5 Easy & Affordable Tips to Organize Your Home
Right now, you’re spending more time than ever at home trying to get as much done as you can. Any clean surface has become a makeshift office desk, homeschool is being held wherever free space exists, and clutter has accumulated just about everywhere. Don’t worry--that’s completely normal and we’re here to help!
On the second episode of Fresh Take, professional designer, organizer and Fresh Chalk pro, Sara Eizen, introduced five easy and affordable ways to make your home more livable and organized. If you have the energy and you find that tackling projects around the house is a positive distraction for you, Sara’s five tips will help you transform your living space.
Tip #1: Start with the end
Find a space for your overflow items
Start decluttering your space by finding a storage location where all your items will end up. This may be a closet or a cabinet depending on your space. It’s normal to find that the storage space you want to use is already filled with other items. If this is the case, get rid of items in your storage space that you no longer use. Finding a place where you can store your items is the hardest part, but it will be the most rewarding in the long run.
Follow the Majority/Minority Rule
Sara lives by the Majority/Minority Rule when decluttering a space. To follow Sara’s rule of thumb, place items that you use the majority of the time in an easily accessible location. The items that you use less often can be stored away in a basement or closet so they don’t clutter your living space.
Make space in small areas
Living in a small space can make it difficult to find an area where you can store your extra belongings. Sara recommends being conscious of what items you are bringing into your home and adopting the mindset that if a new item is coming in, another has to leave.
If you find that you often accept items from friends and family members that you don’t need, remember that it is okay to say “no.” This is an easy way to avoid accumulating items that will clutter up your home.
Tip #2: Make decluttering ultra-easy
Keep a donation bag by the front door
We all have items in our homes that we don’t know what to do with--so what can we do with them? Make decluttering as easy as possible by keeping a bag in your front hallway closet for items that you are ready to get rid of. As soon as the fate of an item has been decided, put it in the bag and keep it there. You can donate these items to someone who will use them through companies like Goodwill, or make a little extra money and sell them on a site like OfferUp. While donation sites are closed, take advantage of the unused space you have in the trunk of your vehicle. Sara also recommends using Give Back Box to get rid of items that are crowding your home now.
Organize your junk drawer
If you’re up for a challenge while you are stuck at home, try tackling your junk drawer. This is a quick and easy location to start decluttering. Test your markers, get rid of old pens and throw away dried up glue sticks that have accumulated over the years.
Keep decluttering simple
Keep decluttering as simple as possible for everyone in your household. Your family will be less likely to participate if tasks take multiple steps. Sara advocates for using hooks wherever possible so that jackets and bags don’t end up draped on a chair or thrown on the ground.
Tackle your closet
Closet spaces can easily become cluttered with seasonal clothing items. Pack away your seasonal items when a new season begins. Fold up items like wool coats and scarves and store them in a vacant space in your closet. You can also use the storage space beneath your bed.
Sara also recommends starting each season by hanging items backward in your closet such that the hanger hooks face outward. You can also fold all of the items in your dresser inside-out. At the end of each season, you will see which items you didn’t wear and are unlikely to wear again. Donate or sell these items to someone who will use them.
Tip #3: Banish the home office
Pack away your workspace
Home offices have disappeared and many of us have become nomads who set up office space on any available surface we can find. Sara recommends giving yourself mental clarity by creating separation between work and leisure by restructuring your work-from-home environment. Pack away your office supplies in a bin or a bag after you finish the workday to clear your space.
Separate work from play
After finishing your work for the day, create separation by going for a walk with your family. This will help you to break away from stress caused by work and school allowing you to come home and start relaxing.
Tip #4: Rotate to refresh your space
It is easy to get tired of looking at the same space every day. Luckily, you don’t need to spend extra cash to spice up your space! Change up your space by moving around the items you already have in your home. Hang your artwork in a new location, switch out your bedding and move houseplants to a new spot. Just because you are accustomed to an item being in one place doesn’t mean you won’t love seeing it somewhere else.
Tip #5: Go vertical
Create a Command Center
Our homes often have unused vertical space that can be used to store miscellaneous items. To organize mail and other paperwork, make a Command Center on a wall near your kitchen. This will help you store these items without sacrificing valuable counter space. Sara recommends creating your Command Center using Three by Three’s Magnetic Magazine Pocket Folder. Write the name of each person in your household on a pocket to help your family sort items into manageable piles.
Organize your items with vertical storage systems
Vertical storage systems like hanging shoe organizers can be used throughout your home to store small items that you don’t have a spot for. Use the back of the door in your bathroom to store toiletries, use another in your laundry room for cleaning supplies or keep one by your front door closet to store shoes, sunglasses and sunscreen. Go through your storage system every six to nine months and get rid of items you no longer need.
Sara will also be hosting a Clear The Clutter Bootcamp which is meant to be an opportunity for you, to tackle cluttered areas in your home and make you feel better too! Join her on Monday, April 27th at 4pm – 5pm.
Sara’s recommendations for organizing your space will help your house feel more like home. Follow Sara on Fresh Chalk for more home recommendations that will help you manage the chaos.