Three Steps to a Spring Miracle: An Organized Closet

By  Co-Founder NorthStar Moving Company Laura McHolm

The official start of spring is just around the corner!  Most of hope, that  spring will bring us warmer temperatures but it also brings us the task of spring-cleaning. Each year  we dream of  starting the new season off with a cleaner, brighter and more organized home. Sound like a miracle? Well, it can all come true with one simple “miracle” closet.

109 Fall Breeze Trail Travelers Rest, SC 29690

109 Fall Breeze Trail Travelers Rest, SC 29690

You may already think your closet is a miracle because it holds everything you ever bought. But, can you find that hot little black dress  for a last minute date night dinner for two? Do you really need to keep your wedding dress right in the prime real estate of the center of  your closet? With one weekend and these simple step-by-step tips on how to create a true “miracle closet” you will be more organized. Life will just be that much better for you in 2015. Think of all the time you’ll save this year by not having to dig through your stuff. You’ll no longer be the “person who is always 10 to 30 minutes late.” Instead, you’ll have more time to focus on the important things in life like spending treasured time with your loved ones. Follow these three steps to create your very own miracle closet, the launching pad for a clutter free spring 2015!

Step One: Empty and Sort

  • Empty everything out of the closet onto the floor. I mean everything!
  • Create four piles: keep, give away, recycle and store.
  • Having trouble letting go of nostalgic items? Ask yourself: When was the last time I wore or used this? If you can’t remember, get rid of it.
  • If the item is just too difficult to part with, put it in a clear plastic box or bag with today’s date and place it in your store pile. If you go back to use it in the next few months then you earned the right to keep it. If not, it’s time to give it away and let someone less fortunate enjoy it!
  • If the item is something you use or wear only during one season a year, it can go into storage. Think of your closet as prime real estate that needs to be accessed daily and your storage as the summer vacation or winter chalet home for your stuff.
  • Look at your give away and recycle piles, ask yourself: Could someone else use this item even if I can’t? If so,  donate it to a charity. If it is too worn, add it to this week’s trash or recycle pile.

Step Two: Box and Label

  • Take photos of each item in your to store pile. Print out two copies of each photo.
  • Next, box up all of your items in the storage category be sure to include cedar balls to keep the moths away. Place one copy of the photo on the outside of each box with today’s date and the second copy either file away or scan and create a file on your computer. On your computer, clearly label the photos of the item and place them in a file labeled “garage storage.”  Then use your computer search feature to find “go-go boots” and look which file that photo is in. Presto, you’ll know where to go find it in your storage unit, attic or garage.
  • In your keep pile: take photos of shoes and accessories. Don’t forget to tell your shoes to “work it baby” as you snap the photo.
  • Place the shoes and accessories in clear plastic containers so you can see everything and tape their photo to the inside of their container with the photo facing out of the box.
  • For sheets and blankets: place them in clear containers and label the outside of the container with the size of the sheet and blanket. Or, if you prefer to let your linens “breathe” make labels (p-touch or by hand) and place labels on the shelves or use a tag around the hanger designating the size of sheets, etc.

Step Three: Put Items Back and Organize

  • Decide how many categories you want for your clothes. Ask yourself – How do I like to decide what to wear? Then organize your closet accordingly.  Remember, always within any category, organize by color.
  • Put your boxes of shoes back by use or occasion. For example, sport vs. work, and then break down your dressy shoes by flats to heels and light to dark.
  • For your folding clothes: lay them inside your drawers or on the shelf on their side. (NOT stacked on top of each other horizontally, but stacked vertically so you can see everything at once!) You can purchase wooden  or plastic planks to use as dividers. Having your clothes and accessories all in view and organized by categories will help you find items quickly and you’ll actually wear more of your clothes!
  • Last but not least, step back and take a picture of your new “miracle” closet and place it on the inside of your closet or drawer so you can keep it that way!

Bonus: Now that you can see all your clothes chances are you’ll wear different outfits more often. New wardrobe? Nope, newly organized.

Laura McHolm is an organizational, moving & storage expert and co-founder of NorthStar Moving Company. NorthStar Moving Company is an award winning, “A+” rated company, which specializes in providing eco-luxury moving and storage services.   www.northstarmoving.com

 

The post Three Steps to a Spring Miracle: An Organized Closet appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

Weave The Basket Trick Into Your Spring Cleaning Routine

Spring Cleaning is in full swing! Here’s one simple trick to weave every day cleaning into your nightly routine.
I get it. You’re busy! Who has the time to keep their home neat all the time? Nearly no one. That’s why I use this simple trick to wake up to a tidy home every morning: the basket.
I keep a pretty wicker basket in an accessible spot in the living room. Every evening before I head to bed, I make the rounds of our living space and collect anything that doesn’t belong. Pair of socks on the living room floor? Unopened mail scattered on the dining table? Shoes in the entryway? Into the basket they go!As I move around collecting, I often end up in the place where at least one of the items in the basket belongs. Having the basket with me makes that “quick clean-up” before bed infinitely easier. No longer am I running in circles as I pick up one or two things at a time only to return to the same spot for the rest.Of course, choosing a basket that fits your decor makes leaving it in an easy-to-access place a welcome decorative addition.
Here are few I have my eye on:
beachcomber oversized Dunn Sea Grass Target striped storage bin sumatra-basket Senegalese Storage Baskets Kiwi Woven Bins

 

With the basket trick, I spend a few minutes tidying up each night, and even less time looking for misplaced items in the morning. The best part: I wake up to a neat home and spend the few extra minutes I saved…in bed, of course!

 

Ready for more spring cleaning? Here’s a printable cleaning calendar.

The post Weave The Basket Trick Into Your Spring Cleaning Routine appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

Must Do Tasks to Get Your Home Ready for Spring

If you’re like me, you’ve been scavenging around the internet for small but efficient ways to transition your home from the treacherous Winter we’ve had to a (hopefully) beautiful and pleasant Spring. I am relieved to tell you I found a great article from The Home Depot which rolls out some smart and easy tips and tricks for making the most out of your “Spring Cleaning” efforts. Check them out below. 

1. Check caulking around all doors and windows. Improper caulking allows for moisture to get inside your walls and cause mold. This is also the perfect time to wash/clean all windows and replace torn or damaged screens as necessary. (The Home Depot)

Door e1395683890142 Must Do Tasks to Get Your Home Ready for Spring

2. Deep cleaning carpets is a spring-cleaning must. Consider purchasing a steam cleaner for your home – not only will it come in handy during twice-yearly major cleaning sessions, but it will also prove to be a lifesaver if you have pets or children in the home. (The Home Depot)

Carpet Must Do Tasks to Get Your Home Ready for Spring

3. Check for possible damage to the roof.  Look for missing, cracked or broken shingles and make note of any needed repairs. For safety reasons, you may want to consider hiring a qualified professional to take care of any repair work that needs to be done. (The Home Depot)

Roof e1395684369632 Must Do Tasks to Get Your Home Ready for Spring

4. Check for and repair cracks in driveway/sidewalk. Spring is the best time to seal cracks in the driveway or any other concrete. (The Home Depot) We repaired our driveway last Spring which was perfect timing considering what a wet and salty Winter it was.

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5. Check garden hoses for dry rot and inspect hose faucets for possible freeze damage that may have occurred during the winter months. (The Home Depot) Unless you’ve kept your hose inside the garage or shed over the past few months, giving your hose a check before use will definitely be beneficial.

Hose e1395684660500 Must Do Tasks to Get Your Home Ready for Spring

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Realtor Mag Agrees, Color is a Must in 2014!

I don’t know about you but I am (figuratively) jumping for joy because Spring is finally upon us! If you are like me, you’ve already begun opening the windows at your house to air out all of winter’s remains. Spring is about rejuvenation so adding small details to your environment like a little bright paint, some new furniture, or fresh flowers is really the best way to waken your spirit.

If you’re looking for an idea on how to renew your space first consider how you can add some color. Even Realtor Mag agrees that in 2014, decor and design is all about eclectic color schemes.”After years of beige and whits grabbing all the attention as a way to appeal to potential buyers, many home owners now opting for more varied colors. Color forecasters agree that gray, especially a warmer hue, is the “it” gal in home design for 2014.” (Realtor Mag)

I understand that having a red or yellow accent wall could be overwhelming for some. If this is the case, as you’ll see referenced in the photos below, implementing small decor pieces like a bright frame or chair is a great start. For more incredible photos and design inspiration visit Coldwell Banker’s Instagram ig badge 16 Realtor Mag Agrees, Color is a Must in 2014! and Pinterest Coldwell Banker  pages.

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Calming purple lawn furniture.

Photo via Pinterest

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Regal violet walls.

Photo via Pinterest

Color 5 Realtor Mag Agrees, Color is a Must in 2014!

Various hues of pink to brighten this guest bedroom.

Photo via Pinterest

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A neon yellow staircase.

Photo via Pinterest

Color 3 Realtor Mag Agrees, Color is a Must in 2014!

Dandylion yellow furniture and decor.

Photo via Pinterest

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Natural lighting and an orange couch.

Photo via Pinterest

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This pastel blue definitely makes this work space inspiring.

Photo via Pinterest

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An interesting way to spice up ordinary picture frames.

Photo via Pinterest

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Interesting bedside lamps with great pops of color.

Photo via Pinterest

Color 15 Realtor Mag Agrees, Color is a Must in 2014!

Vibrant and inviting furniture.

Photo via Pinterest

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A bright and beautiful flower arrangement.

Photo via Pinterest

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The most wonderful tulips to brighten up your spirit.

Photo via Pinterest 

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Deep but rich colors make this bouquet special.

Photo via Pinterest

 

What color will you be adding this Spring?

The post Realtor Mag Agrees, Color is a Must in 2014! appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.

The One Thing Every Wife Needs for Spring Cleaning at Home

I just had the pleasure of reading 5 Things Husbands Need for Spring Cleaning at Home written by David Marine, our Senior Director of Consumer Engagement. All I have to say it…this one is for you ladies, I got your back! :)

A clean home is a happy home and when Spring cleaning rolls around, women around the world begin creating their notorious “honey-do” lists.

do The One Thing Every Wife Needs for Spring Cleaning at Home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following this list is just one of the many things which govern married men. They aren’t quite sure why they choose to give up watching a big game to complete the seemingly endless list of house chores yet they adhere to them in rigid fashion nonetheless. We’ll say it’s all the in the name of love but we all know a woman’s fury just isn’t worth listening to.

In typical male fashion David created a list of 5 things that men need to survive spring cleaning. In typical female fashion I cut down the necessary list from five things to one. All you both really need is one simple little thing: The Honey Do App. This app, which costs a mere $2.99 is really priceless when you think about the value: your sanity.

Here’s what you need to know about this app:

The HoneyDo App Price: $2.99 Value: Sanity

This is the ultimate task manager for couples with smartphones. Here’s how it works. There are 4 lines to fill out:

Who: Assign your “honey”

Do: What needs to be done. Mow the law, paint the house, put winter clothes in attic, etc.

Due: Tell your honey when they need to complete this task

Payoff: What their reward will be for completing the task. Rewards include:

  • Love: You know what they say: “All you need is Love”
  • Money: But then again sometimes love can be bought.
  • Payback: Make something up! Hint: A massage is always nice.
  • Gift: Has he been wanting something special that he won’t spend the money on? Reward him for his hard work!
  • Coffee: He will probably need a little caffeine after completing this list.
  • Beer: Nothing like a cold one after a hard day’s work.
  • Cupcake: The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach!
  • Doghouse: This is where he’ll be sent if the list doesn’t get completed.

Once the task is assigned it will be sent to their phone. Keep in mind they can assign tasks for you as well. They can then accept or reject (guys we don’t suggest this option) their task.Tasks can even be recurring!

This could be the best $2.99 you have spent in a long time! Check out the video above for more details.

Oh and one last tip…

Collect every remote you can find in your house and hide them. I have seen it happen time and time again with my own husband. He will be on a roll with housework and will turn on the TV to check the score of a game. Within seconds he is captured by the TV Gods and lost for the rest of the game. If you want to to have a productive cleaning day TV just isn’t in the plan. Don’t feel guilty about this one, I can guarantee he will still check scores on his phone.

Good luck ladies and happy cleaning!

Protect what’s left after spring cleaning: Why a home inventory can safeguard your stuff

Guest Blog Post

Guest blogger Pauline Hammerbeck is a digital content strategist at Allstate Insurance.

 

Spring temperatures usher in a flurry of home cleaning and home purging activities—and an opportunity to better organize and protect the possessions that make the cut.

Cataloging those coveted items in a home inventory can pay big dividends if you consider that a fire, flood or other disaster can wipe out everything you own in a blink of an eye.

Do you have a detailed list of all your stuff? Or, know what it’s all worth? If you’re like most people, the answer is no.

But the reality is that a simple home inventory can take the edge off the recovery process if everything you own is damaged or destroyed. Here are some simple strategies to simplify the task:

Organize by room. List-making becomes more manageable if you chunk it by room. Use a home inventory checklist as a starting point and document the important items as you walk from room to room. A quick visual scan makes sure nothing is left off the list.

Photograph your stuff. Take a video of each room, and focus on individual items. Then, take photos of smaller things like jewelry, the family silver or other valuables. You can also use a home inventory app to conveniently photograph and capture descriptions of your possessions, and electronically store the info to protect it from the hazards that might invite a claim.

Make some notes. Receipts are great for documenting the cost and purchase date of an item, but that’s if you have them. If not, write a quick description of each item and, for electronics, take down the make, model and serial number. You can estimate the value of your personal property with an interactive tool—you’ll be surprised at how quickly it all adds up.

Secure the information. Whether you store your inventory on paper or electronically, you’ll want to lock the info away (in a fireproof safe, with a friend or relative, or behind a password). Keep it in an easily-accessible location that won’t be lost in the same event that might destroy your home.

Once you’ve created a home inventory, you can use it as a template to make periodic updates: after a major purchase, the winter holidays or any other event that includes gifts you’ll want to replace if misfortune ever strikes.