Now that Daylight Savings is here and we have an extra hour of evening light up our sleeves, it’s a great time to think about making sure that our homes are ready for all of the glories of long, balmy summer days.

Think about pruning what you don’t need

Just like with gardening, pruning is a fantastic way of removing clutter from the home and creating more space for enjoyment and peace-of-mind. Some people find the idea overwhelming but the key is chipping away, one room at a time. There’s no better time to start like the present.

Human beings tend to be hoarders by nature and we find it hard to pass on things we’ve held on to for a while or to throw them away. There a lots of fantastic charities that rely on donations from the public – such as Dove Stores – that fund local hospices, The Salvation Army, Women’s Refuge, St Vincent De Paul, the SPCA – some will even pick up furniture – so long as it’s in good condition.

“Being organised at the beginning will put the whole project on the right path and don’t be burdened by thinking of the whole house initially – consider one room and then the next.”

Imagining how a room may look when of all the things that don’t need to be there are removed is a fun motivation to get started. My tip would be to get an assortment of bags or boxes ready for things that need to be either thrown away or recycled, passed on to a charity – or family and friends, or put aside for storage. There may also be items that could generate some cash on Trademe. You will also find things that you may well have forgotten about – that can be recycled to new uses.

Being organised at the beginning will put the whole project on the right path and don’t be burdened by thinking of the whole house initially – consider one room and then the next.

“Often we convince ourselves we are too busy to tackle projects that seem like a lot of work but the truth is they are incredibly rewarding and can transform crowded cluttered spaces into something entirely new.”

Start in a bedroom and a closet closet or wardrobe and ask yourself, “would I ever wear this again?” “Why am I holding on to it?” Be discerning but a little but harsh as well. There really is no need for a collection of cardigans or bell-bottom pants that may have been all the rage a few decades ago but haven’t been worn since Helen Clark was the prime minister. Better that someone else can make use of them, than they clutter up space that could be used to much greater effect.

Often we convince ourselves we are too busy to tackle projects that seem like a lot of work but the truth is they are incredibly rewarding and can transform crowded cluttered spaces into something entirely new. Pruning also allows for greater access to clean and remove years of built up dust – and spider webs – behind wardrobes, closets and chests of drawers. It is the first step to creating space, cleaning it thoroughly and then transforming it.

If the notion of creating space by pruning is too daunting – then enlist a partner in crime – they very often supply the motivation and also the input about what to do with things that you may be wary to let go of.  Making the project fun will make it a lot easier and also more rewarding – so get cracking!