Brilliant Household Hacks You Can Use Right Now

These hacks are so good you'll wonder, "why didn't I think of that?"

household hacks

Illustration by Julie Houts

Illustration by Julie Houts


Scan everything!
It’s the stuff of dreams not to have to root through a mountain of paper to find the receipt or class directory you need, and you’ll be able to see your kitchen counters again. I like Doxie scanners because they’re so portable you can take them from room to room. The Scannable app is a great option too, and it’s free.
—Carley Knobloch,, @carleyknobloch

Look for a free local swap group or check out Facebook marketplace.
Someone in my city started a group on Facebook where people post things they’re looking to give away and takers chime in via comments to claim items. What a time-saver in terms of decluttering: Whenever I post something it’s gone within a day! —Christine Koh,, @bostonmamas

Unsubscribe from junk mail and catalogs IRL as well as your inbox.
The PaperKarma app gets rid of physical junk mail, while the Unroll.Me app gets rid of the digital kind from department stores and other stuff you never bother reading. Fewer emails means you’ll notice the important ones faster and won’t have so much to sort through each day.


Make putting away faster.
When clothes come out of the dryer, they get folded and put into each person’s individual laundry basket. This eliminates the piles of folded clothing that used to accumulate and makes it quicker to put stuff away.
—Clarissa Laskey,, @clarissaxplain

Try this trick to matching lots of socks.
With five kids, matching socks took forever until I hit on the idea of repurposing hair elastics to keep pairs together in the washer and dryer. 
—Audrey McClelland,, @audreymcclellan

Get outside help.
Sending just our bedsheets out each week to be washed doesn’t break the bank and reduces the load by a third.
—Brianne Manz,, @strollerinthecity

Get the kids to help.
Deposit your kid’s laundry pile in their room and tell them to put it all away. #lifeskills


Toiletries made easy.
Both my kids have baskets filled with their daily toiletries. My daughter’s contains her favorite lotion, hair products, brush and any other items she uses, so there’s no scrambling to find things in the morning.

Convenient bins.
Each family member has a bin on the stairs. Any kid stuff that ends up lying around the house, from random ball caps to books they’re reading, gets tossed in the basket so they can grab it before heading up to their room. —Danielle Smith,, @daniellesmithtv

Prep snacks.
I cut up veggies and fruit over the weekend, portioning them into plastic containers for easy access all week. Having everything all chopped up also encourages my kids to choose them as their snack.

Batch chores.
Just like batch cooking saves time in the kitchen, batching chores saves time around the house. Clean all the bathrooms in one go; deal with all the paperwork at once; run all your weekly errands together.
—Sara Wellensiek,, @momendeavors