How do I get started cleaning out my house? I want to just get rid of everything I don't use and re-organize everything so I can make repairs and remodel but I don't know where to start and it's driving me cazy!
Myself? I'd start one room at a time. Trying to do a whole house would be too overwhelming.
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I'd go room by room too but I would start by considering where you want to put things . For instance, I will keep all my paperwork here, all my tools here, etc. That way when you start cleaning you can at least get something in the area where you want it to end up.
So I guess, you think organization, then do cleaning, and then actually organize, if that makes sense.
Definitely one room at a time. Motivation follows success on the first space for me.
First decide what purpose you want for the room and space (how you imagine it should look and be used). Then have a couple big tarps or sheets in the center, to sort items you either want to keep and the other to donate or sell, plus a large trash can or bag to fill with throwaways. Keep asking yourself if each item you handle is keeping with the usefulness or you just love it in the space (you may have another box for misplaced items that go elsewhere). If not, it goes in the donate or trash. Clean areas before placing the "Keep" items back.
I can easily get rid of 50% of a closet or storage area doing this. It is a really good feeling.
Also calling and scheduling a thrift store pickup, prior to the job helps me. I take photos of the pile of donations, then bag or box them. That way if I want to get a tax credit later I can go back to the photos to do a better detailed list if needed.
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Clutter has to be dealt with first. It's easier to clean when the clutter is gone.
Yes, if you don't use something pass it along to someone else without guilt.
I like to break the major cleaning down into smaller tasks or areas. Rarely have to do a marathon cleaning day by doing little jobs each day.
I would go through the entire house including any outbuildings and attics or cellars.
I would not do it room by room. first rid your house of all items you no longer want to keep. Lighten the load of the entire house before you start cleaning.
Once you do this start the cleaning in any way you desire. I would probably start with an area that needs the least amount of attention because it has the least use. That way you have a "safe" zone to go to if you are overwhelmed with busier areas.
Where you live probably would enter into how you organize or clean. Here in the northeast at this time of the year we are bringing wood into the house, dealing with outside furniture, dealing with potted plants (bring them in? Toss them?) Hanging winter curtains, swapping out bedding and seasonal decorative pillows etc.
So a lot depends on what else you need to pay attention to, other than just organizing or cleaning.
I kinda agree with all the above, in the sense that when we did our house, we first decided the place to store what we wanted to keep (attic) so we started there, got rid of all the stuff we didnt want/use, then sorted & put into totes what we wanted to keep from that area. We got lots of new totes & then started on the rest of the house, room by room. We put what we wanted to keep but wouldnt use often into totes & put in the attic, what we didnt want went out, then we painted & cleaned that room, moved back in what we needed in that space & started the next room the same way. We felt it was a great system & plan to do it that way again if we ever need to do it again. I tell ya one thing, you will definitely realize you have alot of stuff once you start sorting thru it! lol Good Luck!
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I'd do a general run thru of the house removing items you know you plan on donating and doing that first. After that I'm more of a "room by room"er. If you have so much stuff that you're overwhelmed by it then I'd set aside 1-2 hours a day to sit and sort thu things - sorting into piles of discard / donate/ sell / keep. Donating & discarding should be done at the end of each sessions. You can do your selling on craigslist and / or have a garage sale every week or so. It's a good way to work thru a lot of stuff without the house being turned up-side down. Making it a daily scheduled event helps develop a good new habit. The more you do it the easier it becomes.
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