How To Decide What To Keep When Decluttering

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how to decide what to keep when decluttering

How to decide what to keep when decluttering

It's so easy to let things get on top of you in the home.

After all, the weeks can pass by so quickly when you are busy with work or taking care of your family. And then you realize you haven't tidied or cleaned up in ages. 

And then the mess and your belongings can soon pile up. It can then feel like a massive job when it comes to tidying up your home so that it looks beautiful again. 

While it's quite easy to do things like vacuum and polish when it comes to tidying your home, it's a lot more difficult when it comes to sorting through your belongings. 

After all, we all tend to have some hoarding qualities when it comes to items. We don't like to part with our belongings. However, in some cases, it's better off to send them on their merry way to the bin or even to a thrift store. 

After all, they are likely just cluttering up your home and causing it to look messy. But when it comes to going through the items, it can be tricky to decide what to keep when decluttering.


You never know when you might need the item again. Or you might feel like you should keep something which is just a space waster. Therefore, here are some tips to help you make the right decision on whether it's time to say goodbye or not.

When did you last use it?

The first thing you should do when it comes to deciding whether to keep an item or not is work out when you last used the item. After all, you might be holding on to something which you haven't used for years.

And if this is the case, there's a good chance you won't be using it for the next few years either.

You haven't missed it since the last time you used it. In fact, this might be the first time you have found it in ages. Therefore, consider when you last used the item. 

If it is clothes, it's always good to give away anything you didn't bother to use the last time the season rolled around. After all, there's a good chance you won't bother using it again. And then it will just be taking up wardrobe space. For me, anything that's high maintenance I like to get rid of when I declutter. Think of hats, hoodies... stuff that forces you to get a lint remover to keep them looking good. It's like you need to buy more stuff to take care of the stuff you have!

Also, it's likely it's gone out of fashion so will definitely not be your first choice when it comes to choosing clothes. 

If you can't even remember the last time you used it, that's definitely a heads up that you should give it up or throw it away.

When will you need it?

It's always good to consider when you might next use an item when it comes to deciding whether it needs to head for the bin or recycling center.

After all, if you figure out you will need to use it in a month or so, it's a good sign you should keep it. It means you have a situation that you will use it and therefore, it can stay for a little while longer in your home. This applies to items from shoes to clothes. It might be the case you have a wedding or a party to go to which the item will be useful. 

Or you can imagine yourself wearing it to work shortly.

However, if you can't imagine using the item, or can't think of an upcoming event where you might use it, there's a good chance you won't bother using the item again. 


And it should be thrown away so that it doesn't take up space any more. Remember that if you have decided to use an item for a special event or occasion that you do stick to it. Otherwise, the item is just cluttering your home for no reason.

How much did the item cost you?

While money is not always a factor when it comes to decluttering, it can help you to make your decision on whether to keep it or not.

If you have picked up something on sale which was only a fiver, it might not be necessary to keep it. At the end of the day, it might have been an impulse buy which you regret now.

 So you can get rid of the item without worrying that it was a waste of money. And on top of this, if the item was cheap to buy, you could always replace it when you need it again in the future.

For instance, a couple of old mugs aren't going to break the bank if you do need to get them again. However, if you spent a ton of money on an item it might be worth considering keeping it a while longer.

You might decide to use it again in the not so distant future and it can feel a bit sad getting rid of something which took a huge chunk of your bank balance. 

Remember that when it comes to decluttering, you should always consider whether you actually have a home for an item. After all, if the item doesn't really have a place in your home, it's a sign that you should just get rid of it.

For instance, it might be a colorful candle which just wouldn't look right in any room in your home. Therefore, get rid of it so that you can make room and declutter your property. 

Last Updated on March 27, 2019

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