• Anita Chastain

17 Ways to Reduce Clutter for a Tidy Home

Updated: 2 days ago

The biggest challenge most of us face in keeping our home in order isn’t dirt, it’s clutter. Here are 17 ways to clear the clutter from your home.

The biggest challenge most of us face in keeping the house in order is clutter. Once clutter appears, it tends to spread.

Sometimes clutter creeps in and accumulates over days, weeks, or months. Mail, decor items, and kitchen gadgets are good examples.

Sometimes clutter appears all at once and in large quantities. This type of clutter often occurs with life changes.

You leave a job and clear out your desk. Where does all that stuff land? On the floor, a table, or your desk at home. Or maybe you inherit household items from a family member.

Regardless of how the clutter came into your home, it's now a problem.

Clutter attracts clutter.

The flatter the surface and the more easily you can reach it, the more likely it is to attract clutter.

The easiest way to minimize clutter is to limit the number of items that have a permanent home on flat surfaces, such as tables and counters.

The floor is another flat surface that collects clutter. Things that are easy to leave on the floor or step away from, such as shoes, backpacks, and toys, become clutter. These items tend to stay where they are until someone needs to use them again.

The only way to keep clutter from multiplying rapidly is to clear these surfaces on a regular basis.

Be ruthless in deciding what deserves a permanent home on a flat surface.

Allow only a few items on dining tables, counters, coffee tables, side tables, tv stands, beds, and other flat surfaces. Limit those items to things that are functional and used often, such as the coffee maker, or items that are aesthetically pleasing, such as plants or decor.

To prevent trips and falls, keep floors clear of clutter. For many families, this is an ongoing battle. To minimize the amount of floor clutter, make sure every item has a permanent and easily accessible home.

When clearing flat surfaces, I remove clutter room by room. I start on one side of the house and work my way to the other side. I declutter in the order below and finish each task before moving on to the next one.

17 Ways to Clear Clutter Room by Room

Use this list of steps to clear each room in an organized and efficient way:

Clear Living Room Clutter (Steps 1-4)

  1. Remove junk mail, magazines and other clutter from the coffee table and either throw it away or recycle it.

  2. Place tv and other remotes in their designated location, such as a basket or drawer.

  3. Place glasses, plates, bowls, or other food items in the kitchen sink.

  4. Clear end tables of glasses, books, and other assorted odds and ends and place those items in their designated location.

Clear Kitchen Clutter (Steps 5-8)

  1. Clear the counters of dishes, pantry items, mail, purses, and small appliances that don't "live" there permanently.

  2. Place dirty dishwasher-safe dishes in the dishwasher. Hand wash any dishes that are not dishwasher safe.

  3. Dry and put away all hand-washed dishes.

  4. Gather dirty kitchen towels, cloth napkins, and wash rags and drop them in the laundry hamper.

Clear Bathroom Clutter (Steps 9-12)

  1. Put away make-up and grooming items, such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, hairbrushes, hair spray, and blow dryers.

  2. Put away cleaning products, extra rolls of toilet paper, clean bathroom linens, clothing, and any other items that have accumulated on the counter or on the floor.

  3. Close shower doors and return shower curtains to their designated position.

  4. Empty the wastebasket.

Clear Bedroom Clutter (Steps 13-17)

  1. Put away clean clothing.

  2. Drop dirty clothing in a hamper or clothes basket.

  3. Make the bed and return bed pillows and shams to their proper spaces.

  4. Put away jewelry, watches, scarves, and other accessories.

  5. Remove any remaining miscellaneous items from the dresser and bedside tables and return them to their designated location.

After removing unwanted items and returning loose items to their designated spots, the house looks organized. Even without dusting, scrubbing, or mopping, the house feels cleaner.

Tidy Up Each Night

Here's the thing:

Spending 10 minutes (or less) each night straightening up your main living spaces is all you need to wake up to neat and orderly spaces the next morning.


It's possible to stay ahead of the clutter by being proactive. When clutter does creep in, follow the 17 steps in this article to clear it back out.

What area(s) in your home attract the most clutter? Email me at anita (@) simplelife365.com and let me know.

NEXT: You might enjoy reading 5 Things to Do Tonight for a Better Day Tomorrow.

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