A reader named Shannon asked this question in the comments of the last post on decluttering:
Any tips for motivating kids to declutter if there is not cash involved?
Obviously, this is going to depend a lot on the age of the kids.
When my kids were small I did their decluttering for them. It’s amazing what you can clear out of a kid’s room while he or she is at school without them noticing. I also think it’s helpful and important to talk about giving something they aren’t using to someone who will get some use or enjoyment out of it.
As they became teens, I left their decisions about their stuff and their rooms mainly up to them, in a “pick your battles” kind of way. But we have a designated spot in our house for donations, and I find that they do use it.
But if decluttering is important to you, and the kids are motivated by money, I would look for ways to continue to make it about money. Here are some ideas:
- Teach them/help them sell on Craigslist or eBay. (I helped my son — who is very motivated by money — get rid of some old gaming systems via eBay.)
- Help them hold a garage sale of their stuff.
- Pay them a percentage of the amount you save on your taxes through donations.
I know the readers will have some great ideas on this too. So Shannon and I are curious:
How do you motivate your kids to declutter and simplify?