Is your home ready for 2012? Now the New Year has arrived and all the festivities are over, thoughts turn to decluttering the home. A cluttered home is not only unattractive, it can cause feelings of disharmony and anxiety. Follow the steps listed below to get rid of clutter in your home and have more peaceful living surroundings.
1. Clean out cabinets, drawers and refrigerators
• Go through all of your cabinets and drawers one by one. Throw away any paper clutter that is not necessary to hold onto, and file away needed receipts and paperwork in a special folder for safekeeping.
• Check your medicine cabinet for expired medication and toss whatever is past the date.
• You will also want to go through your pantry and refrigerator, throwing away moldy food items and anything that has expired. Make a point of using up any food that’s nearing its expiry date, to avoid it going to waste. Clean the shelves and the sides of the refrigerator, removing shelves that have stuck-on food for scrubbing in the sink.
2. Go through your closets
• Clean out your closets by discarding and/or giving away clothing items that you no longer wear or that no longer fit and cannot be repaired. If you have clothing that needs to be fixed and you are good with a needle, make the necessary alterations. If you can barely sew on a button, take the items to a seamstress or dry cleaner who performs alterations.
3. Inspect each room for clutter
• You can inspect your house, room by room, for clutter that needs to be removed. Pick up magazines and newspapers.
• Give away or refinish older pieces of furniture that no longer work in the room.
• If something is out of place, put it back where it belongs.
• Organize the kitchen by rearranging countertop kitchen appliances into a more pleasing arrangement. Store away any appliances that you may not use on a frequent basis. Put swivel organizers in your kitchen cabinets that will hold your spices and other items and enable them to be easy to access when needed.
4. Instruct your children about clutter
• Give your children proper instructions on how to keep their rooms clean. They should put their dirty clothing into the hamper instead of just tossing items on the floor.
• Toys should be put away when they are no longer being used, and children should also make their own beds when they are old enough. It is good for kids to learn how to be responsible at an early age.
5. Remove clutter from walls
• If you have wall hangings that you no longer enjoy, remove them and store them away. Your home is your haven; keep your walls free of anything that does not inspire you. Leave up any paintings and photos that create a happy ambience and help to engender good feelings in you.
6. Make money from your clutter
• If any of the items you’re discarding are in good condition, you could try to make some cash by selling them on Ebay or Craigslist. This is a good way to sell furniture. If you have lots of smaller items, collect them all together in a box and when the weather improves in the spring have a yard sale.
If you tackle the job of decluttering your home one task at a time, it will not seem so overwhelming. In no time at all, your house will be free of clutter and will truly be a welcoming environment.
This is a guest post from Karen Barnes, who writes for a site all about bedbugs. Decluttering leaves these pests nowhere to hide, and although Karen enjoys her annual clearout in January, she tries to keep her home organized year round.