Life

How to get organised at home – boosting your health and adding value to your home in the process

Being well organised is key to a calmer space, and can also improve your home’s worth. By Sam Wylie-Harris.

Decluttering tips to soothe your mind and improve the look of your home
Decluttering tips to soothe your mind and improve the look of your home

With many of us spending more time at home than ever – be it working from home, chilling out, hosting and socialising – if you’re trying to get into a positive mindset, clutter can be one of the little things that niggle… and is counterproductive to your wellbeing.

Indeed, studies show it has a direct link to the way we function and how we feel – causing us stress even if we don’t consciously realise it.

All the more reason for a spring refresh, declutter and effectively organising your storage space to improve your happiness.

Beyond the health and lifestyle benefits, it can also add financial value to your home.

In fact, ample storage space is the feature most likely to create envy amongst friends and family, according to research by housebuilder Redrow. Almost a third (32%) of homeowners say ample storage space is a ‘must have’ feature if they were purchasing a new home.

To help homeowners de-stress their home, Redrow has teamed up with organisational expert Vicky Silverthorn to make storage hacks as effective as possible…

Start with a detox

Decluttering and donating will put you in the right head space
Decluttering and donating will put you in the right head space (AndreyPopov / Alamy Stock Photo/Alamy Stock Photo)

Before you start decluttering your home and your mind, it’s crucial to get into the right headspace, says Silverthorn.

“Take a step back, set your goals and be critical of what you truly don’t need in your life anymore. Create a designated pile for charity donations and see what pre-loved items you could give to a new home.”

Declutter first, buy last

A mistake people often make is to go out and buy storage for their homes before they know what they need, observes Silverthorn.

“It’s so tempting when you see beautiful baskets and clever storage, but the process should be to declutter an area – and then measure up for storage that will enhance that space and its needs.”

As she points out, walking around your home and wondering what you should put in your beautiful new basket is fun… but not efficient.

Furniture can be functional, as well as aesthetically pleasing

When walking round a showroom, choosing online or buying pre-loved pieces, consider the overall aesthetic and how you can solve the toughest storage dilemmas…

“Be clever with the furniture you choose and opt for items that will maximise the space on hand,” says Silverthorn.

“Opting for an ottoman bed in the bedroom allows you to utilise the floor space as a dual-purpose area – and switching out bedside tables for two small chests of drawers will be aesthetically pleasing, whilst also delivering significantly more storage space.”

Don’t forget about wall space

Utilising wall space is a win-win in the style stakes as well as a great storage solution
Utilising wall space is a win-win in the style stakes as well as a great storage solution

One of the most under-utilised storage spaces in a home is wall space, notes Silverthorn.

“For space saving, it’s understandable homeowners don’t want to close in the space by adding too many cupboards; but by thinking vertically, you can keep a light and spacious feel whilst still incorporating sensible storage.

“This could be by utilising hanging hooks, open shelving or baskets.”

She continues: “These techniques also avoid blocking any window space and encourage natural light into the room, which can improve your mood and energy levels, contributing to better health.”

Keep it neutral and natural

“Your home is your sanctuary, so it’s important your organisation and design is kept as balanced and uplifting as possible,” says Silverthorn.

“From your cleaning products to baskets, try to use natural products and sustainable materials where you can to limit exposure to harmful chemicals – for your family and the environment.”

Similarly, she says to opt for storage solutions in colourways that blend with the surrounds, even keeping the same colour as the walls.

“This stops them from standing out and further cluttering your space – and will keep the mind at peace, and promote a sense of freedom.”

Weave in textured storage baskets

Baskets can create a beautiful Scandi-inspired feel whilst providing additional storage solutions, and shouldn’t be limited to the floor, says Silverthorn.

“Adding storage baskets to the wall can complement shelving and help offer a clean frontage for storing regularly used cables or toys that you want out of sight, but in reach.”

In the kitchen, creating a pantry wall with metal baskets can double the space and provide a fun and effective way to organise supplies, she adds.

Create designated spaces

“To have optimal organisation everything you own needs a home,” stresses Silverthorn.

“I suggest grouping similar items together to create a serene space you’ll be proud of. Think simple drawer dividers and items that can be used throughout the home in the immediate every day, and the long term – especially with plastics.”

GoodHome Konnect White Cube Shelving Units, from £15 each
GoodHome Konnect White Cube Shelving Units, from £15 each

“Also consider making visible the items you use frequently on a day-to-day basis, while other items could be neatly stored away out of sight.”

Stylish homework nooks

Keep your home working and study spaces separate from your day-to-day living is a tip that is both functional and visually appealing, she advises.

“This will keep your work-related clutter out of your living spaces, and help you mentally unwind and detach from stress outside the home.”

One step at a time

“Working on a small area at a time can still give you a huge feeling of satisfaction but also, because it’s less overwhelming, it means you can give your full focus and attention to that space,” suggests Silverthorn.

“Trying to take on such a task all at once achieves the complete opposite to what decluttering exists for.” She continues. “Taking these tasks on step-by-step will ensure healthy habits, less stress and enhanced production.”