No matter your New Year’s resolution – whether it’s getting fit, picking up a new hobby, or finding the time to relax or read – there’s one skill that’ll help simplify your life, so you can master it all. Organizing your home can save you money, time, effort, and energy, so that you can work on putting your resolutions into full gear. So, what’s the best way to clear out the clutter and get your year going? Local personal organizer and owner of Simply Organized, Ellen Kutner shares her tips for a tidy 2017.
1. Simplify your paperwork
The best way to avoid dreadful paper pile-ups is to manage mail daily, she said. If you’re the type to chuck mail to the side and run to the fridge right after opening the door, Kutner suggests a manageable solution: “Before entering your house, stand over the recycling bin and toss out junk.” Organize bills by payment date, and address the pile once a week. Set up a file for the year (a manila folder and a Sharpie will do just fine), and add to it as you pay bills off.
2. Categorize items
“Zone your space by gathering like things together,” said Kutner. Sure, it may sound logical, but more than just for practical reasons, categorizing can help you easily identify and eliminate duplicate, broken, and stained items.
3. Invest in vertical shelving units
“Rather than sprawling out [horizontally], use vertical space, placing the heaviest items at the bottom, and rarely used items up high,” said Kutner. You’ll thank yourself for saving all that floor space. And for easy retrieval, don’t forget to label storage bins to reflect contents.
4. Keep pertinent supplies nearby
Think of logical places to put like materials. For example, keep pots and pans by the stove, glasses and dishes near the sink, etc. “Having your prime real estate reserved for key supplies can save time and effort, and reduce stress and frustration,” said Kutner. And who could argue with a stress-free set-up?
5. Take the time to organize often
Organizing your space isn’t a one-time fix. It’s bound to get untidy with hectic schedules and daily chaos, but try to address the mess when possible. “Just as you take your car in for oil changes every so often, your house needs a tune up on a regular basis as well,” said Kutner. “Any good organizing project is only as good as the periodic maintenance.”