Everyone loves the feeling of a clean and tidy home, but getting there can be difficult. We have come up with a few spring cleaning tips to help get you started. Here are some places that might require the most attention when tidying up your home:
Your closet can easily become cluttered with clothing, and cleaning it out can feel overwhelming. Here’s a simple walkthrough on how to deep clean your closet. We recommend dedicating about two solid hours for this project. Remember that sometimes, to clean up a mess, you have to make a bigger mess! Turn on some music and get to work.
- Take everything out. It will be easier to sort through clothing if it is all out of your closet and you can see it all clearly.
- Sort through all your clothes with three piles in mind: throw out, donate, keep. Anything that is damaged or ruined beyond repair (the amount of repair you’re willing to provide), throw away. Anything that is still wearable but is not the right size you should donate. Also, clothes you don’t like anymore can be donated.
- Pack away off-season clothes. Go through your remaining “keep me” clothes and pack away winter clothes. This is another chance to re-evaluate for clothes you should donate. If you didn’t wear it at all this year, consider giving it to someone who will. If you did wear it, no worries! Your closet is primed and functional. By the time you’re done, it’ll be organized, too!
- Sweep out your closet (or dust or mop) while it is empty. If your shelves need repairs, take the time to repair them. Once everything is stored away neatly on strong shelves and straight hanging rods, you’ll be glad you took the time to address structural issues.
- Take time to think about your organization. Did you like your organization before? Do you want to change it? If you have shelves, think about what kinds of clothes you’ll fold. Will you put them in piles? Or in baskets? If you have a hanging bar, will you pair your clothes into outfits? Or will you separate by category—shirts in one section, pants in another?
- Put it all back. Hang or fold your clothes in whatever organizational pattern you’ve decided. Remember, an organizational pattern is just a tool. It serves you, not the other way around. If you generally fold t-shirts but want to hang a few, that’s fine. If you have a stack of nice sweaters but want to hang a few as pre-made outfits, that’s fine too! You can be organized and flexible at the same time. No one will come behind you to inspect your organization.
After you complete these simple steps you should have a clean and organized closet!
"Spring cleaning" doesn't just have to happen in the spring. Doing a deep clean around your home will leave you feeling refreshed and organized. Tidying up around your home regularly can also help prevent pest problems that may be hiding behind cluttered spaces. Since garages are usually the least tidy space in a home it's a good place to do some spring cleaning. The good news? It’s not as hard to clean as you think. Here are three simple steps:
- Find the trash first. We store large tools, seasonal equipment, and otherwise un-categorized supplies in our garages. Begin your garage spring cleaning by going through everything with an eye for things that can immediately go to the trash. If you have space, drag everything onto your driveway. The shame alone will keep you motivated until you’re done!
- Fight against the “someday” mentality. Once you see all the toys, tools, and equipment you’ve been storing but forgot about, you’ll probably want to keep it. You’ll say, “now I’ll use it!” or “I just needed to clear out space.” Ultimately, you’re the boss on what goes and what stays. Just remember that you’re the one who made your garage look like it does in the first place.
- Make 3 piles: Throw away. Donate. Keep. If it’s broken and you know you’ll never get around to fixing it, here’s three words for you: Throw. It. Out. (Recycle when possible.) If items are not broken but you haven’t used them for at most a year, donate them. We’re fortunate to live in a country where we have everything we need available to us all the time in stores. There’s no need to hoard working items we won’t use. Give it to somebody who will.
- If you’re keeping things, here’s another rule for you: everything has to have space. What do you want your garage to do? House your cars? Store your holiday supplies? Serve as a home gym? As an art studio? Most likely, it’s some combination of the above. Organizing expert Peter Walsh recommends color coding each section of your garage. This allows you to visualize how many things you can store per purpose in the garage.
As you clean your garage, keep an eye on the usual pest-prevention measures: tidy floor and yard, doors that seal, and windows with no cracks. If you find a pest problem during your garage spring cleaning, give Epcon Lane a call. We can work together to give you an organized, embarrassment-free garage.
To finish off our spring cleaning tips, we’re talking about junk drawers. Stop cringing! Before we even talk about cleaning it, realize it is okay to have a junk drawer. Everyone does–even the perfect people that live in perfect houses. (Or so they like to appear.) In fact, having one junk drawer that serves as your catch-all is a vital key to maintaining an orderly home. The important part, however, is keeping it to one drawer.
If you periodically empty out your junk drawer, you’ll prevent a total-kitchen-takeover. All you need is a clean surface and about 15 minutes.
- Dump and throw. Dump the contents onto a clean kitchen counter, table, or another work surface. Begin by throwing away all trash: stickers, labels, napkins, tissues, receipts you don’t need, expired coupons, greeting card envelopes, reminder notes, and children’s crafts. Also throw away broken things, like dead watches, flashlights that don’t work, drained batteries, and cheap toys.
- Put away. Put away the items that remain, like game pieces, keys, technology accessories, hair accessories, and office supplies.
- Evaluate what’s left. If you have any remaining items, break them into categories. Do you have simple repair equipment, like upholstery glue, a screwdriver, tape, or tweezers? You could leave these things in your drawer, where they are easy to access if they don’t already have a home. If they have a home—outside in the garage, in a toolbox, in a different drawer—put them there now.
Presto! Your junk drawer is empty and ready to catch last-minute items again. Do this kind of maintenance periodically and you’ll be showing off your junk drawer!
Check For Unwanted Pests While Cleaning
While we were going through all of these lists we noticed one crucial step missing. How do you inspect for unwanted critters while de-cluttering?! It is no secret that these critters like to hide in places that hold all of this clutter you are tidying up. They frequent spaces like attics, walls, crawl spaces, basements, areas behind cabinets, boxes, etc. All spaces that you are disturbing on your de-cluttering mission. So how do we solve this problem? Epcon Lane can help! If your notice any unwanted pests while cleaning up contact our local pest exterminators for all your pest control needs.