A hallway can easily become a muddle of coats, shoes and bags, but restoring order is a relatively quick task and very worthwhile in the stress free home stakes.

The first thing to do in the hallway is to get rid of all dumping grounds. Any flat surface will get filled up with whatever people have in their hands when they walk in the door – Keys, coats, hats, paperwork…. The key to an uncluttered hall is to keep everything off the floor, so a wall rack or stand for hats and coats is a must.

Once the hallway is clear, encourage the rest of the family to keep to good habits. Never go upstairs empty handed. Whenever you go up or down, take something with you and put it away. If you have space, assign a basket for  each family members “stuff” and create a seating area to make taking them off in the hallway easier.

8 MUST DO RULES FOR KEEPING YOUR HALLWAY CLUTTER-FREE

1. Remove absolutely everything that doesn’t belong in the hallway. It makes sense not to do this job on a weekend when the family are likely to be at home and passing through, leaving chaos in their wake. Choose a quiet morning – take a day off work if necessary – and time it so that when everyone comes home they’re greeted immediately by the new, tidy space. It will make a strong impression and encourage the family to help keep it that way. End each day with a tidy.

2. Find somewhere to put shoes: a shoe organiser, a storage seat or a box with a lid that doubles as a seat. This is especially useful if you have small children as they can sit on it while you put on coats and boots in the mornings.

3. Find a place elsewhere, perhaps the garage or shed, for bulky items such as wellington boots or sports bags.

4. Designate a box with a lid for gloves, mittens, scarves and hats and make sure all family members know to put their discarded items straight in there when they come home.

5. It’s a good idea to store spare keys in a tin with a lid rather than on a rack, and keep keys you’ll need every day stored out of sight and reach of the door. This stops them being easy prey for burglars.

6. When charity bags come through your letterbox, use them straight away to gather unwanted items and clear the house of clutter quickly.

7. Get into the habit of putting junk mail or advertising leaflets ‘straight into the recycling bin after they arrive. This stops the hallway looking like a postal drop for all types of paper and discarded rubbish!

8. Put aside coats, wellies, socks and boots that your children have outgrown and anything you no longer need. If they’re in decent condition, these can be donated to local nurseries and primary schools who often need spares for wet weather or pop into the charity bags as per the previous point!

Happy de-cluttering

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