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How Long Do I Have To Keep My Ex’s Stuff? (3 Reasons Why You Want It Gone ASAP!)

Breakups are really tough and no matter how or why a couple decides to split, feelings are inevitably hurt. One of the things that makes it particularly difficult to move forward after a breakup is the looming exchange of personal belongings. 

According to the NYC lawyers, Spodek Law, you should legally give your ex anywhere between 30-60 days to collect their belongings. This allows more than enough time for your ex-partner to collect their items, and you only have to make sure it’s all safe for this amount of time. 

If it’s possible to be amicable with your ex you won’t need to get a lawyer involved and you can exchange items before the 60-day deadline. Typically, people will exchange items with their ex after a few weeks, or within 30 days. There are three main reasons as to why you should get your ex to take back their possessions as soon as possible, and they all benefit you. 

In this article, we’re going to take a look at the 3 reasons you will want to exchange possessions with your ex as soon as possible.

Why It’s Best To Get Rid Of His Things

1. All their stuff will remind you of them

all their stuff will remind you of them

One of the biggest reasons for you to get your ex’s belongings back to them as soon as possible is the fact that every item of theirs that you have will remind you of them. After a breakup, you need to make a clean break so that you can fully grieve the loss of the relationship and this person in your life and get on the road to healing and moving. 

If you have things in your house that are constantly reminding you of the one person you’re trying to forget, it’s going to be extra tough to get over them and try to move on. 

It’s not only the items themselves that will remind you of your ex, but the fact that you know you’re going to have to be in contact with them or see them at some point in the future for the exchange. The thought of seeing your ex again will always be playing in your mind and it’ll hold you back from moving on.

When it comes to gifts that your old significant other gave you, this is quite a grey area and it’s up to you whether you want to hold onto them or throw them. If a gift doesn’t have much hold on you emotionally, you can hang onto it. However, if you feel distraught every time you see it, the answer is: throw it! 

2. You need to decide on shared items as soon as possible

Although it’s obviously still tough, having completely separate belongings to your ex-partner makes the exchange of possessions a lot easier and less painful. The problems really occur when the two of you share possessions. For example, you might have a pet, a house, and expensive items that you purchased together such as furniture or electronics.

It can be incredibly difficult to figure out who should have what, and often you will have to take advice from the people that you know, as well as advice and information from a lawyer. 

Most of the time in this situation, a lawyer does have to get involved to decide who keeps what, but it would be really helpful if you and your ex could agree on the exchange of items without a lawyer being present.  If you wanted to make it more official and legally binding, you could email over a kind of inventory list to your old partner and go through every possession one by one.

The faster that you exchange shared items with your ex, with or without a lawyer, the faster you will be able to come to terms with what you got from the split and move forward. 

3. You want your stuff back quickly

you want your stuff back quickly

You might subconsciously be drawing out the exchange of possessions because you want to see this person again, but if anything will stop you from hanging onto their stuff for too long it’s the fact that you won’t get your possessions back before you give them theirs. 

The thought of having your possessions at their house where other people can access it and they can do whatever they like to it is enough motivation to get the exchange done. So, the sooner you want your beloved goods back, the sooner you have to give them theirs. 

If your ex is unwilling to give your possessions back or isn’t giving you an answer as to when you can pick your things up, you might have to pop an email over to a lawyer for more information. You could also ask friends in the area to help as mediators. 


Should I throw away my ex's stuff?

You shouldn’t throw away your ex’s stuff, simply because it’s not your stuff to throw away. How would you feel if your previous partner started to get rid of items that belong to you? 

Exactly. So, try not to get rid of anything that belongs to your ex for at least 60 days. If they haven’t collected their things by then, you need to inform them, but if there’s no response, then you can either get rid of it or force them to have it by posting it to them or giving it to one of their friends.

How long should I wait to get my stuff back from my ex?

Ideally, you should try and get your possessions back from your ex as fast as possible. By hanging onto seeing them again to exchange stuff it holds you back from healing and moving on. You should ask to exchange possessions as soon as possible and never wait over 60 days.

Is it bad to keep things from past relationships?

As mentioned above, it’s never a good idea to hang onto belongings that are from a previous relationship, because you will always be reminded of that person when you see or use the object. It’s much better to exchange all items and decide amicably who keeps what you purchased together.

Should you keep your ex's gifts?

It’s completely up to you whether you want to save your ex’s gifts from the clear out. It also really depends on how this gift affects you. For example, if you feel like crying every time you see it, get rid of it or put it somewhere you won’t find it for a while, so you don’t have to carry on getting upset. But, if the gift doesn’t affect you, keep it. 

Is it weird to keep things your ex gave you?

It’s not weird to keep gifts that your ex gave you because they’re sentimental memories. If you are adamant about keeping these gifts though, you may want to hide them away or give them to someone for safekeeping while you get over the relationship. These items might be nice to look at in the future, but if you’re not over the relationship, they can hold you back from healing.

All In All

This article should’ve helped you understand why it’s so important to get rid of your ex’s belongings, and why by doing so you will be able to heal and move on from the relationship faster. The end of relationships are horrible, but if you can lower your pain from it by exchanging possessions with your old partner as soon as possible, do it.

Did you like this article and find that it gave you some useful information? Let us know in the comments and feel free to share the advice with others!

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