Organizing for a Move

Do you feel like you need a larger home? Are you thinking of adding on to your home for more space?
It might not be a lack of space, but the way it is being used. All of us have a certain amount of clutter and disorganization in our lives that costs us time and money every day.

To put things in perspective:
• Getting rid of clutter reduces housework by 40 percent.
• 80 percent of the clutter in most homes is a result of disorganization, not lack of space.
• Per the National Association of Professional Organizers, “Americans spend 9,000,000 hours/day (collectively) searching for misplaced items,” which equates to losing time that could have been spent enjoying fun family activities.

So what’s the bottom line? Many of us are in the same boat — life disorganization caused by clutter chaos! Hence, my Get Organized motto: “Clear the clutter, simplify your life.”
Now, the big question, Can moving be a family affair? Yes, it can be, and it should begin with a system that the family can contribute to daily. Children as young as 2 years old should be held accountable for keeping their rooms picked up (with age-appropriate assistance from a parent). By putting a system in place and teaching your children at this early age, they will learn that responsibility for their space is required in life.

If you are anticipating a move in the next 6-12 months, take the opportunity now to prepare for a smoother move. Teri Roberts Marshall, a realtor with RE/MAX Executive Realty in Charlotte, suggests this will also benefit you with the actual selling process so that you can get the highest price with the best terms in the shortest time possible.

If you have already sold your home and are moving within the next month or so and have not already de-cluttered your home, use your packing time to accomplish this task, and thus begin life in your new home uncluttered and with less chaos.

The environment of every room in your house affects your life and your family’s life. Major areas such as your pantry, playroom, garage, laundry room and great room affect your daily life. They can create stress due to unnecessary clutter.

5 easy steps for organizing your space:

1. Make Organizing A Priority
• The average room takes two days to organize (that’s 12 to 14 hours).
• Schedule your time as if it were an important business meeting.
• Cut out distractions. Hire a sitter, turn off phones and work in peace and quiet.
• Don’t let information you come across distract you and send you off track.

2. Tackle One Room At A Time
• Getting started is the hardest part, so break it down into manageable tasks.
• Focus on the area that needs the most attention now.
• Start on one side of the room and sweep across.
• Focus completely on that one area before moving to another.

3. Sort and Purge
• Start with what you can see and creates stress.
• It’s going to get ugly before it improves, so prepare for a mess during the process.
• Go one drawer, cabinet or closet at a time.
• Pull everything out where you can see the volume.
• Sort into 3 boxes: Keep: I need it, I love it and I use it — put item away in its proper place
Donate: Useful items of lesser value
Trash: Non-useful, broken and old items
• Touch each item only once.
• Tax write-offs are just as lucrative as yard sales, and much easier.
• Clean all spaces before restocking.

4. Create An Organizational System
• Designate a home for everything you own. Make it simple and logical.
• Ask yourself “Where do I use this, where would I look for this?”
• Keep all “like items” together.
• Containerize small items (batteries, light bulbs, tools, etc.) and label containers for easy retrieval.
• Measure shelves and cabinets carefully before buying containers.
• Make a detailed list of what you need before heading to the store.

5. Finish What You Started
• Bag all trash and discard it today!
• Make a trip to the recycling center or city dump today!
• Put all small donation items in your car and deliver them today!
• Don’t give away your junk! Throw it away!
• Vacuum, mop and clean up your mess.
• Sit down, rest and admire what you have accomplished!