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Even the most well-intentioned folks make mistakes when it comes to keeping their homes decluttered and organized. You may not notice, but as professional organizers we sure do! Not to toot our own horn too loud BUT we are the experts, after all, and have the training and experience to recognize the areas of your home or your life that could use some help, and can spot organizing mistakes you may miss.
- Not Decluttering Before Organizing
Organized clutter is still clutter! One of the biggest organizing mistakes we see is people trying to organize clutter. Before tackling an area of your home for organizing it is essential that you do some major editing and paring down.
As you do you will need to compile three piles of stuff. One to donate, one to throw away or recycle, and one made up of the items you like, will use, and need. Now you can group them, organize them, and decide if you need specific storage solutions for any of them. Organizing unedited items will leave you feeling frustrated and unaccomplished.
- Buying Organizing and Storage Solutions First
It’s so easy to watch a few episodes of Home Edit or Marie Kondo, then buy a heap of beautiful containers, bins, and shelf dividers. We totally get it—you were inspired! But hold up, because buying all that without first taking measurements, assessing your storage needs, and deciding on what will go where will actually lead to more clutter and time wasted. Edit down the area you are working on first, and then you’ll have a more accurate idea of what you truly need to buy.
- Not Using Labels
It’s awesome that you got your files organized and your garage bins whittled down to a few stacked columns! But if you have no idea what’s inside each one and still need to open them to find out, then you need to take it up a notch and add labels. That’s another big organizing mistake! Labels make your stuff easier to find and lets you know where to put items away. We can’t say enough about how much we love label makers!
- Not Grouping Items
Group and store household items together by their type and usage. Grouping examples could be: paper products, utility items (bulbs, batteries, small tools, measuring tape), bakeware and baking tools, gift-wrapping necessities, video games and accessories. This makes it easier to find and store your household items. It also streamlines your tasks and activities, so you don’t have to run all over the house to get the things you need.
- Letting Donations Pile Up
How wonderful that you have pared down your closets and kitchen to just the essentials, and now have lots of boxes and bags ready for donation! Have you actually taken them in, though; or are they still piled in a corner of your home? Don’t let your goodwill devolve into clutter. Load them into your car, so you can take them to your local donation center next time you’re out on errands.
- Holding Onto Things That Should Be Recycled
That really nice box from Sephora. Those cool divided boxes your wine club bottles came in. That stack of magazines you haven’t had a chance to look through since November. These are the kinds of things you really don’t need taking up space, and you will likely never use, so do yourself and the Earth – and your home – a huge favor, avoid another home organizing mistake and just recycle them.
- Relying On A Storage Unit
Using your storage unit as the default stashing spot for items that have no place in your home is a band-aid you need to pull. Almost 10% of Americans rent a storage unit, and 67% of these storage renters live in a single-family home with a garage. Say goodbye to that storage unit and save yourself up to $1,100 annually, while also cutting down the amount of items in your life.
Keep these home organizing mistakes and tips in mind and your next decluttering and organizing project should be a success! Don’t aim for Instagram-ready perfection—your household’s needs will be different from others’ and suited to your lifestyle. If it feels overwhelming, you can contact us for help and support!