Tips to Organize Your Home

Organized laundry closet

The genius plan you need to get every room in your house organized—and keep it clutter free forever.

Corrie Jackson and Jennifer Baker are two pals with a single mission: to make the world a tidier place, one home at a time. They’re the cofounders of HAVEN, a luxury home organizing company. “We’ve been best friends since high school in the UK,” Jackson explains. “I was a magazine journalist (Harper’s Bazaar and Glamour) and Jennifer was a lawyer at Burberry. We honed our organizational skills in a wide variety of living spaces, and numerous international moves taught us the value of a streamlined home. The stars aligned when we both moved to Greenwich, CT, and launched our company at the end of last year.” 

Since then, the twosome has addressed a whole range of spaces and organizational issues—which means they’ve got the answers we all need—listed here—for taming paper tigers, corralling knick-knacks, busting clutter and more. 

EASY FIRST STEPS

Master the small stuff. Find a spot for everything including stray objects (the declutterer’s nemeses) such as pens, phone chargers, bills, etc. If it doesn’t have a designated place, it doesn’t stay. 

Use what you have. Finish the last inch of toothpaste, the last drops of olive oil, the last roll of paper towel. Don’t buy multiples of things. You’ll waste less, consume less, and bring less clutter into your home. 

Adopt the ‘one-in, one-out’ rule. Make a pact with yourself to donate/consign an item each time you buy something new. This will be EXCRUCIATING in the beginning. But once the habit is formed, you’ll wonder what took you so long. 

Hangers

THE ULTIMATE CLOSET HACK
Fun fact:
the average person wears 20 percent of their clothes 80 percent of the time. Which means your closet needs an edit. Pull everything out and before replacing each item, take a moment to reassess it. If you’re struggling to part with certain items, we recommend the hanger test. Turn all the metal-hook parts of your hangers to face you. Each time you wear an item, turn the hook to face the other way. After a month, check in to see how many hangers are still facing the original direction. Those are the clothes you need to have a long, hard think about.

Fun fact: the average person wears 20 percent of their clothes 80 percent of the time. Which means your closet needs an edit. Pull everything out and before replacing each item, take a moment to reassess it. If you’re struggling to part with certain items, we recommend the hanger test. Turn all the metal-hook parts of your
hangers to face you. Each time you wear an item, turn the hook to face the other way. After a month, check in to see how many hangers are still facing the original direction. Those are the clothes you need to have a long, hard think about.

TWO SPACES THAT TEND TO BE MESSY

Mudroom: The way you enter your home sets the tone for the rest of the house. If your entryway is a car-crash of coats, shoes, bags and other paraphernalia, then shoot this zone to the top of your to-do list. Short on space? Try a standalone coat rack or hooks behind a door. Got drawers? Invest in dividers. Finally, adopt our ‘60-second rule.’ When you arrive home, spend 60 seconds putting things in their place. Not only does it clear your head but it makes it easier to leave the house too.

Pantry: Two words: uniform storage. We transfer everything from cereal to smoothie powders into glass canisters. That way you know what you have and use what you have. Plus, it’s way easier to streamline when your storage items are the same shape and size. 

THE ART OF STORING KIDS’ ARTWORK

Many parents keep everything their kids make, which can lead to a lot of clutter! We recommend a drop zone—a container or art file that enables you to stash their artwork the second it enters the house. At the end of the school year, edit the file and keep the highlights. We love storing keepsakes in white archive boxes from The Container Store. And, FYI, when it comes to kids’ spaces, color-coding is a GREAT way to go. It makes them way easier to tidy up. Even the smallest kids can put the red book back in the red zone (we hope). 

KEEPING DAILY CLUTTER AT BAY

Tidy a room before you leave it. Return items to their place. Get into the habit of doing it as you go along and it will pay off. 

LOSE THE CLUTTER, GET A BETTER LIFE

There’s a reason our tagline is: Transform the way you live. On the surface we’re helping our clients to declutter their home. But it actually goes much deeper than that. A streamlined home equals a streamlined life too. maisonhaven.com