10 Easy Ways to Get Organized and Save Money



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  1. Hang up your keys. (Preferably by the door.)
  2. Find a place for your purse, coat, gloves and other frequently used items and always keep them there.
  3. Make your bed each day as soon as you crawl out of it.
  4. Get dressed. Even if you are a stay at home mom or a mom who works from home, get dressed. Clothes really do make the man or woman. You’ll be just as productive as you are dressed which means if you are dressed for sleep (pajamas, sweats or a robe) then you will get about as much work done as you would when you are sleeping. That may be stretching it, but you get my point.


  1. Wash the dishes and wipe the counters after each meal. No matter how large or small the meal or how tired and in a hurry you are, do the dishes. Even if you are hurried or late in the morning you wouldn’t dream of leaving the house half dressed. Make leaving your kitchen clean as important a priority as getting dressed for work. This may seem impossible at first but once you are on top of things it should only take five or ten minutes to clean your kitchen.
  2. Get rid of trash. About 50% of what unorganized people have in their homes is trash or stuff they will never use again. Stop wasting time taking care of it, moving it or stepping over it. As you walk through the house, pick up garbage and toss it.
  3. Control your laundry. Don’t let it control you. Follow these simple steps to help keep your laundry from taking over your home and you.
    1. Place a hamper or basket for dirty clothes in each bedroom and/or bath. Make sure that everyone’s dirty clothes are put in the hamper before bed and in the morning.
    2. The laundry isn’t done until it is put away.Get out of the mind set that if it is washed and dried it is done. Folding and putting it away is equally as important.

      Some of us think that if we get the laundry washed and dried that’s all we need to do and it’s okay for the family to just pull stuff out of a pile. That makes as much sense as cooking a meal and expecting everyone to stand at the stove and take turns scooping the food out of the pan and eating it one spoonful at a time. You wouldn’t dream of doing that. Yes the food is cooked, but the meal is not complete until the table is set and the food is put on plates. Do the same for your laundry. Put it away.

  1. Pick up continually. This may seem like a pain to do at first but if you stick with it, it will become a habit. I didn’t realize how much of a habit it had become for me until I was visiting my daughter’s the other day (Hey! That’s me! ;-) -Tawra). As I was walking into the kitchen, I picked up empty glasses and odds and ends on my way. Then when I walked from the kitchen to the bedroom I picked up toys as I went in there. It wasn’t even my house but I had seen something out of place and out of habit picked it up.
  2. Read and dispose of newspapers and magazines.There are usually two reasons people have stacks of newspapers and magazines piled around:
    1. They want to save an article in it. If that is the case then cut the article out as you are reading the magazine and file it. Trust me, you not only won’t cut that article out at a later time, but you probably won’t remember what or where it is.
    2. They don’t have time to read them. If you aren’t going to read them the why are you subscribing to them? Stop your subscriptions. This doesn’t have to be an all or nothing thing. If you can’t keep up with the daily newspaper then just get the Sunday paper. Most people usually have more leisure time Sunday to read it. Pick out one or two of your favorite magazines and stop subscribing to the rest.
  3. With any item, if it is broken or you don’t use it anymore get rid of it. That includes clothes, toys, furniture, decorations, dishes and exercise equipment ;-). If it’s not important enough to fix right now, you don’t need it!

 

Comments

  1. says

    Thanks for all your organizing tips. Organization really is the key and limiting the amount of stuff we keep is so important. I have the empty nest now and we are living in a tiny home. Being organized for our smaller space will really help us be more relaxed when we’re at home. Thanks for the reminder about why it is so important to be organized.

  2. mildred lane says

    A large trash can and clothes hamper really helps in my 12 year old son’s room. He gets a $5 allowance/week for chores and keeping his room clean.

  3. elizabeth says

    Great article and very motivating!!! I have finally after 14 years of marriage gottena handle on the Laundry Mountain. We throw all the clothes worn each day into the washer and run it overnight on a small setting of water. The next morning I hang it out. Or you can pop it in the dryer. It is only a few things so it quick to fold and put away. Seriously, like 5 minutes at most. On the weekend I do the sheets and towels or anything that needed bleach, or special treatments. My house was always covered with baskets and piles of laundry in various stages. The simple step of washing daily has saved my life. If it can help someone, I hope it does.

    • Judy Hayes says

      We had six children and a two story house. They were responsible for taking dirty clothes to the basement. When I came home from work each day I went straight to the basement and sorted clothes. I did about two loads every day. Socks, underwear, towels were tagged with different threads for each child. I washed, dried, folded, and put clean clothes into one of six baskets on a big table. The kids would go to the basement, retrieve what was in their basket and put them away. Worked great for us, saved me a lot of steps.

  4. says

    The one idea Get Dressed.
    It helped me lose weight. When I am in a fibro or CFS flair the last thing I want to do is any extra motion. So dressing when the only time I went out of the house was first thing in the morning to wait for the school bus with my sons seemed so much extra I would just throw on my lounging robe.
    The meds the dr gave me to help made me eat more than usual. In one year I had gained 100 lbs.
    Since I wasn’t wearing out door clothes very much I didn’t see the weight going on. Lounging robes hide a lot of dirty big secrets.
    Now I get up have hot shower to loosen me up get dressed and seem to have the energy to walk to the post office even though I hurt. In the last year I have lost 100lbs and I am on the last 30 which hopefully will go the way of the dodo. Having gout for the past 6 months though have cut down on my walking so it will be a slow haul but it is doable.
    So yes get dressed it changes your attitude as much as you change out of your pj’s.

  5. Lori says

    I am definatly guilty of not dressing in the mornings and also of washing and drying the cloathes without folding and putting them away. As a matter of fact I have a full basket of clean cloathes to fold and put away just sitting there. I think for the next 2 months I will make an effort to do both of thouse on a daily basis. I know I can do it and I want to do it. anyways thank you for the articale. I will definatly put it all to use in my daily life.

  6. Sylvia says

    If possible, schedule a weekly trip to the local public library to read magazines and newspapers. Take a notebook to copy recipes or photo copy anything you want to save. Of course, if you don’t file them right away it just leads to more clutter. Just had a thought. Use your digital camera and take a picture of what you want to save then download it to your computer and save in appropriate file folder.

    • says

      Sylvia, I use to do this years ago when my kids were little. I have never been able to really afford magazine subscriptions so going to the library was my break from the kids. I would sit for a couple of hours reading magazines. It was nice too because we were always remodeling so our house was usually hot in the summer with no air or cold in the winter and I did so enjoy just sitting in a temperature perfect place. As you can see it doesn’t take much to make me happy. :) :)

  7. JudyL says

    Why do people giving tips for organizing always tell people to put their keys near the door on a table or on a hook in the kitchen or garage? Security experts will tell you to NEVER put your keys someplace like that. If someone breaks into your home,you are giving them fast,easy access to everything those keys go to & making it easier for them to get your stuff! And you may think nobody will ever break into your home, but consider this – by hanging your keys in plain sight, you are making them available to ANYONE who enters your home by your invitation. This includes your friends & family members, your kid’s friends & parents, service people,repairmen,delivery,etc. Hang them right by the front door & even the mail carrier or pizza delivery could snag your keys when you turn your back to put that package or pizza down or grab your wallet! Please find someplace safer to keep your keys! Otherwise, some gret ideas, thanks!

  8. JudyL says

    Sorry, should have made myself more clear. Yes, if they break in you will have to change the locks anyway & they are going to get away with a lot of stuff anyway. But if you are like me & a million other people, you also have keys to your vehicles, on your keyring, or like my husband & step-dad, you also have keys to the sheds & outbuildings, your office, etc. So if they take your keys hanging by the door,they will drive away in the vehicles parked in your garage, towing your atvs,boat,whatever, behind it & the vehicle will be loaded with everything that was safely locked in your shed.

    I knew someone this happened to once. They kept all their keys hanging in plain sight in the kitchen. When their house was broken into, the thieves had quick access to their vehicles in the garage(which they took), took their motorcycles & snowmobiles,everything in their shed & also had keys to the toolbox full of expensive tools, the gun safe, jewelry box, safe, etc. In a matter of jsut a few short minutes, they lost several thousands of dollars worth of property that was never recovered.

    Of course the chances of this are so slim anyway, but I am so paranoid that I don’t leave any of my keys in sight. My son confirmed this many years ago when he was going through a bad rebellious stage as a teenager & he thought he was so smart to beat his curfew because I locked the door if he was late, so he’d have to knock to get in & I’d know he was late. He took my house key (when I wasn’t looking) off my keyring that I always left sitting on a counter, had his friends take him to get a copy made & put my key back.He thought he was going to just slip into the house in the wee hours undetected – he didn’t count on mom’s super-human hearing when it comes to the kids, so he got caught red-handed anyway!LOL! And spent a LONG time getting extra – special, one-on-one time with mom & dad every night!

  9. Frenchy says

    Clutter can start on your keyring too, obviously. Why have the keys to the snowmobile, the shed, and the gun safe on your usual keyring? I only have the keys to my building, my apartment, and my bike chain-lock (or car for you) on my ring. Even the key to the mailbox isn’t on there because it is one thing less to change completely in case I lose the ring. That one is hung near the door, but it is unlikely anyone will steal the mailbox since it is nailed to the wall.
    All my other keys are stored away in a convenient but unobtrusive place.
    I’m lucky to live alone, so I just leave my keys in the door.

    • says

      Also some mechanics say if you are one of those people with two pounds worth of keys on your ring the continual weigh can at times mess up your ignition (the place your put your keys in to start your car).
      I don’t have anything on my key ring either that someone could steal unless it is my car and if they want it they are more then welcome to it. If someone steals my car then they would have to be very very desperate.

  10. Theresa says

    I keep my keys by the door or I would never know where they are at. When I leave, my keys go with me, do I don’t get the part that they would get them, unless of course they got in while I was asleep. Any more clarification on that point? Theresa

  11. Cheryl says

    I make a point of only wearing clothes with pockets, so my keys live in my pockets, along with my wallet and a handkerchief. It’s really easy to leave in a flash to pick up a child when everything is already handy–and it prevents those ADD moments of, “Uh oh, where’d I leave the purse this time?” Not to mention, it keeps those keys VERY hidden!

  12. Ann says

    I used to always loose my keys in the house. I got in to the habit of putting them IN my shoes. I can’t leave the house without shoes and therefore my keys either..lol.
    I LOVE the tip “get dressed” I used to stay in my pj’s and that made “running to the store a huge chore. Now I get dressed and I’m always “ready” to go anywhere.
    I once read a tip that said “Get Dressed the night before…” in your work out cloths, that is if you’re planning to work out in the morning. Then all you have to do is fall out of bed and work out and you’re done.

  13. Jan says

    Ann, your comments were so funny. I like the idea of getting dressed at night in work out clothes to be ready to work out in the morning. I usually change into sweats BECAUSE I want to work out, but usually never get to it, which means I’m living in sweats all day. LOL! I think I’m going to try sleeping in sweats so I can roll out of bed and actually exercise first thing in the morning. Regarding the keys, by the door or kitchen is logical because that is where we tend to place them. Also, my favorite tip about keys is to have them on a strong clip which you can attach easily to your purse, bag, or belt loop. I never lose my keys!

  14. heidi says

    After the clothes are dried outside on the clothesline, I fold them as I take them down. That way I get to spend a little extra time enjoying the weather and most of the work is done when I get inside. ( you wouldn’t believe how easy it is to get a teenage son to put away his laundry when its already neatly folded!:)

    • says

      Heidi you are so right. I fold mine too as I take them down. We are getting ready to do a video on hanging clothes on the line but I equally was wanting to show how I take them down because I fold as I go. By the time I go into the house all my things also are neatly folded and ready to put away.

      That was part of the reason I wanted to show everyone how to hang clothes out because if you hang them right folded is a breeze. I have no piles of laundry in the dryer, laying on the floor or couch waiting to be folded.

      And like you said soaking up a little sun and natural vitamin D never hurt anyone.

      • Sheila says

        I fold each persons clothing off the line individually. Often I grab the boys and we all fold our own stuff off the line. They much prefer that to touching each others underwear (Although clean) taking everything down and hauling it in.

  15. Joanne says

    I keep my keys on one of those clasp things, and I keep that hooked on to my purse strap. If I’m not taking my purse somewhere, I clip it on to my belt loop.

    I have never in my entire life lost my keys (and I’m 51) because I do it this way. My keys are always handy!

  16. Pati says

    Our door is metal so I bought 2 magnetic hooks…the keys are always right there. If someone is at the door they don’t see the keys hanging in plain sight as they are hanging on the backside of the door. I never realized how clever I was until this article!!! LOL

  17. Donna says

    I put my keys, my cell phone and my purse in a “safe” location but always in the same place, so I can immediately put my hands on them, even in an emergency. I agree that by hanging them by the door, someone who had been there earlier (a repairman, for instance) would know where they are and could easily grab them at a later date. Just too handy.

    My daughter-in-law used to come by to visit and leave her purse on our kitchen table. Then, we’d all go to the back of the house to watch TV for several hours. If someone just came by to ask for directions, for instance, and saw her purse, they could break in, grab it and be out of there in no time flat! So, I suggested she move it to a different, less obvious place. Out of sight, out of mind!

    And, my mother-in-law just told me today that, while shopping, she hooks the baby safety strap (connected to the grocery cart) through her purse handles. If anyone even tried to grab it, they’d be completely caught red-handed, trying to pull it out of her cart! Smart woman!!!

    • Fay says

      Your mother-in-law is fearless! After reading an article about the shopping cart baby seat–I won’t touch it. #1 contaminate is from a leaky diaper; need I say more? I use a carabiner and hook my bag to the inside of the main cart as far from the baby seat as possible.

  18. kim says

    On laundry- I wash a certain load type each day except Sunday. the schedule is right above the washing machine. This maximizes load size and minimizes time, arguments, and detergent, water & electricity costs. Also I have a rolling laundry sorter with multi-colored mesh bag-one for each type to save sorting time. The only thing I watch for is inside out clothing which wait til next time if their not right this time. Then when dry I put tops on one side of basket and bottoms on other so that each type can be quickly hung/folded and placed together in respective area.
    On keys-I have the bare minimum on a carabiner hook. And lately buy purses with those round metal rings that hold the strap to the purse so I have an instant place to store keys. And use the carabiner to fasten purse strap around shopping cart handle.
    On getting dressed- another advantage of morning showers besides the instant wake-up is that it forces you to undress which means you have to re-dress anyway. Take change of cloths to bathroom before hopping in. Then you’ll have one less thing to worry about picking up later-the towel- cuz it’s already in bathroom.

  19. Helene says

    Thanks for the tips– I am going through them. It really makes a difference in how a place looks. I am working through the other tips in the organization section.

    I really enjoy your website– keep up the good work!!

    • says

      Thank you Helene. If you have any questions or just need some cheer leading if you start flagging in the middle of getting things done just holler. We have some super encouragers on this blog.

  20. Deb says

    When I was working, I had my keys on a clip with a long chain. I put the keys in my pocket and clipped the chain onto my belt loop. Now that I’m retired and not going out much, I have the keys in my purse with the clip attached to the strap. I can get them out easily when I need them, and it’s not obvious that they’re there.
    I used to have a sock drawer, an underwear drawer, and hang my t-shirts in the closet. When I came home after surgery, I put the socks in the underwear drawer and the shirts in the sock drawer “neatly” folded. It makes getting dressed so much easier with my arthritis. I can get everything out and get dressed while sitting on the bed. I have a sofa table at the foot of the bed where I keep my pants at night and my pjs during the day. It makes putting laundry away very easy, too.

  21. Jenn says

    My kids are 10, 11 and 13…all are in charge of their own laundry. They have a certain day of the week they are to do it. It makes life for me (2 jobs, scouts, sports, plus Im a student) much easier.

  22. Grandma says

    The wash is always done together. The boys when they were home wore dark clothes and so does their dad.
    So the darks lights and whites are done at the same time.
    I have discovered that if I dump the baskets onto the bed during the day to fold them (now that there is just Don and I) I get them put away the same day.
    We have to sleep in the bed so it has to be cleared off. It is always made first thing in the morning so it makes a good easy surface height as well.
    When the boys were home they did the laundry most of the time and they helped with meals which in our house are very casual. So that took a lot of the organizing out of one persons hands.
    We did dishes by hand because it gave me a chance to keep in touch with their lives. Not a lot to do other than talk when you are standing in a small area.

  23. Jill H says

    Since I bought a bright pink lanyard for my keys, and a bright pink phone cover, I find them much quicker! Yes, I hang my keys in one place always, but I used to sometimes ask my dh to look for them in my purse! And he would! Now with that long bright ‘tail,’ I can find them much more easily. My dark phone used to get lost in the purse, too, but bright colors stand out. Much easier.

    • says

      Super idea Jill (like the name too :) :)) Bright color for wallets are great too. I love the pink idea. My kitchen tools (small hammer, pliers, screwdrivers) kept walking off and I could never find them when I needed them. This went on for years. Finally one year I asked for a set of my own tools and I wanted them to all be pink. I did this with the idea the guys in my life wouldn’t be caught dead using a pink handled tool. I must have been right because 20 years later I still have all of my pink tools and know where they always are. : ) : )

  24. Grandma says

    When organizing keys and wallets cell phones and the like. Do not keep cell phone near the wallet.
    It will mess up the metalic strip on your debit and credit cards so you will have to replace them more often.
    Also if you have battery operated things do not keep them near your hearing aids. My husband kept his cell phone in the pocket with his hearing aids while at work and his cell phone was dead by the end of the shift and his hearing aids needed new batteries.

  25. says

    Getting dressed first thing is key for me to get working. And that includes wearing real shoes and not slippers. I find I can’t move very quickly in slippers, but can really move with regular shoes on.

    My house keys are on a ring attached to my wallet, so as long as I have my keys to lock up the house, I also have my wallet.

    I know a lot of ladies like to have multiple purses. I just have one purse. It’s fairly small, so I’m not straining my shoulder with it. But still everything I need is in there. I keep it on my desk, and I can run out the door on a minute’s notice.

    And when I’m waiting in the parking lot of my daughters’ school, I use those minutes to clean out my purse, get rid of papers, receipts, etc. Cleaning it out regularly makes it easier to find what I need, when I need it.

  26. Tommienell Ellis says

    I, too, put the baby seat safety strap through my purse handles if I get tired of carrying it while I shop, although I NEVER walk away from my cart. I actually see shoppers’ purses wide open with wallets peeking out and ready to be stolen while the shopper is half an aisle away. Tommie

  27. says

    Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and
    wanted to say that I have truly enjoyed browsing your
    blog posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!

    • says

      So glad you are enjoying it Katrin. Many are not sure about signing up for our bi weekly newsletter thinking there are catches but there aren’t it’s totally free and just like getting the newspaper twice a week but doesn’t cost a thing. Hope you enjoy it. I also try post a different post from the web site each day for everyone to read. Hope you enjoy them and don’t be afraid to ask any questions you want.

  28. says

    Hi Jill,

    I like that in your organization tips you focus on setting up systems that you adhere to. It’s much easier to form good habits and stick to them regularly than to have to keep making up ad hoc solutions.

    One other tip I like to give out is to find the best technology that can systematize things for you. That really frees you up.

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