Statistics have shown that the #1 reason for stress in the USA is finance. 90% of people don’t have funds for emergency times or retirement. Now with the COVID-19, there is a deep recession and every dollar counts more than ever.
You are probably wondering “How is organizing related to saving money?” This is what this post is all about. Organizing saves money big time! I’ll share my experience, as a home organizer, to illustrate how organizing and decluttering saves money. Then I will provide a summary list of what I talked about, so you can take actions to improve on money savings.
I enter many homes on a weekly basis. One thing that strikes me and makes me sad is the amount of waste created by many households. Ask yourselves how many times did you throw food that expired? I can tell you that I threw groceries worth hundreds of dollars in many homes I organized. I urged my dear clients to cut the level of food purchased. How does one achieve that? Simply by creating a list before going to the grocery store or purchasing online. Having a list creates savings instantly, as we buy less items we haven’t planned on buying and we buy the appropriate quantities needed for our household.
When organizing offices and paperwork, I encounter many interesting situations; The most common one is having to pay late fees on bills or credit cards. When people put their mail in a drawer and don’t follow up on bills online, no wonder they miss on payments. It is even worse, as they miss looking at their credit card bills, thus a credit debt is formed and increases. It’s a very fast way to get into trouble and lose control of managing ones financial life. I have had cases where I set for five hours to open mail and sort it. Another phenomena I see is not cashing on time checks received. I had a client that found a $3000 check she did not cash. By the time she found the check, the person who wrote it moved out of San Jose CA to another country and closed her account in the USA. Hard to cash a check like that. Procrastination of organizing complicates our lives.
A major cause for spending too much money is the easiness of ordering online what you “feel like having” rather than “what you need”, “what you can afford” or “what you have the capacity to store”. Think about this: How many times have you purchased a product and never even used it once? I take from clients to donation centers countless items in their original boxes. Often clients are not able to explain why they purchased an item. This implies that the purchase was done in an emotional instant rather than by a plan or a need.
Another example that can drain ones savings accounts is buying an abundant number of the same item; If I organize a room and it’s closet, and I see 40 purses or 50 pairs of shoes, that clutter the space, I have to raise the question: when will you use all these shoes or purses? The answer is clearly “never”. What if we keep our rooms and closets organized on a regular basis? We will go shopping with the condition that the item purchased will replace the space of a current item. Wouldn’t is be easier and cut our money spending? It will add a lot more thought and structure to our purchasing process.
What about toys? So many clients complain that they receive too many toys from family members. Kids need our attention. If they have ten toys vs 25 toys, they won’t be happier. Our homes become cluttered with toys and guess what – it stresses us out and the whole family becomes less happy. The same applies to pet’s toys. I have clients who filled their whole living rooms with those toys, while their pet loved the empty package something was delivered in. Then why spending money on toys and accumulate clutter?
The following refers to all spaces at home: clutter prevents us from finding items we need. If our office is cluttered, we might not find important papers. We might have 300 envelopes but won’t find them and go to buy more. If we can’t find a kitchen tool, we will buy a duplicate. I’m sure you understand my point by now. If we have all we need in the house, but can’t find items the moment they are needed. we end up spending more money we didn’t need to, and we increase clutter in our homes.
Many families in the USA have so much stuff, that they rent storage units. According to the sparefoot report, the go-to source for self storage industry, the annual revenue for this industry is $39 billion. 9.4% of households rent a storage unit at an average cost of $88/month. I’m so positive that majority of households can erase this expense. How? by organizing in a functional way. For more details on the report see:
I have shared some of my experience as an organizer. As I want you all to save more money and be happy, here is a summary.
Why do we save money through organizing and decluttering:
- Find items when needed and not buy duplicates
- Find important documents for tax deductions and deposit checks on time
- Avoid late fees by opening mail/email and handling payments on a regular basis
- Avoid buying to much groceries and throw expired food
- Cut the amount of toys in the house
- Buy items to replace items, as opposed to accumulating items. example: a new shirt instead of an old one.
- Avoid loosing cash or gift cards
- Use lists and buy, based on needs. Purchase when there is a sale, as opposed to emotions based purchases and purchases at the last minute
- Save time and be less stressed, which has financial impacts
- Cut on storage units payments
Organizing brings structure to our lives, thus we can save money, better function and be happier. This is a feedback I receive often in my client’s reviews. If you are overwhelmed and don’t know how to start, please contact me for help. I’m here for you, so use my free consultation.
COVID-19 time is the best time to start. It’s not or never.
Always here for you.