Home organization can be taxing and overwhelming, especially when there’s a lot of clutter involved. But it doesn’t have to be that way. There are several quick and efficient ways to organize your home. Here are a few:
- Keep, trash or donate: No maybe piles; apply this rule in every room as you begin organizing.
- Make a plan: Once you’ve decided on all of the items you’re going to keep, make a plan for the function of the room housing them. Think about how the items will complement that plan.
- Put it where you use it: For maximum functionality, store items where they’re going to be used. This will reduce the time you spend searching for them.
If you apply these steps to every room in your home, it should be easy to get things in order. Here are some additional plans to ensure maximum organization:
Organize your kitchen with cooking in mind. If you bake often, have all of the baking items in the same place. If you often cut up meats and vegetables, keep those items close to the functional area (i.e., island or sink). Here are some other tips for getting your kitchen in quick order:
- Hang big utensils: If you don’t have room in the drawers for all of your utensils, use peg boards or hooks. This makes them easy to find and access.
- Minimize your cookware: If you don’t use it, get rid of it. Keep only what you really need and use on a regular basis.
- Free up counter space: You shouldn’t keep a lot of countertop appliances out in the open, especially if you barely use them. Keep appliances in cabinets or in the pantry to make room for food prep and other kitchen tasks.
- Add pull-out shelves: Install pull-out shelving in cabinets to make reaching cups, plates and other hard to reach items easier.
Your living room is one of the most popular places in the house; it’s also among the most prone to clutter. Minimize the mess with containers and bins, and get creative with other organization tools too:
- Repurposed bookshelves: Use bookshelves to store bins and baskets of frequently used items. It’s a quick and easy way to organize, and it also adds to the visual appeal of your living room.
- Cubbies: Made of fabric or plastic, cubbies are a good way to efficiently organize different people’s items. You can also do this in the entryway for shoes or jackets.
- Storage ottoman: A storage ottoman is both furniture and organization in one complete package. It’s a great place to store linens and accessories.
Your bedroom should be extra tidy since it’s where you start and end the day. Make use of space underneath your bed and in your end tables. Other tips to consider include:
- Clear off your dresser: Don’t let your dresser get cluttered. Store items on it that you use on a daily basis — jewelry box, hand creams, etc.; otherwise keep it clear.
- Clean up the inside of your dresser: Use an organizer to get your clothing in order. Keep socks, underwear, tees, sweaters and other clothing in neat piles. That way, you can find clothing more easily when you get ready for work in the morning.
- Don’t overuse hidden space: Having open space doesn’t mean you should fill it to the brim with stuff. Keep it organized and use little bins if needed.
- Don’t use a hamper: Hampers seem like a good idea, but oftentimes they end up filled with clothes, spilling more on the floor. Try to get your clothes to the laundry room instead, and keep your bedroom clear of dirty clothes.
Closets should be organized for maximum functionality, which is especially helpful when you need to find clothes and shoes in the morning. If your clothes are strewn on the floor — or your shoes are mismatched — trying to find everything adds extra time to your routine. The key is to get rid of everything you don’t wear and hang what you do wear. Shoes should be in their proper place — right next to one another. If you have clothes that you don’t want to hang, fold them neatly and put them on shelves. You can have closet organizers installed for about $1,300. Hooks are also your friend for belts and hats.
Bathrooms are where we like to relax or get ourselves ready for the day. Keeping everything you need within reach makes it easier. Here are some ideas:
- Clear off the counter: Keep most items off of your counter. Akin to your dresser, it should only hold your essentials — soap, toothbrush and toothpaste, razor, etc. Put the rest in a drawer.
- Clean out the medicine cabinet: There are probably a lot of medicines you don’t need or use anymore. Trash what you don’t use and put the rest in a drawer.
- Hang soap and shampoo: Use organizers and hanging baskets in your shower/tub combination to free up space on the floor and prevent injury.
- Tackle your towels: If your linen cabinet seems cluttered, try rolling your towels or putting them in a basket. It will make them neater and easier to access.
About Andrea Davis
Andrea Davis works for HomeAdvisor, which helps homeowners find the right home improvement professionals and now makes the process simple from start to finish for everyone using Mhelpdesk. Homeowners can use HomeAdvisor Reviews to see what past customers have to say about each professional, and can calculate average local and national costs for a variety of home projects using Cost Guides. Access to all information and features is free for homeowners.
Note: This is a guest post; the views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of Redfin.