You really can live without all the stuff.

Two years ago I decided it would be less expensive to give my condo a facelift than it would be to move. Call it, downsizing without the stress of moving. Having helped many clients sell and/or consign their furniture and accessories, I knew from experience what to expect.

What I didn’t expect was to sell my two leather sofas within four minutes of posting them on Facebook. Next went the dining room table and chairs along with several decorative pillows, lamps, accessories and a few side tables.

The secret to selling or consigning anything, from clothing to furniture, is to be realistic and to understand you’ll never get what you paid for an item or what you thinkit’s worth. I was smart and knew exactly what I was doing when I priced the sofas, which were in pristine condition, to sell, and trusted the consignment store to price all of the other items as they saw fit. After all, they’re the experts.

The idea was to start fresh and to purchase only those things I absolutely loved and wanted in my “new” home. The process took months as I carefully selected each and every item from my ultra-modern and oh-so-comfy sofa, and shattered glass dining room table top to the seven one-of-a-kind accessories in my living room. In my world, less reallyis more.

Downsizing will change your life. If you don’t believe me, following are some testimonials from friends and clients who simplified their lives and started fresh:

SHEILA FRANK/GRAND RAPIDS, MI

“We did it! We completely de-cluttered and got our house ready to sell. We had photos taken today and can hardly believe how beautiful everything looks. It’s too bad we weren’t living in it this way all along. The funny thing is; I don’t want to bring anything from the old house into the new condo, not even the things we saved. Thanks for the inspiration. It surely got us on the right track.”

ED FINE/PALM SPRINGS, CA

“Guess what? We put the Palm Springs house on the market and are moving to Iowa. We’ve taken your advice and have embraced the process of purging. Who knew it would be such a BIG job? At some point, the de-cluttering becomes almost compulsive. So. Much. Stuff. And honestly, half he stuff we’ve given away or tossed out had no meaning anyway. I’m happy we decided to do this before the television crews came knocking on our door asking to film the purge.”

BARBARA HOLT/NAPLES, FL

“You were right all along. Our house sold as a ‘tear down’ even before it went on the market. I cried for two days and then moved on knowing it was time. My kids couldn’t believe you cleared 30 years of ‘stuff’ out of the 3-car garage. Getting the garage done helped me to make other decisions quickly. As I made those decisions, I found myself thinking about how living a simplified, less cluttered, life will bring me peace of mind. Thanks for all your guidance and compassion throughout the process.”

KAREN DALY/NAPLES, FL

“You will be happy to know I started my annual spring cleaning early this year. First up was the china cabinet where I discovered six hundred dollars in unused gift cards, which I’ve already spent. Post-purge, the china cabinet is functional and everything is in its place. If I’ve learned anything, it’s that de-cluttering is an ongoing process. My mindset is to ‘downsize’ although we’re not moving anywhere real soon. The next project is the kitchen. I can’t wait.”