Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

Ask the Organizer: Tackling Your Clutter Quandaries

Preparing your house for holiday guests can mean the difference between these two rooms!
Preparing your house for holiday guests can mean the difference between these two rooms!

Each year my family comes to visit for the holidays and my house becomes a disaster zone.  Do you have suggestions on how to manage the mess?

The reality of having holiday guests in your home is that it will cause more of a mess.  Your floors will get dirty faster from increased foot traffic and your house will be cluttered with the additional belongings of you guests.  To some extent you have to let go of that fact that your home will not be in tip-top shape.  But this period will only last for a precise time and your house will go back to its normal order when guests inevitably leave.  In the meantime, there are strategies you can use to assist your visitors with maintaining order.

When guests arrive, present your home in the fashion you want to keep it so they have an idea of how you organize your space.  This may give some guests a clue, but do realize that many people are innocently oblivious to matters of the home.

Make sure to show your guests where they can keep their luggage.  If you have extra empty drawers or space in the closet, let them know.  Keep an empty basket in your guests’ bathroom so they have a place to keep their toiletries.  Show visitors where they can keep their purses, coats and other accessories if you have a designated space for these items.  Place a tray in each bedroom where guests can keep their chargers, keys, wallets, and other loose items.

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Mary Bell
Mary Bell
Mary Bell is a professional organizer and space planner in the Larchmont area. Her new advice column, Ask the Organizer, will be featured once a month in the Larchmont Buzz. Submit your organizing questions to [email protected]. You can view her website to learn more information about her business, Spruce at

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