The horror of the cluttered hallway – do you ever get that feeling of despair walking up to your front door? Your heart sinks at the thought of what’s awaiting you, but you just don’t know where to begin to fix it; besides, you never find the time anyway. I know it…


1. Things on the side, that don’t actually belong there

We all have that one cluttered dumping area, usually in the kitchen somewhere, probably in a corner. Or if you’re like me and can’t stand seeing the mess on the sides, in a drawer! Having said that, thankfully I no longer have a drawer of doom like this. It’s easily done, especially in busy households with kids, but it will make the place look seriously cluttered!

Solution = Make sure that everything has a home. For example, keys go on the key rack or in a designated bowl. Receipts and papers in an in-tray to be filed. Pens in a pot or stationery drawer, etc…

2. Cables on display

This is such a bugbear of mine (eye roll) Rogue cables instantly make the area look messy, even if there is no mess in sight! One of the most common cases I see is TV’s that have been hung on the wall when there’s no socket directly behind it. So the wires have to reach down to the plug socket lower down. Honestly, if you want your TV on the wall, plan it properly and get an electrician to chase the wall out and install a new socket. If you live in a rented property and can’t do this, or don’t have the cash. Just have it on top of the TV unit!

Solution = worst-case scenario, install cable trunking. This is never a good situation and can sometimes look worse than the cables, though it tends to be the lesser of two evils!

You can also get handy cable tidy’s which are great if you have a lot of cables together that need to be tidied, but they are out of the way and can be hidden.

3. Cluttered windowsills & too many ornaments

The home decor aisles in B&M and Homesense are always tempting, but if your eyes can’t rest from all the different things going on, it’s not going to make for a peaceful space.

Solution = Less is more! If you love your nick-nacks and ornaments, choose your favourite and arrange them nicely. You will appreciate them more as you will actually be able to see them. Plus, you will have less to dust! Bonus…

4. Cramped bookshelves

Books, books, books and MORE books. I’m sure we all have too many books. They are tricky blighters. I love a book and I also don’t like getting rid of them, so I feel you on this! If you have the space, then by all means keep the ones you love and use. But if you don’t and your shelves are buckling under the pressure, then it may be time to think about giving some away.

A nicely styled bookcase looks fabulous in every home, but a cluttered one looks the opposite…

Solution = Declutter first

Really think about whether you’re are going to read that book, or read it again. If not, say goodbye!

Then, once you’ve decided what to keep, if you still don’t have enough space, think about if there is anywhere else they can be kept neatly. If not, think about where you could put up some more shelves or a tidy unit. But please, don’t buy the storage until you know what you have left and where it’s going to go!

5. Fridge magnets

Fridges with magnet capacity… if there is one quick way and easy way to reduce kitchen clutter, it’s taking down ALL of your magnets and the related paraphernalia! If you have kids paintings etc and that you really want to be in the kitchen on the fridge, then maybe just keep one or two! But, if you’re house is on the market, they ALL need to come down, please! Potential buyers don’t want to see a cluttered kitchen.

Solution = remove them! If you have reminders and invitations, put them into your phone calendar and set an alarm to remind you.

6. Too much furniture or furniture that’s too large for the space

I’ve seen this so often, especially in my estate agency days. If you have a sofa suite that’s too big for the room, or you have a few extra chairs or side tables, the room instantly feels cluttered, oppressive and smaller than it really is.

Solution = Don’t fill every inch of your room with furniture and if you’re in the market for a new sofa – do you’re homework and measure the space first!

7. Shoes by the door

Shoes hanging around by the door look super cluttered, not to mention a trip hazard! But, I get it would be totally unrealistic to put your shoes away in your wardrobe every time you come in and out of the house. Especially if you’re a county bumpkin like me with muddy dog-walking boots.

Solution = One of the best things you can invest in is well-planned shoe storage! A boot room or utility room is the obvious location if you have one. If not, invest in, or if you’re a dab-hand with woodwork, make some tidy looking shelves. If you have enough space then it should go as close to where you would naturally take off your shoes as possible. The easier you make it for yourself, the easier it is to stick to!

8. Paperwork left out on the side

Let’s face it, paperwork piles up. Putting that post on the side table is all well and good if you’re going to open and sort it out the same day! Though, the likelihood is that something else will crop up and the next thing you know, it’s been a hot minute and you have 3 months worth of mail on the side!

Solution = Use an in-tray and label it, for paperwork that needs to be dealt with. Keep it somewhere sensible that you can easily access and every time you get a piece of paperwork that needs thinking about, put it in the tray. Then when you do have time, you know where all that paperwork is and there’s no chance of important documents going walk-about. In addition, it’s neat and tidy.

9. Laundry left sitting around

What’s the secret to making your room look bigger? Remove the laundry!

Clothes airers are big and bulky and very much in your face. Leaving dry clothes and linen hanging around is the quickest way to make your house look chaotic.

Here in the UK, clothes can’t be dried out on the line for about 80% of the year! So unless you’re lucky enough to have a dedicated laundry room, then chances are your clothes airers are lurking in the sitting room or maybe a spare bedroom.

Solution = If you don’t have time to fold it and put it away there and then, simply put it in the (clean) laundry basket and put it in the correct vicinity, or at least on the right floor level! Another thing you can do, if you don’t have a dedicated laundry room, try

10. Supplies hanging around for a project to be completed

I have to admit, even I have been a culprit of this! Much to my other half’s annoyance, I do love a DIY project and constantly have something on the go. If you’ve left paint pots, tools or other bits and bobs out to serve as a reminder, the place is going to look cluttered.

Solution = Firstly, try not to start the project until you know you have enough time to complete it in one go, or on consecutive days. Secondly, If you’ve already started something and you know there will be at least a few days before you can start it again, just tidy it up and put it somewhere out of the way!

Your house feels cluttered, but you don’t know why?

Check off these 10 problem areas in your own home and see what a difference it makes!

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