Whether you live in a bachelor apartment or a five-bedroom craftsman, there’s a strong possibility that you have thought to yourself “I have way too much stuff in this home.” We’re all guilty of collecting clutter, but there are some simple things you can do to optimize your storage space and organize your home.

Storage Tips for Your Home

Here are a few storage tips on how to better organize your home and store your belongings.

Square Containers > Circular Containers

If you’re buying boxes or containers for storage, regardless of size, you should opt for square-shaped whenever possible. Square storage containers are preferable to circular ones because they’re more space-efficient.

They’re easier to stack if need be, and maximize space on a shelf without leaving the empty areas that circular containers would.

You Can Never Have Too Many Shelves

When it comes to storage and organization in an area like your garage, you can pretty much never have “too many” cabinets or shelves to work with. Rather than leaving everything in cardboard boxes stacked five-high in the corner near the lawnmower, do yourself a favor by investing in cabinets and shelving units. It’ll make organizing your garage—and keeping it organized—much easier. You can easily see everything you have in the garage when it’s laid out properly, and you won’t have to go digging through box after box to find that one trowel next time your wife wants to replant the garden.

Buy Kid’s Furniture With Built-In Storage

Having children means submitting yourself to a home filled with endless amounts of stuff. Children require (and acquire) a lot of toys, clothing, books, and general clutter over the years. Something that can help make that a bit more manageable is buying furniture, especially for their rooms, that has built-in storage. Upgrading your son from a crib to a big boy bed? Buy one with built-in drawers! That new footstool you want to buy for the reading chair? Make it a hollow one with a lid that opens up.

Built-In Storage Can Extend Outside a Kid’s Bedroom Too

Let’s be honest, having furniture with built-in storage would be beneficial in any room in your home. That footrest in the living room, the sectional in the basement, even the staircase (if built for it) can be optimized for storage.

Hang Objects Whenever Possible

Whether we’re talking about pots and pans, garden rakes, or clothing, you should always opt to hang things vertically on a wall or a pegboard or in the closet if you can. Freeing up floor space will make the space feel much less cluttered. Having things hanging or displayed vertically also helps with visibility.

When all your pots and pans are stacked into the corner cupboard of the kitchen, you’re stuck digging through stacks of cake pans to reach that one that’s been pushed to the back whereas if the pots were all hung on a rack, you’d have much more cupboard space.

And you’ll be thrilled to stop stepping on the rakes and shovels leaning against the wall once you install hooks for them on the garage wall.

Stop Buying Full Sets Of Tupperware

It seems like the Tupperware cupboard or drawer is one of those areas of your home that is always a mess—but that doesn’t have to be the case. One way to help keep the food storage situation under control is to stop buying those full sets of Tupperware. Limit yourself to only a few sizes of containers. It’ll be easier to stack the containers and lids, plus you won’t have to spend five minutes of your life every night after dinner trying to find the pink circular lid with the crack in it that only fits that one circular container that was stained by spaghetti years ago. Stick to a few sizes and one shape if possible to maximize the mix and match possibilities.

If The Container Isn’t Clear, Label It

If you’re storing things in bins or other containers, it’s better to have clean or at least partially-transparent containers but that’s not always an option. You probably already have a few Rubbermaid bins laying around and there’s no sense in buying new ones just to have clear ones, so just make sure you label them! A piece of tape and a sharpie or even a piece of chalk can save you a lot of time in the future. Label everything you can, so you don’t waste your time digging through the wrong containers.

Put The Least-Used Items In The Toughest Spots

When it comes to organizing your home and optimizing the storage space you have, make sure you consider what items you use the most often. Things like Christmas lights or summer pool toys don’t need to be a priority.

You can put the items you use the least often in the hard-to-reach corners of the basement shelves or in the back of the storage closet because you only need to access them a few times a year.

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