5 Tips For Downsizing and Decluttering
It feels like spring is in the air! Well, the pollen definitely is, that's for sure. But when the weather gets nicer, it usually means spring cleaning is right around the corner - time to get that clutter under control! And if anyone is an authority on tidying, it's Marie Kondo, the world-famous organization guru. Her KonMari method has swept the globe, and it's inspired our list of tips for clearing out your home in preparation for downsizing. Get ready to spark some joy in your life by getting your home clean and organized!
1. Focus On The Perks
There are more advantages to decluttering and downsizing than you might think. Getting rid of things you don't need or use anymore frees up valuable space in your home, and in your mind.
Plus, downsizing could also free up some extra finances in the form of lower mortgage or rent payments. So, maybe you can finally take that trip you've always wanted!
2. Needs vs Wants
It's not always easy to make this distinction, but it's important to do so. This is where focusing on the essentials is truly key.
Marie recommends sorting items by category, not necessarily location. Clothing is always a great place to start. Then focus on things like shoes, appliances, books, paperwork, and other objects. Sentimental items should be saved for last.
A good rule of thumb is to follow the one year guideline. If you haven't used or worn something in a year, it's not likely you'll be using it any time soon.
3. Sparking Joy
One of the key components of the KonMari method is determining if an item still makes you happy. Marie asks us to ask ourselves, "does it spark joy?"
Our possessions can be reflections of ourselves, but sometimes it can be hard to just let go. We get sentimental and form attachments to objects. Or, for many of us, we cling to things we think we might need in the future, "just in case"! Go through the items that are easiest to give up first, and then move on the more challenging ones.
4. Smart Storage
This is where it's time to unleash your creativity. Room for storage in smaller spaces doesn't have to be an issue. Items like storage ottomans and benches can serve double duty. Closet shelves, shoe racks, trendy bins and baskets, and under-the-bed bins are all ways to keep your belongings tucked safely away. Is your bed frame too low to tuck bins beneath? Consider using risers to add some height so you can use that space to stash your stuff!
5. A Place For Everything
“Everyone has a place in their house for forks. If you found a random fork in the bathroom or under the couch, you’d immediately know it didn’t belong there and would return it to its drawer without another thought. Everything in your life should be this easy to put away. If an item occupies no specific location when not in use, it becomes clutter.”
- Steve McClatchy, author of Decide: Work Smarter, Reduce Your Stress, and Lead By Example