Clutter Guys have put together a guide of the top 25 things you should think about when organizing a clear-out in your home. Take a look around the room you’re in now – what about those books that have sat on the shelf for years that you’ve never read? When was the last time you looked at that set of golf clubs at the back of the garage?
Clearing out all those unused and unnecessary items will make your place feel fresh and clean, and you might be able to give them to someone who can put them to good use! We’ve made it easy for you – just follow the checklist below and start clearing out that clutter!
1. Cardboard food boxes
Swap out the cardboard boxes and plastic bags that go with your cereal, snacks and dry goods. They take up lots of space and don’t keep your food fresh. Instead, opt for glass jars or airtight plastic storage containers.
2. Wire hangers
Mom said it best: No more wire hangers! Ditch those dry cleaner hangers for matching plastic or wooden versions.
3. Dish sponges
When was the last time you replaced the sponge in your kitchen sink? If it’s been more than a month, toss it. In between, sanitize it with a spin in the dishwasher.
4. Used air filters
It’s important to schedule a maintenance checkup for your HVAC system every spring and fall, but in the meantime, filters need to be checked once a month. When they’re dirty, change them; dirty filters shorten the lifespan of your system.
5. Worn out shoes
Get rid of any shoes that are broken beyond repair, worn out or missing a mate. Can’t remember the last time you wore a still-good pair? Donate to a thrift store.
6. Forgotten clothing
Donate or sell any items of clothing you’ve had for more than a year without wearing.
7. Kids clothing
The same goes for clothing your children can no longer wear: Unless it’s an heirloom, donate or sell to free up the space.
8. Old toys
Take a look in the garage or attic space – if it’s broken or been put in a box for over a year it’s time to go!
9. Halloween costumes
If they’ve moved on from ninjas to superheroes, go ahead and donate that old costume.
10. Completed colouring and puzzle books
Display your child’s favorite works of art in a gallery wall or a photo album, then recycle the rest.
11. Lonely socks
We all have that bag of socks without their pair. If you’ve done a full round of laundry without finding their partner, it’s time to let them go.
12. Dried out makeup
How long have those cosmetics been lurking in your makeup bag? Mascara should be replaced every three months. Foundation and concealer are good for about a year, while lipstick, eye shadow and blush should be replaced every two years.
13. Free samples and testers
Give away anything you know you won’t use. That perfume you didn’t like would go great in a DIY spa gift for a loved one.
14. Expired medication
Dispose of old prescriptions and anything you can’t identify — but — because meds are considered hazardous waste, it’s important that you follow the FDA’s guidelines. Also, check with your local pharmacy or law enforcement agencies, many offer year-round or seasonal drug take-back days so you can safely drop off unwanted meds for proper disposal.
15. Spices in the back of the cupboard
Most ground spices should be replaced after 12 months. A simple test? Give each one a sniff. If there’s no scent, there will be no flavor. Go ahead and toss it!
16. Your toothbrush
The Canadian Dental Association recommends replacing your toothbrush once every three months for maximum brushing power.
17. Old greetings cards
You’ve enjoyed them, now it’s time to let them go. Record any addresses to your phone or computer before chucking them into the recycling bin.
18. Gift wrap
You probably refresh your wrapping paper supply while Christmas shopping, anyway, so go ahead and recycle the old stuff. If you can’t bear to part with it, try keeping it organized in a rolling mesh laundry basket. You can also turn last year’s leftovers into festive decor.
19. Last year’s calendar
Embrace the current year by recycling last year’s calendar. The same goes for an out-of-date diary.
20. Fridge freezer contents
Toss any unidentifiable objects in the refrigerator or freezer.
21. Old DVDs and tapes
If you’d only give a film one thumb up or you wouldn’t watch it again, give it away or sell at a used electronics store. And those VHS tapes? If you don’t have a player, let those go, too.
22. Forgotten food storage
Throw away any canned goods past their expiration date. If you discover still-good packaged food you didn’t like or won’t eat, donate to a local food pantry.
23. Cookbooks you never read
Give unused cookbooks to your foodie friends who will get more use out of them.
24. Take out menus
You can typically find menus and numbers for all your go-tos online. Keep your favorites in one place by placing them in a plastic folder and adhering the folder to the inside of your kitchen cabinet — it also works well for recipes!
25. Take out condiments
How many packets of salt and ketchup do you really need?
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the task at hand, or don’t know what to do with all your junk contact Clutter Guys to take care of it for you. Alternatively, check out our bin rentals — we’re sure that you will feel better for having a good clear out. After all – a tidy home is a tidy mind!