If you’ve been following our spring cleaning blog series, you’re likely familiar with the phrase, “clean up and clear out.” Both components of this phrase are important, but when it comes to spring cleaning, clearing out typically needs to come first.
Think about it this way: How thorough is your cleaning? Are you effectively cleaning up your space, or are you just cleaning around items? What are you doing with items you don’t want any more, or items that are not where they should be? Everything has its place – whether on a shelf, cupboard, display case, donation box, or recycle bin.
This post will focus on the “clearing out” step of the process. Don’t skip it! Check out a few of our favorite quick tips on how to declutter your home.
Declutter Your Home
- Put it in piles – Much like “clean up and clear out,” a frequenter of the Neighborly blog is likely familiar with “Keep, Toss, Donate” piles. We think this is a great decluttering tactic! Here’s one more option that we think is important, particularly for decluttering: “Keep, Toss, Donate and Store!” If you want to keep it, just not in its current location, Mr. Handyman can help with custom storage solutions!
- Audit your appliances – When was the last time you used that grilled cheese maker? The juice machine you bought from that infomercial? Complete an audit of your small appliances that take up space. For the ones you don’t use often, donate them, send them to the recycling bin or store them for future use. Need appliance help? Call a local Neighborly pro!
- Protect ‘prime real estate’ – Speaking of the juice machine, where does it live in your kitchen? Does it need to sit on the counter next to the refrigerator? While completing your “appliance audit,” consider what items deserve the ‘prime real estate’ that is your kitchen countertops. This thought process can apply to several spaces in your home, like bathroom countertops and decorative shelving. Then run through the “Keep, Toss, Donate, Store” exercise for your small appliances.
- Utilize the ‘multipurpose’ – Tight on space? Make use of items that serve several purposes. For example, store blankets or board games in the living room in a storage ottoman that can be used as extra seating or a coffee table.
- Revisit the aisle – When picking up an item, revisit in your mind the aisle you first fell in love with it. If you returned to that aisle at this very moment, would you buy it again? If not, it’s probably time to get rid of it.
- Pace yourself – Tempted to devote an entire day or weekend to your decluttering efforts? You’ll likely lose stamina and motivation this way. Instead, choose one room or area to declutter at a time. You’ll be much happier with one finished room than several rooms torn apart when you’re too tired to finish them. Call on Molly Maid to help you clean it when it’s done!
- Flip it around – Overwhelmed with DVDs, books, or items of clothing? Flip them around. Every time you watch a movie or wear a piece of clothing, flip the case or hangar in the opposite direction. In one year, whatever items have yet to be ‘flipped’ back to their original direction should find a new home. This same decluttering method can be utilized with a box! Take items out of drawers and off shelves and place them in a box. Only place items back in drawers and on shelves when you use them. After a predetermined length of time, find a new home for whatever is left in the box!
- Give it a home – Once you’ve cleared out all the excess, give your favorite items a new home by proudly displaying them on glass shelves. Our friends at Glass Doctor can create beautiful pieces for your home!
Work smarter, not harder! Make the most of your spring cleaning by “clearing out” before you begin.
Need a home service professional? Explore our family of experts at GetNeighborly.com.