When hiring a maid service, you probably want to get the most out of your cleanings. Cleaning a cluttered home does not get as big of results as cleaning a clutter-free space. When a home is clear of clutter more cleaning can be accomplished in your service window and your home will feel cleaner without all the stuff piled around your home. We all fall victim to keeping clutter in our homes but with these questions you can better assess the items in your home and remove the things you no longer need or love.

First, when was the last time you used it?

We all have items in our closets, kitchens and bathrooms that we hold on to even though we don’t use them, like the crimping iron you have shoved in your bathroom or the fondue pot in your pantry. A lot of these items we move from home to home or shove further back in the cupboards rather than addressing the fact that we simply don’t use them. If you haven’t used an item in a year it may be time to consider parting ways with it.

Next, if you haven’t used it, do you still want to keep it?

Not everything is black and white when it comes to items in our homes. If you have things in your home that you haven’t used in a year, but you still love or are attached to you can choose to keep them. Remember you can have the item or the space but you cannot have both. It’s easier for your house keeper to clean an area with less stuff!

Are you keeping an item out of obligation?

Some items are important to us because of sentimental value but some we keep because we feel obligated. Items like gifts we never really used, mementos of past relationships, childhood favorites and other items may be things we feel obligated to keep but don’t truly love. When it comes to sentimental items you shouldn’t keep things out of obligation.

Do I need this item, or do I have another tool to do the same job?

Do you need a mandoline slicer in the kitchen when you have a nice set of knives? What about the three Swiffers and brooms you have? Do you really need three sizes of curling irons? When you examine all the items in your home that can accomplish the same job you can eliminate clutter without getting rid of any of your favorite items.

Do you own duplicates of an item?

Obviously, some items in our homes we need duplicates of like towels, plates, cups and other basics but there are a lot of things we don’t need duplicates of. Eliminating extra pasta strainers, brooms, hair brushes or other items. By eliminating the duplicates, you will have a much tidier and open space.

Finally, are you keeping a broken item in hopes you will one day fix it?

While some items may be worth fixing there are plenty of items that are not worth holding on to. Broken tea cups, computers, vases and other items are likely to never be fixable or usable again. Some bigger or more expensive items may be worth fixing but addressing this sooner rather than later can help to prevent them from becoming one more piece of clutter in your home.

Set aside some time to declutter your home before your maid service comes, and you will be shocked by how much cleaner your home feels. You will also feel great about dropping the items you have removed from your home off to a charity where other people can benefit from them.