Boost relationships by busting clutter

Published: Sunday 25th January 2015 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Household clutter is triggering domestic rows throughout the region and even causing some couples to split up for good, new research is suggesting.

It seems that the typical couple argues 32 times each year about the clutter in their homes with one in 10 of them going on to break up over the issue.

The study carried out by shows that during the first year of living together couples do make an effort to get rid of some of their possessions.

Men, the research suggests, are more likely to ditch their sports equipment while women are more apt to throw out sentimental items to make space in their new home.

Relationship psychologist Anjula Mutanda says: “Inviting someone to live with you can feel a bit like being invaded by someone else’s belongings, and this can result in subconscious ‘space guarding’, where you use your possessions to mark out your territory.

“Any perceived violation of this by your partner can cause tensions – instead, try to negotiate as much as possible on what stays and goes, and be prepared to compromise.”

But experts have now issued a set of tips to couples who want to hold on to both their domestic harmony and all their possessions.

They are advising a room-by-room approach to de-cluttering, something they say will make the home look better and put an end to the clutter-based bickering.

Alison Cork, founder of , the online interiors company, says there’s no better place to start than in the hall.

She says: “Nothing’s guaranteed to put me in a bad mood more than opening the front door of my house to be greeted by a tangle of school bags, boots and discarded coats left by my sons.

“A large trunk’s proved the ideal hiding place. They just have to lift the lid and drop, and it makes a useful seat.”

Claire Hornby, ‘s creative stylist, meanwhile, wants to see people making more of an effort in their living rooms.

Giving everything its place, she says, will bring order to the room and avoid arguments caused by tripping over discarded toys or clothes.

She says: “Gone are the days of storing items behind closed doors, as the trend for open shelving is quickly becoming a favourite. This style makes spaces feel more homely.

“Exposed display works especially well if you want to highlight striking collections as a focal point, and it has the added advantage that you will quickly notice if surfaces are becoming over-crowded.”

When it comes to the kitchen Tony McCarthy, of , says particular effort is needed to take advantage of every inch of space.

He says: “We seem to cram more and more in our kitchens nowadays, as people generally have more crockery thanks to the advent of dishwashers, and that coupled with the growth of hi-tech gadgets, from coffee makers to juicers, means storage is key.

“If you’re planning a kitchen, make a list of all the items you need to store, and always allow for more space than you think you need.”

Tall larder storage units, slim cupboards, drawer dividers, deep pan drawers and using baskets inside cupboards to avoid chaotic clutter and all well worth considering, he adds.

The bathroom is another place where the space should be enhanced despite usually being the smallest room in the house, says Sarah Holey, marketing manager for bathroom specialists Laufen.

She says while a bathroom should be calm and relaxing many people make the mistake of incorporating storage solutions that make it feel even more cramped.

Copyright Press Association 2015

Published: Sunday 25th January 2015 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Local business search