Spring has officially sprung, which means a big task has been added to the to-do list for countless people—Spring cleaning. This annual ritual is eagerly anticipated by tidy homeowners who love a good cleanout, and dreaded by those who hate the process but know it’s necessary. To make the process as efficient as possible, following are organizing tips that will make your Spring cleaning a little less painful, and help you keep your space organized for the long-term.
The most common mistake people make before embarking on a serious deep cleaning is not having a plan. A considerable about of time is lost and a considerable amount of frustration is gained when you wander aimlessly from room to room without a clear process in mind. Start with a quick trip to your local dollar store for supplies that will help you organize and store your possessions. You might find that investing a few dollars on cute storage solutions to dress-up your space might actually motivate you to get the job done. Consider investing in drawer organizers, pantry food bins, kitchen counter canisters, a spice rack, shoe organizer, closet organizer, new laundry basket, makeup storage, cute baskets for towels, large baskets for blankets, a magazine caddy, and multiple small storage baskets.
Organizing by Room
Once you have your new storage bins and are ready to begin, pick a room to start with and stick to it until the room is 100% clean and organized. Completing one room and being satisfied with the outcome will motivate you to move onto the next.
- Start by cleaning off your countertops so you have space to work with when it’s time to empty out your junk drawers and kitchen cabinets. The kitchen counter is often the landing place for random items coming into house, that never find their way to their intended destination. Take a few minutes to collect those items and deliver them to their rightful places.
- Once your countertops are cleaned off, move onto drawer organization. This is often the most daunting part of a deep clean, but incredibly necessary so you can purge what’s no longer needed and make space for what is needed.
- Tackle pantry organization next by removing everything, cleaning the shelves, and organizing your canned goods, spices, snacks and more with the new pantry food bins and spice rack you purchased. Label each food bin so it’s clear what belongs inside, which will increase the chances of it staying organized.
- The final task is your kitchen cabinets, which might be overflowing with water bottles acquired throughout the year, too many coffee mugs, and more. Purge what’s no longer needed, and make tough choices to remove what’s not used often so your cabinets are clutter-free.
- Clothes and shoes are most likely the biggest contributors to your bedroom disorganization. Start by putting clothes neatly into your dresser drawers or hanging them in your closet, which will clear-off bedroom furniture. Collect your dirty clothes and place them in the new laundry basket you purchased.
- Assess your closet next. Use your new shoe organizer to arrange your shoes, purging those that are no longer needed or haven’t been worn in over a year. Fold and stack sweatshirts and sweaters on closet shelves. Organize your hanging clothing by season or color code. Along the way, toss any clothing into a pile that is stained, torn, too big, too small, or hasn’t been worn in over a year. Later, you can go through those clothes and decide what can be tossed and what can be donated.
- Much like you did in your kitchen, start in your bathroom by clearing off the countertop, putting your makeup, toiletries and other products in their rightful places—in your vanity drawers, linen closet or medicine cabinet. You now have a clean, fresh space to tackle the other areas of your bathroom.
- Next, empty your bathroom drawers and assess what you’ve managed to collect over the past year. Purge what’s no longer needed and reorganize by placing similar products together. For example, dedicate a drawer to hair accessories, another to hair styling tools such as your straightener and curling iron, and another one to oral care including your toothbrushes, toothpaste, dental floss and whitening strips.
- The bathroom linen closet is prone to being used to store anything that doesn’t have a specific home elsewhere in the house. Take everything out, clean the shelves, and only put back items that belong in a linen closet and are actually used—towels, wash cloths, extra bedsheets and extra blankets.
- The crown jewel of your home, this is where you entertain guests, spend time with family and relax after a long day of work. This space should be organized, well-decorated, and welcoming. Start by simply picking it up, putting everything in its place and tossing items that aren’t needed.
- Use large storage baskets to neatly fold and store blankets, making them easily accessible when needed.
- Use smaller storage bins and baskets to hold items that are necessary, but that don’t add to the décor of your living room. This can include television remotes, the book you’re currently reading, knitting supplies and more. Storage bins will keep items contained and out of site until needed.
Keeping Your Home Organized
Keeping your now meticulous home organized might seem like a daunting task, but with a few great tips and good habits, you’ll find that your home can stay clean and organized for months.
- Pick up as you go instead of placing things in random spots with the mental promise that you’ll put it away later
- Commit to cleaning just 5 minutes on a daily basis, whether that means wiping down counters or putting away your clean clothes
- Get the entire family involved and make it a house rule that everyone cleans up after themselves and maintains their own space
- Always have cleaning supplies on-hand so there’s no excuse to avoid those 5 daily minutes of cleaning
If your Spring cleaning and purge resulted in discovering boxes of old home movies, random photo prints, film negatives and slides, send them into iMemories for digitizing and save all that storage space. Once you’ve gone through any shoes and clothing purged from your closets, consider a charitable donation to Goodwill or the Salvation Army.