One week ago today I unpacked from our move. It was only across town, and we had been in our home for almost six years. I know you readers travel farther and more frequently, and I don’t know how you do it with such grace. As a professional wardrobe consultant, I did have a few tricks up my sleeve that came in quite handy for purging our belongings, including how to rid closets of unnecessary items. However, this article isn’t limited to purely clothing-related tips. Let’s focus on the most overlooked places in the home. Whether it’s time for spring cleaning or another move, you’re going to want to apply these tips.
1) Expired medicine, personal care products, makeup, etc. These shouldn’t be used past their expiration date and could break in transport (if you’re moving), wasting other useful/good items damaged by the spill.
2) Bath toys or other baby products that your children have outgrown. Unless you’re planning on adding to your family and the items are in like-new condition, just move on. That squirting bath toy could be housing mold!
3) Junk drawer and hall closet items that belong to appliances and gadgets you no longer own (i.e. cords, attachments, manuals). You may want to check with the hubby on electronics parts, but if both of you are puzzled and can’t figure out what that wire goes with, it doesn’t need to stick around!
4) Tax returns and paperwork in files older than 7 years (or for property, cars, appliances, etc. that you no longer own). Paperwork is bulky and heavy! Take a few hours to shred anything with sensitive personal information (i.e. social security or account numbers). Recycle everything else that you no longer need.
5) Clothing you haven’t worn in 2 or more years or that has stains/holes. Also, excess items that won’t be needed in your new climate. Keep one good winter coat and pair of boots, but unless you plan to travel frequently, living in Florida, Texas, or Southern California doesn’t require 8 winter jackets, 5 hats, 15 scarves, and 7 pairs of mittens! And trust me, if it hasn’t come out yet, that stain will still be on your *old* favorite shirt when you take it out to wear it again. It’s time to let it go.