1. Where are these containers going to be stored?

Containers in the living room are much different than those you would store in a closet or garage. Rattan baskets and containers in beautiful colors are wonderful for the common areas of your home. Clear plastic bins are what I recommend for closets and garages.

2. What are you storing in the containers?

Does the container need to be insect or moisture proof? If so, only choose containers with tightly shutting lids and no air ventilation holes in them. Be sure to double check, as most containers that are not plastic do not have tightly sealing lids. If you are storing sweaters or delicate fabrics, be sure that the container zippers shut to prevent moths or other insects from getting in.

3. How many of the same container do you need?

Before buying containers, you must sort your items to determine what the volume is of whatever you are planning to store. You may be able to store 12 sweaters in 1 container, but will they be completely packed in there so that when you take them out in a few months that everything is wrinkled?

4. How many containers can fit in the 1 location you have chosen to store the items?

OK, you have chosen the location, the container, and have determined exactly how much of that particular item you want to keep. Now, measure and decide exactly how many of the containers will fit in that location.

5. When and where will you purchase the containers?

Finally, now is the time to purchase the containers. You must first determine where the containers are being store, what you want to store in them, how many you will need and how will they all fit in that one location. Enjoy putting your neatly organized items into your containers to maximize your storage capacity as well as preserve the value of the items you are storing!

Shannon McGinnis, CPO®, Certified Professional Organizer
Author of The 10-Minute Tidy: 108 Ways to Organize Your Home Quickly
www.organized4success.com, www.10minutetidy.com

Author's Bio: 

Shannon McGinnis is a natural born organizer. She has over 25 years of experience clearing clutter and creating organizational systems as well as being the only Certified Professional Organizer in Santa Cruz, California. Shannon enjoys helping her clients feel empowered while creating a more supportive and balanced environment in their homes and offices. She offers confidential, non-judgmental sessions, classes andworkshops on a wide variety of organizational topics. Shannon’s first book, The 10-Minute Tidy: 108 Ways to Organize Your Home Quickly has been a huge success across the country. She is available for booksignings and speaking engagements.