Over the years, you tend to accumulate a whole load of stuff that takes up space in your home. If you feel like you are constantly tripping over things all the time and you don’t have any space to keep things, it may be time to give your home a big declutter using our decluttering tips and tricks. Not only is clutter annoying, studies have also shown that it can be bad for your overall mental health when people feel like that have more stuff than they can manage. Remember, mess causes stress!
To start off with, we should define what exactly clutter is in the first place. Essentially, clutter is anything you are holding onto around the house that is not adding value to your life. Decluttering is a cathartic experience that helps you to make room in your home for the things that really matter. So, within this article, we will go through each room of the house and give some advice about how you can declutter each one of them.
When you think about your bedroom, you should be thinking about a place of peace and tranquility where you can escape from the stresses of life. In reality, all you need in there is a bed, a nightstand, and some storage for clothes and cosmetics. However, they can end up being a dumping ground for things that you don’t really know where to put.
Starting by taking items out of the drawers and asking yourself whether each item belongs in the bedroom and whether you have used it in the past year. You can then either move it back to its proper place or get rid of it altogether. When you get round to putting the items back in the drawers again, try adding some dividers or small containers so you can better group items together. Try to keep flat surfaces in the bedroom as clear as possible, save for things like lamps, photos and everyday essentials.
When people think about decluttering their homes, the closets are often their first port of call. As well as outdated items of clothing, this is also a space where people put things that they don’t have a place for. When you are tackling your closets, you should keep plenty of bin bags to hand as this is likely to be a place where you find a lot of things that you no longer have a use for.
The best way to start is from the bottom upwards. This way, you have more room to really get into the closet and tackle the things right at the back. Obviously, clothing is one of the main things that you will be wanting to get rid of. The 80/20 rule is a good one to follow which basically states that we wear 20% of our clothing 80% of the time. It is the rest that you will want to be targeting. Ask yourself whether it still fits, whether it is damaged and whether you have worn it within the past year.
Next up, you can remove everything from your closet shelves and wipe them down. People tend to store things on top of each other which means that there is a lot of stuff that gets buried. You may find that there is a lot of stuff at the bottom of piles that you no longer have any use for. Ideally, you want everything to be visible so try adding some more hooks and shelving if you need it.
Home offices are another notorious space where you find that mountains of paper can end up building up and taking up a great deal of space. While this may take some time, it is worth going through all the paper so you know what you need to keep and what can be recycled. If you are not sure about something, your smartphone is a useful tool to scan in documents so you can keep digital copies instead of hard ones. A good way of sorting out papers is by splitting them into three sections: file, to-do and rubbish. Buy some lever arch files so you can store things in a more efficient way rather than in a big pile.
When you look at your desk, you want to be getting rid of everything except the things that you use on a regular basis like your computer, a lamp and some stationery. When it comes to organising your drawers, try putting everything into categories and dispose of things that you no longer need. If you find that you have cords and wires snaking all over the place, there are plenty of items that you can buy online that will help you keep them more organised. We are big fans of this cable storage box.
The kitchen is one of the most frequently used and most important rooms of the house that you will want to declutter. The first thing that you will want to take care of is the countertops, just leaving behind a handful of items that you use on a daily basis. For everything else, you should be able to find some cabinet space for it or you could buy some hooks to keep utensils on.
Try dividing up your kitchen into zones to help improve the organisation of the room. The space near the stove should have items conveniently located such as utensils, pots and pans. Cleaning supplies should have their own space, as well as items like storage bags, cling film and aluminium foil. Another area could also be sectioned off for baking. You are also likely to have items which are damaged or things that you haven’t used in the past year so just get rid of them.
Bathrooms have a tendency to acquire all kinds of things including old cosmetics, expired medication and broken items that you no longer have any use for. The best thing that you can do is to remove everything from cupboards and drawers. You will probably be shocked by just how much stuff you have managed to accumulate but this will give you a much better idea of the scale of the task that you have to undertake. Put all of the like things together (medicines, toiletries, cleaning supplies etc) and get rid of anything that has expired. You can save space by combining multiples of the same thing in a single bottle or container. Towels are something that are very bulky and you tend to accumulate a lot of them so you could consider getting rid of the oldest ones that you have. If you have products that have slipped to the back of the cupboard but you still may use them at some point in the future, try moving them to the front so you are reminded that they are there.
Garage, Attic and Basement
These three places tend to be the most common ones where you store items that have been long-forgotten. Sporting equipment, old toys, tools and boxes are just a few of the things that take up a lot of space. After a day spent cleaning out these rooms, same-day rubbish removal is a service which may well come in handy. While some things have sentimental value, others you will have totally forgotten about and you probably don’t need to hold onto, anything that you haven’t used in five years or more. Ultimately, it is all about organisation and unique storage solutions that will help you to deal with the things that have built up over the years. If you are looking for another way to clear some extra space, it may be a good idea to rent some storage space in another location.
The living room is another space where you simply want to kick back and relax without having to worry about clutter. This is the place where many miscellaneous items end up, so you will want to start by returning things to their rightful place which have ended up here. Adding more storage can play a major role in decluttering your living room, so add some baskets for bigger items, and shelves for media devices. Though a few throw pillows are a nice touch, too many of these can quickly become frustrating. And you may find that you have a whole host of items like CDs and DVDs which have become redundant and you can get rid of them either through selling or donating them to charity.
Make Sure the Clutter Doesn’t Return!
Once you have gone through all this effort, you will want to make sure that the clutter doesn’t return anytime soon. Before making any new purchases, ask yourself whether it is something that you really need or you can happily live without it. One of the main secrets to success is little and often, so take the time to remove little things from your home on a day-by-day basis. And if you can rent or borrow something rather than buying it, try doing this instead.
Got any great decluttering tips or tricks you’d like to share?
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*This is a collaborative post*