Three hidden benefits of a minimalist lifestyle

There’s a host of reasons why people will declutter their homes and discard unnecessary furniture or objects. Whether it’s to improve mental or physical health, recover their finances or to accommodate a simplified lifestyle, minimalistic lifestyles are on the rise. However, if you’re still afraid to let go of your possessions, then here are three unique reasons you should ditch the disorder and have a more orderly home.

1. Pest reduction

There’s nothing rodents, insects and bugs love more than huge piles of junk to burrow and hide in. Pest infestations are not only unpleasant, but they’re dangerous to your health. It doesn’t matter how many times you call an exterminator – if you’re providing an environment they love to live in, then they’ll be back time and time again. After you’ve cleared out your clutter, you’ll notice the creepy-crawlies have nowhere to go.

When it comes to pests in your house, bed bugs are by far the worst perpetrators. When they infest furniture and bedding, it can be almost extremely difficult to get rid of them; especially in warmer, more humid climates. For example, if you are having issues with bed bugs control in Puerto Rico, ditch the piles of old clothes, needless furniture, stashed food and stacks of papers. Adopting a minimal lifestyle means these pests are unable to hide in your possessions as comfortably and as easily.

2. Money saved

The average American household has almost 300,000 possessions, and when you add up the cost of every impulse purchase, one-time kitchen appliance, clothes never worn and abandoned toys, it can be extremely confronting. Because trends cycle in and out so quickly, people often throw out perfectly good homewares, clothes, electronics, furniture and other household goods and replace them with slightly newer models at a significant cost. Cutting out this cycle will see an instant reduction in weekly expenses.

When you cut out the clutter, you’re not only saving money you would have otherwise spent on unnecessary possessions, but you’ll also cut down the ongoing costs of maintaining your hoard. Americans spent $32.7 billion on self-storage last year, with the average unit costing $87.15 a month. That’s a lot of money spent on household goods that we rarely use.  As well as storage costs, other expenses are associated with hoarding large amounts of clutter – for example, insurance premiums are likely to be higher to people with more possessions.

3. Health improvement

A minimalist lifestyle is inherently healthier than a consumer-driven philosophy that encourages excess. Firstly, a decluttered house is much easier to clean, which means you can tackle things like mold and pests (and the diseases they spread) before they get out of control.

Studies have also found that people with tidier, organized rooms have a better night’s sleep than those who hoard clutter in their home. A good night’s sleep helps control a person’s weight, their mood fluctuations, and daily wellbeing. Many minimalists have also reported that by decluttering their homes and adopting a mindful daily routine helped mental health issues, particularly depression and anxiety.

Delicia Warren is a freelance writer, passionate about the environment, organic farming and food production. An advocate for a holistic approach to the world’s problems, she has a particular interest in the small changes individuals can make to their lifestyle to minimize their environmental footprint.