Getting Organized - January 18th 2013
A New Year is upon us and there’s no better time to get organized and get rid of stuff that’s no longer needed and taking up precious space.
Here are a couple of suggestions that can help with the de-cluttering challenge.
- Purge, Purge, Purge: If you don’t use it, get rid of it. Plan a garage sale but remember they do take time and effort. Sometimes it’s faster and easier to give items to charity or make them available through a web-based service such as craigslist or the buy and sell.
- Recycle your clutter: It may be tempting to toss your clutter in the nearest waste bin, but with a little extra effort you may be able to discard them in a way that won’t burden the environment. More and more there are recycling programs available through either your local municipality or through other organizations for specific items. The Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation is a non-profit organization that operates Call2Recycle. This is a program devoted to helping recycle batteries and cell phones free-of-charge. Visit www.call2recycle.ca for nearby drop-off locations in British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec. Also consider donations to the Habitat for Humanity ReStores when you have quality building materials that you no longer need, for more information visit www.habitat.ca.
- Categorize before you organize: Separate items into categories like tools, gardening, automotive, sports equipment and camping equipment.
- Label your containers so that you know their contents without having to search through them all the time. Taping photos of the items on the containers or keeping a record in a binder will help bring back the memory and its location when you need to find it again.
- Maximize your vertical space: Once you’ve organized, install cabinets, hooks and racks and purchase clear bins for an easy way to find your items. Built-ins, such as cabinets, shelves and overhead units, are especially helpful to keep items accessible and off the ground. Some companies can custom build organizers, shelving units and cabinets to maximize your space.
- Keep it safe: Store flammable products and household chemicals (weed killers, pesticides) away from heat sources and where they can't spill. Keep them in a safe cupboard if they can't be stored in an outside shed.
- Put items that you want to keep but don't need access often such as Christmas decorations in storage. There are services available that will bring containers to your home and take them to a storage facility once you have loaded them.
- If you are short on storage space consider renting a storage locker to store less frequently used items such seasonal items Christmas decorations and out of season clothes or sports equipment.
- Consider hiring a professional organizer to get you going in the right direction. Professional organizers can provide you with tools and tips to conquer your clutter and most importantly assist you in developing a system to help you get and stay organized.
- Stay Organized - Every night take a few minutes to tidy up. Each month commit time to update a calendar of what needs to get done including appointments, maintenance and family events etc.