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Start the New Year Right: 10 Ways to Clear Your Clutter


Getting organized is at the top of most resolution lists. Here are 10 ways to get started on a happy and organized new year.

1. Get Cooking

If you are like most homeowners, you have an abundance of utensils and dishes that you no longer need, cluttering up the space. Look for chipped or cracked coffee mugs, party plates and napkins you cannot reuse, cookbooks you never open, broken tools, well-loved dish towels, and anything else not in good working order, or that you have not used in the last year.

2. Look at Expiration Dates

It is easy to hang on to items past their expiration. Go through drawers in the bathroom and look for expired make-up. Scour the fridge for expired food and condiments. Look in cabinets for expired medicine and cleaning supplies.

3. Shop the Racks

Going through the closets is often a dreaded chore, but once it’s done you will love the results. Seek out clothes that no longer fit or that you have not worn in the last year, uncomfortable shoes, socks without a match, and anything worn out that cannot be repaired.

4. Papers and Books

Stacks of papers and books have a way of showing up in unwanted places. Go through the stacks and get rid of anything non-essential. File away the rest. Donating books you don’t plan to read again is a great way to keep the bookshelves looking tidy.

5. Let's Play

For their small stature, kids notoriously have a lot of stuff. Set aside some time on a rainy day to go through the toy bins with your kids, and help them sort out toys they would like to donate.

6. Define Your Style

Trends come and go. If you are hanging on to items you previously loved, but may not fit with your current style, it is time to get rid of them. Throw pillows, coffee table books, and knick-knacks are good places to start.

7. Gift Yourself

If you have a stash of old wrapping paper, wrinkled tissue paper, gift tags, or anything else you don’t foresee using for a gift, get rid of it.

8. Out of Sight

Oftentimes, items are relegated to storage when we are not sure what to do with them. Going through your storage before adding more items can clear up some much-needed space. Look for anything you have not thought about or used in the last year, with the exception of items that hold sentimental value.

9. Take Back Your Garage

Along with closets, garages see their fair share of discarded items. Search for deflated sports equipment, unfinished projects that you don’t plan to complete, broken or unused tools, and boxes for appliances or gadgets that you are saving “just in case”.

10. Cyber Cleaning

Don’t limit your efforts to just your physical space. Go through your e-mail accounts and clean out old messages, update passwords and subscriptions, and organize the files on your computer’s desktop for a pleasant feeling when you boot up.

The experts at Cambria® Mortgage™ are always available to provide guidance and answer questions about home ownership. For more information, visit CambriaMortgage.com or call 952-942-0110.