How to Declutter an Apartment
The apartment is an excellent first housing option for a lot of people. They are cheap, come with amenities, and can be a great place to meet people. However, they do also lead to the old ‘Too much stuff and not enough space’ phrase that everyone says at least once in their lives. Apartments can get cluttered quickly, not that they have enough space to begin with, and soon you might have to look at decluttering.
But if you’ve collected a ton of clutter, then it can be hard to figure out where you should start with decluttering. Keeping, putting into storage, throwing things away, or giving them away, it’s a lot of work and choice. But it doesn’t have to be.
There are steps to decluttering an apartment that can make it much easier than you might think, and if you can master them, your home will be clean in no time.
Section Things Off and Make Piles
First, you’ll want to figure out what you want to declutter. If you have a lot of small decluttering projects all around the apartment, tackle them one at a time. If your bedroom is the only cluttered spot, then divide your bedroom into sections.
Having plans for decluttering is much easier than hopping in and getting overwhelmed, so start small. Next, create three piles in the center of your area. One is to keep, one is to store, and one is to give away/ throw away.
This part is a bit harder, and you might need to bring in some impartial third parties to help you, but you should take every piece of clutter and place it into one of those three piles. Don’t overthink the idea or reminisce about all the times you used this piece of chaos, but just put it in a pile and then move on.
Speed is the name of the game here, and if you are still having trouble, ask yourself if you have used the item in the last year. If yes, keep or store it, and if no, get rid of it.
Manage Your Space
Now that you have all the things you don’t use thrown or given away, you need to manage the rest of your items to ensure that your apartment doesn’t get cluttered up again. Take a look at where you will be storing these items, and see what improvements you can make.
For example, if your storage space is in your closet, rather than shoving everything in there and hoping for the best, try to clear it up. Use bins and place themed items inside of them, or take advantage of your closet space to shove the things you don’t use as much to the back. Then you can have the stuff you need access to into the front.
If the space is out in the open, such as in the kitchen, try to have everything. This might sound a bit silly, but assigning everything a location in your home can help with the organization, so you don’t misplace things.
Keep all your plates in one cabinet, your silverware in a drawer, your cups in the cabinet above the sink, and your pans below the oven. Don’t make any changes and always put the dishes back in the same place. Soon, you will know where everything goes, and you’ll see if you have space for something else.
Make Space Before You Buy
Staying in the kitchen, once you get everything organized in the kitchen, then you can look at your space. Do you have enough space on the counter for a new gadget to have a permanent home? Is there enough space in the cabinet for a new pot?
If there is, you can confidently make plans to buy a new thing because you have a predetermined spot. One of the main contributions to clutter is when people buy first and then don’t wait to see if they have enough space to store the item. Then they try to make space, and that’s where the clutter happens.
Use Furniture For Storage
If your furniture has drawers, pockets, or space that you aren’t using, then try to make them storage items! Use a chest of drawers, not just to store clothes but also smaller knick-knacks or electronic devices. If your chair or couch has a pocket on the side, then place the remotes in there. Grab a bowl and use it to store keys and jewelry, and get creative.
Finding space isn’t always the easiest thing to do in an apartment, but you can find it and, in some cases, make it.
Use The Digital World
Finally, turn physical items into digital ones. If you have several pictures cluttering up your walls, then scan them and turn them into digital slideshows on your television. If you have a massive movie collection, then try to find digital versions or sign up for Netflix or another service.
If cords are cluttering up your outlets, try to look for cordless items and electronics to keep things clean. The digital world is a lot easier to keep clean than the physical one, so take advantage of that fact to clean your apartment up.
Don’t Stress About Decluttering
Finally, decluttering shouldn’t add stress to your life, but instead, it should remove it. Just take the process slow and go through one room of your apartment at a time, pile the items together, and try to move without any hesitation. The more time you spend reminiscing or justifying why you need a certain piece of clutter, the less time you spend actually cleaning up. Soon you’ll have a clean apartment, and you can marvel at all the space you now have!
Plus, a decluttered apartment often means that you can invite people over and not have to apologize for the mess. If you like being the host of your gatherings, then that should be incentive enough to start decluttering!