Organizing every room in your home can feel like a lofty goal. But with the right organizing ideas and strategies, your entire home can be (and stay) neat and tidy. Make sure to allow yourself time to accomplish this huge project and don't put too much pressure on yourself to finish quickly. Instead, enjoy the undertaking, and remember the beneficial results that even a little bit of organization will bring to your life.
Start by Listing Every Room in Your Home
Before starting your large-scale organizing project, make a list of every room in your home, as well as each space to organize within that room. For example:
- Kitchen (utensil drawer, pantry, pots, and pans drawer)
- Living room (coffee table, armoire)
- Primary bedroom (end tables, vanity, dressers, closet)
What is a Primary Bedroom?
Many real estate associations, including the National Association of Home Builders, have classified the term "Master Bedroom" as discriminatory. "Primary Bedroom" is the name now widely used among the real estate community and better reflects the room's purpose.
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Take all of this information and transfer it to a to-do list and you will begin to create a plan to tackle the clutter. Read on for 38 home organization tips and ideas to help you get started.
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Transform Your Junk Drawer Into an Everyday Drawer
Instead of calling it a junk drawer, think of it as an everyday necessity drawer. A mix of items typically ends up in this drawer, including batteries, paper clips, scissors, tape, and other odds and ends. The phrase junk drawer insinuates the drawer is filled with trash and useless items. But an everyday drawer explains exactly what it is: a drawer you need to access frequently for various useful items. Viewing the drawer this way might help to prevent you from cramming it with items you actually should get rid of.
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Organize Your Spices
It can be a hassle to find which spice you need when you're cooking. If that's the case, opt for a step organizer for spices placed in deep cabinets. A tiered organizer allows you to have easy access to your spices and see the names of all of them at once. Now your food will never burn on the stove as you rummage through the cabinet to find a spice.
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Construct a Grab-and-Go Cleaning Station
Cleanliness and organization go hand in hand, and systems are key to keeping your home organized. By creating a grab-and-go cleaning station, you can keep your supplies simplified and organized in one confined unit. Store the cleaning supplies you use the most in a caddy. Any additional items you use less frequently can be stored underneath the sink adjacent to the caddy. This creates an organized station, so you don't have to go searching for things.
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Employ Over-the-Door Storage
Taking advantage of doors is an easy way to add storage space. Over-the-door storage units are often used for shoes, and they typically can fit anywhere from 12 to 24 pairs. Another way to utilize this organizer is to store beauty supplies in it, such as hairbrushes, curling irons, hair straighteners, hairspray, and lotions.Continue to 5 of 38 below.
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Set Up a 'Do Later' Box
You might find yourself saying "I will do it later" when it comes to organization. This can create mental cutter, which can lead to stress. To alleviate this, keep a specific box where you can put small items you need to sort, put away, or otherwise deal with later. Then, before you go to bed each night, organize these items so everything is in its place for the next day.
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Color Coordinate Your Closet
ROYGBIV is many professional organizers' favorite term. The acronym stands for all the colors in the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet) and it can help you to organize clothes in your closet by color and make them visually appealing. You also can color-code your books, craft supplies, and any other category of items that has multiple colors.
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Organize Your Wallet
Wallets often become their own form of junk drawer. Receipts, crumpled money, old coupons, and credit cards get lodged into our wallets only to have us fumbling at the checkout counter. So keep your cash in order from largest to smallest bill amount, and make sure all the bills are flat and unbent. Take out your receipts every day when you get home, and organize your credit cards in order of how frequently you use them.
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Frame Meaningful Letters
Keepsakes are memories that should be enjoyed and shared, not cluttered in an old box in the attic. An effective way to keep meaningful letters organized, preserved, and part of your life is to frame them. This keeps them out of storage and visible every day for you to remember that special person and message. You can also create a keepsake binder for easy access to your special messages.Continue to 9 of 38 below.
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Add Drawer Dividers for Extra Space
Maximize the storage capacity and organization of your drawers with drawer organizers or dividers. One drawer divider instantly creates separate categories for the space, so everything has its place. You're typically also able to fit more items in each drawer because the dividers make it easier to stack things vertically.
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Use Hooks to Maximize Wall Space
Hooks are a handy way to utilize wall space, especially if you live in a small home or apartment. There are a lot of items that stay perfectly organized on hooks, including backpacks and hats. Plus, hooks are inexpensive and easy to install.
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Organize Your Nail Polish Collection
One creative way to organize nail polish is to create a nail station on the wall, similar to the ones you see in salons. You can also make a portable nail polish caddy that holds files, polish, and polish remover. That way, you can pick it up and move it to wherever you want to do your nails.
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Incorporate Shoe Boxes
Shoe boxes prevent your shoes from getting dusty and damaged by other shoes being thrown on top of them. For functional organization, purchase clear shoe boxes, so you can easily find all of your shoes at a glance. Many of these boxes even allow you to open them at the front, so you don't have to shift stacks of boxes to get to the pair of shoes you want.Continue to 13 of 38 below.
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Use Hooks for Organizing Jewelry
Necklaces tend to get tangled and damaged easily when they aren't organized. Create your own necklace station by hanging a rod on the wall and then hanging individual hooks on the rod. This allows you to display the exact amount of necklaces you have and space them accordingly to keep them from getting tangled.
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Make an Art Station on Wheels
If your children's crayons, coloring books, paper, and paint are all over the place, organize them into a portable art station. Purchase a shelving unit with wheels, so you can move this station to wherever your kids are doing art projects. This also helps to teach your children how to stay organized if they have to put their items back where they found them on the station.
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Create an Electronics Closet
Electronic cords tend to be bulky, and they can easily tangle and cause clutter. So consider turning a closet (or part of a closet) into a dedicated space for electronic items, such as spare chargers, power strips, etc. Find stackable containers to fit your items, and label what's inside.
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Create a Filing System
If you keep paper records, make sure to store them in an organized fashion. You can use a simple accordion folder, which is ideal if you don't have much to store and prefer that your records are easy to transport. You also can use a filing system that fits in an existing desk drawer or a freestanding filing cabinet. This prevents papers from being scattered in various places, yet it still gives you easy access to your records.Continue to 17 of 38 below.
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Fold Your Jeans
You generally don't have to worry about jeans getting creased if you fold them. So to keep them organized, store your jeans in a neatly folded stack rather than spending time hanging them. This makes it easy to see all of your jeans at once when you're picking a pair to wear.
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Organize Your Seasonal Clothes
Twice a year, spend a day packing away your seasonal clothes. At this time, consider donating clothes you haven't worn over the previous season. This will prevent your closet from getting cluttered and stuffed. If your closet has the space, store seasonal clothes on the top shelf, so it is easy to rotate them when the season changes again. If you don't have the space, pack away your clothes in an airtight container, and store them in a room that doesn't get extremely hot or cold.
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Organize Your Hobbies
By organizing the items you need for your favorite hobby, you might feel motivated to do it more. For example, if you like gardening, consider making an organized gardening station. Use shelving to spread out everything you need to garden: pots, a watering can, utensils, etc.
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File Your T-Shirts
By folding your T-shirts in such a way that they file one behind another, you can pull out one shirt without the others moving. This also allows you to see what's on each shirt all at once.
Follow these steps for folding:
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- Lay the T-shirt face down with the arms spread out.
- Use your hands to spread it out flat with no wrinkles.
- Fold the left arm in.
- Fold the right arm in. Now you should have a long rectangle.
- Fold the bottom of the shirt up.
- Turn it right side up, and fold it once more.
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Categorize Party Utensils and Decor
Plastic containers are convenient for storing extra party utensils and materials for entertaining. Instead of dumping them all in one container labeled "party utensils," divide them into categories. This allows you to find what you need quickly. Potential categories include cutlery, decorative napkins, and decorations.
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Sort Your Pantry With a Stackable Rack Organizer
A stackable rack organizer is ideal for organizing soda cans and soup cans. Every time you take out a can, another one rolls down. This is an excellent way to organize and increase storage capacity when you buy items in bulk.
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Label Containers for Pet Treats
Don't forget to organize your pet items. Since dry pet food bags can be bulky, a great way to keep things neat and organized is to empty the food into a plastic container. Organizers specifically made for pet food often have options with wheels and a scooper inside. For treats, you can use a decorative container that you don't mind keeping out on display for easy access.
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Organize Your Makeup Brushes
Glass jars are an attractive way to organize makeup brushes. They make it easy to grab which brush you need and have the benefit of being decorative. Simply fill the jar with beads or marbles, and then stick in the brushes. This method keeps brushes in place but still allows for quick access.Continue to 25 of 38 below.
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Sort Small Purses and Wallets
Small purses and wallets fit great filed one in front of another in a small open container that allows you to quickly select the one you would like to use. Make sure the box is not too deep. You want it to fit in such a way that the purses are flush with the height of the box.
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Store Children's Toys in Bins
Bins are a terrific way to organize children's toys in one place. Large items such as stuffed animals, dolls, and sports balls tend to take up a lot of space, and it can be difficult to find a suitable storage spot for them. But bins come in many sizes, so you should be able to find a spot to keep these items organized and out of the way when they're not in use.
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Use Tilted Shelves for a Shoe Wall
Tilted shelves are an effective way to organize shoes. These shelves keep shoes neatly placed and prevent them from slipping and sliding. Plus, all shoes are visible at once, meaning it's easy to find and grab the pair you need. Tilted shelves can be installed in a closet, or if you are a shoe enthusiast, you can create a shoe wall with tilted shelves.
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Sort Gift-Wrapping Supplies
An over-the-door gift bag organizer can be helpful to keep your gift bags nice and neat. Categorize them by size and occasion. Next time it's someone's birthday, you'll know exactly where to find the birthday bag you need.Continue to 29 of 38 below.
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Color Code Your Holiday Decor
Colored paper, labels, or index cards on storage bins are a helpful way to organize holiday decor. This makes it easy for your eye to see which bins belong to which holiday. For example, your Christmas bins could all have a red label, and your Halloween decor could have an orange label.
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Use a Track System for the Garage
Track systems come in different forms, but they all have a horizontal track with different ways to hold items vertically. They often have hooks or clips that allow you to effortlessly hang many items you need in a garage. Shovels, brooms, bicycles, ladders, cords, and rakes are all items that can be organized within this system.
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Frame Children's Artwork
If your child likes to create lots of artwork, don't let it pile up and turn into clutter. Instead, frame favorite pieces to display as decor. This will help to cut down on clutter on your fridge and in boxes.
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Invest in a Professional Closet System
Investing in a professional closet system sets the foundation for your organized space. Although some are pricey, you don't have to spend a lot of money to design an organized closet. Some systems are as low as a few hundred dollars. With specific places to put things away, keeping your closet organized will be a breeze.Continue to 33 of 38 below.
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Sort Food Storage Containers
One of the best alternate uses of a dish rack is to use it as a food storage lid organizer. Simply put the dish rack in a cabinet or large drawer where you keep your food storage containers. Then, stand the lids in the dish rack slots. This will make it easy to find the lid you need without digging through a pile.
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Set up a Compact Car Organizer
Your car can be viewed as an extension of your home, so make sure to keep it organized as well. Consider a swing-away compact car organizer, which sits over the passenger headrest and can swing to the back of the seat if someone needs to sit there. That way, essential items, such as tissues and spare change, will be organized and within your reach.
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Create Storage Space on the Inside of Doors
The inside of a door is a creative way to add more storage space. For instance, by adding a single track with baskets you can organize ribbon in a craft room, spices in a pantry, or personal care items in a bathroom. It is a simple and affordable organization tactic that's suitable for most spaces.
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Make a Home for Everything
When all of your items have a designated storage spot, it should be easy to keep your home organized. Put like items with like items. For example, don't allow writing utensils to be scattered all over your home. Instead, use a drawer or other organizer designated for them in one spot.Continue to 37 of 38 below.
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Try the 8-Minute Rule
The eight-minute rule can be used for any space in your home. Set a timer for eight minutes every night, and put away as much as you can in those eight minutes. The intent is not to finish organizing your entire room. Rather, it helps to develop organization habits and prevents clutter from building up.
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Even if you were the one who stored the items, you might not remember what you put in every box and bin. That's where labeling can help. Labels ensure that everyone in your home can follow your organization system and will know where to find things and put them away.
How organized are you? Take our short personality quiz to find out how organized you really are plus get tips for better organization.