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10 Top Tips to Spring Clean Your Home

Spring is the time to let go…

Once we have finished hibernating inside our homes over the winter months, the motivation seems to kick in to start decluttering – and not just our homes but our lives as well. But when it all seems so overwhelming, how do we get started? The key is to start small, do a little bit at a time and reward yourself as you go. Try these top 10 tips to simplify your life and revitalise your home this spring.

  1. Go on a tour around the house and take notice of all your belongings. Ask yourself – do I love it, do I need it, is it useful? If you can’t answer YES to just one of these questions it’s time to go. If undecided, pop it in a “maybe” box to decide again in six months time.
  2. “It may come in handy one day” or “It was a gift from my mother/best friend/dead grandmother” are common excuses you need to overcome. If you really need something “one day” then I am sure you will be able to buy it again if and when that time comes. If the item was a gift and you are feeling guilty, change that feeling to one of gratitude and generosity and then pass the item on to someone who really does need it or will love it and use it. Feel free to take a photo of it so you will still have the memory, without the stuff.
  3. Sort the items into piles, putting “like” with “like”. Make a Keep pile, a Donate/Sell pile and a Garbage/Recycle pile. Once the items are sorted into these three groups, go through the Keep pile and start sorting again into categories of items that are similar ie stationery, books, shoes etc. This makes it easier to see how many of the same items you have (and no one needs three potato peelers).
  4. Get the kids involved with their toys – what have they outgrown or don’t play with anymore? Teach them the value in passing on to others who may not be as fortunate as them, or sell to make extra pocket money to save up for something they really love.
  5. Kitchen items – empty utensil drawers and put in a box. Only remove items as you need them to cook. Anything you haven’t used in a month you can let go. And that goes for bigger items too – when was the last time you used that bread-maker? Don’t forget to check the pantry for any out of date ingredients too. If by chance you “may need it one day” then that is the day you can buy another one – but chances are you won’t. This usually applies to melon ballers and egg slicers.
  6. Go through your wardrobe in preparation for the warmer weather. Pack away the winter woollies in airtight containers (don’t forget the moth and humidity protection). Anything you didn’t wear last spring/summer – out it goes! Donate to favourite charity or have a swap party with girlfriends.
  7. Options to get rid of clutter for good: call Vinnies or Lifeline, hold a garage sale with neighbours or friends, sell things of value on eBay or put an ad in the local paper, and check out consignment stores for good label clothing. “Dress for Success” www.dressforsuccess.org is a great charity to donate your business clothing, shoes & accessories as they help underprivileged women find work. Even leaving items out the front of your home with a “Free” sign works wonders. One man’s trash…
  8. Do a little at a time – Rome wasn’t built in a day and if you try to do too much at once you will soon tire and get disillusioned. And little rewards along the way help to keep you motivated (think cuppa & chocolate cake!)
  9. Don’t tackle it all on your own – ask for help! Decluttering your home can be quite overwhelming and an extra pair of hands can make all the difference. Make sure the kids pitch in and do their share too! Better still, enlist the services of a professional organiser who can help to ensure you won’t be cluttered again!
  10. Celebrate your new home – buy fresh flowers and candles, invite friends and family over for a spring bbq or dinner party and enjoy showing off all your hard work!
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