home organizing for seniors man helping senior organize the laundry room

Home Organizing for Seniors: 4 Ways to Help Declutter

Home organizing can be a daunting task for seniors.

Still, with some planning and simple organization tips, it is possible to create a living space that is easy to navigate and maintain. One of the most important things to keep in mind when organizing a home for seniors is ensuring that all essential items are easily accessible. This might mean moving objects that are used frequently to lower shelves or rearranging furniture to create a clear path through the room.
Another critical factor to keep in mind is to make sure that everything has a designated place and that items are returned to their designated areas after they are used. This helps keep the home organized and makes it easy to find things when needed.

One simple organization tip is to use clear storage containers for items that are not used often.

This will make it easy to see what is inside and help keep the item clean and dry. Keep things that are used daily or that are hard to replace, like medications or important documents, in a clear container or an easy-to-reach area to quickly access when necessary.

Plastic storage bins are a versatile storage solution that can be used for a wide range of household items. Some examples of the types of items that can be stored in plastic bins include:

  1. Clothing and linens: Plastic bins are a great way to store out-of-season clothing, blankets, and linens. They can protect these items from dust and keep them organized.
  2. Food: Plastic bins can be used to store dry goods, such as flour, sugar, and cereal, and to keep pantry items organized.
  3. Documents and paperwork: Plastic bins are a good option for storing important documents, such as bills, tax records, and certificates.
  4. Tools and hardware: Plastic bins are great for organizing tools, nails, screws and other hardware items, keeping them out of the way but easily accessible.
  5. Toys and games: Plastic bins are a convenient way to store toys and games, keeping them off the floor and easy to find.
  6. Personal Care items: Plastic bins are great for storing personal care items such as toiletries, makeup and hair care.
  7. Sports equipment: Plastic bins can be used to store sports equipment such as balls, rackets, and gloves, keeping them in good condition and easy to find.
  8. Gardening items: Plastic bins are perfect to store small gardening items, pots, gloves, and other related equipment, keeping them protected from moisture and easy to access.

It’s important to note that when storing food, clothing, or other items that might attract pests, it’s a good idea to ensure the bins are sealed tight and placed in a clean and dry area. It’s also a good idea to label the bins for easy identification, and to avoid stacking too many heavy items in a single bin to avoid crushing or warping.

Another easy tip for seniors who want to stay organized is to ensure they are not holding on to items that are no longer needed.

Getting rid of items that are no longer needed, including sentimental items, can be a difficult task, especially for seniors. However, with a little bit of planning and a thoughtful process, it is possible to declutter and make space for the things that are truly important. Here are a few steps you can follow to help make the process easier:

  1. Make a list: Create a list of the items you want to get rid of and divide them into categories, for example, clothes, books, kitchen items, etc. This will help you to focus on specific areas of your home and make the task feel more manageable.
  2. Take it room by room: Go through each room in the house and start decluttering. It is important to focus on one room at a time, so you don’t feel overwhelmed. It will help you to start seeing progress and give you motivation to continue.
  3. Sort items into piles: As you go through your items, sort them into piles: keep, sell, donate, recycle, trash. Keep items that you use and love, Sell items that are in good condition but you no longer need, Donate items that are still usable but unwanted, Recycle items that are broken or worn, and throw away items that are no longer usable.
  4. Consider sentimental items: Sentimental items can be some of the most difficult to part with, it’s important to approach them with care. Give yourself time to think about the sentimental items and if you are having a hard time letting go, try to find other ways to keep the memory alive such as creating a photo album or scrapbook with pictures of the sentimental item.
  5. Get rid of the items: Once you have sorted through all of your items, it’s time to get rid of them. You can sell or donate items that are in good condition, recycle or throw away items that are no longer usable. Or, consider keeping sentimental items in a storage box that can be accessed in the future.
  6. Create a habit: Home organization is a continuous process, once you’ve decluttered, it’s important to keep things that way. Make a habit of going through belongings regularly, so you can keep on top of things and avoid the build-up of clutter.

It’s important to remember that decluttering can be a difficult and emotional process for seniors, and it may take some time. The most important thing is to start, and focus on making progress one step at a time.

One way to get a sense of what is important is to create a checklist of items needed for daily living.

Creating a checklist of items that seniors need every day can be a helpful tool for keeping their home organized and ensuring that they have everything they need on hand. Here are a few steps you can follow to create a checklist for seniors:

  1. Make a list of daily tasks: Think about the daily tasks that seniors perform and make a list of the items they will need to complete those tasks. For example, getting dressed, making breakfast, taking medication, etc.
  2. Consider the environment: Think about the specific environment of the senior’s home and the layout of their living space. This can help you identify any items that they might need to reach on a regular basis, such as a phone or a flashlight.
  3. Keep it simple: Keep the list simple and easy to understand. Avoid using technical jargon or complex instructions, and instead use simple language that is easy for seniors to follow.
  4. Gather input from the senior: It is important to involve the senior in the process of creating the checklist. This will give them a sense of ownership and ensure that the items on the list are things that they actually need and use.
  5. Prioritize items: Once you have a list of items, prioritize them by importance. Make sure that items that are needed for daily living, such as medication or mobility aids, are at the top of the list.
  6. Label items: Label items that are on the checklist, to ensure the senior knows where they are kept, this will make it easier to find them when they are needed.
  7. Review regularly: Review the checklist regularly, to ensure it is still accurate and relevant. As the senior’s needs or living situation may change over time, updating the checklist accordingly will help to keep it relevant.
  8. Share it with caregivers: If the senior has caregivers or family members that help with their daily needs, it would be helpful to share the checklist with them, so they are aware of the items that are necessary for the senior’s daily needs.

Creating a checklist of items that seniors need every day can be a helpful tool for keeping their home organized and ensuring that they have everything they need on hand. It will help with independence, autonomy, and reduce stress, as seniors will know exactly where to find the items they need and the steps they need to take to complete their daily tasks.

If you are a senior who is struggling with home organization, consider hiring a professional organizer.

A professional organizer can help create a plan for organizing the home and provide tips and techniques for keeping the home organized over time. They can also offer hands-on help to move and sort through items and create storage solutions tailored to your needs.
Overall, home organization is an essential task for seniors. Organizing can improve their quality of life and make moving around their living space easier. With some planning and simple organization tips, seniors can create a home that is easy to navigate, maintain, and enjoy. Although it may take some time to get used to the new system, and it is important to be patient and flexible, organizing is a process, not a one-time task. With time it will become natural and easy to maintain a home organized.