Declutter your home with these expert tips
By Kamala Kirk
NEAT Method/Submitted photos
“It can be challenging to stay organized and maintain a tidy home, especially when dealing with busy work schedules, kids, pets and everything else. We also tend to accumulate a lot of personal items and belongings over the years, which take up space in our homes. Studies have shown that there is a strong connection between clutter and stress, which can have a big impact on one’s mental health.
“We believe that an organized home helps you live a more calm and composed life,” says Krisztina Galambos, owner of NEAT Method Los Angeles, a luxury home organizing company. “You will find that it truly saves so much time because everyone in your household will know exactly where everything is located and can quickly put items away. Being organized also allows you to maximize storage in small places and easily keep track of what you own to ensure overbuying is a thing of the past.”
NEAT Method specializes in organizing, unpacking and downsizing homes and offices across Los Angeles and Canada, in addition to offering a variety of high-quality products for organization and storage.
“NEAT Method specializes in providing elegant and customized solutions through thoughtful organization,” Galambos says. “We pride ourselves on offering a white-glove service; we organize, purchase organizational solutions, implement these solutions, donate/consign unwanted items and leave you living the NEAT life. We also manage moves and relocations, as well as consult on builds and renovations to simplify life during those times when it might feel like anything but.”
Embarking on a big home organization project for the first time can be overwhelming, but Galambos recommends taking it slow by starting out small.
“We always suggest tackling just one cabinet or drawer when you’re first getting started,” she says. “Many times clients try to organize an entire room in a short amount of time and quickly get overwhelmed or give up on the project altogether. By starting small, you will feel a sense of accomplishment and will gain the confidence needed to continue on to another space.”
According to Galambos, the very first step when organizing any space — especially when going through drawers, closets and other storage — is to take everything out.
“Once it’s empty, give it a good wipe down before you put things back,” Galambos says. “Next, go through and begin to edit items and decide what to keep, relocate, donate, recycle or throw away. After you are left with only the items you are keeping, start to sort them into categories and decide what type of organizing product to implement to create ‘boundaries.’”
When it comes to organizing products, Galambos has several favorites from NEAT Method she likes to use and recommends to her clients.
“Our Everyday Hangers and Spice Jar Sets are both great places to start because they make a big impact with little effort and don’t require measuring your space,” she says. “Our Grid Baskets are also one of our favorite multipurpose products that can be used to store items in an elevated way, all over the home.”
While it can be difficult to decide what to get rid of and what to keep, Galambos offers several suggestions to make the process easier.
“We recommend going through items at the end of a season and donating or selling anything you did not use, no longer need or that your kids have outgrown (or will outgrow by the next season), are broken, missing pieces or expired,” Galambos says. “Donating to a local charity is a great option, as well as selling through companies such as The Real Real, Thread Up and local consignment shops. If you are having a hard time deciding if you should keep an item, we suggest storing it for a bit and then reevaluating to see if you missed it.”
One important thing to keep in mind is that getting organized isn’t a one-time thing; rather, it’s an ongoing form of maintenance and upkeep that requires commitment and dedication, even if just for a small amount of time on a regular basis.
“Organization isn’t a one-and-done process. … You have to keep at it in order to maintain your system,” Galambos says. “The trick is to do a little here and there so it never feels too overwhelming. Try making an effort to put belongings away as soon as you’re finished using them and regularly donate anything you no longer need to prevent clutter from accumulating.”
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