Curb Your Clutter: 18 Things to Toss Out Today

Feel like you live in a home taken over by hoarders lately? Reclaim your life (and your space) by taking stock of what you don’t need and subsequently getting rid of it. To help you start making ticks on your list, here are a few items we think you can live without.


1. Unread Books

If you have books on your shelves that you’ve read but don’t plan to read again or, even worse, have never read and don’t plan to read, pack them up and send them off to the local public library. Don’t skip over the cookbooks, either. If you find yourself looking up recipes online more often than you crack open your pile of culinary titles, send those away too.


2. Old Shoes

Most of us wear the same two or three pairs of shoe over and over again. So if you have shoes taking up space in your closet that you just can’t see yourself in anymore, get rid of ‘em in an eco-friendly manner like donating them to a clothing drive.


3. Newspapers/Magazines

Why are you saving these little slices of life? News happens every second of the day; there will always be something fresh to read. Send this stuff to recycling bin and get your daily reports online from now on.


4. Useless Electronics/Cords

In one hand you have electronic devices for which you can’t find the power cords; in the other you have power cords for which you can’t find the devices. Strange how that happens. Free up both hands and list these items on eBay so the stragglers can be whole again with new owners.


5. Tapes & CDs

When was the last time you watched a VHS tape or listened to an actual CD? That’s what we thought. While the VHS tapes are basically useless in any capacity, the CDs, at least, can be sent to the public library.


6. Soiled Undergarments

While we always advocate saving money where you can, there’s never a reason to skimp on undergarments. If you have torn, tattered and dirty socks, undies, and bras, chuck ‘em in the trash and treat yourself to fresh undergarments.


7. Toys

Do your kids have toys that haven’t seen the light of day in a couple years? Make extra space in the playroom by donating those unwanted toys to kids in need.


8. Hair/Beauty Products

When we buy these products, we have high hopes. But sometimes they don’t live up to our expectations, and then they just sit in the bathroom. Go through your inventory and decide what you’ll genuinely use and what you won’t. Whatever you don’t want, throw it away.


9. Dishes

You probably eat off the same few plates and drink from the same few glasses all the time. So why do you need a couple dozen more in your cabinets? You shouldn’t throw everything out, of course — keep enough to serve company — but the excess you should get rid of.


10. Expired Food

Go through your fridge and your pantry and inspect the expiration dates of all the food you have. Whatever is past its prime, toss it. Let this be a lesson to you, however, to make smarter decisions when buying food. Or at least be more conscious of actually eating the food you buy.


11. Hangers

You don’t have to put every hanger you receive from the dry cleaner in the closet. Save a few for guests, but send the rest to the recycling bin.


12. Dated Receipts and Bills

Paper clutter can pile up quickly, and there’s really no reason for it in the digital world in which we live. See the surface of your desk again by going through your dated bills and receipts and recycling whatever you don’t need.


13. Food Containers

How much leftover food do you have? Probably not enough to fill all those containers you’re hoarding. Keep a few; recycle the rest.


14. Tattered Towels

Like clean undergarments, this is an area where you shouldn’t live like a pauper. If your bath towels have been through the ringer, replace them with fresh ones.


15. Expired Medicines

Read this carefully — expired medicine can be dangerous. For starters, medicine loses its potency after its expiration date, which means that you may not be taking the correct dosage. Secondly, drugs also can change in their chemical composition over time, resulting in potentially harmful side effects. These problems are avoidable, however, if you stay on top of your medications and discard anything that has expired.


16. Junk Drawer Items

A junk drawer certainly lives up to its name in that it’s a collection of items for which you have little use. We ask you then, why are you keeping this junk? Go through the drawer, take out what you need and know you’ll use, and find a proper home for it elsewhere. Say goodbye to the rest of the junk.


17. Abundant Luggage

At university, you had one backpack and a suitcase. Now you have nine backpacks, three suitcases, and a duffle. Where are you going?! Unless you plan to live in a van down by the river, you probably only need a couple pieces of luggage. Donate or sell the rest if they’re in good condition.


18. Anything Broken

If it’s broke and you can’t fix it, you don’t need it. To the trash it goes!


Have more ideas on what we can throw out today to cut some of our clutter? Let us know in the comments below.


Mikey Rox is an award-winning blogger and journalist whose work has been published by more than 100 regional, national and international publications. Consistently, Rox writes for the personal finance blogs Wise Bread and Money Crashers and lifestyle sites such as FlyLyf and Swagr. Rox lives in New York City with his husband and their two dogs. Follow his OMG! moments on Twitter @mikeyrox.


Recent Posts