One of the latest hits on Netflix is the new series, “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.” Inspired by the host’s first book, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” the show follows families and individuals as Kondo helps them declutter their space. The show has caused millions to consider parting with many of their belongings. While this certainly helps to create a tidier, more organized home, could it make you more frugal overall? Find out how Kondo’s strategies are helpful for those who want to save money.
Get Rid of Unnecessary Possessions
Slimming down your collections of clothing, books, papers, kitchen utensils and other odds and ends around the house is the heart of the KonMari Method. Marie Kondo recommends that people ask themselves which items “spark joy” when they sort through all their possessions. If something doesn’t bring you joy, you should part with it.
Of course, some things you may need to keep anyways. A pair of long underwear might not necessarily make you joyful, for example, but if you need these layers frequently during colder months, you should obviously hang on to them.
By getting rid of the things that don’t serve a purpose or don’t bring you joy, you can see more clearly what things you actually do want in your home. Perhaps you’ll realize that you don’t use a lot of the dresses you buy or that you don’t really have a use for three different types of spatulas. When you’re tempted to buy these things in the future, you’ll remember that they only ended up being tossed out or donated in the long run and avoid making a wasteful purchase.
Maybe you’ll find that slimming down your book collection is easier than you thought. This could cause you to place less value on buying books and instead visit the library to find new things to read. You’ll save money by acknowledging that actually owning the books you read isn’t all that important to you after all.
With a more minimalist approach to your possessions, you’ll be able to stick to a more frugal lifestyle and put your money to better use by avoiding unnecessary purchases.
Use Up Less Storage Space
For most people, the biggest line item in their monthly budget is their housing cost. And because the bigger the house, the more it costs, it pays to streamline your stuff in order to use less storage space. By trimming down your possessions to only those you actually want, you won’t need as large of a space to live. For homeowners, that could mean downsizing to a smaller house or using a former storage space for something more useful, like a guest room or a craft room. For renters, that could mean getting rid of their storage unit and saving money on the rental every month. You get a better value for your housing costs when you don’t waste a big chunk on space that’s storing things you’ll never use.
It’s worth noting and Marie Kondo does recommend storing things in an organized manner. A big part of her tidying up method revolves around using containers of various sizes to wrangle all the objects you end up keeping. However, you definitely do not need to use overpriced, matching storage bins in order to achieve this level of organization. In fact, Kondo recommends using random boxes you might have lying around the house or even shipping boxes you get in the mail. Using items you already have to organize your stuff prevents you from accumulating more possessions and spending even more money just to get a tidy home.
Visit the Thrift Store
Even if you change your shopping habits after following the KonMari method, you still need to buy things every once in a while. Fortunately, now is one of the very best times to save on used items at the thrift store. Due to the Netflix show’s popularity, there’s been a “KonMari effect” at everything from thrift stores and used book stores to resale websites like Craigslist and Poshmark and apps like LetGo and OfferUp. Many stores are reporting a huge influx of items being donated due to people tidying up in response to the TV show.
If you need furniture, clothing, shoes, books, or any other items, try checking out your local thrift stores first. You may find plenty of items in excellent condition that have been recently donated, helping you to save significantly compared to buying something new and creating less waste to boot.
As you can see, the KonMari Method is about more than just making your home less cluttered. When you use this method, you’ll gain a new appreciation for the things you have and realize which purchases are simply not worthwhile to you. It’s a great way to approach a frugal lifestyle, especially if you also want to be a mindful consumer.