(BPT) - Wedding day traditions vary ever so slightly from decade to decade based on music, fashion and cultural change. However, today's newlyweds have a distinct issue that their parents probably didn't face a quarter century ago - which sectional couch stays, and which one goes?
Today's wedding registries are still chock-full of china, saucers, spatulas and the like, but chances are your newlywed friends have already accumulated many of life's necessities as a result of living on their own for years before marriage.
A recent survey of first-time newlyweds by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows the median age of people marrying for the first time in the U.S. is at an all-time high. And while the percentage of young men and women living with their parents has risen in the past decade, more than 80 percent of Americans ages 25 to 34 live independently before marriage, according to Census Bureau reports.
So, what does a couple do when faced with duplicates of nearly everything before moving in together?
'Detach,' is the advice from Sean E. Burns, a psychologist with Counseling Associates of West Michigan.
"Try to respect the fact that some people will build emotional attachments to items,' says Burns. 'However, you must jointly establish reasonable limits. Otherwise, you risk associating sentimental value to everything in an effort to avoid difficult decisions.'
Melanie Bergeron, former CEO and current chair of the board for the nation's largest franchised moving company, Two Men And A Truck, suggests a successful move begins with an open mind.
'I was 30 years old and my husband was 40 when we got married, so we had a lot of duplicates on that first move,' Bergeron says. 'All my decor was light and contemporary and his was dark antiques, so I was certain we had a decorating nightmare on our hands. In reality, we ended up finding a happy medium and gave away those items we didn't absolutely need. So, rule No. 1 is to keep an open mind as you combine homes.'
Bergeron suggests these additional tips to make your first nesting experience as painless as possible:
Duplicates to dollars: Take a pen to paper and lay out your combined inventory a month before your move day. This way, you can begin to visualize what goes where and what duplicates can end up on Craigslist to build funds for items you haven't yet acquired.
Box yourself in: Once inventory is complete, decide what will go where and organize everything in boxes that are clearly marked for each room. The more direction you can provide your movers, the faster your move will go and the less it will cost. Contact your local Two Men And A Truck moving company to have all your moving supplies delivered in advance for free.
Purge before you merge: De-junking before moving day is critical to streamlining belongings. Most movers estimate jobs by the hour, so the more you can clean out beforehand the less time it will take to move.
Sweat the big stuff: If you can't afford to hire a moving company for all your belongings, consider hiring professionals for just heavy, bulky items. In an effort to save money, you have to consider the favors you'll be forced to ask, the pizza and beverages you'll need to buy and the anxiety that comes with every hardwood ding and drywall puncture. Before you rent that truck yourself, call for an estimate; the time and money saved will be better spent celebrating your nuptials.
For more moving advice, visit www.twomenandatruck.com.