Keep Flat Surfaces Clutter-free
Papers, books, brochures and magazines tend to accumulate on flat surfaces all around the house, and the family room is no different. “You need a household information center, and the family room may be where that happens,” says Julie Morgenstern, author of Organizing from the Inside Out. In fact, the family room is often more cluttered because it’s a central gathering place in the house. A two drawer lateral file is Morgenstern’s ideal recommendation – on average she says that’s really how much paper it takes to run a home. If you don’t have the floor space, a stackable file cart will do.
Make a quick sweep of all flat surfaces by piling papers in a bin, then sorting and purging as necessary. Take a vow, and get your family to follow it, to put papers in files rather than on the coffee table.
Control Out-of-Control Cords
Until the world goes wireless, we’ll forever be stuck with tangled cables behind our entertainment centers. Fortunately, there are several options for taming cords in the family room. The most attractive is the slim Cableyoyo. It neatly coils up to six feet of cord and comes with an adhesive backing that sticks onto nearly any surface. A cable caddy usually sticks onto a desktop (or behind the TV console) and has a space for several cables to clamp into. Your cords will still dangle freely, however, so a cable zipper, which encloses all the cables in a tube, might be the best bet.