Are toys and random clutter taking over your home?
If so, then you’re not alone.
Keeping a neat and organized space is something everyone wants — but it’s not always easy to do. Twenty-seven percent of Americans feel like they don’t have the space or time to organize their home.
If this sounds like you, then it might be time to do more than your annual spring cleaning. Although it may seem intimidating, it’s a lot easier to declutter and organize throughout the year if you take some extra time to begin the process.
In this guide, you’ll learn how to organize your home with three simple steps.
The Importance of Organization
One of the main reasons that homeowners upgrade to bigger homes is because they believe they need more space. This could include an extra garage bay, bigger closets, or a basement for storage.
But the opposite couldn’t be more true! In fact, 80 percent of clutter is a result of disorganization — not lack of space.
The good news is that it’s totally normal to feel overwhelmed when thinking about sorting through your entire home. But by doing so, you’ll reap major benefits, such as having peace of mind, an easier time finding things, and saving money.
Benefit #1: Peace of Mind
When your home has a proper organization system, you’ll have less mess. With less mess, daily routines and cleaning will be effortless — and maybe even more satisfying!
Additionally, in a house full of family members and children, it can be easier to get everyone on board when they see how simple spaces can be.
Benefit #2: Easier to Find Things
“Where are my socks?”
“Where’s my favorite toy?”
“Has anyone seen my car keys?”
If you’ve heard these questions before, then you know misplacing items seems to be a part of life. These situations are completely preventable! With some home organization tips and methods, you and your family can be well on your way to a stress-free house.
Quick Tip: In instances where everyday necessities are constantly going missing, consider investing in clear or decorative bins with labels and wall hooks.
Benefit #3: Saves Money
Have you ever been in a situation where you swore you just bought something, but now you can’t find it anywhere? Back to the store!
Proper organization can help save a lot of money. Instead of buying a new pack of batteries, you can save those few dollars and avoid buying duplicate items.
How to Organize Your Home
You might be surprised to learn that the average person spends a total of 3,680 hours searching for misplaced items in their lifetime. Some of the most common things people tend to misplace on a daily basis are:
- House Keys
- Car Keys
- Lip Balm
- Hair Brush
Although everybody has misplaced their car keys once or twice, one of the most frustrating things to misplace is important paperwork — whether it’s bills, receipts, or warranties.
You might be surprised to learn that the most disorganized room in American households is the home office. It usually becomes a site for random paperwork and bills that always seem to get lost in the shuffle.
Here are three simple steps you need to take to get your home efficiently organized: sorting, decluttering, and labeling.
Step #1: Sort Through Your Unused Items
Did you know that Americans don’t even use 80 percent of the things they own?
Rule #1 is to sort through your unused items. What does sorting involve? Well, the general rule of thumb is that if you don’t use it, then it’s time to lose it.
Consider donating any of the items you come across that you don’t need if they are in good working order and others can benefit from them. Otherwise, throw them away! A good list of items to go through:
- Kids’ toys
- Small Appliances
- Electronics & cords
- Paperwork in the home office (check with your CPA how long you need to keep your records. Chances are, you can shred most of it!)
- Unused knick-knacks and clutter in the garage, office, and bedrooms
After you’ve donated or thrown out everything you don’t need, it’s time to declutter what you do have.
Step #2: Declutter What You’re Keeping
The key to organization is that everything needs its own spot. If something doesn’t have a place to go, then consider putting away in a cabinet or filed drawer.
For example, you might declutter through these organization techniques:
- Kitchen: Bins for pantries and cabinets to organize through your spices, cans, and pasta packets; also only put appliances you use nearly daily on the counter — other appliances should be stored in cabinets or shelves to clear counter space.
- Garage: Clear and labeled boxes, baskets, crates, and bins are ideal for sorting through assorted things.
- Bathroom: Baskets and shelving are essential. Consider purchasing small drawer inserts to keep things separated — makeup, creams, medicine, and other toiletries.
- Home Office: Consider getting a scanner to keep essential documents in electronic format, easily accessible in organized computer files. Invest in a filing cabinet with labeled files for any bills you still receive in paper format, warranties, important agreements such as car leases, and medical insurance records and bills.
To stay organized, your best bet is to label everything. This way, you know where everything should belong.
Step #3: Label Everything!
The easiest way to keep track of where things go is by labeling. Colorful labels are a great way to make organizing more fun and visually appealing.
Not only does labeling help the adults find where everything goes, but the kids can join in, too. Think about your child’s classroom: when you walk inside, you probably see word and picture labels everywhere! That’s because labeling is a necessity since children begin to recognize letters, words, and images.
Some bins and boxes that you might want to label could be for:
- Kids’ items
- Your home office
- Kitchen cabinets
- Laundry areas
Quick Tip: In areas like the garage and basement, it’s best to use clear bins with lids so you can see what’s inside without having to rummage through the entire box. In shared spaces like living rooms, mudrooms, and bedrooms, try out some fun and decorative bins that are fun in color and design.
Ready to Rock an Organized Home?
Everybody wants a chaos-free household, but the question is how to achieve it. The first step to an organized home is by setting aside a chunk of time so you can save time, money, and sanity in the future.
Everyone has to start somewhere, so begin donating or throwing away things you haven’t used in over a year — and you may be surprised what you find! Have the kids join in by organizing their own toys and books. Once you have fewer items, you’ll see how much easier it is to declutter.
And by labeling your items, it may actually be fun! Use boxes, bins, cubes, and other storage organizers and label everything so all you have to do is glance at a label to know what’s inside.