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When preparing your home to sell I hear it from clients all the time; “what should I do with all my clutter” Preventing the clutter in the first place would be ideal, but not realistic for many of us with mail, the laundry, items we have through the house, gifts that we don’t know what to do with and then the purchasing of items we don’t necessarily need. Don’t despair there are ways to prevent clutter before it takes over your house and your life. Here are some suggestions.
Have too much clutter in your kitchen, start in one area. If you don’t have enough storage area start there in the cabinets and drawers eliminating utensils and items you don’t use on a regular basis. Keep only the basic essentials that you need or use on a regular basis. Do you really need your holiday serving platters, or roasting pan to be taking up space that could be used for something essential? Remove the clutter off the counters; you will enjoy having the work space when needed. This is always a recommendation to sellers is too, keep counters clear of nonessentials; it will make your kitchen feel like it was intended for, to cook.
Another problem we all encounter is mail- we get too much. Probably a lot of it we do not need or want, so how do you reduce this clutter? Do not provide your personal contact information without asking yourself if it is really necessary. Same goes for your email address. This can be a time consuming task too if your inbox has mail from senders you have no interest in. Think first before giving out the information if you really want to be contacted by that company, this will reduce the garbage in your inbox and time you spend deleting unnecessary correspondence.
Plan before you buy. We usually have a reason why we are going to a store to purchase something but sometimes find that bargain that we can not live without. We bring it home and realize that it was not as great as we thought, but never return it. Plan and think before you buy. Stick to your grocery list, when purchasing furniture and accessories, have a plan as to what will fit in the space, what you really need. If it is not needed or works as you thought, return it or give it away.
Closets are a place where many of us could declutter. Each season BEFORE you go shopping go through the contents of your closet and edit out anything that you did not wear last year. Anything that is worn, or looks not up to your standards, get rid of. Don’t hang onto something that you think “someday I will fit into it” unless you are on a plan to make sure you will be fitting into it, chances are by the time you do, it will be out of style. Pack up and give to the Salvation Army or Goodwill it can be considered tax deduction.
While on the subject of closets, organize your closet similar to a high end department store. Group similar articles of clothing together pants, then shirts, etc. within those sort by color. Yes sounds a little obsessive but it does help you when picking out clothes to wear and when shopping. You will have a better idea of what you have so you do not duplicate and end up with a cluttered closet. Do the same with your shoes too. This is another area I tell sellers to concentrate on when preparing a house to sell and to give the closet a pulled together appearance use all the same hangers.
Each season is a good time to edit other areas of the house like the attic, basement and garage. These tend to be places that catch all the “stuff” we don’t know what else to do with. Stop that habit now. With spring here this is a great time to go through everything in the garage, if it is broken, hardly working, or you have no idea what it goes to, get rid of it. Do the same with the basement and/or attic. Yes you do need to store something’s, but store only what is useful.
Last if you are tired of your spaces consider re-decorating versus throwing everything out and starting new. Not sure how to even begin the process? A great resource is a Professional Home Stager that specializes in interiors. They re-invent people’s spaces for selling and can create magic in home reducing clutter and getting the spaces balanced with the right amount of furniture and updated style you maybe looking for.
Share with me any simple organizing ideas you have.