13 Common Clutter Hotspots In Your Home & How You Can Fix Them


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We all have clutter hotspots in our home – it’s a fact of life. They are those areas that always seem messy – no matter what you do with them. Here are 13 of the most common clutter magnets that you may well need to tackle in your space – and some tips and inspiration for each one. They are bound to have you clutter free before you know it.

13 Clutter Hotspots And How To Fix Them For Good

There are a LOT of surfaces and areas in our home that have the potential to collect clutter.

Clutter hotspots, clutter magnets – whatever you call them – they are a potential stress in our homes that we could do without.

And they tend to be the same for most of us – Why?

Because they all have one of two things in common: –

  1. They are flat and empty surfaces that are handy for our every day lives – and they have space to put things down on them really easily
  2. They are hidden away and less used areas – so we can shove things into there and not have to think about them so much

And yes – sometimes it really IS easier to leave things out on surfaces or stuff them away – because they are dealt with quickly.

But are they, really?

The clutter that they create can play on our minds so much, that they can become a real stress in our homes.

Not only that, but it also adds to the time it takes to do our homemaking: –

  • It increases the time it takes to clean everything (think about taking it all off, cleaning the surface, cleaning each item, and then putting it all back).
  • It means we spend more time looking for things because they don’t have a definite place – they’ve just been put down wherever’s easiest there and then.

So – today I wanted to look at some of the major Clutter Hotspots in our homes – and give you a few ideas and tricks as to how to deal with them all.

I hope they help – whatever you’re having issues with in the list!

Clutter Quote - In a sense, clutter is...

#1 – Kitchen work surfaces

There are usually a LOT of flat surfaces in a kitchen – just ready and waiting to be filled! – and when we use them multiple times a day for food prep and eating – then they are bound to start collecting things…

Ways to declutter: –

  • Make sure your cupboards are all easy to get things in and out of – if we leave them out it’s usually because it’s easier than putting them away or getting them out each time. You are more likely to put things away when it’s easy to do so.
  • Keep items near to where you use them – so they are stored away but still handy.
  • Make sure only what you truly need on a daily basis is left out all the time, and tidy as you go when it comes to each and every mealtime.
White kitchen, chrome oven, and white walls

#2 – Hall table

We come and go multiple times each day – and have bags/coats/shoes and general stuff with us when we do so. As such, it stands to reason that little by little this all mounts up.

The hall table is a particular hot spot because it’s right at hand level – and is easy to put all those little bits and bobs that we bring in.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Have storage pots/trays for collecting the little things in a gathered way. This is great for keys and coins that we commonly empty out of our pockets when we walk through the door.
  • Use hooks by the door for bags and coats – that’s easier than dumping them on the floor or the table!
  • Use a hall table that has storage in it – and use specifically for those things that tend to pile up. For example, we have a drawer each in our hall table for our hats and gloves, we have a cupboard for bags, and the drawers are for things like keys, postage supplies etc….
Black sideboard in a hallway

#3 – Dressing Table

Full of toiletries, hair products, perfumes etc… – and probably multiple choices of each with all the special offers (buy 2 get one free) we have in the shops for these things.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Use minimal products – decide on what you ACTUALLY need and use, and stick to these only. This will immediately lessen what’s kept on the surface and make it easier to find what you need.
  • Use a dressing table with storage drawers – so you can hide things away more often.
  • Add containers to the top of the dressing table to keep everything together.

#4 – Bedside table

Another HUGE clutter hotspot – and one that I specifically struggle with at times….

It’s all too easy to bring a few things up to bed with you and leave them on the bedside table for the next morning – not to mention all the bits we have for our bedtime routines…

There are medicines, sprays, hand cream, drinks, jewellery, books, phone, kindle etc…. – usually the things we need for the last minutes of the day when we are undressing and/or getting ready for bed.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Use a tray. Having a small tray on the bedside table will mean that you have a distinct place to put everything – and it keeps it looking neat. It’s also easier to clean because you can simply life the tray off and wipe underneath.
  • Make the bedside table top drawer the place to put all those things you need each night – moving them out of the way but still just as easy to grab.
  • Create more storage by using Chests of Drawers rather than bedside tables next to your bed.
Grey bedside table, greay wallpaper and white bedding in a bedroom

#5 – Food cupboards

One of those places that we just buy things and add to the chaos. Food shopping takes time – and the last part is to put it away, so this is the place we often rush through to get to the finish line.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Have a place in the cupboards for each type of food – that way you know what you have, you’re less likely to buy more and add to the clutter, and you can see what you have more easily. You then have a quick place to put them away when you DO buy new ones.
  • Meal plan based on what you already have in your cupboards, so you start to use what you have already.
  • Declutter all the out of date food – and use up those items that are due to go out of date shortly.
  • Remove all the packaging before you put food away – as packaging takes up more room.

#6 – Freezer

Just as with the food cupboards – the freezer (especially a chest freezer) can easily become a clutter hotspot because we just keep adding and adding to it all.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Use a freezer inventory – and list what you have in there. That way you can ensure you don’t buy more and add to the clutter – and that you use things up before they go bad. There’s a freezer inventory in the Food and meals section of the Home File that’s perfect for this job!

#7 – Wardrobe

Another place that we use daily – that can be cluttered really quickly if we don’t tidy up each day when we undress and dress.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Have a capsule wardrobe – stop buying more clothes, and make the clothes you have work harder for you. The less you have, the less clutter you’ll have automatically.
  • Store your out of season clothes elsewhere. If you have space, this can be a great idea, because you will make more room for what you’re currently wearing, and ensure that they are easier to get and put away each day.
Clothes on a clothes rail

#8 – Window sills

A lovely flat surface that’s just waiting for extra bits and bobs to be added to it!

Ways to declutter: –

  • Don’t have ANYTHING on window sills if you can. Use the view out of the window to look at rather than accessories. This will ensure they stay clutter free, make it easier to clean, AND ensure they don’t get the way of window dressings or open windows and the breeze.
White room with shutters

#9 – Garage

If you have a garage (or shed) they can be places that stuff goes before it leaves the house. As such we shove things there, and unless we have a system to get them out of the house fully, they can accumulate quickly….

Ways to declutter: –

  • Sort your garage and make it feel like a proper storage space / room. If you have a better looking space then you’re less likely to want to clutter it up.
  • Take clutter out of the space as often as you can. A regular trip to the dump/tipis ideal to stay on top of things.
  • Use your garage for the car! – if you have a car, then start parking in the garage because if your car is there, you can’t add clutter to it as easily.

#10 – Coffee table

This is in the centre of the room, and can house all those bits we use for our daily lives. Things like remote controls, books, candles, coasters etc…..

Ways to declutter: –

  • Use a storage coffee table so you can house all the things you DO need in that space, but hidden away
  • Have baskets for things like remote controls – to contain them so they don’t start spreading all over the place
  • Use the space for display items only – flowers/plant/candles – and clear each day of the stuff that you have used.
Living room with greenery and tray on ottoman

#11 – Handbag

Where all receipts, coins, medicine, keys, pens, paper, etc… go to live and be forgotten at the bottom!

Ways to declutter: –

  • Use a handbag organiser which contains everything – so you can simply lift it all out and the bag will stay clean and tidy
  • Empty your bag each and every day – so there is no build up allowed
White handbag with brown handles

#12 – By the sink

Whether it be in the bathroom (toothbrushes, toiletries etc…) or in the kitchen (cloths, soap, crockery etc…) – the sink can be a HUGE clutter magnet.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Have a container for the items that DO need to be out ready to use
  • Add then into a nearby shelf or drawer
Sink in a beige bathroom

#13 – Living room / Bedroom / Playroom floor (toys)

Toys are a crazy clutter object in homes with children. They get EVERYWHERE!

And although it’s lovely to have them for your children to play with – it’s not great when you want to keep a tidy home.

Ways to declutter: –

  • Use a large box / basket / trunk in each room so that the kids can easily grab what they want – and throw each toy back in when finished each day (it also makes it easier for them to learn putting things away).
  • Limit the number of toys that are available to kids at any one time – so things can’t build up. It works really well to rotate what you give them – and also makes it more interesting for them to have ‘new’ items regularly.
13 Common Clutter Hotspots In Your Home & How You Can Fix Them - 791 clutter hotspot toys
13 Clutter Hotspots And How To Fix Them For Good

There are some very key things that can be done to clear those clutter hotspots, and help them to stay that way – and these tips can make all the difference: –

  • Create a place for everything in your house – so that you know where they go and use it. This place may be a drawer. a shelf, or a container that’s left out, but means that things are still kept tidy.
  • Make this place easy to use – just as easy as the nearest clutter hotspot.
  • Clear the hotspot once and for all if you can – or declutter as much as possible.
  • Don’t allow anything back on there – because once one thing gets put on, it’s easy to start a pile again! If you DO have things on/in there, then ensure that ONLY THOSE STAY THERE.
  • Scan each room / area once a day so you get used to tidying things that have been left out

Doing all these things will mean that you will suddenly have a plan for those clutter hotspots, and they will be a thing of the past.


So, why not pick the area that you are struggling with the most (I’m sure one of these 13 things stuck out to you more as you read the post), and use the specific tips to tackle that area this week.

You’ll feel free-er, and clutter free – and what could be better than that!

This article was written by Chrissy

Hi - I'm Chrissy... Having run my own business for 12 years as a Professional Organiser and Interior Designer, I know what works (and what doesn't!) when it comes to setting up a home that works both functionally and aesthetically. Now you can mostly find me in a coffee shop or at home, working full time on (which I setup back in 2011) sharing all my tips and ideas. My mission is to help you create a home that you love to live in every day...


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