Spare rooms: Room of postponed decisions
April 11, 2021
BY Amy Kennedy
Why spare rooms in houses should be banned.
Spare rooms: Room of postponed decisions
Spare Room of Postponed Decision - The Organising Bee

I think spare rooms in houses should be banned.

What? Yup, you heard me. I think spare rooms in houses should be banned. I think they cause more trouble than they’re worth… at least in my house anyway. 

I like to call spare rooms, the room of postponed decisions. A room where we store the things that we’re not ready to make a decision with today.

Have you ever sorted through your child’s wardrobe? I’m sure you did a great job. You probably got three bags of unneeded clothes out of it. One bag full of clothes that you’re going to donate to the local charity. One bag of really nice stuff that you’re going to give to a friend who’s got a child the same age. One bag filled with items that are genuinely torn, broken or ripped that you say you’re going to put into the bin. But for one reason or another, life happens and you don’t actually get to do it and we put them in the spare room. Out of sight, out of mind.

Then the next thing comes along. Like the pile of paperwork we find on the table before guests are coming over. We want to clear the table quickly so we pile it all up and pop it into the spare room. Out of sight, out of mind. 

And then we get all of our kids creations and classwork that they bring home from school. Rather than evaluate it and look at it at the time, we instantly think “ugh, I’ll do it that later.” And again, it goes into the spare room. And on, and on, and on. 

Then one day we go into the spare room and find that it’s just a collection of decisions. Every item that you’ve placed in there is a decision of what to do with it or dare I say, lack of such. Every item in there doesn’t have an actual home. They don’t live there. In fact, most of them may not even have a home in your house, which is the very reason they’re there to begin with. 

So what’s the solution to all this?

Give your spare room a function and a clear goal. Is it a guest room? Is it a clear space where you can sit down and enjoy a cup of coffee away from the kids in peace?  Is it space where you study or sew?  Is it your home studio?  Whatever the purpose, define it and the next time you decide to dump something in that room, you can think to yourself, ‘does ‘XYX’ belong in this room?’ and ‘if I put it in this room will I be able to enjoy the room in the way that I want?’

You will be surprised this simple action of reframing the purpose of the ‘spare room’ from ‘junk room’ to ‘yoga studio’ or ‘Mum’s sanctuary’ can help keep the clutter at bay.

If your spare room is full to the brim and you are paralysed with indecision or overwhelm, please feel free to reach out to us.  We can be the guide to support you to review the clutter and help you to realise the vision for your spare room.


The Organising Bee is a professional organiser based in Canberra. Amy Kennedy supports families to organise their homes and their time. Book a free consultation with Amy and talk about ways you can organise yourself so you can spend your time doing the things you love.


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