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Check these off your list

Check these off your list
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When it comes to chores, it’s so easy to just say you’ll do it later, or you’ll do it when you really need to. But chances are, if you have a habit of doing this, you find yourself scrambling to complete the task last-minute. These to-do-list items don’t take you much time, but they’ll be a huge weight off your mind and will save you time and stress in the future.

On the other hand, learn the household chores that are actually a waste of time.

Make a dentist appointment

Make a dentist appointment
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“When you avoid seeing the dentist on a regular basis, minor conditions grow into major issues. For example, a small cavity develops and grows until you end up with an abscess. The abscess will take considerably more time and money to fix than the cavity, not to mention the pain. I always emphasise to my clients that it’s just as important to do ‘health chores’ as it is house chores.” —Alice Price, certified professional organiser and coach.

Book a holiday

Book a holiday
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“We tend to put off big projects, like planning a vacation, because they take more than one step to complete and need to be managed over a long period of time. But procrastinating may mean you do a sub-par job or, worse, it doesn’t happen at all. Instead of feeling overwhelmed, do some planning and scheduling. Break down a project into small tasks that can be done fairly quickly. Research locations online one day; then gather supplies another day. Mapping out a plan and scheduling time to do each step will help you save time and money and get the vacation you really want.” —Janet Schiesl, certified professional organiser and owner of Basic Organisation.

Deep-clean your fridge

Deep-clean your fridge
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“A lot of my clients struggle with productivity and procrastination, especially in the home. One household chore I’ve found that helps clear some mental and physical space is to clean out the fridge. Clean up little spills as you go but once a year make time to clean it out top to bottom. If that sounds too overwhelming, think about the very first thing you need to do to get started rather than the entire chore. One of my favourite mantras is ‘If it’s difficult to get started, the first step is too big.’” —Joel Minden, PhD, Clinical Psychologist.

File important papers right away

File important papers right away
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“People defer decisions on paperwork because they don’t know where to put a bill, an office memo, or a recipe, so it ends up in a pile and you can never find anything when you need it. Creating a system that’s easy to maintain means that it will be, well, easy! You’re much more likely to put something away if you know where it goes than if you feel like you have to figure out where it goes each time, so develop a fool-proof filing system—and use it.” —Erin Strasen, professional organiser and owner of Placed by Erin.

Check out these 20 things professional organisers never do in their own homes.

Install a financial app on your phone – and use it

Install a financial app on your phone – and use it
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“It’s easy to procrastinate dealing with finances but this is how people get in thousands of dollars of debt and lose control of their financial health. Keep an app on your phone such as Mint or LearnVest, know your net worth, and stay on top of your daily spending habits and budgeting plans. It only takes a few minutes a day but letting this get out of control can cost thousands in interest payments, late charges, unused and unnecessarily purchased items as well as a lowered credit score which in worst cases, can prevent you from getting jobs, homes and transportation.” —Beth Derrick, life coach at Live Good, Live Well.

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Back up your digital photos

Back up your digital photos
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“Upload your pictures to your computer or a cloud service at least once a month. Even better, take a minute to change the names of the photos to something more meaningful. Or organise them into folders labelled with the date and event (like Sep 2020 Kim birthday). You can go a step further by right-clicking the photo and selecting properties. This menu option will allow you to add keywords or names to an image making it easier to search for specific images later. Making backups will save time and money later on and also give you peace of mind.” —Cheri Warnock, Photo Organiser and owner of Cherish Your Photos.

Squeegee your shower

Squeegee your shower
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“If you have a walk-in shower, get a squeegee and use it to remove excess moisture from any windows and walls. It only takes 30 seconds and will do wonders to prevent mildew and soap buildup. If you have a shower/tub, wipe down the walls and tub (along with the shower curtain) after each use. These little preventative measures will save you from having to do a massive shower scrub later on.” —Marty Basher, home organisation expert.

Here are 22 bathroom mistakes you never knew you made. 

Set up auto-pay for bills

Set up auto-pay for bills
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“Take the time to set up auto-pay for all the bills you can; then you don’t have to worry about being late and paying fees and it will improve your credit score. If you can’t do auto-pay, schedule a time one night a week to pay bills. Have a ‘bill paying’ drawer or basket that has envelopes, stamps, a pen, chequebook, everything you need to pay bills.” —Felice Cohen, professional organiser, author, motivational speaker.

Here are 40+ things homeowners aren’t doing but need to. 

Sort your mail at the recycling bin

Sort your mail at the recycling bin
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“Before you even put the mail down on the counter, take a quick look at each piece quickly. If you know you don’t want the catalogue, flyer, advertisement or credit card offer, drop it in the recycle bin or bin straightaway. Do not put them down and then let these junk items join the rest of the pile of mail. Recycling as the mail comes in saves you time because you won’t be looking at things twice. Even better, sort it over the outside garbage can so you won’t have to take it out again.” —Diane N. Quintana, certified professional organiser.

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