Marie Kondo and her KonMarie method of decluttering have taken the world by storm. With four books, unprecedented media coverage and a series on Netflix, she’s the queen of tidying up with her own tailored method of folding clothes and guidelines for decluttering every part of your home and life.
But let’s be honest, her level of detail can be terrifying! We’ve created a room by room guide to decluttering based on the most common issues I see as a real estate agent and some simple steps you can prioritize.
1. Living room
One of the most common mistakes with living rooms is to over-furnish them with sofas that are too large for the space and giant TVs. Move this furniture out – either sell it or put into storage – and replace with something lighter and brighter that complements your space.
Are your countertops crammed with recipe books and knick-knacks? Box them now and get the countertops cleaned off. Strip all the magnets and kids’ drawings off the fridge. Go through your cabinets and send to charity or sell every gadget you saw advertised on TV but never used more than twice.
The guest soaps you collected from hundreds of hotels can be thrown or donated to charity if they are in good order. Go through your vanity unit. Throw out anything that is out of date, or which hasn’t been used for a year. This includes medicines, makeup, sunscreen, old hair gel and miracle face cream that didn’t work.
Kids’ toys should be culled and tidied regularly. Throw out broken toys and wage a continual war on Barbie and Lego with some specific storage solutions for them. Pick up everything off the floor. Put all your clothes on the bed and go them through one by one. If you haven’t worn it for a couple of years, you’re unlikely to again. Make a pile for repairs of items that you want to keep. Pack or donate what you no longer want to charity.
Laundries tend to be dumping grounds of everything from sporting equipment to old shoes to cleaning products. If the kids haven’t played with their baseball gloves for more than a year, send it to charity or hold a yard sale. Stick all the cleaning products into a bucket and stow. After all this tidying, you’ll want to give the place a good clean.
Just start with one room and work from there. Remember, similar to loosing weight it took more than a few days or weeks to get there it's okay to take some time to get back! Any progress is progress and should be rewarded, just not with anymore stuff!