Joyce Crommett's Blog
How long has it been since you've deep-cleaned your home attic? The attic is one of the most overlooked spaces in the home. It is important to shake out the dust ever so often before your attic becomes a source of germs and allergens in your home. Here are some tips to help you keep your attic clean and fresh all year round.
The easiest room to clean is an empty one. For attics not cleaned in a long time, it is best first to remove everything inside. Thorough cleaning allows all the nooks and crannies to be open and the cleaner to check for defects, leaks and other structural damages that may have occurred over time. Removing everything also helps to sort everything kept there to throw away whatever is no longer needed.
Vacuum, then sweep
If you find plenty of dust and waste materials in the attic, using a broom will cause dust to go into the air. Make use of a vacuum cleaner to suck up debris and dirt from the attic. High-efficiency bags or filter canisters work most effectively for these. Be sure to wear protective face masks when cleaning attics because of allergens and other particulates that could be in the dust.
Check for moisture and mold growth
Attic insulation is one of the most common sources of mold in the home. Inspecting an empty attic after cleaning will reveal if there is mold. If you find mold in your attic, call a professional attic cleaning company to come and take care of it. They will also ensure to identify the root cause of the mold and remove it. Failure to take care of mold growth in an attic leads to respiratory problems like asthma and allergies.
Donate anything no longer needed
Attics typically provide storage, and after a while, most of the things stored there are no longer useful. Sell whatever in your attic that is still in good condition, or donate it to a local charity. Cleaning up an attic is also an excellent way to get many items for a yard sale which could sometimes raise enough money to pay for the professional cleaning service for the attic and any repairs that you need to carry out.
Box and label before replacing things
After cleaning and repairing your attic, the last thing is to restock everything there. This time, box everything properly and label with a tag or a clear marker so that things are easy to find. Maintaining some organization in the attic helps to make subsequent cleaning easier.
For a professional attic cleaning and repair, call a local company for quotes.
Cleaning is most peoples' least favorite thing on a typical day. But for Open House day? It can seem either terrifying or expensive, but it doesn't have to be. A little elbow grease can make a huge difference and save you a bundle.
You have to be careful of painted walls. If you're too abrasive, you'll rough up the paint. If you don't scrub enough, and the walls remain dirty. Start with a soft damp cloth like microfiber or a new sponge and just some clean water. If that's not enough, try a mild grease-cutting soap like dish or hand soap. If your walls are still dirty, use a kitchen or all-purpose spray cleaner or try a wall eraser. Stay away from steel wool or exfoliating style cleaners since they can take the paint right off your wall, which increases your cost.
It should be no surprise that your best option here is to clean your stainless-steel appliances regularly. Regularly here means once or twice a week depending on how often you use it. A disinfectant spray or bleach and water solution will help to clean off any grime. Follow that up with a stainless-steel finishing spray available at your local appliance store. Use a soft, lint-free cloth and never liquid glass stovetop cleansers or soft scrubs as they can scratch or damage the surface and finish.
Tile Countertops, Floors, and Showers
You can purchase a variety of tile cleaners at your local home improvement store, or easily make your own neutral pH cleaner from baking soda and water (use about ¼ cup baking soda per 1 gallon of water). Use a soft sponge or sponge mop to apply the mixture directly to your tile. You can clean the grout with the same solution, or for more stubborn stains get an oxygen bleach-based grout cleaner (it’s probably right next to the tile cleaner at the store). This time use a toothbrush to apply the cleanser and let it sit for 10-15 minutes before wiping it off. You can use a grout sealant to protect your grout once it’s clean to help keep it that way longer.
Wood Flooring and Carpets
Household cleaners and wood soaps are best for wood floors. You can use a similarly colored oil-based polish to fill in any scratches. If you have too many scratches, you might wait to sand the wood down and apply a stain-finish product, but be careful you know what you’re doing. If it’s a big job, it might be best to leave this one to the professionals.
Your carpet needs more than just a regular vacuum, so try out a carpet cleaning machine, usually available for rent at your local home improvement store. Be careful only to use the soap or cleaner recommended for the device you rent, and in the right amounts. Extra soap can work against you. If it's left in the carpet, then it attracts more dirt.
Your real estate agent can help you determine if your cleaning situation is DIY or requires the professionals.
When you’ve gone through the lengthy and tiring process of seeking out, bidding on, and buying a new home and then sell your home, the last thing you want to worry about is cleaning your old house before you leave.
However, there’s multiple reasons you’ll want to ensure your old house is clean before you leave. First, as a common courtesy, you’ll want the new owners of your home to have a good first experience and to maintain your rapport with them after closing day. However, there are also legal and financial issues at play.
If your contract states that your home needs to have been “broom-swept” or some other form of cleaning before you leave, then your new owners could technically postpone closing. Furthermore, some states have laws requiring that homes are cleaned by their previous owners before they move out.
Although it can be difficult to define just how clean a home needs to be, legally speaking, your best option is to do your part to leave the home relatively clean, whether that means cleaning it yourself or hiring a cleaning company.
Legal reasons for cleaning your old house
As mentioned earlier, some states state cleaning requirements in the purchase contract when you sell your home. Their definitions of clean can often be vague, but usually include sweeping floors, wiping down surfaces, stripping nails and hangers from walls, and carrying out all furniture and garbage.
These rules are mostly designed to protect people who purchase a home from getting stuck with bulk items and other surprise issues that they’ll have to pay for.
An exception to this is when your home is sold “as is” or when you have some form of written agreement between you and the new owner that some part f your home will be left as is.
Cleaning your house
The ideal time to clean your house is once you’ve moved everything out. However, if you’re moving over a long distance, you might not be able to return to the house once it’s empty to give it a final cleaning.
In this case, your best option is to have your furniture and boxes packed away neatly in the garage, or in the corner of one room. Doing so will allow you to sweep, clean surfaces, wipe down cabinets, and so on, while your belongings are still in the house.
Just be sure to keep a broom handy once you’ve put everything on the moving truck so you can give one last sweep of the floor before you say goodbye to your old home.
It can be difficult to keep track of everything you’ll want to clean before you move out, so here’s a list to go by:
Sweep all floors
Vacuum all carpets
Wipe down cabinets, shelves
Try to sweep under appliances, oven, etc.
Spray sinks and tubs, leave air freshener in bathroom
Wipe inside of refrigerator, if applicable
Remove all nails from walls
Do a final walkthrough and remove any trash you’ve missed
Dogs are a man’s best friends, but the mess they bring into your home? Not so much. Learn how you can have a clean house and a lovable pup at the end of each day. Here are ten tips below to get the best of both worlds.
1. Groom regularly. Keep less fur off your floors and furniture by brushing your dog on a regular schedule. Ideally, this would be a few times a week. Eliminate even more clean up by brushing out your pup outside when possible.
2. Sweep floors in high traffic areas with a microfiber cloth broom each day. The microfiber cloth will grab onto fur and dirt alike and can be reused. It’s also a quick and simple habit to develop and one you can easily delegate as a chore for the kids.
3. Dust often. Stay on top of fur build up by dusting a few areas of the home each night with a microfiber cloth. By just doing a room or two at a time it becomes a less overwhelming task and easier to do regularly. You can even keep a cloth stored away in each room to make the chore even simpler.
4. Vacuum furniture and drapes as well as carpeting. When you have a furry friend your vacuum is going to be working a lot harder around the house. You’ll want to vacuum drapes, furniture, and carpets frequently to stay on top of hair build up. Just as with dusting, you can do a few rooms at a time throughout the week to break up the tediousness of doing the whole house at once.
5. Lint brushes are your new best friend. You might as well fill a handbasket full of them the next time you’re at the store because you’ll never have too many. Store them where they can easily be on hand in closets, bathrooms, the mudroom and your family's’ vehicles. Where there is fur, there’s a way so be prepared to keep clothes fur free when leaving the house.
6. Take care of stains ASAP. Make cleaning up pet stains a no-brainer by putting together an easy to grab bucket filled with cleaning supplies that are made for the job. Be sure to include a pair of rubber gloves, a roll of paper towels, a microfiber cloth and your preferred cleaning solution.
And a bonus for the extra meticulous: wipe paws down with a microfiber cloth after walks. Microfiber clothes are wonderful multitaskers for household cleaners and now you can add “paw wipes” to the list. Before you let your dog run loose around the house after a walk gently wipe their paws with a dry microfiber cloth to catch any loose debris they could track inside.
We love our dogs. They are cute, funny and oh so loving. The messes that come with them, however, aren’t always so welcome. You can easily keep your home spick and span with a little preparation and a regular cleaning schedule. At the end of the day, you can admire your handiwork while curled up on the couch with your pooch.