How to Get Organized

Ready to take your home from cluttered chaos to controlled calm? These four strategies will help you clean up your act and get organized.

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Keeping your home neat and tidy isn't always easy. Before the mess around you becomes overwhelming, learn how to take control and conquer clutter in every room of your home. These four fixes will help you clean up and create storage to get your home in order and create a sense of calm. As an added bonus, clutter-free rooms look cleaner and larger.

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1. Take Stock
Organization should be methodical, not haphazard. Working one room at a time, start the process by dividing everything you own into three piles: keep, donate or sell, and trash. This can be a time-consuming process, but it's a great way to uncover problem spots in your home or in your daily habits. It's also only after this step that you can begin to really understand your storage needs. Once you've cleared away the donate or sell and trash piles, go through what's left and group like items. Next, determine logical spots for storage solutions so items are easily accessible and likely to be returned. For example, keep remote controls by the sofa and hampers where your children most often change their clothes. Continue this exercise until you've identified a place for everything.

 

2. Maximize Space
As you look for organizational opportunities, assess each room's unique possibilities for transforming unused space. Can you add a rack, shelves, or another solution to the walls to take your storage vertical? Are there specially sized bins that could capture the area under a bed or between the refrigerator and wall? Is it possible to replace or add furniture that pulls double duty as storage, such as a lidded ottoman or a bench with drawers and baskets underneath?

 

3. Be a Smart Shopper
It's finally time to put everything in its place. Before you run out to buy containers, however, decide exactly how many storage products you need, including the kind (plastic tub, hat box, etc.) and the size. Putting together a complete list before shopping prevents buying lots of pretty bins that end up unused while clutter continues to mount. Although there are many beautiful options for organizing products, whenever possible, use clear items that allow you to quickly identify what's inside. If you prefer items that match your decor, try to find solutions you can label.

 

4. Think Outside the Box
You don't have to stick to the organizing store or aisle when looking for storage. You can find solutions anywhere when you get creative. In the kitchen, install a vertical magazine rack inside a cabinet to store pot lids, or a use a tissue box to hold plastic shopping bags. For the bathroom, a magnetic strip in the medicine cabinet can hold tweezers and small tools, and a plastic tub with a handle is a great way to tote accessories from the closet to the tub or vanity. In your bedroom, place a ladder against the wall to hold extra blankets, and install rows of crown molding to hang up high heels.

Organization Strategy: Use the Right Container

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