Want an easy to maintain kitchen without spending money? Then it’s time to declutter. Ask these ten decluttering questions as you work on simplifying your kitchen today.
Many people look for the best organizing solution for their awkward-shaped kitchen. But there isn’t a single organizing solution that will fix the problem.
What problem? The problem of too many items in the kitchen.
The best part? Decluttering shouldn’t cost you any money.
What does an easy to maintain kitchen without spending money look like?
Every kitchen is unique. But generally an easy to maintain kitchen is easy to tidy, mostly clutter free, and simple to use.
The side benefit of decluttering the kitchen is when it becomes a mess (which in our home is every few hours) it takes 5 minutes or less to tidy up to a more presentable state.
My goal is if a friend unexpectantly dropped by, could I show them into the kitchen? Luckily for us most of the time the answer is yes!
Why did I want an easy to maintain kitchen?
My journey for a more simple life, all began with a question. What can I do now to make life easier later?
I asked that question after three life events took place. Yes not one, not two but three different life events to make me want to change.
1. When our 1-year-old was caught making snow angels on the kitchen floor with the flour that he had pulled off the shelf. Yes, it was a mess. And yes, it was hilarious!
2. When I was pregnant with our second child. I was tired and cranky and so over cleaning up the same messes every day. Can anyone else relate?
3. After we had moved, again. I was working on unpacking all of the junk we had brought over from our previous home.
I needed a new and different approach to life. So I started to declutter.
Decluttering our life all began in the kitchen. Why? Kitchens are the heart of the home and our home is no exception.
I asked myself a series of questions as I worked on decluttering and minimizing our kitchen. I share the ten questions down below and hope they help you out today.
What if I declutter something I need later?
Place any item you aren’t 100% sure you want to declutter in a Time-Will-Tell bin. Keep this bin in a storage space. After a little while, if you no longer remember the items or don’t go back for them, then donate the items from the Time-Will-Tell bin.
I do this with most things in our home, and to be perfectly honest I have never gone back and kept something from the time will tell bin. It has never happened. Why? Because having a more simple space with fewer items always wins.
When in doubt toss (or donate) it out.
10 decluttering questions to ask for an easy to maintain kitchen.
1. Have I used this item within the last 6 months?
This question can be difficult to answer. Often times we might think, but I used to love this item. When was the last time I used this? If you haven’t used an item in sixth months then the chance of using it again is slim.
2. Am I keeping this for “just in case?”
If you are keeping an item for someday, then get them out of your home. The idea of “just in the case” doesn’t make the item get used. Just in case adds to the clutter and stress to our life that we don’t need or deserve.
What about emergency situations? This is a valid question. What I would recommend you do is to find a storage space outside of the kitchen to store emergency items. Kitchens should be used for everyday cooking.
3. Would I buy this again?
There have been so many items that I later regret buying. Especially decorations or cute kitchen trinkets. So if it’s something you don’t like or would buy again. Then donate it.
4. Am I keeping this out of guilt?
Are you keeping items because you regretted buying them in the first place; 7 FREE ways to Reduce Impulse Buying? How do you feel every time you walk by that item? Do you feel pain or regret? Or maybe someone gave you something as a gift. But you never use the gift.
Wouldn’t it be better for someone else to get used to that item rather than being shoved in the back of the cabinet to be forgotten for years? Don’t beat yourself up over a $15 table cloth. Your peace of mind is worth more than the guilt.
5. Would it cost $20 or less to replace?
Most items in the kitchen aren’t very expensive to replace. If it could cost $20 or less to replace and you aren’t using or loving the item currently, then let it go.
6. Do I have multiples of a similar item?
This was a big one in our kitchen. We had three different-sized glass Pyrex dishes used for casseroles. I never used the smaller ones, I only ever used the large ones for casseroles. I was holding onto the others for the “just in case.”
Be truthful with yourself (this can be super challenging to do and I still struggle with this). Will you really be using all of the multiples? If yes, then keep all of the multiplies items. But if not, then let them go to a good home.
What multiples do I personally keep? Tableware (dinner plates, bread plates, bowls), drinking glasses, mugs, and utensils.
7. Do I need all of the multiplies?
For instance, look back at the questions above, think if you really need all of those extra multiples. Want more information? Joshua Becker has a great video about 6 Steps to Declutter Your Kitchen.
8. Could I double up two items in one?
If there are small kitchen appliances that could be combined, then try to do so. For instance, at one point I had a food processor, blender, and immersion blender. I never used the food processor. I used the bender one time. But I used the immersion blender every single week.
9. Is this a seasonal item?
If an item is a seasonal type of item, try and store it in another place until you need it again. We are going for an easy-to-maintain kitchen. Only hold onto what is absolutely necessary for day-to-day kitchen use.
10. If I were to move, would want to pack this up?
This last question can be another hard pill to swallow. If you were to move a few months from now, would you want to take the time and money, and effort to move this item? Even if you never plan to move. This is still helpful to ask.
Easy to maintain kitchen without spending money conclusion
Decluttering is hard. You are often confronted by past decisions. Feelings of regret, what if, and indecision can be hard to breakthrough. But you can do this!
Your peace of mind and an easy-to-maintain kitchen are worth more than all of the extra stuff in your kitchen. For example, look at decluttering as a muscle. The more you work at it the stronger your “decluttering” muscles will become. I believe in you and YOU CAN DO THIS!