Time To Downsize: Get Rid Of These Things When Retiring

Every year, millions of people across the United States set a personal milestone by retiring, but it’s not as easy as it used to be. With the cost of living increasing exponentially, people have needed to figure out new ways to stay financially afloat. Here are some things retirees should consider selling to get ready for the next life chapter.

Books Take Up Space

After reading a book, it’s unlikely that you will read it again. Books take up a lot of space around the house, so it’s probably smart to sell the ones you’ve already read.

old books on a shelf
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Many used bookstores will buy back your books for cash or you can also sell them through services such as Amazon Trade-In.

Ditch Your Old Clothes

Americans own more clothes than they ever have before and are always looking for something new. Vintage clothing is extremely popular and can go for a lot of money.

women looking through boxes of clothes
Joe Raedle/Getty Images
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Retirees should consider selling all the clothes they don’t wear anymore to consignment stores or on the numerous online shopping websites.

CDs And DVDs Aren’t Worth Saving

Since retirees tend to be of a certain age, they are more likely to hold onto outdated things such as CDs and DVDs.

A bucket of CDs set up by a vendor
JHU Sheridan Libraries/Gado/Getty Images
JHU Sheridan Libraries/Gado/Getty Images

With streaming services for both music and video entertainment, there is no need for these items anymore. Selling them at record stores or on online shopping sites can get you some much-needed cash.

Storage Units Are A Waste

Something that can eat away at your wallet is a public storage space. These units charge a monthly fee for storing items you probably don’t use anymore.

A woman unlocking a storage unit
Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Retirees should consider giving up their unit and sell the things they are keeping inside. If you don’t want to sell the items yourself, there are auctioneers who can do so for you.

Empty Nesters Can Get Rid Of These

It’s likely that if you are getting ready to retire, your children have most likely grown up and left the house. These kids have probably left a lot of things behind such as their childhood toys.

toy story toys with a blue background
Yvonne Hemsey/Getty Images
Yvonne Hemsey/Getty Images

There’s a chance that some of their toys have accrued value and can be sold for a pretty penny.

Unused Exercise Equipment Can Go

Working full-time might have made going to the gym a struggle, so working out at home seemed like a better option.

exercise equipment including treadmill, weights, and an elliptical
Jumping Rocks/Getty Images
Jumping Rocks/Getty Images

If you have exercise equipment that you don’t use anymore, consider selling it. People who are enrolled in Medicare have access to free gym memberships that will work at thousands of facilities nationwide.

Old Furniture Is Easy To Sell

When people retire, they sometimes want to move to a smaller space in order to downsize. This means that they will have to get rid of a lot of old furniture.

furniture including a table, chairs, and flowers
Print Collector/Getty Images
Print Collector/Getty Images

Consignment stores or online shopping sites are probably the best places to sell your furniture for the greatest value.

Kitchen Gadgets Probably Aren’t Needed

While some retirees now have more time to cook, it doesn’t mean they will use everything in the kitchen.

Baking utensils for cookies on wooden background
Anjelika Gretskaia/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group via Getty Images
Anjelika Gretskaia/REDA&CO/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Many gadgets such as blenders, food processors, or waffle makers can go unused for years. While you are in retirement, take the time to go through the things in your kitchen and sell what you don’t use anymore.

Not Having A Car May Be A Good Option For You

One of the biggest expenses in the United States are cars. Not only do people have to pay a ton for repairs, maintenance, and insurance, but the price of gas has significantly increased as well.

A Tesla Model S electric car
Neil Godwin/T3 Magazine/Future via Getty Images
Neil Godwin/T3 Magazine/Future via Getty Images

In order to prevent unwanted car payments, sell your car and opt for public transportation or rideshare services.

Throw Out Those Massive Holiday Decorations

Retirees who are looking to downsize should get rid of their old holiday decorations. These are usually stored in boxes that take up a ton of space.

easter bunny figures in a garden
Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images
Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images

If you think it’s unlikely that you won’t be hosting holiday parties or if you lack the energy to decorate, it’s time to sell them.

Business Casual Doesn’t Exist Anymore

If you had a job where you had to wear business attire every day, then be glad you’re finally retired.

buisnessman wearing a navy blue double breasted suit
H. Armstrong Roberts/ClassicStock/Getty Images
H. Armstrong Roberts/ClassicStock/Getty Images

There’s no need for your old business clothes anymore. First, go through your closet and get rid of all the suits, blazers, ties, and whatever else you only wore to work. Then, gather it together to sell at a consignment or online store.

Your Collections Could Be Valuable

When people are really passionate about certain items, they will start a collection. Things such as stamps, figurines, or coins can be very valuable if certain pieces are included.

Hummel figurines displayed
Schöning/ullstein bild via Getty Images
Schöning/ullstein bild via Getty Images

By the time you get to the age of retirement, it may be time to sell your pricey collection and use the money for your golden years.

House For Sale

Those who are planning for retirement and short on money should seriously consider selling their home and downsizing.

open house with people out front
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Homes are often the most valuable asset for people and the housing market is more competitive than ever. Also, another smart option is renting out a home with services such as Airbnb.

Silverware May Be Worth More Than You Think

An item some retirees may be hanging onto that is actually worth something is silverware. Not only are vintage pieces worth a fortune, but the silver itself is valuable as well.

silverware from the 1700s
Heritage Art/Heritage Images via Getty Images
Heritage Art/Heritage Images via Getty Images

Keeping silverware in good condition requires a lot of cleaning, so it may be a better choice to sell it.

Camping Gear May Not Suit You Anymore

Going camping and exploring the great outdoors may have been easier when you were younger, but might not be your thing as a retiree.

a hammock and tents set up for camping
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

If that’s the case, go through all of your camping gear and get rid of what you haven’t used in a while. Items such as tents, sleeping bags, or lanterns can still be sold used.

Make Money With Your Fine China

Whether you come into fine china through your wedding gifts, inheritance, or a garage sale, it’s an item that can be sold for quite a lot of money.

white and blue china plates, bowls, and cups
Sean Gallup/Getty Images
Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Consider taking the time to look through your own fine china collection and sell them either through an auction, consignment store, or online.

Will You Continue To Do Yard Work?

When it comes to retirement, there may be a chance that you will downsize to a smaller living space with little to no yard.

A worker mows strips of grass
Sean Gallup/Getty Images
Sean Gallup/Getty Images

If that is the case for you, then it’s time to sell your yard and gardening tools. These can range from lawnmowers, leaf blowers, edgers, or chainsaws.

Someone May Want Your Knick-Knacks

If you’ve ever looked around your house, there’s a big chance that you’ll have some knick-knacks lying around.

knick knacks displayed on a table
Tim Graham/Getty Images
Tim Graham/Getty Images

While they may seem fun when you buy them, they can actually bring about a lot of unnecessary clutter. These knick-knacks may be of value to someone else, so try selling them on online shops such as Etsy, eBay, or Amazon.

Let Go Of Your Musical Instruments

Picking up a musical instrument may seem like a good idea at first, but they can often go ignored for years on end.

a vintage piano
Imagno/Getty Images
Imagno/Getty Images

If you have an old piano, guitar, clarinet, or so on that you don’t use anymore, it’s probably best to sell them. Pawnshops can be a great place to start, but also consider posting online.

Get Your Jewelry Valued

One of the most important things to look for if you’re deciding to sell your things is your jewelry.

blue, pink and green diamond rings
Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images
Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

There may be dozens of pieces that are more valuable than expected. Before trying to sell the items, get the ones that do seem like they are worth money appraised. Then, you can try selling the jewelry at a local jeweler, pawn shop, or online.