The Ultimate Declutter Checklist for When You’re Ready to Purge

The Ultimate Declutter Checklist for When You’re Ready to Purge

All of us have clutter that piles up over time. And with each new season, we get a chance to clear out the old and bring in the new. So when it’s time to clean out, a declutter checklist is a huge help—and a season like spring is the perfect time to tackle all that clutter.

There are lots of ways to tackle home organization. But the first step is to start decluttering, and then declutter some more ... and some more ... until you’ve worked your way through the entire house. The decluttering process can go quickly with a few helpful tips—we've got you covered.

decluttering checklist first page

Download the PDF checklist here!

The Ultimate Decluttering Checklist

As you start the process of decluttering, a comprehensive checklist makes sure you don’t overlook items that need to be addressed and purged. 


  • Water bottles
  • Mismatched Tupperware 
  • Travel mugs 
  • Cutting boards
  • Scorched pans
  • Excess baking trays 
  • Specialty utensils 
  • One-time use gadgets
  • Old spices
  • Old tea bags and specialty coffee
  • Expired food
  • Food you tried and didn’t like
  • Plastic shopping bags
  • Holiday kitchenware 
  • Cookbooks you never use
  • Excess cutlery 
  • To-go containers


  • Ill-fitting clothes
  • Clothes that need mending
  • Seasonal clothes
  • Special occasion clothing
  • Jewelry and accessories
  • Travel bags 
  • Scarves and gloves
  • Old or unworn shoes
  • Coats and jackets
  • Swimwear that smells like chlorine
  • Mismatched socks

Linen Storage

  • Mildewed rags and towels
  • Extra linens
  • Broken air mattress
  • Excess throw pillows
  • Seasonal or holiday items


  • Old or fraying towels
  • Old or fraying Washcloths
  • Outdated cosmetics 
  • Travel samples
  • Personal items you never use 
  • Expired medicines
  • Unused supplements
  • First aid 

Entertainment Area

  • Miscellaneous cords and cables 
  • Remotes 
  • Puzzles you’ve completed or missing pieces
  • Board and card games
  • Old gaming consoles or VCRs
  • Video games 
  • CDs, Album covers, Vinyl, Cassettes 
  • Photo Albums 
  • Scrapbooks
  • Old kids’ toys
  • Craft Supplies 

Office and Paperwork

  • Filing cabinets
  • Stationery
  • Old office appliances and hardware 
  • Computers and hard drives
  • Files and resume papers
  • Bills and shredded paper
  • Old receipts
  • Coupons
  • Mailers and junk mail
  • Instruction manuals
  • Business cards

Workspace & DIY 

  • Tools and Hardware
  • Lightbulbs 
  • Batteries 
  • Picture hanging kits
  • Sticky strips and putty
  • Assembly kits and wrenches
  • Flashlights 

Tips to Declutter Quickly

Declutter Tip #1 - Sort items into piles as you go

Sometimes the hardest part of the decluttering process is getting started. The easiest way to start making some progress is to start with piles. Designate a pile each for trash, donate, consign, or keep. You may need to add more piles as you go, but this will help you gain momentum. 

Declutter Tip #2 - Tackle one area at a time

After you’ve designated your piles, you can pick the first area of your home to declutter. Make a list of areas you want to tackle (see tip #3 for how to prioritize them). Keep your piles nearby so that you can easily toss items and categorize them. Maybe even use bins or trash bags to begin decluttering your closet, bathroom, pantry, or main area quickly and easily. 

Declutter Tip #3 - Work from easiest to hardest

You may have heard of the snowball effect. A lot of people use it to tackle all sorts of big goals that otherwise seem impossible. For example, instead of starting with your most cluttered, disorganized space, start with an area that you can easily and quickly tackle in 30 minutes (or less). You’ll be able to check a box off your list of places to declutter. And you’ll start to pick up speed.  

Declutter Tip #4 - Find new homes for the things you don't want anymore

When you find a new home for items that are contributing to clutter in your home, it can create a sense of purpose and provide motivation to keep the clutter-clearing going. Find a place to donate your old items, or give them away to someone who might really be able to use them and will love them more than you do.

For more helpful blogs on decluttering and simplifying your life, check out these posts:

And head over to the Silk+Sonder blog for more!

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