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How To: Declutter Your Home

By Sophie Pettit 2 January 2017
A New Year means a fresh start, and what better way to kick this off than by clearing your clutter and making space in your humble abode? But for many Hong Kongers, knowing how to lighten your load is a mystery, which seems crazy considering more than 90 percent of homes in this city measure less than 690 square feet. So we did the ground work for you to find you the best options. Happy clearing!

Throw a Swishing Party

90604088 They say that one man's trash is another man's treasure, or in this case it may be one girl’s. Spare yourself the hassle of selling your stuff on eBay and throw a clothes swapping party (aka a swishing party) to bid farewell to your unwanted wardrobe. Totally free and surprisingly fun, this is the perfect excuse to have the girls over and crack open a bottle (or two) of wine whilst giving your home a much-needed overhaul. You never know, those pair of jeans you fell out of love with might be the perfect match for your best buddy, and she may even be done with those gorgeous heels you’ve been admiring for months  it’s a win-win. And don’t worry if you don't manage to shift all your unwanted goodies, because any items left over can always be dropped off in the charity collection points dotted around the city. Read on to find out their locations.

Donate Your Goods

169280876 Spend a few minutes rifling through your wardrobe or shelves and you’re bound to find a handful of clothing and other items you no longer need. Instead of leaving these things to gather dust at the back of the wardrobe, they could help generate much-needed funds for charities and make someone in need very happy. Luckily for us, there are several charities across Hong Kong who can help take the clutter off your hands and keep their rails and shelves filled with your lovely donations. Friends of the Earth Reusing and recycling is the name of the game for this environmental charity, which launched the Used Clothes Recycling Programme in 2001. You can drop off items like clothes, shoes, and handbags at collection points dotted throughout the city. Re-wearables are sent to neighbouring countries in need while worn out pieces are resold to places where there is a high demand for clothes. The profits made from the programme are spent to support the FoE(HK) community education works. Since 2001, they have collected more than 4,000 tonnes of used clothes. Add your bundle to the mix and find your nearest collection point. Hong Kong: The Salvation Army The Salvation Army Recycling Programme welcomes both organisation and personal donations of goods such as clothing, books, toys and electrical home appliances. You can donate at any of the Family Stores during opening hours in Hong Kong and Macau. For donations of a large quantity, such as five large bags of clothing, or heavy items such as TV sets, washing machines, refrigerators, and large musical instruments, contact the Recycling Hotline to arrange a pick up service one to two weeks in advance. Some of the donated goods will be directly helping people in need, such as home alone elderly, street sleepers, ex-prisoners, and CSSA recipients. The rest are distributed and sold in Family Stores, and the net proceeds go towards supporting a variety of community programmes. Oxfam Established in 1977, The Oxfam Shop offers a range of second-hand items, from designer label clothing and handbags to CDs, books and home accessories, as well as Fair Trade products. All the income from sales goes towards Oxfam’s humanitarian projects around the world and every cent counts. So give your clutter a second home and head down to the Oxfam Shop located in Central. Click here to find out which donations are suitable and what's not. Crossroads Foundation If you have larger items that you're looking to shift, such as furniture and electrical home appliances, then give Crossroads a call. The charity takes high-quality unwanted goods from Hong Kong and redistributes them to people in need around the world. They accept all sorts of goods, from clothing, books, and bedding, to small and large cooking equipment, electrical appliances, and furniture. All re-wearable goods go into their Global Distribution Program, some of which are distributed to local cases sponsored by the Social Welfare Department, and some are designated to foreign countries such as India, Cameroon, and Fiji. Fill out the online form to describe what you would like to donate, and give them a call to arrange the drop off.

Box it Up

genie If you can’t bring yourself to part with your clutter, but don’t have enough cupboard space to store it, then why not set up a virtual cupboard with online storage company StuffGenie. This is the perfect solution to help you regain valuable square footage in your apartment without chucking stuff you might need again in a few months’ time. The company offers a valet storage-by-the-box system where they deliver plastic storage boxes straight to your door (free of charge). Simply fill them to the brim, tell them when to collect the boxes, and they will take them off your hands and store them securely offsite until you need them again. There are four different sizes of box, ranging from "document box" ($35 per month) to "bulky item" ($100 per month), so however much clutter you have, the virtual storage space is limitless. So get packing those boxes and welcome back that extra floor space just don’t forget you left them there! The genies are also partnering with the Crossroads Foundation to help customers donate unwanted items when they store their goods. Whenever customers call to arrange the door-to-door pick up service when they want to store some boxes away from home, they can also request a box to fill with donated goodies that will be taken away to the Foundation and given to a loving home. Isn't is great to kill two birds with one stone? Visit their website to find out more.
Read more! Check out 5 Tips to Save Money on Hong Kong Public Transport or 20 Fun Things To Do With Your Kids in Hong Kong.

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Sophie is always on the lookout for a great story and her next big adventure and loves nothing more than discovering the city’s hidden gems—and most delicious cocktails. When she’s not exploring new places, she’s off travelling and ticking countries off her bucket list.

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