RedFin: How to purge your living area of clutter

Article published at: Sep 22, 2019 Article author: Wiebke Liu Article tag: Declutter
RedFin: How to purge your living area of clutter
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How to purge your living area of clutter

As the workhorse of the home where entertaining, playing, relaxing and even eating happen, keeping a living room clear of clutter can seem overwhelming. While it can sometimes seem like the clutter is neverending, finding a system that works for you and your family is key to creating a routine. 

1) Stick to an easy to follow routine

Follow this one-minute routine each night before you go to bed: fluff decorative pillows and place them back on the couch, fold any blankets, put away remotes, and drop any empty glasses off in the kitchen. Then wake up to a calm, organized living room. –Joanna Organize

2) Don’t let the clutter enter

Our purchasing habits can sabotage a happy home. Pay extra attention to every box, piece of mail, extra groceries that maybe we could do without, subscriptions, or even purchases at the farmers market. Less coming in means we have control of what’s within. –Dear Mess

3) Designate landing zones

Clutter is really just a result of decision fatigue. As busy adults, we find ourselves exhausted at the end of the day and cannot make even one more decision as to where to place an item if it doesn’t already have an assigned place to live. That’s why it’s essential to designate homes for all of our stuff within an easily maintained system. This way, we barely have to think about where we should return something after we’re done using it. –Haven

How to purge your kitchen of clutter

The sight of a clean, uncluttered kitchen can do wonders for starting your day on the right foot. Not only that, it makes for a stress-free and inviting environment to be in. Keeping the kitchen neat and organized takes a few simple steps and can inspire you to spend more time cooking.  

4) Only keep the appliances you use on a daily basis on your kitchen counter

For example, a coffee maker or a blender. When you have too many big appliances and miscellaneous items, it becomes cluttered & stressful. Therefore, you want to have a clear and clean counter, so you have the space to cook and eat. –No Mess with Missy

5) Repurpose jars into functional storage solutions

There is more to the clear, glass jar trend than just looks. They are incredibly helpful, as they allow us to see how much of a particular item we have. They also make storing things a lot easier as the items are contained and not falling on top of each other, as they might have been if they were stored in plastic bags. –Making Room for Peace

6) Eliminate and purge often to avoid clutter in the kitchen

Some items can be old/unused appliances, broken/unused dishes, unused utensils, and old/unused cookbooks. Establish an easy-to-use file system for financial, personal, home, and business papers, so they don’t accumulate in baskets, drawers, or countertops. –Organize Your Life

How to purge your bathroom of clutter

A bathroom can quickly become a hotspot for clutter. From toiletries to cleaning supplies, it’s easy to let these products pile up until you’re left with duplicates of each item. An aesthetic, spa-like bathroom can be both functional and attractive, and keeping it clear of clutter can make it easier to clean. 

7) Designate “homes” for each item in your bathroom

To keep your bathroom free of clutter, or, at least, less cluttered, unpack and put goods in their “home” as soon as they get in. For example, open the new toilet paper rolls package and stack the rolls in or on the designated cupboard or shelf, and put the package in the recycling bin or trash right away. Also, create “zones” by categories, and keep all items together in that location. For example, dental care can be put in the “smiling zone”, personal hygiene in the “let’s smell good zone”, and hair in the “mane zone”. Labeling the zones on the containers or shelves encourages the entire family to put things back in the right places. Plus, humor always makes it all fun and easier for everyone. –The Creative Organizer

8) Have separate drawers or bins for different categories of items. 

Keep all your hair products in one, all your dental products in another, makeup in another, and so on. It will be easier to find what you have and see if you are running low on anything so you can stock up again. You can also put a little sticker with the purchase date on makeup so you can track how old it is. Whether you wear makeup daily, monthly, or only on special occasions, it can still form bacteria if it’s been open. –Donna Declutter

9) Don’t forget the shower and tub area

Clutter can easily hide behind the shower curtain or around the tub. Empty shampoo bottles, barely-there bars of soap, or rusty razors can easily go unnoticed in a rush to get ready. Make sure to remove any old items when you replace them with new ones. Also, make sure to clean any soap scum or mildew that can be lurking under our bath items. –Energetic Organizing

10) Think twice before hiding items away in containers

 One principle I like to share is “frequency merits facility.” The more often you use something, the easier it should be to see and access. This is especially relevant in the bathroom, so I recommend organizing products that are highly visible and accessible. For example, Oxo Good Grip 3 Tier Shower Caddy. You see your shower every day, so your soaps and shampoos should be easy to find and access. This shower caddy looks great and can hold a wide variety of sizes. The Oxo Good Grip feature means that it has a stable hold on your shower pipe. A suction piece at the bottom of this unit offers additional security. –Matt Baier

11) Sort travel-size minis into categories

Sort your collection of travel-size minis and sample products into the following categories: Use Now (self-pampering mini samples), Use Later (your travel stash), and Give Away. Because minis take up valuable storage space and expire quickly, it’s best to say goodbye or put them to use as soon as you acquire them. Moving forward, refuse samples and minis that don’t appeal to you to reduce incoming clutter in your life. –Spruced Co.

12) Curate your products to create a spa-like experience

There’s nothing like that luxurious spa-feeling when you use fabulous toiletries. So spoil yourself and splurge on your single, favorite shampoo, conditioner, soap, and lotion. Keep only one of each for that zen bathroom vibe. Going forward, say “no, thank you” to department store cosmetics samples, mini toothpaste from your dentist, and other hotel-sized toiletries. –Blisshaus

How to purge your bedroom and closets of clutter

A bedroom should be a stress-reducing environment, somewhere you can easily relax and free yourself of a hard day’s work. But if clutter is starting to take over your nightstands or overflowing from your closets, a good decluttering is needed to breathe new life into your bedroom.

13) Commit to a system

Our dressers and closets can easily accumulate clutter. To avoid this, you need a system, which many don’t have and is why things go back to how they were in a week or so. To declutter a closet or a bedroom, the first step is to make sure each item has a home. To create an aesthetically pleasing space, you can add categorized baskets to spaces, whether at the top of a closet for seasonal items or bins inside of cabinets. By putting your items away each time you use them, it creates less work later. If you struggle with this, have a catch-all basket and set aside one day each week to put the items away. –SPIFF

14) Make small, manageable changes

Begin your decluttering with ‘small bites’, which makes the project more manageable and less overwhelming. I always suggest beginning with your nightstand. Remove all items from the top, clean and dust, and keep only the bare necessities, such as a coaster for a water glass, a favorite framed photo, or a small plant. Find a better location for any items you need to charge, recycle old magazines, shelve the books you aren’t reading. Keeping this space clear and inviting leads to a better night’s sleep and a better morning wakeup.  –Home Perspective

15) Use clever solutions to maximize your closet space

Closet space is often limited, so opt for storage solutions that help maximize it. Choose laundry sorting bins with style so you can leave them out and about in your bedroom. This way, your laundry loads are sorted while enhancing your decor instead of hiding and hogging closet space. Clever vertical hanger connectors also help make the most of tight closet space, turning your hangers into cascading clothing storage. –Three by Three Seattle

16) Find go-to storage areas for similar items

Ideally, a well-organized home will have go-to storage areas for similar items. For example, commonly used household items such as batteries, light bulbs, and duct tape might reside in a laundry room cabinet, while seasonal holiday bins can be stored on garage shelves. If you’re losing sleep because your closets, cabinets, and drawers are still overflowing, it’s time to call an organizer. A pro has no emotional attachment to your stuff, which means he or she can help you identify the things you actually use and eliminate the ones you “might use down the road.” –House of Glow Denver

17) Clear the room of visual clutter

If you want your bedroom to feel calm and be an inviting place where you can rest and recharge as well as be fully present with your partner, the most powerful thing you can do for yourselves is to remove the TV and tidy up. Fold and put away any clean laundry piles, clear all surfaces of visual clutter, and wash sheets and bedding on a regular basis. Last but not least, bring in fresh flowers like deep red roses to add to the ambiance. Make your bedroom your own fresh haven of harmony and happiness. –My Happy Home


— Published by Redfin |

Author Hannah Tan | September 21, 2021 |

Photos by Contributors to Redfin - See Redfin article for source and contribution

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