Planning For A Major House Decluttering Project

Posted on: 28 November 2015

You're ready to clean out the basement, garage and all of those little storage areas that have accumulated clutter over the  years. If you are really ruthless about what you'll keep, give away and throw away, you'll gain back a lot of precious space in your home. Here are some thoughts to get you started planning your next major home decluttering project.

Making the Tough Choices

As you work your way through the house, you'll find that personal items fall into four categories:

  • Items to keep
  • Items to donate to a thrift store or other charity.
  • Items to recycle
  • Items to throw away

With each item in your home, you'll want to ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do I currently use this item?
  • When was the last time I used this item?
  • Can someone else make use of this item?
  • What is my justification for keeping this item if I don't use it?

Based on your answers, you'll know in which category each item should be placed. Be prepared to feel uncomfortable at first as you make the choices. Items that you've kept for years but never used, such as the fondue set you got from your Aunt for Christmas twelve years ago, may be strangely hard to part with. The more items you work through this way, the easier it will become as you see how much space you'll free up in your home.

Setting Up the Staging Areas

You'll find it easier to sort through items if you set aside space to hold them as you work through the house. Don't try to put everything in one room that you want to get rid of because it will appear overwhelming and you'll begin to resist making the pile bigger.

  • Pick one room to hold the items to take to the thrift store or give to a charity.
  • Pick a place in the garage to hold the items to go to the recycling center.
  • Pick a place outside for those items to be removed by a trash hauling service like Waconia Roll-Off Service. Some of these services offer dumpster rental, so you can have a small dumpster delivered to your home and taken away after you're done.

With all of this in place, you're ready to begin going through the house.

One Room at a Time

Go through each room and don't leave it until you've sorted through all of the items in it. You may need a couple of days to go through some spaces, such as the garage or basement. Only go through one room at a time or you may have that overwhelming feeling again that will put up a block to getting rid of items.

As you sort through your personal items, keep in mind that if you aren't using it, someone else may make good use of it. Or, it's made of a material that can be recycled into something useful. Think of decluttering as a way to re-purpose items that are just taking up space in your home.