I know, it’s not spring just yet. But come the new year, I like to clean up the clutter that has been piling up around our house for the past few months. While I could wait until spring to actually do it, I choose to do it now since I am motivated with the new year and making other changes to my life. In fact, I find it easier to clean out things (meaning get rid of them) when I am in this mindset as opposed to when spring rolls around. So how do I spring clean now? Here is my usual plan of attack.
Clean Out The Closets
My first step is to go through my drawers and closets and getting rid of old clothes. For me, the end of the end of the year I either received some clothes as gifts, or I went shopping after Christmas and got some great deals on clothing. As a result, I have too much.
I do a quick run through of my closets and get rid of anything I haven’t worn in the past year. My theory is that if I haven’t worn it in a year, odds are I am not going to wear it. I then do the same thing in my drawers with sweaters and t-shirts.
Next, I run through the same process again, only this time being more critical of the clothes. If there is something I hardly ever wear, it usually gets removed. I make sure I do this with shoes and also jackets too. It’s easy to overlook jackets.
Once I have everything piled up, I separate them into two piles. One pile for trash and another pile to donate. This serves me well as I can write off the donation on my taxes, though since I donated this year, I cannot take the tax break when completing last year’s taxes. This is something to keep in mind in case you want to spring clean in December so you can get the tax break for the prior year.
Clean Out My Files
I need to organize all of my files for tax season, so I might as well clean everything out at the same time. I run through everything quickly as I have my method down cold. I have a pile for shredding, a pile for papers for the accountant and a final pile for papers that are important, but the accountant doesn’t need.
At the end of the day, my files are cleaned out and I now have room for forms and receipts for the upcoming year.
Clean Out The House, Attic and Basement
The same routine is followed for these as was for my clothing. Some things will get tossed in the trash and others will get donated. I do have a third pile though and that is for stuff I am going to sell. I will put stuff onto Craigslist and ebay and make a little bit of money. This money is saved or invested. It never gets used for buying more stuff.
All told, my spring cleaning takes me close to a weekend to complete. As I mentioned above, I like to go through this routine early in the new year simply because I am in the best mindset to tackle this project. I have found when I clean house in the spring, I tend to hold onto more stuff, stuff I really don’t need or use.
I encourage you to look around your house and do some spring cleaning now. You don’t have to go all in like I do, but rather pick an area or two and clean out the clutter. Not only will you feel better, you will have more room as well. You may even realize that you waste a ton of money on stuff you really don’t need, which will benefit you greatly in the years to come.