If you feel your space is plagued by cord clutter from all the electronic devices you plug in to power through your day, you’re in good company.
So many of us have multiple charging stations to gas up smartphones, laptops, desktop computers, tablets, smart watches, fitness trackers, voice control devices, speakers, and all of those remote controls. Oh my!
Our devices may be getting smaller, but they seem to be multiplying, and they still need juice. Figuring out where to put them all without creating a stressful cord-clutter eyesore can be a challenge.
“Keeping device cords together is crucial for staying organized,” said Stacy Thomes, a professional organizer. “There are many devices and styles to choose from, so you need to see what works best for each individual budget and situation.”
If you’re ready to seek professional help for your cord problem, read on for some powerful tips.
Hide Cords to Avoid Cord Clutter
With all of our portable devices these days, rooms can develop a “snake pit” or “bird’s nest” of cables on multiple surfaces. Then there are the suite of cables behind a traditional desktop computer—for those who still have one!
Fortunately for us, so many people have this problem that of course there are products and ideas galore to help solve it.
Depending on your situation, simple cable ties, or even twist ties, shown in our first image, are the cheapest and among the most effective ways to cope. Velcro tie strips and cord clips are another version of these.
Cable sleeves, pictured above, also go a long way toward containing the clutter, said Matthew Lurie, founder of digital-organizer.com.
The experts we interviewed also love cord-management boxes, aka power-strip hiders. These consolidate a large number of cords on a surge protector in a tidy box. Some include a USB charger and space for hiding electronics. The more elaborate are made of handsome wood.
“They hide cables underneath and have spacers to charge and store several phones and tablets and watches all in one,” said David Shor, cofounder of Tidy Haus. As flat-screen TVs take over our great rooms, more people are tucking their cables into the wall. If that hookup isn’t at your crib, there’s always the old-school cord cover, a hollow protrusion that runs along a wall, outdoors or in, from outlet to device.
A favorite option is Legrand, said Shor. Their cable-cover strips, aka “on-wall wiring” are sold in different widths. There are also kits with corners, branches and joiners, and they can be painted the same color as the wall.
One version is shown below, perpendicular to the TV.
For storage, Thomes likes to wrap cords individually with a Velcro strip and store them in a baggie, bin or a specifically designed cord organizing case.
Eliminate Old Electronics and Its Cords
Thomes says the term “electronic clutter” has shifted from bulky devices that once required plugging into the wall.
“Gone are the massive entertainment units that house our stereos, VCR, cable box and CD collections,” she said. “Many clients are still hanging onto old systems that are really no longer relevant.”
She advises clients to think hard about what they will no longer need and to purge.
If you’re just starting to declutter your cords, first focus on eliminating the old cables and holders you no longer use, say Thomes and Shor.
Wi-Fi-connected devices have made the biggest impact on cords and are a big reason to get rid of the old, says Shor.
“Where a home would have had to be wired for sound, security and video, all of these systems are Wi-Fi-connected so only need power, and some of them are battery-powered,” he said, emphasizing the need to remain vigilant. “This means fewer cables but often people do not hide or manage their power cables so the visual aesthetic can actually be more cluttered.”