How to Sell Everything and Move to a New Country
As soon as we made the decision to move to New Zealand, we had to hit the road hard and get to work! We had 2 months to sell 2 houses, sell 2 cars, sell ¾ of our stuff, pack a 20-ft shipping container, get our Visas and passports, and be ready to make the move to New Zealand. I’m just tired thinking about everything we had to do! But we took one step at a time and made it work. This is how to sell everything and move to a new country according to our family… Well, I should clarify...we didn't sell everything, but we sure had to sell a TON!
First, we had to come up with a plan. I am a list maker, so I made lots and lots of to-do lists. We prioritized what had to be done. First, we had to get our Visa and passport work started. Most people hire that crazy paperwork out and get help. We did not. And it was a lot of work but since Cody is super savvy with research and computers and I kept us organized, we made a good team and got all the necessary work done and sent in. Then we had to get our 2 homes ready to sell. So, we focused hard on that task until we had both up on the market. We had fabulous realtors that made the process run smoothly. But it took a lot of cleaning, painting, repairing, and staging to get them ready to sell. Once that huge job was done, we moved onto the next task. One by one, we ticked off the items on our lists. It was crucial that we had a plan so we could stay focus and on track.
A big part of preparing to move was going through our stuff and deciding what to do with what. We had to decide what we were going to sell, what sentimental items we would put in storage, and what we would take with us to New Zealand. Once we had everything organized according to its destination, then we could focus on selling.
What to sell
What to donate
What to put in storage
What to bring with us
We had so much stuff! After 13 years of marriage and 4 kids later, we had accumulated way too much. Our house and garage were full of our basic needs, furniture, hand-me-downs from generous family, holiday decorations, mementos, artwork, hobbies, and way more than we needed. After organizing what we needed to keep, we had to sell or donate about ¾ of our stuff. Disgusting and embarrassing, I know! We sold our stuff on Facebook, Craigslist, and garage sales. I was a member of a local buying and selling group on Facebook that ended up being really helpful in selling a lot of our stuff. Whatever we didn’t sell, we donated to Goodwill or Deseret Industries. And we donated a ton!! We made sure to keep track of what we donated so we could use it for tax deductions. It was extremely liberating getting rid of so much junk!
Those two months were absolutely nuts! We worked on little sleep and were constantly doing something to prepare for our journey. It was a crazy time but we knew that there was an end in sight. If we worked hard, it would all work out. And it did! With the help of many friends and family and through the grace of God, we were able to sell everything and move to a new country within 2 months! It was miraculous and we wouldn’t trade those insane 2 months for anything!
We boarded the airplane from LAX to Auckland with 18 (!) suitcases to live off of for 2 months while we waited for our shipping container to arrive. And those 2 months with living on the essentials was amazing...we almost didn't want our shipping container to join us...almost. Because we sure missed our beds!