You’ve been meaning to organize your house for a long time. You’ve managed to get some things in order, but they don’t last.
Why? Because it may not be the best method for you.
Ask yourself this question: Are you copying what you see on social media? If you have and that set-up isn’t working for you, there’s your problem.
Organizing is important if you want to live a clean and stress-free life. But believe it or not, there is a wrong way to organize. There is, however, no perfect way to organize. Where does that leave us?
Back to the start.
Where do you start when you want to organize your home?
The number one rule when starting to organize your home is not to emulate what you see online. Everyone’s space is different. Everyone’s situation is different. Take inspiration from what you see. We all do but don’t try and copy it inch by inch.
First, you need to see what you’re working with. And that begins by decluttering and cleaning out the following spaces.
1. Storage. You won’t be able to properly organize unless you see what kind of storage space you have. Go through all of your storage space first. Declutter as you clean, tossing anything that’s broken or doesn’t serve a purpose anymore. Start a donation pile. Be ruthless.
2. Kitchen, living room, and other shared spaces. Shared spaces are the most commonly cluttered areas. This is because so much foot traffic goes through them. As you clean these areas, make sure you’re not throwing anything away that doesn’t belong to you.
3. Bedrooms, closets, and personal spaces. Next it’s time to focus on those more personal areas. Cleaning and decluttering clothes can seem impossible, but the time it takes to do it will be worth it. Donate any clothes you haven’t worn in years. Toss any that are so worn in or beyond repair. Encourage your family to do the same.
4. Small and remaining spaces. Last but not least it’s time to clean out the remaining areas of the home. Linen closets, pantries, entryways, and mudrooms. Any small space left will now get the decluttered treatment.
The goal when cleaning these areas is to declutter as much from them as possible. I’m sure things have piled up in certain rooms that don’t belong or are no longer needed. Add them to the donation pile or move them to the room they belong in.
Best organizing practices for your home
Now that the rooms in your home have been cleaned and decluttered, it’s time to start organizing.
Here are the best steps and practices to use when organizing your home:
Create a cleaning schedule
You can’t expect things to stay organized after one time. The key to good organizing is to always make room for it in your life.
Do this by creating an organizing schedule. Break chores down into daily, weekly, and monthly tasks. Making the bed can be a daily task while deep cleaning the bathroom can be a monthly task.
Remember to take your personal schedule into account. Don’t schedule organizing on days you know you’re super busy. Be strategic and if you miss a day, that’s ok. Just do it tomorrow.
Everything in its place
This is one of the golden rules of organizing. Make sure everything in your home has a place.
You’ve heard the saying before: A place for everything and everything in its place. Don’t ignore this!
By the time you’re done organizing, every single loose item in your home should have a place to go. A good practice is to gather every loose thing at the end of the day. Spend five to ten minutes picking up what isn’t in its place and putting it back.
Do this consistently for a month and it’ll become second nature.
Create a staging area. When you come across something that doesn’t have a place yet, set it here. It’s your reminder that it needs to go somewhere. Don’t let it sit there too long. The last thing you want is your staging area to become your dumping area. Then you’re back to square one.
Don’t create more storage space
Your goal when cleaning and decluttering room by room was not to make more space. Don’t clean with the intention of creating space for those items you don’t use.
Organizing doesn’t mean you use every single unused space in your home for storage. Organizing is about maintaining a clean and orderly home. Too much storage can make that impossible.
Don’t think you need to fill every corner of your home. If you suddenly have open space, great. Hang a picture there. Buy a plant. Use that space to enhance the room. Don’t use it for more storage.
Get rid of that storage unit
I understand people use storage units for a variety of reasons. If your reason is to keep unwanted stuff, then you’re wasting your money.
If you have a storage unit, go through it once your home is reorganized and decluttered. Is there anything here you can store home now? Is there anything you don’t use at all?
Ditch the unwanted items and bring the used stuff home.
Useful professional organizing tips
Congratulations! You’ve managed to declutter and organize your home.
Here are some final tips to help you keep it that way.
Keep less stuff. Don’t impulse buy unless you have a dedicated purpose for the item you’re buying.
Don’t postpone tasks. If it takes five minutes or less to do, get it done. Some examples of this type of task are sorting the mail, emptying the dishwasher, or putting laundry away.
Have a junk drawer but make sure it’s organized and similar items are grouped together.
Beware of flat surfaces. They’re notorious for collecting piles. If something has to sit there for a day or two, fine. But get it put away as soon as possible. Create a nice centerpiece. This way when an item that doesn’t belong sits there, it doesn’t look nice and you’ll be more motivated to put it away.
Label as much as you can. You can never have too many labels.
Replace cardboard with plastic bins. They’re easier to stack and less likely to be taken over by pests.
Don’t strive for perfection. It’s not possible. Instead, organize in a way that makes it easier for you to maintain.
Organizing can be a fun project to take on, but it can also become overwhelming. If you’re looking for additional help to get your home in order, contact us today. At Set Things Straight, we get you to where you want to be.