Maybe it started with just a few boxes, but if your house looks like the crew of Hoarders is going to come-a-knocking, you might want to think about decluttering.
The good news is that you can clean up your act without aiming for an “everything I own fits into one suitcase” type of approach. A combination of donating, tossing or storing your unused items will help you trim the clutter from your life.
The self storage industry is growing around the world, year-on-year – and for good reason. Behind combination locks and roll-up doors lies unused sporting equipment, old clothes, paperwork, keepsakes and anything else you can imagine (and plenty you can’t). Self storage is also fantastic for seasonal items that clutter up the garage when they’re not in use. But for the sake of your purse, lower your costs by first going through your stuff and throwing out what you haven’t used in the past year.
Ask yourself what you would replace if you lost everything? Another helpful tip on how to know if you should bin something: if you still haven't unpacked something after your last move, you might not really need it. Donate your unused items to someone in need – this will help you feel better about parting with that beloved crockery set or handbag. Once you reduce your stuff, you can pay for a smaller self storage unit and save money that way.
You’re not going to be able to clean your entire home in one day. It took time to collect all that stuff and it’s going to take some time to let it all go. Choose one area or room to focus on at a time, then get stuck in decluttering and organising. It’s easy to get emotionally attached to items, so try to think of things in terms of their usability first, and sentimental value second. Ask yourself if you have another item which does the same job, better or at least as well. Try not to let yourself get bogged down by items like photographs – think about how the item makes you feel and evaluate how much space it takes up. Digitizing photos and documents can also help them to take up less space, and if you back them up they’re also saved for life.
Don’t be tempted to leave tucked away items out of this ruthless clean – just because you can close a drawer on a stack of unused papers doesn’t mean they bring value to your life. You’ll feel happier once they’re no longer taking up space, and some self storage stores even offer shredding services.
Think about the extra money you’ll make selling some unused items and let cash be your motivator to clean. With less things standing around, your home will also be quicker and easier to clean. Seems like a win all-round.