you start to think twice before you buy something. “Will I actually use this or will I be throwing it out next Spring Cleaning?”

So do yourself and your heirs a favor – don’t leave them with a whole house full of stuff they have to pay to throw out. Live lighter and use the money to buy assets that will add to your net worth instead.