Do you walk into your basement and close your eyes to the mess down there? If YES, then you need to read these tips on how to clean a messy basement.
Cleaning the basement doesn’t have to be a chore that you dread. If stuff is starting to pile up simply because you declutter the top floors of the house, then you might need a slight clean up.
I know my basement can get really cluttered when I rotate toys, summer and winter wardrobes for all family members and store away seasonal items down there too.
Because I have my washing machine and dryer in the basement, I can see the mess daily, which is why I try my hardest to keep things clean and tidy. No matter how hard I try though, it gets messy and it happens overnight it seems. This means that I clean my basement often because I simply cannot stand the mess.
So if you want to get rid of the mess in your basement, here are my best tips.
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Time To Clean The Basement
Whether you have a finished or unfinished basement, these tips will help.
The first thing you’ll need to do to clean your basement efficiently is to stop overthinking things. Clear your mind of how long it will take you and how much work you have to do. These kinds of thoughts can give you anxiety, and then leave you with an unfinished project.
So without panic, and too much thinking, here are my favourite time-saving tips for cleaning the basement.
The number one tip I have for you is to just start. Doesn’t matter where, just pick a place and start cleaning it. This is the same advice I gave my son when he told me that cleaning up his toys is overwhelming and it really helped him overthink the whole job.
Before we start cleaning the basement, we need to have a good idea of what kind of mess we are dealing with. Take 30 minutes and do either a mental inventory, or write it down so you know what you have to tackle. Emotional and sentimental items can be dealt with later if they take an emotional toll on you.
You can use colourful stickers to tag your items with trash, sell, keep and donate. Here are some things you can use to help you categorize the items.
- Do you still use this item, or have you used in the past year? If no, then donate or sell.
- What are the reasons for holding onto this item? If the reasons are not good, then toss or sell.
- Do you really have space for this? If no, then toss or sell.
- Can someone else use this? If yes, then give it to that person!
- Have you already gotten a new item to replace this item? If yes, then get rid of it.
Just as you would organize any other part of your home, it is time to make piles to keep things organized. You can use bins, cardboard boxes or bags to get things into these piles. Use your handy stickers to help you really quickly place the items into piles.
Make a pile of items you want to donate or sell. Make another pile for garbage, and make another pile to organize. Better yet, organize as you go, but if you can’t due to lack of organization space or materials then put it in a to-do later pile.
Deal With Piles
Once you have made your piles, be sure to deal with them. Donate that pile that needs to be donated. Sell the items that you can make money from if you have the patience. Throw away the garbage into your outside bin immediately.
Personally, when I clean my basement, I try to do it the day before garbage day. This isn’t always possible, simply because life is so busy, but if you can do the declutter and clean before garbage day then do that.
You might even have to do a dump run with some of the accumulated garbage, and if that’s the case, make a pile in the corner and then make a date for the weekend to go and deal with the garbage.
Dust From Top To Bottom
You can do this while you sort your items out or once you have finished sorting and organizing your stuff, but it is important to dust the basement from top to bottom. Regardless of it being finished or unfinished, dust is an offender that haunts all living space and must be banished.
If you have living room furniture and couches, make sure they get dusted as well.
Vacuum and Mop Floors
Enjoy Clean Basement
Once you have organized, donated and got rid of all the stuff that has been making your space feel cluttered and then given that space a good clean, then you can enjoy your basement.
Quick Basement Clean
These are tips for a quick basement clean. If you are looking into a deep declutter, you may want to take a look at Marie Kondo methods of life-changing tidying up. Personally, I am fairly good at keeping the home clean, but when it comes to keeping things organized, that’s a whole other animal.
I have 3 children and it is simply not in my best interest to keep things super organized. Working from home, keeping life as screen-free as possible and making sure to get outside daily is tough enough as it is.
I hope you enjoyed these quick and dirty tips on how to clean a messy basement.
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