19 Reasons Your House Still Looks Cluttered After Decluttering

dishes in kitchen sink cluttered kitchen

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I Decluttered My House . . . So Why Isn’t Anyone Noticing?

You have read every article you can squeeze in about how to declutter your house and how it will have such a positive influence on your life.

You have had family and friends over, yet not one of them has made one comment indicating they can tell how much time and energy you combing through your house step-by-step.

Have you ever felt this way?

Before you return to the feeling of overwhelm, it is probably an easy fix to get your house looking like it’s clutter-free on the topside, not just on the inside!

Do a sweep of your house in the following areas and see if you can go a bit deeper and remove the things that are visibly causing your house to look cluttered, even though on the inside of your cabinets, drawers, etc., it has been decluttered.

Reasons Your House May Still Look Cluttered After Decluttering

1 | Overflowing Countertops

A spotless and clean kitchen can look like it hasn’t been cleaned in weeks when the countertops have things lining the wall.

Examples include small appliances like toasters, can openers, and coffee pots.

If there is an item you use daily, you may not want to hide it in a cabinet, only to have to drag it daily or multiple times a day. However, if there are items you only use once a twice a week or month, they would be a prime candidate to store in a cabinet or pantry when not in use.

Personally, I have never liked anything sitting on my countertop. The one exception is my Keurig coffee maker. I use it daily and sometimes a couple of times a day so I choose to leave it as the one thing sitting on my kitchen counter.

The same is true for a bathroom and laundry room countertop.

The best plan of action is to find a home for everything you have sitting out. The exception might be one or two small things if you find them necessary to be out because you use them frequently.

2 | Too Much Furniture

Furniture can overfill a room if it is not the correct size for the size of the room.

Sometimes the furniture is the right size; however, there are just too many pieces of it.

Either situation can cause a home to look cluttered even when it is not.

How does this happen?

Often times friends or family give us pieces of furniture that we should decline instead of making a place for it. Other times we have furniture that holds sentimental value so we feel it needs to be included in our living areas.

The best plan of action is to evaluate your living areas that look cluttered.

Is furniture that is too big for the room or too many furniture items in the room the problem?

What can you get rid of to solve the problem?

If there is a piece of furniture you hold dear to your heart for sentimental reasons, consider getting rid of something else in the room. Whatever goes doesn’t matter as much as finding balance.

3 | Too Many Decorations

Decorating your home is oh so fun!

However, it is easy to go overboard and before even realizing it, there are decorations and knick-knacks lining the walls, shelves, and side tables throughout the home.

I compare this type of decorating to the way I see many elementary classrooms, and that is over-stimulating.

Our minds need rest, and this means every room needs space so our eyes can rest and not have to process too many things.

Examples of too many decorations might be

  • an over-abundance of wall hangings
  • family photos that line every inch of the wall in hallways, staircases, etc., and include multiple photos of the same people, the same year, just different poses, etc.
  • knick-knacks and collectibles filling up space on a credenza, tables, etc.

If you want to keep the photos, create a photo album for most and just leave up a few. For the knick-knacks weed them out so there is as much empty space between them as possible.

4 | Piles Of Clothes

lady carrying load of laundry to ironing board

Laundry is one of the house cleaning tasks that feels never-ending (and it is hard to admit it kinda is!)

[bctt tweet=”Overwhelmed with too much laundry? Here is the answer to solve the problem FAST!” username=”drtawnaschmidt”]

It can also quickly create the look of a cluttered house if you get just a little bit behind.

When my boys were little I was overwhelmed with the amount of laundry there was to do. After years of frustration, I knew there had to be a better way.

I developed a strategy and it worked beautifully, and now that I have shared it hundreds of times over the years it has also worked like magic for others.

I share my laundry routine in the post 12 Time-Saving Cleaning Hacks You Will Wish You Had Started Sooner. Head over there if you are feeling overwhelmed with your laundry because it might help you too!

5 | Random Items Sitting Around The Sinks

Examples of this might be bottles of dish soap, cleaning supplies, dish rags or washcloths in the bathroom.

All of these items should have a home, and that place is not on the countertop around the sink!

pinterest image for 19 reasons your house still looks cluttered after decluttering

Examples of this might be bottles of dish soap, cleaning supplies, dish rags or washcloths in the bathroom.

All of these items should have a home, and that place is not on the countertop around the sink!

6 | Random Stacks Of Mail & Paper

It is easy for paper and mail to create a paper trail from where you walk in the door to where you stop!

If you are ready to get rid of this paper trail forever, it is time for you to create a paperless home office!

If you prefer to keep the mail coming, it is necessary to have a successful filing system set up to follow. It is also important to place the document in the correct location so you don’t keep moving it around from one place to another.

With any paper documents (including mail) the goal is to never touch it more than once! When you get your home office decluttered, keeping it tidy is super simple. I share my strategy for this in the post 7 No-Fail Ways To Keep Your Workspace Organized When You’re Tired Of Moving The Stacks Everyday!

7 | Too Many Blanket Throws & Decorative Pillows

Decorative throws and pillows provide a cozy environment for a room.

However, there is such a thing as ‘too much of a good thing.”

The other problem with this is the impracticality of needing to move pillows every time you sit down or go to bed.

If it is important to you that your decorations include throws and pillows, just put out a couple and call it good! You will get the inviting feeling they create in a room without going overboard.

8 | Shoes, Coats & Random Items Sitting In The Foyer Or Entryway

The entryway is the first thing visitors see when they walk into your home.

Most homes have a closet in this area that is designed for shoes, coats, scarves, etc. If your closet is being used for other things, find another home for them and use this closet for the things you drop at the door when you walk inside.

Other things that may need to go in this closet besides coats and shoes, might be backpacks, bags, purse, etc.

Not only will making this change eliminate the clutter in your entryway, but an added convenience is you will easily be able to locate the things you typically take with you when you leave!

9 | Toy Clutter

This is probably one of the hardest declutter challenges to overcome for moms!

It is also one of the few things that should be decluttered frequently, even as often as once a month. If you add this into your cleaning routine, you will find the toy clutter decreasing pretty quickly over just a couple of months.

For the toys you keep have a plan for them. Get creative with storage ideas for the main living area since it is nearly impossible to keep them out of this area.

Littles want to play where we are, not off by themself! And I wouldn’t want them playing by themself every day anyways just to keep a clean house.

10 | Unmade Beds

unmade bed

It has always amazed me the difference in how a room looks and feels when the bed is made as opposed to when it isn’t!

This is a simple fix!

If it is not a habit to make your bed every morning, make that change and I can guarantee you it will make a difference in your entire day!

11 | Towels On The Floor

It is easy to hop out of the shower or bathtub, dry off, and drop the towel wherever we are standing to get dressed.

This is fine, as long as the towel is picked up as soon as the clothes are on and put where it belongs, making it a simple fix.

12 | Stacks Of Boxes (Unopened Or Opened)

In today’s shopping world most people order at least some of their things online, and others make the majority of their purchases online.

This means boxes are coming into your home on a consistent basis.

If you are like me, you want to save some of the boxes in case you need to return something.

So where should you keep all these boxes?

One thing is for sure and that is if you want your home to look decluttered they need to be behind closed doors. Some places to store boxes might be in the bottom of the kitchen pantry, a bedroom closet, or even in a bathtub behind a shower curtain IF you don’t use that bathtub and you have no other place!

13 | Pet Toys

If you have pets like mine they love to play.

This means they take it upon themselves to drag out every toy and leave them lying around the house like I don’t have anything else to do but pick them up a couple of times a day!

I don’t have a simple solution other than maybe have fewer toys so there are fewer to pick up!

Having a pet toybox gives you a place to keep all the toys in one place when they are picked up!

14 | Visible Extension Cords, Electronic Cords & Phone Chargers

Nothing can change the look of a clutter-free room more than a mess of electronic cords, and suddenly the room can be spotless everywhere and it looks cluttered and a mess!

One of the best ways to cover the cords is with a cord cover. Another option is to use wireless and blue tooth accessories.

15 | Too Many Plants (Real & Artificial)

Nothing can brighten up a room and make it come alive like the beauty of plants.

Both artificial and real plants add rich color to a room with the greenery.

However, there can be too many plants in a room.

If your preference is artificial plants, it is important to keep them dust-free and try to select plants that look real.

For real plants, they also need to be kept dust-free. it is also important to keep the dead leaves cut back so they continue to look nice in the room rather than drawing unwanted attention to them.

16 | Magnets & Papers All Over The Refrigerator

The exterior of the refrigerator can quickly become a clutter magnet if you allow it! This is especially true if you have children; however, even in a home without children, it is a habit for most people to grab a magnet and slap all kinds of notes, menus, and other things onto the refrigerator.

Since we spend so much time in the kitchen we believe if something is hanging on the refrigerator it will remind us not to forget it.

There is a simple solution to this problem!

Create a place for the things you typically hang on the refrigerator. It can be a file in your office, a small drawer in the kitchen, etc.

If you need to remember something and you worry you will forget if it isn’t hanging on the refrigerator, put it on your calendar immediately, and then put the document with the details in the location you created.

If it is papers from school that clutter your refrigerator, try to narrow everything down and choose one to keep on display. If you have several favorites, rotate them so they all are up at some point, just not at the same time!

17 | Cleaning Supplies Sitting On Counter, Around Toilet, Etc.

All of your cleaning supplies should have a home together.

I recommend under the sink in the kitchen and the bathroom. If you have littles be sure to keep the cabinets secured with cabinet safety latches.

18 | Overly Worn, Dirty Or Mismatched Curtains And Window Blinds

Everything doesn’t have to be new or even semi-new in your home for it to look decluttered!

In fact, there is nothing farther from the truth!

However, the colors should complement one another so they easily blend together rather than draw attention to the area.

If you haven’t taken your blinds or curtains down recently to clean them, that should be done as soon as possible. You will be shocked at the difference this makes in how your room looks and feels!

19 | Magazines & Books

I have stopped receiving magazines in the mail, but I do still pick one up when I get groceries from time-to-time.

I also have my own library of books.

Both of these things need to have a specific place so they don’t clutter your living areas.

Have you ever walked into a doctor’s office and one of the first things you noticed was how neat the magazines looked as they were carefully spaced apart and fanned across a table in the waiting room?

And then another time you walk into a doctor’s office and there are magazines strewn randomly around the waiting room?

It is the same in your house. Although you probably don’t have that many magazines, it gives you the idea of what we notice when we first enter a room and how easy it can be to fix it!

What has worked for you to keep your decluttered house looking decluttered?

Have you been wanting to put some final touches on your decluttered home? These 19 tips are a great place to start!

If you’re already enjoying a beautifully decluttered home that looks decluttered, I’d love to hear your best tips for keeping this space in tip-top shape!


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