clut·ter (/ˈklədər/); a collection of things

clut·ter (/ˈklədər/); a collection of things

Clutter by definition doesn’t sound that bad, but the mention of decluttering ones home can bring about a lot of anxiety and worry.

Clutter doesn’t just happen overnight, it’s a process that takes time and can go unnoticed until one day you realize there’s a problem. It could be when you decide to sell your home, are planning a large social event or you just can’t find the stuff you need when you need it without an all out time consuming search being initiated.

Clutter in the home can cause delays in your daily schedule, create stress you could do without, create work or relationship issues and even cause injuries in the worst case scenario.

THINKING OF SELLING YOUR HOME

Everyone is looking to add thousands of dollars to the price they receive for their home? Did you know according to professional organizers for each box of clutter you remove from your home before listing it you may add up to $500 to its value.

By opting not to decluttering your home and staging it prior to it being listed you are conceivably throwing away a large amount of money. In contrast hiring someone to do this for you would be a minimal cost vs the savings you could obtain.

The kitchen is one of the first places you gather at when guests are over, its also one of the first rooms new home buyers look at. They want to imagine themselves there with family each morning having breakfast or a gathering area when friends show up. Ensuring your kitchen displays well can be significant when someone see’s you home for the first time. Remove anything that is taking away from making the area look spacious, neat and inviting. People want to envision how they will personalise it, not think about your lifestyle by seeing a ‘busy’ looking kitchen. Take that same approach with cupboards and storage areas, let people see the potential not the clutter.

THE FINANCIAL SIDE OF DECLUTTERING

Lots of people are now renting self-storage facilities to deal with their clutter issues. (according to CBRE, there is estimated to be 3,000 self storage units across Canada, self-storage space in Canada per capita is 2-3 square feet, the average vacancy rate for storage units in the GTA is at 10% (a historic low) and the percentage of self-storage tenants who are residential users is 65-85%.) While this can free up living space in your home this quick and convenient solution does have price tag associated with it. Depending on location, accessibility, size of the unit and other variables they can quickly become another added expense while not really addressing the original issue of just to much stuff.

The average self-storage unit size in North America is 10’ x 10’. In the Toronto core this will cost between $190-$395/month, in Mississauga this unit will cost between $195-$260/month, and in Oakville this unit is between $180-$240/month. If we were to take the median price of say Oakville at $210/month that works out to $2,847/year with taxes, over five years that would be $14,238. Now you are paying someone to take care of all the stuff you don’t know what to do with.

OTHER ALTERNATIVES

Sell

You can sell those items you no longer need or use around the house and make some extra cash as well. There are numerous online sites to accommodate you here, Kijiji and eBay. Pawn shops and auction houses are excellent options.

Donate

There are many options available to us in our communities to give our no longer needed items to. It helps people who really need it within the community and some will even provide you a tax receipt for the goods you donate. Not to mention the good feeling you get when helping others.

Throw it out

Sometimes we hang onto something because we think we may need it later, but months or years later the realization is that we don’t have a use for it. It could be time to discard it for good freeing up much needed space. There are many options here as well depending on your needs. You can purchase bags at your local building supply store you can fill with items that you are unable to sell or donate and schedule a pickup. Up to large bins that can be dropped off in your driveway while you do a more extensive purge.

SATISFACTION

Getting the decluttering finished either by yourself or by hiring someone to help will be a rewarding occasion. If you’re selling your home it will add value, if you’re tired of the mess it will reduce stress and increase your overall well-being. If you’re paying to have it in self storage the money you save could be a stress-free vacation!

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