Handling the holiday gift influx

Let’s be honest, many of us get a lot of stuff around Christmas time. Some of it we may be super excited about and some of it, like that bag of socks, is a bit less welcome. Either way, while new stuff is great, it usually means that we need to do something with our old stuff to make room for everything. Here’s some ideas for how to organize and store your things when Christmas gifts require you to consolidate!

1) Boxes.

Cardboard boxes are a great way to organize your stuff in a categorized, stackable way. Even better, you can pick up boxes for cheap at your local mailing or moving store. When sealed up with packing tape, boxes can be a great way to keep items safe and clean, even for a long time. Just use a permanent marker to jot down what’s in each box so you don’t forget! Keep in mind, cardboard boxes are not always the most durable, particularly if exposed to water or moisture. So, if you’re storing things in your garage or a leaky basement, consider using a storage tub or plastic box. These can typically be found at home improvement stores!

2) Storage Facilities.

Unfortunately, sometimes we have so much stuff that we can’t fit it all in our own home! That’s why remote storage facilities exist. Most of them charge a monthly fee and give you access to a secure, garage-like personal space. Some of these storage units can be small, only a couple feet wide and five or so feet deep. Others can be large, the size of a one car garage or bigger. These facilities are secure and generally well maintained, meaning that you won’t have to worry about someone breaking into your stuff or water or bugs getting to it.

3) Selling Locally.

Many of us have things that we don’t use regularly, but are actually somewhat valuable. Examples might be grills, bikes, yard equipment, tools, or old furniture. Each of these things, particularly furniture, can take up a lot of space in our house unnecessarily. If you have well kept things that you don’t use often, consider selling them. There are many sites out there, like craigslist, ebay, nextdoor, or simply social media that allow you to sell things online. Not only does it help you clean out your house, but gives you some cash as well!

4) Donating.

Particularly in the cold months of winter, many shelters are looking for useful donations. If you have extra things laying around, particularly clothes and coats, see if you can find a local shelter or charity that you can donate to. Goodwill will work in a pinch too! And, if you donate something with significant value, like a car, you can often write the donation off on next year’s taxes!