With the colder months fast approaching now is the perfect time to start thinking about decluttering for the season ahead. A new season often comes with an urge to make changes for the better and to adjust your lifestyle as the colder weather forces us to spend more time indoors.
Read on to discover 8 tips for decluttering your home, ready for autumn/winter 2017…
1. Out with the old
When it comes to clearing out the end result can be extremely satisfying, but many of us find it difficult to let go of the items we have collected over the years. During the colder months you spend more time at home, and so it’s nice to take the time to make your home feel cosier while also ensuring it meets your needs while you’re spending a lot of time indoors.
Take a weekend to work through each room of the house to get rid of things you no longer use or need. To help the process stick to this rule: anything that hasn’t been used or worn for longer than a year should go. By setting this rule this should help you let go of items that are merely cluttering up rooms and storage space.
2. Winter switch up
There are lots of items that we use in the home during the summer that we hardly ever use in the winter. To help keep your home free from clutter and make the things you do use more accessible, consider switching out the things you use in the summer for the things you use in the winter. Summer clothes, picnic blankets and baskets, swimming costumes, salad bowls and outdoor sports kit can all be stored away for the winter, making room for winter clothing, boots and wellies, hot pot and stew dishes and cosy blankets.
3. Rubbish clearance
When you start to declutter you might notice that you have a lot of rubbish lying around the home that you weren’t even aware of. From cardboard boxes and packaging materials to old papers, brochures and cards, unwanted rubbish seems to get stored here, there and everywhere in the home. As you declutter get any rubbish out too and set aside or bag up, you’ll be surprised by how much space unnecessary rubbish is taking up. If you’ve got too much to fit in your bins and recycling, consider using a professional rubbish removal service to get the job done.
With the festive season right around the corner now is the perfect time to consider donating some of your old things. There are lots of Christmas donation programmes that are setup to provide gifts to those that otherwise might not receive a present at Christmas. You can donate unwanted toys, clothing, food and toiletries, making someone happy at Christmas while giving your cupboards a good clear out too.
Many of us will have a piece of furniture or similar that just doesn’t quite fit in the home, but you keep it as you don’t want to be wasteful or you’re not sure what to do with it. Give an old piece of furniture a new lease of life by upcyling. You can paint woodwork, add new knobs to drawers and doors and even add a shabby chic look by sanding. That chest of drawers that’s been pushed in a cupboard can be transformed into a stylish piece of furniture and you can increase your storage space too.
6. Make it a family affair
Doing a big clear out can seem like a daunting task, but it’s easy to make it a fun thing to do and get all the family involved. Get the kids to tackle their own rooms, and encourage them to get rid of any toys they have grown out with. A great incentive to have a big clear out is by suggesting if they get rid of 20 old toys they can have one new toy, or encourage them to help you through out the day by going for dinner as a family as a reward in the evening.
7. Step by step
A big clear out may be necessary once every few years. We’ve all been there when we get to that point where we feel like there’s just too much stuff around. If you feel like it’s time for a big clear out, but you haven’t got the time to dedicate a whole weekend to the task try doing it bit by bit. Set yourself weekly goals to achieve, such as clearing out one room, or tackling the book case or the kids’ playroom. Over a few weeks the house will be looking much tidier and you’ll find rooms you haven’t wanted to spend time in are suddenly a joy to be in.
8. The 12-12-12 challenge
Turn decluttering into a game with the 12-12-12 challenge. To complete the challenge you simply need to find 12 items to throw away, 12 items to donate and 12 items to be returned to their proper home. Get the whole family involved and see who can completely the challenge the fastest.
Decluttering doesn’t have to be a big chore, it can be something you do gradually to get your home looking great for the season ahead, or it can be done in one weekend with a bit of commitment from friends and family too. It can be extremely satisfying to have a clear out, and don’t forget decluttering doesn’t have to mean a trip to the dump – there are lots of programmes that will pick up unwanted stuff for you, as well as professional rubbish clearance services – all designed to make decluttering that little bit easier.