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...I can afford to keep the home, but will be house poor.
...She has said she wants to give me money to make up for all the choices I made for her, things like the ring purchase ($4k), but I know she doesn't have much money or earn much, she will be having a hard enough time just making it on her own as-is...
...I told her a week ago that if she cares for me, and wants to reduce the pain, she'll find a new place to live as quickly as possible so we can arrange for her stuff (and cats) to not be here anymore so we can both move out of this awkward phase of everything she owns being here...

Is she, by any chance, a procrastinator? If so, you might have to take the initiative regarding clearing her stuff out of your house. For example:

Hi <ex-gf>,
I was thinking some more about your offer to compensate me for the ring and other items, since your departure on <date she left>. I appreciate it, but think it's best if I decline. Please use your resources to cover security deposit, 1st month rent, etc on a place of your own.

I'll be willing to help you move Fluffy and Muffin, as well as your things, from this house to your new apartment any time this month. If, by the end of the month, you don't have your own apartment (or some other place where we can move your things to), I'm afraid I'm going to have to take the cats to the pound, and your things to Goodwill. That would be awful, so I hope it doesn't come to that; but I don't think it's unrealistic for you to find a place this month. There's a little over 2 weeks left, which should be enough time. I'm not clear that it will be any easier to find an apartment in March, April, May, etc., than it is now, so now is the time.

I'm sorry to have to set a deadline. I feel some urgency emotionally to wrap this up, as we've already discussed; and on top of that the reality is that I'm going to have to decide what to do with the house (sell it, rent it, get a roommate, ...). For financial reasons, I have to decide soon, and obviously I won't be able to do anything until the house is cleaned up.

Please keep me posted,

I considered your bringing the cats to a kennel and her stuff to a storage unit, but that would require cash that you don't have (as is, you might have to pony up for a U-Haul). As far as her paying for it, you can't make her pay for it; and even if you could, it wouldn't make sense. Kennels are expensive, an apartment would be cheaper.

The main reason to push for this month is that her offer of compensation indicates some feelings of generosity and/or guilt on her part. Best to take action before those feelings pass.

If you decide the sample letter is too hardball, obviously you can modify it accordingly. I can't tell from here what it will take to get her to take action. Ideally, you could have a conversation:
"I really need your stuff out of my house by the end of the month. How is that going to happen?...Will you have an apartment?...Will you have a storage unit?...Can your parents take the cats?...No, I can't keep them here...Honestly, if they're still here by the end of the month, I'm going to have to take them to the pound..."

So, you might try the verbal parrying first, but follow up with a "per our conversation" email.

With luck, your setting an end-of-month deadline will work. But just in case, also look up landlord-tenant laws. You might have to give her 30 days' notice before discarding her things. I still think you should send a letter (email) to start the clock ticking, but don't actually go to Goodwill until you're able to do so legally.

Good luck.
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