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household organization in 4 easy steps

Household Organization: Getting it All TogetherThe key to household organization is to create a place for everything in your home.

It should be no surprise that the secret to household organization is to take an orderly approach: Prune away the excess, stow what's left in logical places, and resolve to keep clutter from building up again.

Here's how to accomplish household organization in 4 easy steps.

1. deciding what to keep.

Ask yourself:

  • Have I used or enjoyed this recently?
  • Does someone in the family value this?
  • Would I save it if there were a fire?
  • Will I need this later?

If you answered yes to one or more of the above, keep it!

2. deciding where it goes.

Place articles you've decided to keep in five bags or boxes labeled:

  • Other Rooms
  • Give Away
  • Toss or Recycle
  • Storage
  • Garage sale

3. organizing the keepers.

Use these organizing principles for stashing the stuff you're keeping and that belong in other rooms:

  • Create a place for every item.
  • Store things near where you'll use them.
  • Place least-used items on top shelves.
  • Keep like items together.
  • Corral small objects in baskets.
  • Stack stored items in similar-size boxes to maximize space.
  • Label each storage container.

4. controlling future clutter.

Make these strategies a part of your life to control clutter in the future:

  • Place a catchall basket in your home's busiest rooms to hold keys, receipts, mail, and other items until you can find the time to organize them.
  • Place baskets at the bottom and top of the stairs to hold things that belong on another floor; take one or more items with you when going up or down.
  • When you bring home a new shirt, a kitchen knickknack, or a toy for the kids, resolve to store, recycles, give away, or toss another item that's past its prime.
  • Make putting away playthings a part of your child's nightly bedtime ritual.
  • Set aside 15 minutes each day to return mislaid books, magazines, cups, and so forth to their rightful homes.
  • Spend an extra minute each night to hang up your coat, fold your T-shirt or sweater, put away your pants, and stow your athletic shoes in your closet.
  • Keep your significant other current on important engagements, school information, bills due, and invitations to respond to, by putting the papers in a special folder or "hot-stuff" basket.

Visit the Clean Organized Home Store for the products and supplies you'll need to create an organized home.

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About the Author

Tara Aronson

Tara Aronson is a native Californian. Having grown up in San Diego, she studied journalism and Spanish to pursue a career in newspaper writing. Tara, whose three children - Chris, Lyndsay, and Payne - are the light of her life, now lives and writes in Los Angeles. She also regularly appears on television news programs throughout the U.S.