Decluttering is very much in vogue at the moment; sparking an entire guilt-free decluttering movement of Netflix shows, books and entire YouTube channels.
However, once you’ve sorted through the garage, or detangled yourself from the old Christmas decorations in the loft, it can be very tempting to break out the bin bags and chuck things away. But, do consider that when you do this you’re sending items to landfill – which should only ever be a last resort.
Instead, consider what can be upcycled, stored away, and handed down to the next generation, or given away to someone else who could benefit from that item.
After all, just because you no longer have a use or need for something, you shouldn’t simply assume it has reached the end of its lifecycle.
In this guide, we will be covering how exactly you can declutter your home in a sustainable and guilt-free way.
How to Declutter Sustainably
If you haven’t prepared yourself in advance, it can be incredibly overwhelming when you’re faced with a rising mountain of stuff, which is why it’s so tempting to chuck everything in the bin.
However, with a little preparation you can dig straight in without the guilt and begin sorting through all of your stuff.
Before you even so much as open the cupboard door, create a system to pile up your belongings.
Something like this would be ideal:
• Items you’re keeping.
• Items going into storage.
• Items that can be passed onto kids, grandchildren, friends etc.
• Items to sell, hand to charity shops, or take to the recycling centre.
• Items that can be repaired.
Decluttering can often feel like a momentous task – especially if you’re working your way through a lifetime of possessions after a family bereavement.
But, try to start small with a drawer or a cupboard when you’re starting out on the journey, and you’ll soon find that the pace will begin to pick up once you’re moving into larger spaces.
Keep reminding yourself that this isn’t an overnight process, it can take a while to sort through an entire house or storage unit, so it may be a better idea to focus on smaller areas at a time.
And remember to give yourself time actually execute the plan you have for each item, otherwise you’ll end up putting everything back where you found it.
Here’s a few questions you should ask yourself when unearthing each item:
Can I Repair This?
When you come across broken or damaged items, ask yourself: can it be repaired?
You don’t have to be a master craftsman to undertake the repairs, it could be something as simple as sewing up a hole on a jumper to painting an old piece of furniture, and they’ll be plenty of easy to follow YouTube tutorials too.
Can I Reuse This?
If the items in question are functioning perfectly normally, you can reuse them by taking them to the charity shop, storing them away so they’re ready for someone else in the future, or selling them online.
Sites like eBay, Gumtree and Preloved are ideal for selling or giving away your unwanted items – you could also use the ‘Flog it’ feature in our app to have your high-value items appraised and auctioned by our friends at Chiswick Auctions.
If you do decide to hand it down to relatives or friends, really ask yourself whether it’s something that might be physically useful for them, or else hold some sentiment – otherwise they may feel pressure to take the item, creating unwanted clutter for someone else.
Can I Recycle This?
If an item can’t be repaired or reused by someone else, then it’s a good idea to see if it can be recycled.
The best way of doing this is looking online to see whether your item can be recycled at your local recycling centre, if you’re unable to fit it into your recycling bins, of course.
If you’re heading to the recycling centre, ensure that you’ve separated everything out. For example, books, plastic toys, electricals, and glass, will all need to go into individual skips, so it’s a real time saver to get this done before you head down there.
How to Stay Clutter-Free
Once you’ve finished decluttering, you’ll probably be feeling pleased with yourself – and so you should be, this is anything but an easy process.
You may feel as if the weight of the world has been lifted from your shoulders now you have less stuff laying about, and perhaps you’ve even been able to resurrect some long-forgotten item too.
However, you might be asking, how can I keep it like that?
We’ve all been there, once you’ve decluttered, there’s tonnes of free space just crying out to be filled with new stuff – but just remember what value are new items bringing you. If they’re destined to sit in the wardrobe or jammed into the back of the drawer, what’s the point?
After your sort out, you may find that the value of the items you have chosen to keep has risen exponentially – so simply focus on ensuring that what you want is what you need, and you’ll never find a reason to buy clutter again.
The Decluttering Checklist:
- Sort – Create a sorting system to define what you’re keeping, what you’re storing, what you’re passing on, what you’d like to sell and what items can be repaired.
- Manage – Break down your decluttering into manageable chunks.
- Upcycle – Look for items that you can repair, upcycle, and even put towards a secondary use, to increase the lifespan of the item.
- Sell – Stuff that works well can be sold or donated.
- Recycle – If you find something that can’t be repaired or reused, find out whether you can recycle it.
- Clutter Free – Focus on buying items that fulfil both the want and need category, and you’ll never want for clutter again.
How Can the Store Log Flog App Help You Declutter?
The Store Log Flog app is the perfect decluttering companion.
In fact, the app can also help you overcome a wide variety of storage challenges. Through the app you can keep a log of your belongings and track precisely where these items will be stored, whether you decluttering due to a home move, sorting through the belongings of a love one after passing, looking to declutter your business premises and much, much more.
Using the app during your next organisation project, you can:
- Find Storage – if you’re looking for a self-storage solution to stow away your belongings for the future, you can find a Store Log Flog approved yard near you through the app.
- Online Organisation – in the app, you can replicate the size and shape of the room you’re decluttering, this way you can log all of the valuables that you’re keeping ensuring you never need to search through dozens of boxes for a single item ever again.
- Log & Share – if you’re planning on handing some of your valuables, such as family heirlooms or expensive items, you can photograph each item, create descriptions and associate a value to each item with our Loggit cards, and then share those with your loved ones through WhatsApp, email or social media.
- Flexibility – if you decide to log an item in your loft, and then decide later on that you’d like to move it to a self-store unit, you have the flexibility to move these items in the app with complete ease.
By downloading the Store Log Flog app, you have the perfect companion to help you log, map and store all of your valuable items to aid your next decluttering project.
If you’d like to learn more about Store Log Flog, why not contact us today?