What are Some Home Organizing Tips?

Margo Upson
Margo Upson

Having an organized home can make life a little less stressful, as a neat and tidy living space is easy to relax in. Knowing some home organizing tips can help to turn a cluttered home into an enjoyable place for friends and family to gather. Being organized can also help reduce time wasted looking for missing items, and can streamline the house cleaning process.

Organization can help streamline house cleaning.
Organization can help streamline house cleaning.

One of the best home organizing tips is to take on the clutter one little bit at a time. Trying to organize an entire home in a day is impossible. Organizing the kitchen shelves, however, is entirely possible, and it will only take an hour or two, probably less. When tackling a big project, like an overstuffed closet, take out and sort one box at a time.

Bookshelves are one way to organize things in a small room.
Bookshelves are one way to organize things in a small room.

When sorting through clutter, make three piles — stuff to keep, stuff to get rid of, and stuff that could go either way. After organizing, immediately get rid of the pile of things you no longer need or want. If this task is put off, you might never get rid of the stuff. Put any items you are not sure about in a box, and set them in an out of the way location. Anything you do not retrieve within six months can be tossed or given away.

Another of the best home organizing tips is to clear out a section completely after you have removed all of the clutter. Empty the closet, the shelf, the drawer, or whatever else you may be working on. Seeing the empty space will make it easier to plan out what will go back in, and where those things will go. Have a plan of action before beginning to put things away, and be sure that it is something that will work and that you can stick to. Putting an item that gets a lot of use in the back of a high shelf will only cause problems the next time you reach for it.

Develop a system for dealing with objects as they come into the house, whether it is mail, new clothes, library books, or something else. This is one of the most overlooked home organizing tips. Once the clutter is gone, many people forget to keep their homes clutter-free, making organizing easier next time. By developing an organizing system, it is possible to keep your home clutter free. A tray by the front entryway can collect mail that needs to be sorted, school papers. A keychain holder near the door makes it easy to locate keys before you leave the house.

Keep objects where you use them. Pots and pans, along with stirring utensils, belong near the stove. Cookbooks should also be in the kitchen, not on a bookshelf in the living room. By putting things near where they get the most use, there is a better chance that they will be put back where they belong.

Keep similar objects together. Cleaning supplies, for example, can be kept in a small plastic tote. This way, it is easy to grab what you need in one trip, and everything is easy to find. Have a set location for everything in your household. This will not only make things easy to find, but they will also be easy to take care of. “A place for everything and everything in its place” may be one of the oldest home organizing tips, but it works.

Margo Upson
Margo Upson

Margo has a varied academic background, which has involved everything from psychology and culinary arts to criminal justice and education. These wide-ranging interests make her an ideal wiseGEEK writer, as she always enjoys becoming an expert on new and unfamiliar topics.

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Discussion Comments


Completing your organizing in small blocks of time is the most efficient way for me. If I look at one huge area, I am too overwhelmed and often times, won't even start. So I will commit myself to one small area and work until that is complete, before moving on to another area.

For me, getting organized can be easier than staying organized. I try to follow the rule of, a place for everything, and everything in its place. This is easier said than done when you are in a hurry though. But having a place for everything does help when you have a chance to organize - then you don't have to wonder where you are going to put everything.


I love to keep things organized and clutter free, but no matter how hard I try, it seems that a closet or drawer still needs to be cleaned out every few months. I often use the method of the three piles - one to keep, one to throw away, and one I don't know quite what to do with.

The most frustrating thing is that it feels like you are creating quite a mess while you are doing all this sorting. The key is to clean up the area as soon as you are done, so you don't feel like you are adding more mess.

Don't think too long and hard about what you are going to keep or throw away - make a quick decision and move on or it will take you too long and you will give up.

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