When you finally make the decision to put your home on the market one of the most daunting tasks is undoubtedly decluttering your home. Let’s face it, decluttering can be really hard!

Finding the time to actually start can be one of the most challenging aspects of this task. First you need to sit down and make a plan. 

Start by writing out all the main points involved; Will you need to hire a skip? Can you donate some items? Could some items be placed in storage?

This task can become overwhelming at times as you may be emotionally attached to certain items, so it may be beneficial to separate items into distinct piles; you could have a ‘maybe’ pile and a ‘letting go pile’ this can then help you make that final decision. 

Would you secretly be relieved to get rid of this item?

Sometimes we hold on to items because we purchased them in a sale or it’s been passed down through generations in your family but the simple fact may be that you just don’t like it! Those curtains you got in a sale that are folded in the attic gathering dust? It’s ok to donate or even put them in a skip. If it’s a family heirloom, you can simply pass it on to another family member, they might be delighted to receive it.

Would you feel guilty about getting rid of certain items?

This can be one of the hardest aspects of decluttering your home. Gifts that you received for birthdays or hand-made items that you know where thoughtfully bought or made can be hard to remove. If you simply don’t like the items or if they don’t go with your current décor they just no longer belong in your home.

Donating these items may help to ease the guilt, for instance that cutlery set that’s been languishing in your dresser since your wedding day might be perfect for a young couple just starting out in their first home.

Could you use this item in the future?

It’s always good to be prepared for the future, stocking up on certain items that you know you’ll need is usually good forward planning, but, there is always a limit to what you might need or what may be useful.

Do you hoard reusable bags? It’s ok to admit it! Nearly every home has a drawer packed full of eco bags and while it’s been a fantastic initiative to reduce plastic waste many people are inclined to buy a reusable bag every time they shop. This is the perfect time to consider a clear-out, check through your collection and get rid of any old or damaged ones, they can be put in the recycling bin and cloth bags might be suitable for the compost bin. 

Other objects we tend to hoard are items that come in our letter box. Now is the perfect time to create a filing system. Any important documents like bills and receipts can be filed and the empty envelopes placed in the recycling bin, junk mail can also be placed in the bin.

Has your lifestyle changed so much that this item is no longer relevant?

Sometimes it’s only when we make a big change to our lifestyle like moving home, children moving out or even an elderly parent moving in that we realize that we no longer need or want certain items. We become so accustomed to certain items that it’s possible you never even noticed before that you don’t want it. It might be good to note that if the change in lifestyle is just temporary you may not fully need to get rid of the item, if that’s the case, check out the storage options in your local area.

Is the cost of certain items preventing you from getting rid of it?

This is one of the most difficult questions to ask when we are decluttering for a home sale. Sometimes we buy things that we don’t really need or want and now it has become irrelevant to our lifestyle or our home’s decor. You may have saved up to buy the item and it can be a cause of great guilt to get rid of it but it can also very satisfying and freeing, it’s also good to remember that you shouldn’t be shamed into keeping items if they are considered a family heirloom, these items can easily be passed on to another family member.

If you are based in the Kildare or Dublin areas, whether you’re on the market already or just thinking about selling, if you’d like our advice on how you can declutter your home or if you would like a valuation of your home, call us on 045 815855, 01 912 5500 or email info@byrnemalone.ie and we can help you transform your space. We’re always here to help and would love to hear from you!