The living room is usually the first place that people get to see once they enter your home. A clean and tastefully-decorated living room in your condo gives a good impression of how the rest of the house is maintained. Because it’s a part of the house where family members get together to play games, watch TV, or entertain guests, this means the living room tends to get messy and cluttered often.
Maintaining the order and cleanliness of your condo’s living room is important if you want to maintain the relaxing environment that this part of the house is supposed to have. Vicky Silverthorn, founder of the professional decluttering company called You Need a Vicky, says, “The living room should be a tranquil space, so it’s important to get rid of the things you don’t need to bring the zen back into your evenings.”
Keeping the condo living room free of clutter is challenging, however. According to Rebecca Tucker, interior designer and co-director of Suna Interior Design, “Your living room is probably the most frequented room in your home. And – particularly if you have children – it’s only a matter of time before things start to accumulate.”
As daunting as the idea can be, it’s possible to maintain the orderliness of your condo’s living room even if you don’t have a personal maid to watch over the cleanliness of the house. In designing your condo living room, you also need to consider how to minimize unnecessary items. The trick is to identify which stuff you should be keeping off your living room and finding good storage for these items. Here’s a list of some of the insignificant things you still keep in your condo room, which you need to put somewhere else.
Old magazines and newspapers
These stacks of old reading material belong to the basement. In your case, since you’re living in a condo, you’re better off disposing newspapers and magazines permanently. Keep only current copies and stack them neatly. If you’re a collector, consider cutting out favorite covers and clippings then have them framed for display. You can also put them in a scrapbook or clear book.
It’s understandable to have toys in the living room if you’re using the space as a nursery or playroom while you watch over your kid during the day. But when night comes and the kids are tucked safely in bed, you need to put the room in order for the grownups to relax in. Keep the toys in a chest or basket so you can easily move them from one room to another when necessary.
Amazingly, there are condo owners who actually store their washing piles in the living room, for everyone to see. Unsightly piles of dirty clothes have no place in your living room and should be stored in a cupboard or other discreet places.
Leftovers and dirty dishes
So the pizza party extended into the wee hours and now you’re too tired to clean the mess. This can be excused occasionally, but you shouldn’t make a habit of leaving food and soiled plates in the living room. Aside from the obvious eyesore, this can encourage rats, ants, and cockroaches to infest your condo.
Random items on the coffee table
We’ve gotten used to putting mobile phones, keys, mail, and other random stuff on the coffee table. The amount of small items can multiply over time and you may find yourself with a cluttered coffee table. Make a habit of clearing up the coffee table regularly and putting these small items in their rightful places.
Coats, shoes, and bags
Just like the keys and mail, a lot of us have the habit of leaving our coats, bags, and shoes in the living room, particularly on the sofa, as soon as we get through our living room door. This is okay as long as you put them away after you’ve settled in. There should be appropriate storage places for these items.
Cables and wires
A bunch of tangled wires is one of the most common eyesores that one can encounter in a house, especially in the living room. If you’re not the type to remove and unplug cables every time you use it, you can make use of clever methods to hide unsightly wires from sight. Use twist wires to put cables in order or you can use cable covers to conceal the web of wires under the table.
CD and DVD cases
Look, we can’t convince an avid music and movie collector to ditch his prized CDs and DVDs. What we can suggest is to store the discs in a file case to keep the collection in one place. If parting with the cases is still a painful idea, then a great alternative is to store them in chests, plastic boxes, or concealed cupboards.
No matter how gorgeous the bouquet is, you will have to learn to let it go when it dries up and wilts. Dead petals get shriveled up and fall to the table or floor. A dried-up bunch is also a proven dust magnet. If you still want to keep the flowers, just take them off the vase, cut them off, then place the dried petals and leaves in a container.
Controlling the amount of furniture is one frugal way to set-up your home. This is indeed necessary especially if you’re living in the limited spaces of a condo. While it’s great to have lots of cabinets, shelves, and boxes for storage, there is such a thing as too much furniture. To address this problem, you need to get rid of excess stuff in your home like clothes, shoes, books, and toys. This eliminates the need for extra drawers and cabinets, which you can donate or sell.
The rules in keeping the condo living room clutter-free apply to other parts of the house as well. The important thing here is to identify which household and personal items are worth keeping and which ones should be disposed. For the items you decide to keep, you should make it a habit to store them in their rightful places to make the rooms look clean and organized. Preserve the orderliness of your condo to make it a relaxing place for you and your family.