Whether you’re prepping your home for sale or have decided that getting organized is one of your New Year’s home improvement resolutions, here are some tips to help curb the clutter in your home.

Start slow

Even if you’re packing up to move and need to get rid of things ASAP, diving in too quickly can leave you overwhelmed and at risk of making choices that you will regret later. Make a list and tackle small areas of your home each day. Perhaps the easiest way is to go room-by-room. This may also get you in the habit of clearing and organizing.

Find Your System

Whether it’s keeping bills in a countertop space in your kitchen, or a designated space somewhere else in the house, find a way to deal with paperwork and stick with it. (Tip: Switching to paperless billing cuts down on tons of random papers).

Corral it

Bins, baskets, drawer organizers or boxes can help organize the small things. Find a place for each item and put it there each time after you use it.

Put remotes, magazines and other living room items in a basket, as shown in this Soquel home for sale.


If you’re short on closet space or space in general, purchase furniture that serves a dual purpose of storage to make the most use of the areas you have. Beds with drawers, coffee tables with shelves, and end tables that double as more storage can help you keep the clutter put away. Look for places to stick extra storage.

This kitchen in a Seattle home for sale (below) makes the use of empty space above the window with shelving for large dishes.


Rather than waiting until the New Year, or spring cleaning to clear out closets, make time once a month to get rid of the things you no longer need. If you’re unsure about tossing something, stick it in a box for a few weeks, and if at the end of that time you forget about the item, chances are you’re free to toss it!

Have any other sure-fire tricks to curb clutter in your home? Share in the comments.

About the Author

Erika Riggs, the Zillow Digs manager, covers home design and trends.

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