A picture of clutter from a house
Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/joeshlabotnik/1440948116/

Decluttering is a regular occurrence for those of us who buy too many things. Decluttering is defined as removing unnecessary items so that there isn’t any junk and the rooms seem calm and organised. Decluttering a single room can be a challenge, but comparing that to decluttering a whole house, it is made much simpler with a set of simple guidelines.

The basics of decluttering are to remove the items that you no longer use, aiming to reduce the number of things you have in your life.  Several methods of decluttering include throwing stuff away after you haven’t used it for a while, using multifunctional devices rather than single purpose ones, and using a one in, two out policy when you buy more items for your home.

By using a strategy for decluttering you can make it easier for yourself to clear your home and make it a nicer place to live. Whilst you are carrying out these steps you need to make sure that you check everything and take no prisoners when throwing stuff away. In particular paper based stuff such as catalogues, junk mail and random notes; these may be extremely numerous and easy to get rid of to declutter your home.

Room by room

Go through every room, one at a time. Look quickly and remove everything that you can. An initial quick scan can get rid of stuff on instinct, rather than deciding slowly and convincing yourself that you need the item. When I went through my room, I cleared out old mugs, broken stationary and loads of rubbish.

Drawers and small storage spaces

Now you have sorted out each individual room, it’s time to go into those rooms and target the small storage spaces. Places like shelves, drawers and under bed storage gets the chop at this stage. With clothing, if you haven’t worn it in the last year you are never going to wear them again, give them to a charity shop or recycle them. 

Children’s toys can get the same treatment. If they haven’t used them then give them to someone else or recycle them. The only exception is toys like Lego and other expensive timeless classics. Keeping these for future offspring or grandchildren might be good to keep, but most cheap plastic toy won’t be worth saving.

Storage space

Once you have done your initial scan it’s now time to target the big storage spaces, the under stairs cupboard, the garage and the dreaded loft space. Box upon box of stuff is probably up there but it  will take a lot of time to truly declutter this space, so take your time and do it on instinct rather than evaluating each item. You should try to remove whole boxes of stuff at a time, as it will be the quickest way of doing it.

Little and often

To prevent the clutter appearing in the first place, you need to decluttter little and often.  It works best if you have a few spare minutes here and there. Ten minutes decluttering a room here and there is a lot more efficient than trying to get the lot done in one weekend. It’s also better on your mental health!

Decluttering a house is a big task that will need a lot of effort. These tips will help you to have less clutter in your home and live a simpler lifestyle. If you have any tips to help declutter a house then please put them in the comments.