Guest post by Kacey Mya
Over time, your home becomes filled with furniture and odds and ends that reflect your journey through life. When you move into your first house, you may inherit furniture from your parents and relatives. You add the sparkle of your unique personality, filling it with decorative items that reveal parts of who you are.
You may keep your home squeaky clean, or maybe you have a few piles of clothes and paper to sort through in your de-cluttering process. No matter if you prefer your home tidy or lived in, everyone needs to de-clutter once and a while. What stays and what goes will also be unique to your needs and what you want to hold onto as a keepsake:
1 – Sunny, Warm Day: Yard Sale Day
The sunny and warm weather is the perfect time to have a yard sale or a garage sale and sort through your belongings. Have the kids color in your hand drawn “Yard Sale Here” sign on a bright poster. List your yard sale on Craigslist, social media groups and in the newspaper. Signs should be placed in higher traffic areas with clear directions, date, time, location and hot sale items, such as “baby clothes” or “got to go furniture.” Place these out a day before to give shoppers a time to save the date.
To have a successful yard sale, remember that location is everything because a well-traveled street gets you more traffic than a private cul-de-sac. Team up with your neighbors or a friend, and host it at a prime location. Start your prep work several weeks ahead, taking a few hours out of your day here and there to select items to sell so you don’t stress out. Place these in a separate room or pile, and use the 50-30-10 rule: new items are 50 percent of original retail value, slightly used is 30 percent and old are 10 percent.
2 – Sell Your Items Online
Instead of posting a yard sale advertisement, you may want to take more time to research and sell items a few at a time. Use Craigslist, eBay, social media groups and the newspaper to post these items as you decide to sell them.
Other shopper sites focus on a specific category of goods. Keep in mind that these sites take a small percentage for their service, so price your items accordingly, and keep prices in line with other items on the site.
3 – Closet Swap
Take items out of your closet that you don’t wear anymore, have gotten too big or small or that you dislike. Invite girlfriends over, with items from their closet, and swap, vowing to keep only five items each. Drink wine, eat chocolate and enjoy. Donate the remaining items.
4 – Take Five Minutes
All you need is five minutes. Set the timer on your phone, grab a bag or trash can and go. Choose a compact area to de-clutter, like a drawer or shelf. For example, you may want to de-clutter an overrun jewelry box and sell your jewelry. If these items are family heirlooms, you’ll want to get them appraised to find out the real value, and not sell them for less than they’re worth at a yard sale.
5 – One in, Two Out
For every new item brought into the home, take two items out. When you bring a new pair of pants home, toss out old socks with holes and an old pair of pants.
6 – Reverse Clothes Hangers
For every item you wear, place it back in the closet and reverse the hanger. After a few weeks, you’ll know what items you wear and what you don’t. You could also take photos and create an album or inventory list, for when wash day strikes.
7 – One Room at a Time
List the rooms to de-clutter in order of difficulty, starting from easiest to hardest or vice versa. Take it one room at a time.
8 – Invite People Over
There’s nothing that kicks your cleaning and decluttering urges into gear like inviting people over to your house for a dinner party or smores in the fire pit. Give yourself a few weeks, and go. Start with one friend who has seen your mess, and tell them what your master plan is. If it’s not working out, then call your friend over for motivation, and celebrate with takeout afterward.
9 – Be Honest with Yourself
Ask yourself: Do I need it? Why? Why am I keeping this?
The answers will likely surprise you, but they will give you added insight into a deeper value you assign to these items. For items that you are unsure of, place them out of sight for a month and see if you miss them. Do the same thing when buying items, and the answers may surprise you.
10 – Keep Clear Boundaries for Stuff
Assign boundaries to items. Toys, for example, should line shelves or the wall in their designated spots. Once these items outgrow their borders, empower children to choose what items to keep or give away.
When you de-clutter, you are not losing anything. You’re returning simplicity and joy to your life by having a stress-free and organized environment, where you invest your money into experience over stuff. When you do purchase an item, be honest with yourself. Do you need it, and why are you buying it? Home is where the heart is, and your heart needs space to explore its passions.
Kacey is a lifestyle blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts.
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