Over time, it’s almost impossible to refrain from collecting stuff and clutter, and a stuffed house takes longer to clean and gets dirtier faster. Unless you’re particularly vigilant regarding the buildup of clutter and extra things, you’re always going to have a few things hanging around the house that do little more than build dust bunnies or sit in boxes.
It might take a few months to rid your home of clutter and useless things, but keeping your space neat and tidy is a breeze when there are fewer broken blenders, old clothes, and ancient toys. Got kids? Then you need to get rid of the clutter. It’s almost impossible to keep a house neat if you’re dealing with a few adorable little heathens plus a bunch of clutter.
Here are the steps you’ll want to take to create a clean and carefree life where dust is a foreign word and cleaning is a breeze.
1. Make a plan and take a breath
You’ll never finish the job if you try to take on the entire home at once. Even if you live in a studio apartment, you’ll want to whip out a pen and a piece of paper (or your tablet computer) to make a list.
Divide each project into a separate session. You might consider going room by room and reducing the clutter a little bit each weekend. Start with something easy first… perhaps the spare bedroom where you store old stuff and promptly forget about it for several years.
2. Toss everything you’ll never fix
A few years ago your old tube television went on the fritz, decided it liked the color blue, and refused to broadcast in any other color. You swore you’d get it fixed at some point, but now it’s been three years and the dusty machine is just taking up space in the guest bedroom. Time to recycle that set!
Look around your home. You probably have holey clothing, small broken appliances, and dilapidated children’s toys that haven’t been used in years. Don’t try to convince yourself that any of those items is worth a penny. Recycle them now!
3. Have a fire sale
The phrase “fire sale” usually means to sell everything really cheaply and to get rid of it as fast as possible, but as far as clearing out clutter is concerned, fire sale means something a little different. Think about if your house was to catch on fire… what would you save?
Anything that would get left inside the house is probably something you could sell, donate, or recycle. The extra set of dishes that haven’t been used in a decade? Perfect garage sale fodder. The old clothing that hasn’t been in style since Reagan lived in the White House? Best thrown in the donation bin at a local charity.
4. Reduce redundancies
It probably makes you feel safe to have a few extras of certain items, just in case something breaks. But think about how long you’ve been storing those extras. Perhaps you moved in with your significant other a few years ago and suddenly had two microwaves, a pair of couches, and two sets of bath towels.
Does it make sense to store that extra microwave for a decade just in case your present microwave decides to die? Unless you have unlimited funds to store extra stuff, think about getting rid of all the doubles in your home.
5. Digitize your life
You might have an attachment to old photographs, ancient report cards, and letters, but if you’re like many people, you have tons of paper effluvia cluttering the tops of your closets and sitting in stacks of boxes in the garage.
Consider getting a scanner and digitizing your old photographs, records, and bills. If you’re nervous about keeping photographs in digital form, you can burn them to a disc and store them in a safety deposit box, or at a different location.
Consider that you can keep as many paper records as you want in digital form, and the space you’ll need to house thousands and thousands of records, photographs, and old cards will require nothing more than a single 3-ring binder of discs.
Need to Clean that Clutter?
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