Don’t put it off any longer. Get that attic or basement organized. Clear it out. Pack it up. Sort it out. Get it stored away. Organize it all. Don’t procrastinate any longer. You can get this project done. So, roll up your sleeves and get ready to tackle it. Wondering how to get started?
One of the first things to consider when organizing and cleaning out an attic or basement is the type of containers that you are storing items in. Cardboard moving boxes are not ideal long term storage containers. If you still have items packed away in cardboard moving boxes or the cardboard fruit boxes you got for free from your local grocer, there are two things to ask yourself. First of all, how long ago did you move into your current home and if those items have been packed away since your last moving day (and that day was not in the past calendar year), you may not even need what is in that moving box. However, if you dig through it and realize you had simply forgotten about your grandmother’s vintage metallic drinking glasses, and are positive you want to keep them for next summer’s family reunion, well then, you need to find a better storage container to house Grandma’s things.
Cardboard can be a pest magnet. Many bugs, like silverfish love those dark and damp places, often the same places we store our stuff. They just love eating paper products. The newspaper you wrapped those glasses in and the cardboard box look like a mighty tasty treat and home for the silverfish bug. You don’t want these guys moving in. Keep them out of your home by not providing eating material for them in their favorite dark places. More importantly, keep them out of the containers you store your things in, by keeping your things in containers that are meant for long term storage. Plastic totes with lids are ideal for keeping silverfish from making your stored items their home.
The next step is to start going through your stuff in the attic or basement and deciding what you are going to keep and what you are going to purge. If you don’t want something, consider donating it if it is still in good shape and usable. If you think it is valuable and worth your time to sell it, then, figure out a way to sell it at a consignment store, online, or maybe at your next garage sale, then, store it in a properly sealed container, like a storage tote, until you get around to selling it. Clear out everything that is going.
Now, it is time to look through what you want to keep. Group similar items together. Holiday decorations should be kept in the same area of your attic or basement. Put all the Christmas items in red and green totes so they will be easy to spot. Label the outside of the totes, if you think it will help. Put all the Halloween items in an orange or purple tote to distinguish them from the rest. Keep them all in a holiday corner. Do the same for other holiday items, such as Easter, Fourth of July, and so on. If you don’t have a tote that has a color that makes sense with the holiday items it is storing, than consider two different approaches. Use clear totes and bins. Or label your bins in large lettering, so they are easy to spot, even from far away. You can use reusable labels or simply write on the bin itself, if you don’t think you will be using the bin for anything else in the future.
Proceed similarly throughout your whole attic with all of the items you want to keep and store. Consider creating areas for similar items. On a smaller scale, fill bins with similar items, clearly labeling or making it obvious what is contained within the storage container. Soon, you will have a cleared out and organized storage area.