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How to declutter your home this summer: The ultimate checklist

Don’t let your old clutter pile up. Instead, follow this list to stay on top of your organization

Person organizing boxes in their finished attic
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Have you ever embarked on a big decluttering spree only to wind up finding extra boxes and broken items that you had meant to throw out but you forgot about them during the chore? Then, you end up shoving these items into the back of the closet or hiding them in the attic for your next decluttering craze. But what happens when you continuously neglect to master your decluttering sessions? As the items pile up, it seems like this task becomes endless.

That’s why we’re offering you the ultimate checklist so you can know how to declutter your home. Don’t let your old clutter pile up. Instead, follow this list to stay on top of your organization.

Ornament storage box with glass ornaments
Helaine Weide / Getty Images

Unused seasonal decorations

As you begin decluttering this summer and tossing items into your yard and garage sale bins, we recommend going through unused seasonal decor from the holidays. By this time of year, the holidays are mostly over. So now is a good time to go through the garage, basement, or attic and sort through broken, unused, and unwanted seasonal decorations.

Dirty garden tools in wheelbarrow.
Hannah Yelverton / Getty Images

Broken garden tools

One area many homeowners neglect to declutter is the outdoor shed or garage. Broken and unused garden tools often pile up, causing more disorganization that can quickly ruin spring and summer gardening. Do yourself a favor and sort through your old garden tools, ridding your home of anything that takes up space and goes unused.

Open tray of toolbox with tools
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Broken home improvement tools

Home improvement projects are a fun way to spruce up your space and invest in your property. However, these projects can require a plethora of tools. Over time, these materials pile up. Remember that bathroom revamp? What about the pantry makeover? Are you left with unused pipes, wood, brackets, or paint? Go through your home improvement supplies and declutter anything that you can’t salvage or use for another project.

Person painting kitchen tile with DIY method
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Unfinished DIY projects from last year

Speaking of projects, it’s all too common to give up on a DIY project that just isn’t meeting the vision you set for yourself. If you have unfinished projects from last year or DIY decorations that have been pushed to the back burner for the past few months, maybe it’s time to say goodbye. Sort through any unfinished DIY projects and part with anything you know you won’t return to.

Woman with baby in a gray nursery.
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Baby gear

Aside from clothing, baby gear is one of the most popular clutter items homeowners put out in their summer and fall garage sales. If you’re a parent, chances are much of the old baby gear you’ve got is just sitting in storage, collecting dust. Sure, if you plan to have more children, keeping the old gear can save you money. But if your kids are getting older, there’s really no reason to hang on to that car seat or those bassinets. Instead, consider decluttering any infant items you won’t need in the future.

Woman decluttering her bedroom
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Summer wardrobe

Now that summer has arrived, it’s a good idea to sort through your summer wardrobe. Try on clothes that have been sitting in your closet for the past six months and sort through what fits and what doesn’t. Additionally, anything that no longer suits your style or that you haven’t worn in over a year should be added to your declutter pile.

Office desk with paper clutter on top
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Kids’ schoolwork

If you have children, summer is a fantastic time to sort through the past year’s schoolwork. While they enjoy summer vacation, it can be a good idea to toss any old homework, tests, or printed school sheets that aren’t sentimental or important to keep. Store artwork, awards, and any important paperwork in a keepsake binder, but recycle the rest. Piles of old schoolwork can easily take up space in your filing cabinets.

Toddler bedroom with baske of stuffed toys
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Old or broken toys

Get your kids involved in decluttering by encouraging them to let go of any old or broken toys. Sit down and sort through toys your kids have grown out of or haven’t touched in over a year. Teach them about the importance of decluttering and work together to make room for new toys in the year to come.

Pool box for toy storage
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Unused pool house gear

With the start of summer, chances are you’ve entered your pool house only to be shocked about the amount of equipment you no longer need. If you’ve purchased new pool floats and toys to replace old ones from last year, now is a great time to rid yourself of anything you won’t be using this pool season. Clear out the pool house by decluttering broken and unused pool gear.

Couple holding a TV remote
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Old electronics

Old electronics are a classic decluttering category. As the year goes on, many items like old batteries, remotes, cords, and smaller electronic items go unused or get tossed aside for something newer or more efficient. Walk through your home and collect any old or unused electronics that need to go.

Organized pantry with cans and spices
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Clear out the pantry

If you want to keep your pantry clean, fresh, and organized, it’s important to go through it every season and clear out any old or expired food. Check the labels on the packaging and toss anything outdated. Wipe down shelves, reorganize, and take stock of what you have left before refilling your pantry for the next season.

Garage interior with car and tool bench
Gorloff-KV / Shutterstock

Reassess the items in the garage, basement, and attic

As you declutter, it’s important to reassess the items in your garage, basement, and attic. These areas of the home become a haven of forgotten and unused materials. Anything you don’t want or don’t have a place for often ends up in one of these locations throughout the year. If the weather is nice, consider sorting through these areas and decluttering things that you won’t need in the future.

Decluttering is a great way to save space and gain more peace of mind in your home. Be sure to carefully review each area and truly assess what needs to stay and what can go. Don’t forget to work through seasonal materials to be sure you have what you need without hanging on to any old or outdated items.

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Amelia Wilson
Amelia Wilson (author pen name Amelia J. Wilson) is a content writer in Greenwood, IN. She often enjoys topics on…
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