During my time as a professional organizer, I’ve heard people say they don’t want to spend the time or money decluttering their space. This is a valid argument: some people believe they can’t afford a professional organizer, and others have busy lives and seemingly can’t take the time to organize on their own. However, this begs the question: What does it cost you to NOT hire a professional organizer?
Let’s start by looking at the obvious:
if you don’t hire an organizer, you’re saving money, right?
Americans spend over $37.5 billion a year on storage, spending an average of $90 each month. While storage units may be necessary for some, they’re definitely not for the average American. Think about how much we pay to house our extra items that we don’t use or even need. Many prospective homeowners fantasize about huge walk-in closets and two-car garages, but they end up over-filling these areas, and then find themselves forking over hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on additional storage space. Because of this, storage companies are popping up around every corner because people overbuy, and/or they can’t seem to part with their belongings.
Here’s a simple math problem: take the price of the square feet of your home and multiply it by the approximate amount of space your clutter occupies (maybe a 2-car garage). The result is the money you’re wasting on housing your clutter.
Sample: $125 sf. x 400 sf. = $50,000
“A startling 25% of people with a 2-car garage can’t put their vehicles in it because they use it to store other things.”
-U.S. Department of Energy
It doesn’t just end with the garage. Kitchens, offices, closets, and attics are also filled with stuff. Additionally, people will find themselves buying doubles & triples of things they already have, like cosmetics, toiletries, tools, or pantry items because they can’t seem to find things in their own homes. These and many other items get hidden among the clutter so in reality, your money is hidden among your clutter.
Next, think about how much time you’ve spent this past week looking for something. Your keys, your favorite pair of shoes, an overdue bill… twenty minutes a day? Two hours a day? Now multiply that by 365 days. How much of your life are you wasting on what seems to be an arbitrary action? How much is your time worth in one year? Whatever that figure is, it is invaluable! Wouldn’t you rather spend that time on something you enjoy, like a hobby, or going out with friends, or spending more time with your kids? People can be cash rich but time poor. You deserve to get your precious time back.
According to NAPO, "in our lifetime, if we’re disorganized, we spend an entire year looking for our stuff."
Finally, organization isn’t just about decluttering. It’s also about cleaning the air you breathe. When we ignore a space for weeks, months, or years, it begins to collect dust, animal dander, and even mold. Many people don’t realize it, but your clutter can severely damage your health. Not just physically, but emotionally, too. On top of that, does the thought of clearing out your closet make you anxious and stressed? Developing allergies and asthma along with overwhelming anxiety is not a healthy combination.
Hiring an organizer can seem like a frivolous expense and maybe even embarrassing and time-consuming for some; however, it’s therapeutic, healthy, rewarding, healing, and satisfying. Spending a few hours or a few days with an expert can save you money, time, and potential doctor visits in the long run.
The list of reasons to get your life in order by decluttering is endless. Delaying organization is delaying happiness and wastes your valuable time and money. There are no downsides to decluttering. Make a positive change in your life, and work towards making room for a happier life and perhaps save money as a bonus.