With the holidays behind us and New Year’s resolutions calling your name, you may find that organization is at the top of your list of things to accomplish. There’s no shame in admitting that when holiday guests arrive, it can be tempting to hide everything in a closet and try to deal with the resulting tornado later.
With the gift-giving season now over, there is no better time to declutter. It will instill a sense of calm in your home during the New Year’s Eve commotion, provide space for any new gifts your family may have acquired (this is especially true for children’s toys), and you can give back to those who need it most. Wins all around!
Place Stress-Free Living Above Sentimentality
If you are a sentimental person, it can be hard to organize efficiently. Vetting through items becomes a dreaded task, choosing to store precious mementos can feel counterintuitive and it can be difficult to clean around the piles of memories throughout your home.
To keep your home ready for holiday parties and visits with the in-laws, visualize how much easier your home will be to care for once you have parted with a few extra items. Less is more should be your mantra.
Tackle the Paperwork
Kids’ art projects, semi-important receipts and memorabilia you just can’t let go of all tend to become wandering souls, moved from surface to surface without a real home.
End the clutter shuffle by purchasing accordion folders for tax papers, temporary receipt savings and warranty information, and by purchasing photo boxes or magazine organizers for the rest. When your mementos box becomes too full, it’s time to vet what you’ve saved.
Declutter and Donate
All organizing should begin with a good purge. Start with the easy part, and toss worn out or broken items.
Don’t be wasteful, but do be realistic… those strappy sandals that you were sure you could find a way to fix aren’t worth the real estate in your closet. Recycle any items that can be recycled, and say goodbye to garbage that is taking up precious storage space in your life.
After that, you’re ready to tackle the gently used items that you may not need. Around this time of year, you may find that you’re more willing to part with items in the spirit of giving. If you’re finding it hard to decide what to keep, make a “maybe” box and store it for a few months. If you don’t come back to the box searching for a specific item, chances are you didn’t need it anyway. Package anything you didn’t miss and donate it without regret!
If you have young children, chances are you were overwhelmed with the amount of toys your kids received from friends and well-meaning relatives. The reality is, children do not have the attention span to truly enjoy all of these presents at once.
Instead of inviting chaos from over-stimulated children pulling out several toys at once, take a few of the new presents and put them away for later. Down the road, when the current toys lose their appeal, swap them out for the new items. In a month or two, you can repeat the process and your child will be perpetually entertained with “new” toys to examine, and you won’t have to clean up a plethora of playthings each evening.
Getting organized can feel like a daunting project at times, but little tasks can lead to a big accomplishment. If maintaining a calm and organized home is on your list of resolutions this year, there’s no better time to start.
Tiffany Frederick · Real Estate Professional · Licensed in Virginia
Tiffany@LNF.com · Cell: 440.785.6880
Long & Foster Reston 2100 Reston Pkwy Suite 102 · Reston, VA 20190
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Brentnie Daggett is a writer and infographic master for the rental and property management industry. She loves to share tips and tricks to assist landlords and renters alike. To learn more about Daggett and to discover more great tips for renters visit www.rentecdirect.com