New Year, Less Stuff: How To Get Rid of Clutter in 2019

It’s a new year! And maybe you, like many others, have made the goal to declutter your apartment. If you’re not sure where to begin or how to make the cleanliness last, read on for the top 3 professional tips on how to get rid of clutter for good. 

1. Organizing Clothing

Clothing is best organized by the owner in one sitting. So we recommend setting aside an hour to organize it.

Grab a few garbage bags. You’ll want one for clothing that you can donate, and one for other clothing that isn’t donatable (used underwear, damaged clothing) that you can recycle through a fabric recycling program. In the U.S. over 13 million tons of fabric ends up in landfills each year, so no matter what condition it’s in, recycle it!

If you live in a place where you experience seasonal changes, then it’s also a good idea to have a large, clear Tupperware container and lid with you.

Start by putting all your clothing on your bed. Take each item of clothing and ask these question (or some like them):

  • Does this item of clothing bring me joy?
  • Does this item of clothing provide me peace? 
  • Have I worn it in the past 12 months?

If the answer to any of those questions is “no” then you place it in either your donation or recycling bags. 

If you come across clothes for another season than the current one that you’re keeping, fold them neatly and place them in the Tupperware container. When the appropriate season comes again, you can place the passing season’s clothes inside.

2. How to Get Rid of Clutter

Many people express before beginning a decluttering mission that their space is overwhelming. And it’s hard to know where to start. If you feel this way, then we’ve got a trick for you. It’s called the 10-minute trash routine. Get 2 trash bags (one for garbage, one for donated items) and start at one end or corner of a room. Set a timer for 10 minutes and spend the entire 10 minutes sorting items into one of the trash bags or a keep pile.

After your timer goes off, immediately take out your bag of garbage. And place your donation bag in the room you’re decluttering. You can continue to use that for donation items through the week.

Before you leave the room, take the items in your “keep pile” and put them away in their designated spots.

Repeat this routine at least once a day. Pick a day of the week to deliver your donatable items to Goodwill, a local charity, or another thrift store. Continue to donate items once a week.

Making the 10-minute trash a routine is a small way to make a big impact on your overall cleanliness.

3. Go Paperless

A lot of clutter that happens around the house is a result of mail, bills, and other miscellaneous papers. A pro decluttering tip is to switch to paperless bills, statements, etc. Think through your property utilities like rent or mortgage, water, garbage, gas, electricity, sewage, etc. Find out which of these you can manage through auto pay and paperless billing. 

Next think of other reoccurring expenses like a phone bill, loans, internet, credit card payments, car payments, streaming services, etc. All of these bills should allow for paperless billing.

Set up an email account that’s exclusively for paperless billing emails so you don’t miss any payments.

With less paper clutter in the house, it’ll be easy to sort through junk mail and send it straight to the recycling bin.

Now What

Now that you know how to get rid of clutter, it’s time to get started. Choose one of these ideas to start with today!

Need more help decluttering your apartment? Check out this article on unique bedroom storage ideas.

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