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FIVE THINGS | To get organized

Unless you are ready to part with clutter, you may not be ready to truly follow the other steps to clean up a messy home or office

(NEWS CENTER Maine) -- When you look around your house, do you see chaos and clutter?

Whether you’re a pack rat or just need a little help cleaning out the “junk drawer,” professional organizer Dawna Hall says it doesn’t need to be a daunting task. She breaks down her simple and easy tips into 5 Things To Know about getting organized.

First, she says to sort and purge. “You can’t organize clutter,” Hall explains. She says it’s best to focus on one section of a room at a time and have three bins handy; a keep bin, a go bin and a “belongs in another room” bin. “Ask yourself these questions, ‘When is the last time I used it’ and ‘if I was shopping today, would I buy it again,’” Hall says.

Hall says your next step should be to create categories, sorting like-items with other like-items. “Think of categories like you would shop at the grocery store. Every aisle has labels,” Hall say, “you have your baking, your canned goods, your snacks, so categorize in that sense.”

Her third tip is to give items a convenient and consistent home. “If you’re the type of person who misplaces your keys, think about hanging a little key hook by the entry so they’re easy to grab,” Hall advises.

Next she says to label. Hall says, “Labeling is underrated. You really want to keep the family members accountable for putting things back where they belong.” She explains labeling is also a great way to figure out if you are out of something. If there’s an empty space by a label, you’ll know it’s time to restock.

Finally, Hall says if you want to get organized, create limits. “For everything that comes in, something must go,” Hall advises her clients. She says to always ask yourself when you’re out shopping where you would put the item you’re considering and think about if you already have something similar. If it doesn’t have a designated space in your home, or if you already have something similar, her advice is to walk away.

Hall says the same strategy works for organizing your work space. Watch as she organizes the desk at NEWS CENTER Maine where Sharon Rose Vaznis works.

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