59-Minute Garage Declutter Countdown
The countdown is on — in just 59 minutes you can have a clutter-free garage and be ready to help America’s veterans in your community. So let’s get started!
The key to quickly decluttering is to first gather everything you need. Here’s your list:
> Large garbage bags (which are probably easy to find even in your cluttered garage)
> Masking or painters tape
> A Magic Marker or a Sharpie.
You’re going to be separating your stuff into three groups: Keep, Donate and Trash. You’ll need garbage bags for the latter two groups, and you’ll want to mark the bags with strips of tape that you’ll written DONATE and TRASH on. The items you’ll be donating will later be marked with “V.V.A.” so the Pickup Please drivers will know what to take — but we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
Start big and work small. Spend the first few minutes of your decluttering efforts by working your way clockwise around the garage, collecting all the hand tools and brooms and the like, which you’ll want to store in a single location.
Now that you’ve placed all the large items with handles in a central spot (best if you actually use those hooks on the walls that have sat empty for years!) you can get down to business. Grab your garbage bag that will actually be used for garbage and again work your way around the garage clockwise. You’ve probably already discovered a bag or two of stuff you know you’ll never use and you won’t be wanting to donate…things like old, broken flower pots or the trays your plants came in, cardboard storage boxes stuffed with old papers, and cans filled with old paint. Much of this stuff you’ll be placing in your recycling bin, with the exception of the paint which you’ll probably want to take to your town’s environmental recycling center.
By now you’ve already made quite a dent in your clutter, and it’s time to zero in on the stuff you know you’ll want to keep. We’ll start with your DIY supplies, which could use a shelf or two of their own in your garage cabinet. A good rule of thumb is to keep the items you use the most at eye-level, while storing the lesser-used gadgets and gizmos higher and lower, more out of the way. For the sake of your back, place the heaviest at the bottom. One added benefit to this decluttering effort is you’ll no doubt find a useful item or two that you’d long since forgotten you even owned.
It’s time to tackle the tackle…fishing tackle, that is. Or any number of sporting goods the modern American garage seems to swallow up. Whatever your family’s interest is, those items belong together, whether they be stacked in the center of a far wall or stored neatly in rows on a shelf. Follow that up by organizing the garden items…are you really going to use that second set of hedge trimmers? Of course not — so add it to your donation collection. Ditto the bike your child outgrew years ago…there’s another little boy or girl in your community who would love to ride it.
Congrats! You’re more than halfway finished. Now that the tools are organized, the DIY items neatly arranged and the sporting goods tucked away, you’ve probably unearthed plenty of items that you know you no longer need. That’s when your DONATE pile comes into play. Gather up the extra footballs, ice skates, disused toys and other items you’re not using but someone else will find handy and add them to your donation collection. The stereo system and the computer monitors and printers that are taking up a lot of space? Yup, you know where to put them.
Time to take another clockwise trip around the garage, this time keeping a close eye out for your garbage/recyclable items. Stiff paint brushes or rollers caked with gunk, car cleaning supplies that have run low, and of course all the spare nuts, bolts and washers left behind by all the furniture installs over the years should all make it into your recycle pile.
Clock’s ticking down! Grab your donation pile and start adding the items to the bags or boxes you’ll be placing outside on the day you’ve chosen for your pickup. Move them out of the way to a good storage spot until that day comes. Feel free to go ahead and mark them with VVA (you can write it on the side of boxes, or tape a piece of paper to a bag).
Your decluttering effort concludes with a good, quick sweep of the newly exposed floor. Be sure to get in the corners where cobwebs have been known to collect…the more you disturb the spiders, they more likely they are to flee to somewhere outside.
Spend your final minute of the 59-Minute Garage Declutter Countdown by taking a look around and visually cataloging the results of your efforts. Not only do you deserve a pat on the back, but you’ll also be motivated to keep your garage as organized as it is right now.
Just think, an hour ago your garage was bursting at the seams with stuff you didn’t need, want — or even knew you had. Now, it’s decluttered, organized, and ready to welcome your car into its warm embrace. Plus, you’ve scheduled your free donation pickup which will help support the Vietnam Veterans of America in their efforts to support America’s veterans and their families. What, you haven’t scheduled a pickup quite yet? No worries…just click the box below: