Ready to declutter your home fast? This list of things to throw away, or donate, will have you quickly getting your household clutter under control… minus the overwhelm!
If you’ve had enough of ‘stuff’ in your house, this list of things to declutter is for you.
Decluttering Quick Wins
From broken things that we shouldn’t be keeping anyway to those ‘what if’ items that are just taking up valuable space in our household. It’s amazing how fast stuff can accumulate over a short space of time.
And you don’t have to be a minimalist to appreciate having fewer things! I’m certainly not. Grab the list of things to throw away (or donate and sell) and get busy!
This was going to be a list of 100 things to throw away, but let’s be real. There are so many more things in the average home that probably don’t need to be there!
So instead you get a much bigger list to help you get started decluttering.
When you are feeling overwhelmed by decluttering or just don’t know where to start, this list is a sure way to start making progress quickly!
In fact, even if you just got rid of all the relevant items on this list from your home (you won’t have all of them), you will already have made a huge impact on your household clutter.
Or if you only have 5 minutes a day to declutter, this list will help you make that 5 minutes count.
YAY for quick wins!
Sell, Throw Away Or Donate?
One of the biggest things that hold many people back from decluttering their home is not knowing what to do with the items they declutter.
Many items on this list will be items that can go straight in the bin. Anything broken, damaged or with no value shouldn’t be held onto.
Make that decision quickly and get it in the bin.
But what about the things that may have some value to someone?
If you have some high-value items in your home that you no longer need, and you have the time, absolutely you can try to sell those items!
However, this means the stuff is staying in your home for now… and there’s no guarantee it will sell.
If you want it out your door now to make sure it leaves quickly, you can donate any of the items that are worthy of recycling.
Check online where your local charity organisations are where you can drop off unwanted goods.
The key is to do this quickly so you can eliminate the clutter from your home fast… and before you change your mind!
When Not To Throw Something Away
I am all for recycling anything that is still in great condition. And many items you no longer want or need will fit this category.
So while we may be referring to THROWING THINGS OUT, that doesn’t always mean into the bin.
If you have household items and clothing that are in good condition, donating them (or selling them) is a great option.
By donating, you can help someone in need who may not have the budget to purchase the same items at full cost.
The key is to get these items out of your home though – so once the decision is made to let something go, don’t go back on it!
Getting Ready To Declutter: What You Will Need
Now that we’ve established that not everything might go into the trash from this list, it’s time to set yourself up for a successful declutter session!
To do this, find a box or tub for each collection of unwanted items – trash, donate and sell. If you have no plans to sell or donate, you may just need a single tub for things to throw away.
Take your containers to each room with you as you work through your home so you can easily put your decluttered items into the right tub as you go.
This will make your task a lot quicker than walking out to the bin every few minutes.
Cardboard boxes are great because you can throw the entire thing in the bin afterwards. Or use them to drop off donations.
But even washing baskets or garbage bags are just as effective!
Things You Can Throw Away (Or Donate)
You’re ready to get started with decluttering. You’ve made the decision to reduce the number of things in your home and you’ve got your decluttering containers ready (I hope). Now it’s time to get to work.
Work through the whole list of things to throw away in a day or do a section at a time. Either way, there is no greater satisfaction than removing unwanted items from our home and life.
The list has been created in zones to save you time. This way you can work through a single zone of your home before moving onto the next.
And, if you see something you don’t want or need that isn’t on the list, get rid of that too!
The kitchen is one area of the home that can become cluttered quite quickly simply because it is one of the most high traffic areas of the home.
Just as it is also one of the first places in your home to need deep cleaning, it also seems to accumulate excess stuff.
These items include both consumable and non-consumable goods. This is why it is a good habit to clean out your pantry often and consider keeping a list of pantry essentials so you can avoid double-ups and food going out of date.
We also seem to end up with a lot of extra appliances and gadgets rather quickly, seeking to find the perfect tool to streamline our meal prep or replacing an existing utensil without removing the old one.
- Broken mugs
- Chipped bowls and plates
- Containers without a lid
- Utensils you never use
- Old tea towels
- Novelty cups
- Appliances you never use
- Appliances that don’t work
- Worn pots and pans
- Recipe books you don’t use
- Expired food and drinks
- Out-of-date herbs and spices
- Anything in your pantry or fridge you won’t eat
- Used birthday candles
- Serving ware you never use
- Party supplies you won’t need anytime soon
- Extra cooler bags
- Old stubby coolers
- Broken lunch boxes
- Excess shopping bags (plastic and reusable)
- Old takeaway menus
- Cake decorating supplies you won’t use
- Mix-matched glasses
- Extra water bottles
Try one of these 10-minute decluttering tasks if you’re in need of a little extra guidance and motivation!
The main culprits in most bedrooms are our wardrobes where we accumulate clothes mysteriously over time.
Doing complete clothing declutters every 6 months will help keep things manageable. It will also help make quick work of this task in future too!
For the clothing that we are reluctant to part with, but probably haven’t worn in a long time, try the coat hanger wardrobe declutter method.
If you’re not going to wear it, let it go!
- Clothes that are torn, stained or stretched
- Clothes that don’t fit
- Clothes you never wear
- Shoes you don’t wear
- Old underwear
- Bras with broken underwire
- Extra scarves
- Odd socks
- Old swimmers
- Broken jewellery or watches
- Stockings with holes
- Broken clothes hangers
- Extra caps and hats
- Broken glasses or sunglasses and old prescription glasses
- Damaged or extra handbags
- Extra belts
When was the last time you went through and decluttered your makeup and skincare products? You might be horrified to know that many of these items should only be kept for 6 to 12 months before they should be disposed of.
Expired medications and products can be dangerous if kept well beyond their use date, making the bathroom an important place to dispose of unwanted items regularly.
And if you have young kids, random bath toys and mystery items may have made their home in your bathroom too.
- Old make up
- Old skincare
- Broken hair accessories
- Beauty products you never use
- Hair products you never use
- Perfume or cologne you don’t wear
- Old toothbrushes
- Old dental floss
- Extra toiletry bags
- Expired medication
- Old or unwanted nail polishes
- Broken make up brushes and application tools
- Stretched shower caps
- Bathroom scales that don’t work
- Mouldy bath toys
- Worn sponges or loofahs
- Empty product bottles
In the laundry, it is mostly linen that can get out of control. If you’re anything like me, linen is one of my worst ‘just in case I need it one day’ areas. Well… it was!
Last year I gave my linen a massive overhaul and gotten rid of more than half of what was in there. Now using a basket linen organisation system, it is certainly more manageable and limits how much room I have for adding new items.
- Old towels
- Excess linen
- Any damaged or old linen
- Excess table runners and placemats
- Seasonal linen you never use
- Old laundry products
- Broken pegs
- Broken clothes baskets
- Odd pillowcases
- Incorrect-sized sheets and bedding sets
- Hooded towels or baby linen that has been outgrown
- Extra warm blankets you never use
- Lumpy pillows and cushions
Living areas can encompass a lot of areas of the home. These are the areas of the home where the family tends to hang out together or high-traffic areas that you pass through often. Not just the lounge room areas.
One of the biggest game-changers with creating more space in living areas is eliminating media you no longer need to keep.
These days many of us have switched to subscription-based media for music and entertainment, such as Netflix and Spotify. This allows us to get rid of all or most CDs and DVDs.
We aren’t all the way there in our house yet but our collection is drastically reduced.
- Old magazines
- Books you won’t read
- Broken furniture
- Damaged CDs, DVDs or gaming discs
- CDs you never listen too
- DVDs you won’t watch
- Games you don’t play
- Broken electronics
- Remote controls that don’t go with anything current
- Empty photo albums
- Wall art you don’t love
- Unwanted decor items
- Old gaming consoles and accessories
Garage and Outdoors
The garage is often the home of things that don’t have a home. You’re sure to find some interesting things to throw away in your garage and potentially in your backyard too.
This can sometimes be where you have items that need to be safely disposed of as well, so take care when throwing potentially risky items into your trash can. (More on that below).
- Broken outdoor toys
- Outdoor furniture that you never use
- Broken pots
- Unused gardening tools
- Broken mats
- Unused sporting equipment
- Rusty tools
- Power tools that don’t work
- Tools you don’t use
- Bikes and skates that have been outgrown
- Leftover home building items (tiles, wood, trim)
- Any items you can’t identify
- Dead plants
Kid clutter can take over your whole house so this zone may take you all over the place as you work through the list of things you can get rid of.
The best way to approach kid clutter is to consider if the item is age-appropriate or they have outgrown it.
If they have outgrown it, will you be having more children? Then consider if that item is worth storing or if you can easily get a new or second-hand version in future.
Trust me, I know how hard it is to part with those adorable baby clothes your kids wore. It can be a very emotional process to part with sentimental clutter.
It can also be challenging when decluttering with kids because often they don’t want to part with a thing!
As for the rest, if its broken, unwanted or no longer useful, say goodbye!
- Broken toys
- Toys they no longer play with
- Felt pens that don’t work
- Items they have outgrown
- Old school supplies
- Dried out paints
- Junky toys and trinkets (Happy Meal toys, party bag toys)
- Board games with missing pieces
- Puzzles with missing pieces
- Discarded collections (rocks, leaves, bugs etc)
- Baby items your kids have outgrown
- Kid’s artwork (take a photo and make a photo book instead)
- Extra stuffed toys
- Used colouring books
- Dried up playdough
- Broken or torn picture books
Find clever ideas for storing toys in your home after your declutter.
Home Office & Craft Room
Not every home will have a home office or craft room. For you, it may be a drawer or a tub under a bed where you keep stationery and craft items… if you have any.
This zone is wherever the list takes you, just like the kid clutter.
As a scrapbooker and DIY lover, I am guilty of having a large craft supplies collection. I store most of mine in cube tubs in my Ikea Kallax shelf.
What helped me get it under control was setting a space limit and then putting back only the items you really love first and then whatever else you have room for after that. It is a less overwhelming way of culling your craft supplies or stationery.
You can find some great craft storage ideas to help keep your supplies organised and tidy.
- Used notepads
- Craft supplies you never use
- Cardboard boxes
- Bubble wrap
- Pens that don’t work
- Computer accessories that don’t work
- Out of date calendars and planners
- Paperwork that has exceeded the mandatory tax period
- Duplicate office supplies
- Craft tools and gadgets you don’t use
- Old textbooks and reference books
- Redundant technology – floppy discs, cassettes, VHS
- Phone books
- Items from a previous job you won’t need
- Old technology you have upgraded (computers, cameras, monitors etc)
- Orphaned cords & plugs
- Dried out glue
- Extra buttons
- Personalised business stationery with out-of-date information
Other Things You Can Get Rid Of Quickly
This list is the stuff that may not have a specific home in your house but certainly still benefits from a cleanout. Think about where other unwanted items might be hiding in your house while you’re at it!
- Junk mail
- Old travel brochures
- Broken luggage
- Excess luggage or backpacks
- Birthday and Christmas cards from previous years
- Unwanted printed photographs
- X-rays and ultrasounds
- Unused picture frames
- Unused keyrings
- Unused instruments
- Novelty gifts you don’t use
- Unwanted travel souvenirs
- Duplicate items that you don’t really need
- Random things at the bottom of your handbag
Things That Need To Be Discarded Safely
There are certain things in our home and backyard that we may have been meaning to get rid of for years, but it isn’t as simple as throwing them in the bin and saying farewell.
Some items we have are not so easily disposed of. This includes chemicals or anything that might have an explosive warning.
In these cases, determine the items you have that you want to get rid of, then contact or check our local council area website for how to dispose of such items.
Here are some examples of items you will need to dispose of safely:
- Gas bottles – Check with your local council on the safe disposal of gas cylinders.
- Tubs or cans of paint – If you dry the paint out first, it can be disposed of in the trash.
- Lawn & cleaning chemicals – Check with your local council for disposal options.
- Car batteries – There are usually several options within your local community to dispose of car and other household batteries. Check the Planet Ark Recycling website for locations in Australia.
- Old cell phones – If you have an old cell phone that is no longer working and not worth selling, most telecommunication companies have a mobile phone recycling option. Apple also provides recycling for all of its old products.
YOU DID IT! YOU MADE IT TO THE BOTTOM OF THE LIST!
It’s a huge list of things to throw away and imagine the impact throwing out unwanted items from your home will have on your clutter. This is a fast way to declutter your home and get a quick win, without needing a lot of time.
Once your decluttering is done, this is a great time to deep clean your home! Here are my best cleaning tips and resources to help you get your house spotless:
- How to create a cleaning schedule that works
- Room by room guide to deep clean your home
- Gross things you’re forgetting to clean
- Cleaning hacks you want to know
- Tips to reduce cleaning time at home
- Fun cleaning games that make your kids want to help
- DIY homemaking binder
- Items you need to replace in your home
- Ways you can make cleaning more fun
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