Five Ways to Get Your Home in the Best Shape to Enjoy Living In It
-With Naomi L. Klein
Hello Mint Sweater girls!
Naomi here from Sundays in the City *Insert waving hand emoji*. With over 15 years in the real estate business and over $350,000,000 in sales, I’m your personal real estate consultant helping you through the real estate process, understanding it, and having fun while doing it all. Please feel free to reach out anytime!
Now that we’ve had the summer to enjoy the sunshine, work on those beach bodies, and go on vacation, it’s time to get that home back into shape. It’s about to be sweater season so time to shift gears! Time to prepare for the holidays with decorations, some holiday shopping and of course the obligatory pumpkin spice everything! #traderjoes #starbuckspumpkinspicelatte #omg
For me, Fall kicks off my favorite four months of the year! I love the sweaters, the boots, the hot lattes, and the home decor! I feel like Martha Stewart meets Million Dollar Listing, except I’m more Z-Gallerie than DIY.
With that being said let’s just jump right into “The 5 Ways to Get Your Home in The Best Shape to Enjoy Living in it!”
1. CLEAR THE CLUTTER TO ENJOY WHAT YOU ALREADY HAVE!
- Make a clear plan and vision for tweaking what you already have.
- Big plastic bins are a great way to start. Get at least 5 to begin.
- Order on Amazon and when they arrive to take all of your paperwork, knick-knacks, sheets, towels, clothes in drawers and even your makeup, lotions and face washes and throw everything into the bin. Do this for your refrigerator and pantry as well!
- You will then take everything out of the bins one by one and really evaluate what you want to keep, what you can donate, and what you want to hold onto just in case. It’s like going shopping in your own store! Keep in mind most make up only has a 6 month-1 year shelf life.
2. GET IT PROFESSIONALLY CLEANED AND DO A SAFETY CHECK!
- Only choose the items you want going back into the room that matches your vision for the space. You wouldn’t buy everything in Z Gallery so do the same at home in your current stash before purchasing anything new.
- Put back the “want to keep” items.
- Put the “want to donate” items in plastic bags and donate to goodwill, a church, etc.
- Put the “Hold onto just in case” items in the plastic bins. Write down the items on a sheet of paper and if you haven’t touched it in 6 months, maybe it’s time to re-evaluate if you need to keep it or if you can donate it.
“Know you can always edit the plan and vision (and most likely will) as is done with most things creative. Focus and direction will save time and money. Give your vision 1-2 weeks to settle in and then go for it! Write your intentions of what you’re hoping to accomplish, your wishlist, how much time you are giving to get things in order and work from there. Every time I clean/clear something out, unintentionally something comes back to fill that space in a 2.0 kind of way. Have fun!”
- Now that you’ve cleared the clutter, let’s clean and clear out the old energy with new, clean and green, happy energy.
- Before we get to the cleaning, please make sure your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly. You can call your local Fire Department or smoke detector compliant companies to do this for you. It’s not expensive and can save your life!
- This professional cleaning is to be done throughout the house with attention to details. You’re going to have a lot on your mind regarding decor, and measurements for furniture or appliances you may be replacing so delegate the cleaning to a professional.
- Because you’ve probably saved quite a bit of money from enjoying what you have all over again, take some of those savings and splurge on an exceptional professional cleaning service!
- I’m talking services that clean your couches, curtains, door frames, sliding glass doors, patios, balconies, windows, go all out!
- After all, you are the CEO of your household. Which means you direct, make the big decisions and oversee projects are completed.
- A great way to search for a great service is by referral! Ask friends, if they can suggest or know of anyone. Also, make sure to ask the cleaning service if they do the following and if there are any extra costs to do so.
Something tells me if you are in the process of sprucing things up around the house to clear the clutter, refresh the hallways and bedrooms, and just show your space some love, you’ve already pinned, tagged and screenshotted what you want your space to look like. I imagine there are no images of you slaving in the kitchen, cleaning toilets, windows, vacuuming, etc. Let’s be clear, I am all for cleaning around the house for the day to day but the objective here is to treat yourself and treat your home. YOU deserve it! It’s ONE splurge and I’d suggest it two to four times a year.
A checklist of questions for the professional cleaning service because when I say detailed I mean detailed! Here are some examples to get you started:
-Do they use “green, more eco-friendly products?” -Are they insured? See proof. -Clean all windows inside and outside.
-Powerwash of the entire house, front, and back. -Steam clean the carpets or properly clean the hardwood floors, especially in the corners where dirt accumulates.
-Dusting off and washing any items that are not used as often that may collect dust. For example, serving dishes that may stay out as decor, dining room table arrangements, wall decor.
-Window sills. -Slats indoors. -Door jams. -Lampshades. -Lighting fixtures. -Clean under the bed.
-Clean the shelves and straighten your closet.
-Washing the dirt that may have collected from hands opening and closing doors. -Stoves. -Ovens. -Laundry. -Cleaning the bbq.
-Organizing and throwing out expired food in the pantry and refrigerator. -Cleaning and dusting window treatments.
-Thorough cleaning of bathtubs and drains. -Thorough cleaning of showers and drains.
-Thorough cleaning of all the nicknacks in your bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchen, living area, etc…
3. PAINT! ENTIRE ROOMS OR JUST DO AN ACCENT WALL. ENJOY A “NEW” NEUTRAL
- I cannot stress enough how paint (and accent pieces like pillows) transforms homes and spaces!
- It can give a home a much-needed facelift.
- Think of paint as the baseline to your mood board and inspirational spots around the house. Do you want a blush color, off-white, bright white, a chalkboard paint for one wall in a kids room or garage to write love notes?
- The sense of sight is very important. You can really feel like you’ve remodeled your home or space for the fraction of the cost of remodeling just by painting. The fumes may also calm you down for a minute (insert laughter).
- Pick one wall in your home that could just be a show-stopping accent wall.
- You can either go down to the hardware store and choose your color or mix your own colors from their color swatches or hire someone to do the job for you.
- Trending colors right now are grays and blues! I’m a fan of a mid colored to soft gray as an accent wall where all the other walls are a bright white.
- I use eggshell finish throughout the house except for the kitchen and bathrooms where I use gloss.
- You can always try a few samples on your walls first before you completely commit to your color choice.
“Confession: I am not a huge “do it yourself-er” when it comes to painting. Props to those who are!! I’m afraid if I was left alone with some paint cans and brushes I’d have whatever was in my eye line partially painted in one room, on one wall. No prep, no appropriate clothes to paint in and definitely no patience. I’m sure by minute four, a hummingbird, email notification or the need to scroll Instagram would distract me.”
Here, again, I would hire a professional to do the paint job. They have the prep work and materials down. They also may get a discount on paint that may trickle down to you on price. They will usually have a good gage on how much paint to get or paint match the color you are looking for and finish a lot faster than you can. Howwwwwever, if you are all for the DIY version, by all means! Maybe you enjoy painting as much as I enjoy folding laundry. Play to your strengths, honey!!
Whether DIY’ing or hiring someone make sure to know the cost beforehand…in writing!
A checklist of example questions for the professional painting service:
-When getting an estimate of the cost to paint have your dream list quoted and then you can always edit it to fit your budget. -Make sure you have prepping materials to cover the floors.
-Make sure you have paint tape for the wall to ceiling break and wall to floor breaks. -Make sure you have bins to pour the paint into.
-Make sure you have the proper rollers and extensions for the rollers to reach the higher areas. -Make sure you have a ladder. -Are you painting walls, ceilings, and floorboards?
-How long will the painting take the professionals? -How many people will they have on the job? -Does their estimate include materials and paint? -Are they insured? See proof.
-How much paint will you be using? -What colors will you be using? -Go to the hardware store and bring home some paint swatches. See what speaks to you. Be as specific as possible.
-If you are DIY’ing, ask the store where you purchase the paint and prepping materials if you can return what you don’t use. Most custom paints you can’t return but maybe the store you’re going to has a return policy for basic paint colors.
-Are you doing flat, matte, eggshell (I suggest eggshell for walls), or glossy paint? -Are you doing a no VOC paint? (I highly recommend. Fewer chemicals).
4. TAKE INVENTORY! GET NEW TOWELS, LINENS & PILLOWS, LIGHT FIXTURES (maybe even new furniture) & FIX WHAT NEEDS TO BE FIXED/REPAIRED!
- You will feel such pride and a sense of completion with this!
- It can be as simple as donating your old one off mixed colored towels and then getting a new, fluffy set, or as extensive as fixing the flu in the chimney you’ve been putting off.
- You know your phone is an added appendage so for a week or two be conscientious of items around the house that need to be fixed or given away and write it in your phone’s notes, take pictures of it, etc.
- This will make space for cleaner, calmer and safer living areas.
- Light fixtures also do wonders in the house. Maybe it’s time for a brighter lamp, a larger lamp, a chandelier, a modern light fixture above the dining room table or in your master bedroom or bathroom or simply new lamp shades. Changing these things out will be just what you need to freshen up around the house!
- Lamps Plus, Amazon, Bed Bath and Beyond, overstock.com and HOUZZ are great places to look!
-Replacing or fixing any window screens needing to be replaced. Ask Yelp to suggest a company for this.
-Replace light bulbs that are out in the ceiling, lamps, motion sensors outside, etc…
-Scratched flooring that needs to be buffed, repolished, etc.
-Maybe a pool heater isn’t working. Fix it.
-Yard work like any broken sprinklers, grass, flowers, weeds, patio furniture or a BBQ that has seen better days.
-Get one set of new linens to enjoy!
-Get a matching set or two of towels. Functional or decorative works here.
5. YOUR CLOSET…GET THIN MATCHING HANGERS, COLOR COORDINATE AND IF NEEDED REPLACE THE CLOSET BARS OR REPAIR/ADD SHELVES
- If you live in NY this is essential! If you’re anywhere else in the country you’ll love it!
- The thinner the hanger, the more room you will have in your closet. Just as suggested in #1 when you’re done with the bins throughout the house do the same for your clothes and shoes!
- Take inventory and see the pieces you really want to keep and the pieces that need to be cleaned, altered, or that you really haven’t worn in a while and donate it.
- HACK!! Want to have your current pieces styled for you?? Brooklyn Decker has come out with an INCREDIBLE app called FINERY where it takes inventory of your closet and coordinates fresh looks for you based on what you already have.
- It’s like we all get Clueless’s Cher’s computerized closet!
- YOU’RE WELCOME! 😉
You will be amazed at how you will fall in love with some pieces you’ve had all along as you see them become new again.
Well, Mint Sweater girls, that should keep you busy and make for a refreshed look, and home ready to enjoy the holidays and that Pumpkin Spice Latte even more!! You’ll be amazed at what this purge and cleaning does for not only your home but for your mindset, ability to work, and your relationships! I’d love to hear your stories!
This post was written by Guest Blogger, Naomi L. Klein.
Naomi’s Blog: http://sundaysinthecity.com/blog/
Naomi’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sundaysinthecity_/?hl=en