Every home needs a good decluttering now and again. But before you start tackling that hoard of stuff, it could be worth embracing a few tips to ensure that your clear-out is effective. Here are a few dos and don’ts to bear in mind.
Don’t start without a decluttering schedule
You can’t reorganise your home in a disorganised fashion. Creating a schedule for yourself will motivate you to get it all done. Reserve a couple days for decluttering and aim to get through one room per day. Serious clutter zones like the loft or garage may need a couple days to clear out. Consider hiring a skip or arranging for friends to help as this will motivate you to stick by your plans and not put it off.
Do sell items
If you can make money from your clutter, do it. There are plenty of places from jumble stores to flea markets to second-hand sites where you can sell your stuff. You may even be able to pay to recycle some items.
But don’t try to sell everything
Not everything is valuable and trying to sell it all could take up a lot of time. This time and effort could cause you to lose motivation and may give you time to rethink your decisions on getting rid of certain items (worse still, you may relocate all the items to be sold to the loft, only to forget about them). You may be able to donate certain items like clothes and books. However, many items such as old mattresses and VHS tapes and worn shoes may be better reserved for the garbage.
Don’t buy a bigger wardrobe
Buying a bigger wardrobe is just encouraging you to buy more clothes to pack it with. If you’re going to upgrade your wardrobe, you’re better off going for a clothes rail that minimised your storage and puts all your clothes on display so that no dress goes forgotten. Focus on getting rid of clothes to fit your existing wardrobe. Methods such as the coat hanger experiment can help you to choose which clothes to keep and which ones to lose.
Do buy some extra storage solutions
In some cases, extra storage may be in order but try not to go for anything big and bulky. Minimalist storage solutions can be great for finding homes for miscellaneous items such as chests for make-up for baskets for living room clutter. Also consider multi-purpose furniture such as ottoman footstalls that double up as storage.
Do get help when decluttering
Sometimes it can be worth having a friend or family member to help you rationalise which items are really worth keeping. They may also be able to save time when taking on rooms such as lofts and garages. You can tell them not to throw anything away without your permission, but don’t let this hinder the decluttering process.