Repeatedly at clients’ homes, I request certain items to use for de-cluttering or organization or just getting things together. People don’t seem to have these things, preventing tasks and projects both small and large from getting done. No judgment here- not everyone has everything at all times. To help get everybody in order, I have compiled a brief list of items every home should have. See how many you’ve already got and add the rest if you don’t have them.
Here they are:
SHREDDER – In the age of ID Theft, this is totally necessary. Don’t decorate your hands with paper cuts by ripping paper. Invest in a shredder- and don’t skimp! You get what you pay for with these! If you get a cheap one, you will pay for it in time and frustration, as it constantly overheats, as you have to change the bucket way too frequently, as you have to turn it off and pull shreds out with your hands or some tool which is dangerous and unnecessary. Get one with at least 8 sheet capacity, even better the kind that can shred a credit card and cd, and especially one that has a larger bin to catch the shreds, for less frequent dumping. Ever spill the contents of the shred bin onto the floor while trying to dump it out? Yes, let’s avoid doing that too often.
LABELMAKER– Labels change people’s lives. They all but eliminate different members of a household putting things in different places. They make you remember where things go. They make your filing cabinet make sense, and look good, which helps promote more frequent filing.
EYEGLASS REPAIR KIT– Or do you want to spend even one minute walking around with a safety pin holding the arm onto the frame? Nerd.
BATTERY TESTER– Each time I find a stray battery at a client’s home/office, we end up throwing it out because we’ve no idea if it is old or good. It’s a pain to try to stick it into a device and see if it works, as another battery inside could be the culprit if it doesn’t. Getting a batt tester changed my life! Keep it with your battery supply and pat yourself on the back every single time you test a battery and it is good!
CHANGE JAR– You have money lying around everywhere in your house, maybe even in a bunch of shallow dishes in different rooms. Get a decent jar to keep all those coins in one place. Not too big a jar- it will be impossible to carry, and the smaller the jar the more frequently it fills up and the more you turn it in for dollars you can use to pay for an organizing session as many of our clients do! You’re welcome!!
STAIN REMOVER– Obvious.
GOO GONE- Or you could spend an eternity trying to peel sticky labels off your new products. Been there, done that, broke a nail.
SENTIMENTAL BOX– A nice box or large file to store sentimental stuff that is not flat and able to fit in an album or scrapbook. We all have stuff like this. I keep my memorabilia in a pretty trunk that is a joy to open up now and then to see old photos and love letters (yes, I have gotten some!)
TWO-DRAWER FILING CABINET (both drawers the same size)- Firstly, you need a place to store your paper documents. Secondly, don’t fool yourself buying one with that smaller drawer on top and the bigger file drawer on the bottom. That top drawer will soon be holding your files in a stack that you aren’t bothering to put back into the bottom drawer. I have seen this over and over. Get the same size drawers and you can set up your files one for adults and one for kids, or one for one person and one for another, or one for serious business stuff and one for hobbies and interests..etc.
ZIPLOC BAGS- FUNDAMENTAL! If it is sorted and zipped up in a Ziploc Bag- IT IS ORGANIZED!
Ok – Print out this list and take it to the shops. I guarantee you will have some great results in your home and/or office if you put these various tools to work!
What are your household essentials? Tell us in comments!
Nicole Abramovici is an NYC-based Professional Organizer and the owner of Genius Organizing. She works with everyone from CEOs to homemakers, both in their homes and offices, getting rid of the clutter and organizing what’s left. Understanding that clutter causes not only disorganization, but a lack of motivation, she creates solutions that not only serve to de-clutter your home and office, but your mind as well, readying you to move forward with whatever you choose to spend your precious time on. To learn more about her services, or to set up an appointment, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.