If you are stuck in a decluttering slump, use these clutter hacks to get your home clutter-free. They cover each room in your house and each type of household clutter with the best ideas to declutter your spaces.
The Right Way to Fold a Blanket (Cause You've Been Doing it All Wrong!)
01 of 36
Designate a Spot for 'Junk'
Whether you accumulate junk by the front door, in front of the TV, or in a drawer, it's best to limit yourself to one small space. A “junk bowl" by the front door can keep those odds and ends that don’t fit anywhere else. Throw items in here such as receipts, business cards, and hair ties. If a bowl isn't your aesthetic, another option is a tray.
In your living room or TV room, store remote controls in a caddy. It’s amazing how much a caddy or tray can transform a pile of clutter into something useful. If you have a junk drawer, use a muffin tin for little odds and ends. Small containers in drawers help separate odds and ends and make them easier to find.
A junk bowl, tray, or drawer is only effective if you make a point to go through it regularly and either trash or file the items.
02 of 36
Use Magnetic Desk Organizers
Use magnetic desk accessories to corral office supplies. By using magnetic trays, you can rest easy knowing your paperclips or bulletin-board tacks will be securely in their container when you need them.
03 of 36
Designate a Donation Center
Having a place to donate old clothing, shoes, and accessories before beginning to declutter makes the process easier. Find a local donation center or charity that you can easily leave lightly used items with.
04 of 36
Hang Kids' Artwork
Hang kids’ artwork from clips to avoid fridge clutter. You have to display your kids’ artwork, but not forever, and you can make it look more interesting than just hanging it on the fridge with magnets.Continue to 5 of 36 below.
05 of 36
Use Shower Curtain Rings to Hold Just About Everything
Shower curtain rods are surprisingly useful. You can use them in your bedroom closet to hang ties, scarves, handbags, or belts. In the kitchen, they can effectively hold tea towels or dishrags.
06 of 36
Declutter Your Mudroom With Built-In Storage, Hooks, and Bins
The mudroom or entry tends to be a dumping ground. Take the time to either DIY or build proper storage for things like umbrellas, winter gear, bags, and shoes. Organize your mudroom by moving stuff off the floor and onto hooks for easy retrieval. Built-in storage such as shelves or cubbies can also go a long way to uncluttering a mudroom.
In the end, your mudroom will be functional and look better.
07 of 36
Be Prepared With Baskets
Use attractive baskets for quick living room decluttering. Is that basket holding kids' toys, assorted batteries, or extra cables and wires? Who knows. But living room guests that the space is neat and tidy. And that's all that counts.
08 of 36
Create a Clutter Cabinet for Home Accessories
The clutter cabinet can store home accessories like tchotchkes, picnic gear, candlesticks, and centerpieces, and decor items you display only sometimes, like picture frames, mementos, vases, and seasonal items.
These can be stored in an accessories cabinet or in project bins. This way, when you want to change up your decor or entertain, you know exactly where to retrieve these items. Plus, when it’s time to store them again, you know exactly where to put them.Continue to 9 of 36 below.
09 of 36
Have a System for Project Magazines
Don’t save a magazine for one recipe in it. Have a system for managing the content in magazines you actually want to keep. Store recipes in your recipe file, DIY project ideas in your DIY project file, and so on.
10 of 36
Invest in a Shredder
If you have lots of paper clutter, a shredder will help keep it under control. Use a shredder as you go through the mail so these piles of junk mail don't even get a chance to accumulate. Also, periodically go through your files to see if there is anything you can shred.
11 of 36
Save Countertop Space
Get rid of the knife block that takes up valuable counter space. Instead, store knives on a magnetic strip on the wall or in a drawer with a divider.
12 of 36
Use Storage-Friendly Furniture
A bed can double as a storage unit by either storing items in the dead space underneath or choosing a bed with built-in storage. In small spaces, using furniture as storage is not only smart but is necessary. This may mean picking an ottoman with storage, nightstands with drawers, or tall bookshelves.Continue to 13 of 36 below.
13 of 36
Create Clutter Hub Spots
Create a “hallway hub” to keep halls clear. Think of these “way stations” as places to dump clutter that belongs in another room until it can be carried to its proper spot.
14 of 36
Set a Timer for 15 Minutes
If you hate cleaning, commit to cleaning for 10 or 15 minutes at a time. Set the timer and clean or declutter while listening to a podcast. Or, tidy the kitchen while you’re waiting for water to boil.
15 of 36
Treat Every Item in Your Home the Way You’d Treat a Fork
If you think of everything as a fork, it becomes obvious when it's out of place. Because when you find a fork in the bathroom, you know it doesn't go there. You know it goes in the kitchen in a drawer in the utensil holder with the other forks. Everything in your home should have a storage space like that.
16 of 36
Use Your Smartphone
Take photos of paper menus and schedules to avoid extra paper clutter. Don’t save paperwork that can easily be found online. This includes documents like user manuals, credit card agreements, and take out menus. You can take photos of one-page documents, or bookmark them in your browser, store them in Evernote, or just Google them when needed.Continue to 17 of 36 below.
17 of 36
Use Hanging Storage
Use a hanging shoe organizer for items other than shoes. In closets, these can be used for storing gloves, scarves, or jewelry. You can use them in the kitchen for boxed or canned food. The clear pockets allow you to see the contents while also holding them securely.
18 of 36
Get Familiar With the Box Method
The “box method" uses three boxes—put away, donate/sell, and storage—plus a trash can. Go through your items one by one and place them in a box. Try to go with your "gut" feeling for each item. The idea is to quickly decide what to do for each item.
19 of 36
Store Plastic Bags for Later Use
Store extra plastic bags in a paper towel tube to keep them from ending up in an unattractive clump. You can also purchase or DIY a fabric holder for plastic bags. Either way, they'll be stored and ready for use as small wastebasket liners, dog waste bags, or tote returns back to the store.
20 of 36
Rotate seasonal items in your front closet so the clothing you wear most often is right up front. Plus, switching out your clothes each season will give you a chance to examine each piece to see if any repairs are needed or if it's time to donate a piece of clothing.Continue to 21 of 36 below.
21 of 36
Use Baskets in the Linen Closet
Use baskets to separate out different types of linens such as bath towels from beach towels or different sizes of linens such as King sheets separate from Twin sheets. This makes everything easier, especially when guests are staying over.
22 of 36
Pare Down Your Clothing
Move toward a minimalist wardrobe. You will find once you start decluttering your clothing that you no longer need all those scarves, sweaters, jeans, and even shoes that you thought you did. You’ll save space in your closet and have less clothing to maintain.
23 of 36
Give Everyone's Items a Space
If you have a big family, give everyone a shoe bin in the mudroom, entryway, or foyer. Creating storage spaces for individual family members may even get your kids to help you keep the house tidy as well.
24 of 36
Quickly Declutter a Bag
Even if you are short on time, you can still tackle clutter. Decluttering your bag only takes five minutes. Dump everything out of your handbag and replace just the essentials (e.g., wallet, sunglasses, lip balm). File things like receipts and appointment reminders and trash the obvious trash like used tissues, straw wrappers, and old grocery lists.Continue to 25 of 36 below.
25 of 36
Control Your Email Clutter and Junk Mail
Cut email clutter by setting up filters, unsubscribing to spam, and clearing out your inbox. You can even set up two email addresses: one for things you have the subscribe to and one you only give to friends and family. This way, when you check your main email, you know it’s going to be something you really want to read. When you check your "newsletter" account, you can be surgical about deleting it.
For junk mail, unsubscribe from any catalog you don't regularly buy from or can view online. The same goes for magazines. There is no need for them to arrive at your house if you never read them. Also, go around your house and collect any catalog or magazine you've already read and recycle it.
26 of 36
Don’t Neglect the Junk in Your Car
Keep a trash bag in your car for coffee cups, old receipts, and other odds and ends that accumulate on the passenger seat, under the driver's seat, and in the trunk. Spending just a minute or two each day going through your car looking for trash will ensure it doesn't pile up.
27 of 36
Use the 5 Things a Day Rule
Pick up five things and find places for them. Everyone has those items in their home that seem to always end up in random spots, such as remotes, keys, or notebooks. This is the time to find a designated spot for them, once and for all.
Since you will be walking around your home picking up items and finding spots for them, combine this with a weekly organizing routine. As you visit a room or zone in your home, follow the routine to clean, organize, or straighten that area.
28 of 36
Fill One Bag a Day
Decluttering your entire home at once is daunting. Instead, commit to filling just one trash bag a day with things to donate, shred, or trash. Breaking it down into this small task will make it much easier to complete and commit to.Continue to 29 of 36 below.
29 of 36
Start Moving Prep Early
If you’re moving, start early. It makes no sense to pack and move the clutter you’re going to toss anyway. But, start early. Even though decluttering can be fast, some items like keepsakes and old clothing can take time to declutter.
This technique can also help you declutter even if you aren't actually moving. Just act like you are. You know that decluttering makes staging your home and packing easier. If you pretend you're moving, as you declutter, ask yourself if you would pack an item and move it to a new home.
30 of 36
Check Food Expiration Dates
Know what to toss in your pantry each week and schedule time to give it a good once-over. The same goes for your freezer—toss anything expired, with freezer burn, or if you just can no longer identify it.
31 of 36
Organize Recipes 10 Minutes at a Time
If you have recipes stuck inside cookbooks or stuffed in a drawer, take 10 minutes at a time to declutter them. For one 10-minute chunk, gather all your recipes. For the next 10-minute span, go through the recipes and weed out the ones that you don't want to keep. Continue this for tasks such as putting them in a binder, rewriting the smeared ones, and so on. This is a big project so breaking it up into small, manageable spurts is smart.
32 of 36
Use the Traveler's Method
Declutter with the “traveler’s method.” Think of decluttering your home the way you would pack a suitcase for travel. Your home is only so big and can only fit so much. So, designate one caddy for toiletries, for example. Once it's full, you can no longer keep any more toiletries unless you purge something already in the caddy. Continue this process throughout your home.Continue to 33 of 36 below.
33 of 36
Use a Scanner for Office Clutter
Greatly reduce office clutter by investing in a scanner. Use it to scan in receipts needed for taxes, digital backups for vital documents like mortgages or extended warranties, and more. Once scanned, you can safely store these documents away, and you may even find while sorting through a lot of the paper clutter that you don't need to keep a copy of it—either scanned or paper version.
34 of 36
Declutter for the Holidays
Plan a clutter-free Christmas by giving away ornaments and decor you haven't used for years. This also goes for wrapping paper that you haven't used for a few years. Also, go through your inventory to see what you have and plan to use before heading out to buy more bows and ribbons.
Reduce clutter by rethinking your gifts, that way you don't unintentionally add clutter to someone else's home. If you know someone is following a low-carb diet, for example, don't make them a "bread in a jar" gift.
35 of 36
36 of 36
Use Pegboards to Organize Visually
Use a pegboard to fight closet clutter or to store crafts supplies. The more you can see, the easier it is to keep track of what you use and what you’re just permanently storing.