It’s spring cleaning time. That means it’s time to go hard on your home. What have you neglected these past few months? Chances are, you have plenty of things you should organize this season.
Getting down to the nitty-gritty once or twice a year makes your weekly spruce-ups more effective. It also reduces stress — how many minutes have you wasted looking for that “one thing” you knew you stashed somewhere? Life’s a breeze when everything’s in its place.
Are you ready to don your Marie Kondo hat and get your home perfectly arranged? Here are five things you should organize this spring.
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1. Your Garage
If your mind is on curb appeal amid this crazy real estate market, you should definitely organize your garage this spring. Why? More buyers look for a garage organization than attic or basement. Replacing the door alone reaps a 96% ROI, and a tidy space behind it will make prospective investors look twice.
How should you organize your garage if you currently have a motley assortment of tools, car parts and toys scattered everywhere? Here’s an example of how to arrange common objects you often store there into zones:
- Zone One: Items often used inside the home that you grab usually go closest to the connecting door leading to the interior.
- Zone Two: Outdoor tools like rakes and shovels hanging from a pegboard or pieces of PVC pipe.
- Zone Three: Children’s toys, stored in knee-high chests that keep out bugs or hanging baskets on your pegboard.
- Zone Four: Holiday items. You can place these on high shelves since you don’t need them every day.
You should also store items like antifreeze out of the reach of little hands. Store them on high shelves, or, better yet, install a locking cabinet for those things they shouldn’t touch, like your chainsaw.
2. Your Home Office Files
You’ve been working from home since 2020, and your desk resembles the aftermath of a Cat-5 hurricane. It’s well past time to get your home office files in shape.
This rule applies even if you commute to work. After all, every household keeps copies of bills and receipts they need come tax time. How safe are you from an audit?
You won’t have to worry if you keep them all organized in files. Better yet, go paperless at home by scanning what you must save and creating electronic files. If the IRS calls, you’ll have the proof you need to back up those deductions at your fingertips.
3. Your Closet
Spring cleaning means it’s time to go through your closet. Get ruthless this time, but make it fun by inviting your BFFs to a swap party when you finish your chores. You’ll feel better knowing that expensive sweater your aunt gifted you but which is two sizes too small is going home with a beloved pal instead of to Goodwill.
Once you have the items you want to save, make your next spring cleaning easier by hanging your clothes with the hangers facing the opposite direction from what you usually use. Reverse the order after washing and wearing an item. At the end of the year, it’s a snap to see what you haven’t worn.
What about those clothes that are holey beyond repair? Here are a few fun ideas for what to do with the material to keep it out of the landfill:
- Compost it: If it’s a natural fiber like cotton or silk, it will break down into beautiful organic fertilizer. Keep synthetic blends out, though, as they contain microplastics.
- Make pet toys: Could Fido use a new chew? Stuff that old T-shirt and let him rip it up.
- Kiddie art smocks: Some art teachers collect old shirts for kids to use as smocks while doing messy projects.
4. Your Pantry
Did the pandemic scare you into becoming a pack rat? It’s fine to be a prepper, but your pantry can start to resemble an episode of “Hoarders” if you don’t organize your stash. Use these tips to keep your reserves tidy and fresh and make dinnertime easier:
- Invest in organizers: Hang your spices, compostable storage bags in various sizes and small utensils on walls and doors to free up shelves. Use hard plastic or glass containers for dry goods like cereal and pasta to keep out mice and insects.
- Use bag hangers: A rack of these is indispensable for keeping various chip bags from going stale — because one kiddo invariably craves cool ranch when the other wants barbecue.
- Use shelf risers: These increase space and keep stacked soup cans orderly.
- Use clear baskets: They’re perfect for storing foods like potatoes and apples.
- Label everything: A date helps keep things fresh.
5. Your Basement and Attic
You’re all warmed up from your other spring organizing tasks and ready to tackle the Augean stables — your basement and attic. Pat yourself on the back — many people delay this chore until it’s time to move. Even then, they merely schlep boxes from one home to the next.
Here’s a fun idea to make this burdensome chore less nasty: look at it as a treasure hunt. After all, you might have Pokemon cards from your school days that will fetch a pretty penny on sites like eBay. Who knows? If you inherited items, you could be sitting on valuable antiques. Think of it as real-life “Storage Wars,” only you don’t have to bid — simply roll up your sleeves.
Things You Should Organize This Spring
It’s spring cleaning time. What should you organize while you have on your apron and gloves?
Consider organizing these five things this spring. Your hard work will pay off in a neatly arranged, serene home.