June 2005


Organize Your Home

Are you running a little late on your spring cleaning? It's not too late to get your home organized and clutter-free. Summer can be the perfect time to give your home a makeover. Beat the heat and spend the day indoors with the air conditioning on full blast and get your home organized. Cleaning, organizing and finding effective storage solutions for your home can make your life much more simple. Below are some guidelines that will help you clear out the clutter in your home and get organized.


If it's time to revamp your closet, begin by removing everything from the interior. You will have a clean slate to work with and it will also be the perfect time to give your closet a good cleaning. Now that everything is out in the open, begin by sorting through the items and dividing everthing into three categories: Keep, Throw Away and Sell/Donate. Once you have seperated all the items out, immediately get rid of the Throw Away items and the Sell/Donate items. Have your Throw Away items picked up by your trash service or take them to a local dumpster. If you are planning for a garage sale in the near future, organize your Sell items into large bins and store in a basement or attic until the time comes. Try to take your Donate items to a local charity as soon as possible to allow more space. Now that you
are left with your Keep items, it is time to start organizing. Clothes--The easiest way to organize clothing is to make sure you have a place for everything in your closet. If you don't have much closet space, try adding shelves and shoe racks. Shelves are great for stacking clothes that do not have to hung up, such as jeans and sweaters. If you have a lot of clothes, it may be a good idea to seperate summer and winter clothes. Keep your winter clothes stored during the summer months and vice versa. When the season's begin to change, this will be a good opportunity to clean out your closet while you are changing out your wardrobe. Wall hooks are great for hanging belts, scarves, ties and other accessories. Look for racks that can be hung on the back of the closet door if you are low on wall space. If you have a large closet, a small chest of drawers also makes a great way to organize accessories. Once you have everything organized to your liking, make an effort to keep things where they now belong. It will be much easier to search for that certain item you are looking for.

Kitchen and Bath

It is very important to keep kitchens and bathrooms organized. Because they are used so frequently and usually contain a lot of smaller items, it also makes them more succeptible to clutter. The first step is to take inventory of what you have. Then assign a space for all of your items. Keep items you use most frequently in easy to reach places, such as top drawers and cabinets that are close by. Once you have decided where you want everything to go, empty out all you cabinets and drawers, keeping only the items you truly need. Re-arrange your remaining items into their assigned spots. It may be easier to affix temporary labels to drawers
and cabinets until you remember where everything belongs. Some helpful tips to go by when arranging items:

-Use drawer dividers for organizing silverware and utensils. This will make them easy to find when you are pressed for time.

-Organize kitchen items by size. Pots and pans can be stacked according to size to maximize space.

-Use a lazy susan for canned items. This makes it easier to search for a particular can.

-Store items that are only used for special occasions in the back of cabinets to maximize space.

-Keep only kitchen items in the kitchen. Don't let other household items clutter your kitchen space.

-Use baskets to store items in your bathroom cabinets. Baskets allow for easy retreival and you can group similar items together.

-If you have a small bathroom, maximize space by purchasing a bathroom rack that will fit behind the toilet. This will allow for extra storage without using up a lot of space.

-Use a medicine cabinet to double as mirror and a shelf. These are great for storing small toiletries.

Tips for General Storage:

-Evaluate potential storage options. Store clothes and/or blankets in boxes that can be hidden under a bed. Use top shelves in closets for storage boxes and bins, just make sure to keep them all labeled for easy access.

-Categorize your stuff. Keep all holiday decorations together, all sports equipment in one corner, etc.

-Use remote storage (basement or attic) to store items that you want to keep out of sight. Examples: seasonal clothing, unneeded files, hobby items and holiday decorations.

-Anticipate future storage needs. Try to leave some empty space for things you may collect over time (pictures, books, etc.)

-Make an effort to place things back exactly where they belong. Designate two days per year to clear out old items so clutter does not begin to set in again.


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