To actually sit and organize something is a process. You have to assess the area, sort, purge, and create a system so the area hopefully doesn’t get disorganized again. I said hopefully.
However, sometimes, actually most of the time, we simply don’t have time to organize in our daily lives. I mean even I struggle with daily decluttering. I have to actually schedule time to organize. Sometimes it gets done and many times it gets pushed forward to another day.
So how can we quickly declutter for guests and make your home look organized until you actually have time to organize?
I just happen to have a few tricks I use myself!
Baskets are great at hiding clutter. I round up small toys in baskets and store them out of site. I can clear a table or counter in five minutes by putting everything in a basket and storing it in the pantry or office (depending what it is). Baskets are also great for bathroom counters. . I keep all of my everyday items in a basket. *This is how I “pre-clean” when I know I’m getting my house cleaned.
If you know you are going to have company looking in your kitchen cabinets so you can quickly declutter by “getting rid of half”. Typically, you will have too many plates, plastic cups, and coffee mugs at the very least. Same with utensils. Pull out at least half and store them in a labeled show box bin in the pantry. Remember you can take the time to really sort and purge when your guests leave. You may find you don’t need to put back the half you took out.
Disguise Pantry Clutter:
Use Snapware labeled containers and get rid of all of the cardboard packaging you can. This will be less visual clutter and you will be amazed at the space you create.
Look under your cabinets and pull out what you never use, what is old, what is expired. Yes, you can get rid of that old foot bath now. 😉 Only put back new or very clean towels and cleaning supplies (preferably in a basket).
Declutter Medicine Cabinets:
Do a quick once over and throw away all that is old or expired. Please remove and personal medication or items you may not want a guest to see (no one needs to see the hemorrhoid cream) and store them in your bedroom. Leave only your basic pain relievers, allergy medicines, bandages and neosporin. We are in a very dry climate so I always keep a new bottle of nasal spray for each guest as well.
Have you ever needed to do laundry at someone’s house only to walk into their laundry room and it looks like a clothing bomb exploded? Embarrassing for everyone right? If you don’t have time to do load after load of laundry before your guests arrive you have a couple of options. First, you can talk all of the laundry to a local laundromat and do it all at once. Great option if you have a helper. Second option would be to get a few trash backs and separate the laundry by color, or material and store in your closet only bringing down one load at a time while your guest is visiting. That way the laundry room stays clean and useable.
I love throw pillows as much as the next person, but too many is a nuisance and a hazard for guests. Yes, I have tripped over a throw pillow on the floor in the middle of the night before. Maybe pick one or three and store the rest. Also, please make sure the actual bed pillows are washed. Not just the pillow cases. You don’t want your guest to see someone else’s sweat and slobber stains. 🙂
If you are having children as guests it is always good practice to put away any toys you don’t want broken or played with. Also, consider the age of the children and store any small and dangerous toys. I usually store at least half of what my son normally plays with and I only leave out things the kids can play with together. This also helps not to have so much clean up when guests leave.
Please for the love of goodness take 10 minutes to get rid of the old food wrappers and trash out of your car before picking your guests up or before they arrive. Grab a box or a laundry basket and take everything out of your car. Store the basket in the garage to be sorted and purged when your guests leave. Give your car a quick wash and vacuum as well. * If you have a baby car seat now would be a good time to wash the cushions as well. Those things can get pretty nasty!
Lastly, don’t forget to make a quick list of what all you have stored and where so you can really sort, purge and organize when your guests leave. This will actually give you a nice jump start on organizing.
For more great ideas to get your get your guest room ready for the holiday season check out: 18 Ways To Prepare Your Guest Bed & Bath For Company
Can you think of any other things you need to quickly declutter before guests arrive?