That time of year has arrived when the days get longer, and it becomes easier to do something about the carpet stains, dust and stale air that have built up during the last few weeks and, perhaps, months. Finally, you can throw open all of the windows and let in the fresh air without freezing. Now, get ready to revitalize your home with a good spring cleaning.
Whether you conduct a full-house cleaning once a year or once a month, you may want to consider renting a self storage unit to get things out of the way during the process. In addition, cleaning and organizing easily can turn into redecorating. Self storage facilities are great places to store items for the long-term that do not fit into your updated home design scheme but that you are not ready to toss, sell or donate.
Spring cleaning tips:
- To keep track of what you have already accomplished, clean from the top down, dusting and washing ceiling fans, light fixtures and corners first. Then wipe and wash walls, windows, counters, furniture and floors.A similar philosophy works with windows. Try cleaning the inside from left to right and the outside from the top down. This will make it easier to tell which side has streaks, if either.
- Replace smoke detector batteries, test the smoke detectors and give them a good wipe down.
- Clear counters and shelves and wash them thoroughly. Wash knick-knacks and dust books. If you have accumulated stacks of papers or bills, now is a good time to file the important documents in your self storage unit. Recycle junk mail, outdated magazines and used envelopes. Shred old bills and other papers that contain personal information.
- Pull out appliances and wash the sides and floor. Clean normally hidden spills and wipe the walls.
- If you plan to paint or thoroughly shampoo the carpets, consider moving your furniture into a self storage unit. Many companies will rent units for as little as a day. Mobile storage companies will even bring a storage unit to your house and remove it when you are done with it.
- When cleaning mattresses and other furniture, consider laying down a tarp and leaving the bedding and upholstery outside on the driveway for a few hours. Some strong sunlight and ultraviolet radiation can help eradicate microscopic creatures that are trying to take up residence there. A thorough steam cleaning may leave your furniture feeling and smelling fresh, also.
- Sort through seasonal clothes. Wash or dry clean them, and sew on buttons or stitch up minor tears. A wardrobe box with a hanging rod will help keep clothes looking good and can easily be placed into your storage unit. Remember to look critically at your garments. Get rid of overly worn garments and things you never wear.
- Remember the small stuff. Sweep the corners where you vacuum does not reach, wash down air vents, clean the dirt from the tracks in your windows and patio doors, and wipe crown molding and window frames.
- Don’t forget the outside of the house. Use a power sprayer to remove grime, empty wasps’ nests and spider webs from exterior walls and windows. Spray down the garage floor while you are at it to rid the space of fluid leaks and road salt or sand that can easily be tracked inside and stain your carpet.
- Remove lawn furniture from your basement, garage or self storage unit. Clean it. A good spraying with the hose will usually do the trick. Replace the furniture with snow blowers, snow shovels and winter toys like sleds and snowboards. These bulky items can get in the way when stored at home. As these seasonal items don’t need to be removed often, you may find that when you tuck them away in a self storage unit you have taken a very practical step toward keeping your home free of clutter.
- Trim bushes, aerate the lawn, lay down fresh mulch, and maybe even plant a few flowers. Garden tools can be bundled together and placed in trash barrels in your self storage unit when they are not needed.
As you clean the nooks and crannies, you may find leaky faucets, broken door handles or cracked tiles. Take time to make these repairs now to prevent them from becoming more serious or costly problems later. Get seldom used tools out of the way when you are done with the repairs by placing them in your self storage unit.
Spring cleaning may be a lot of work, but the payoff is a brighter, safer home that can give you a new perspective and prepare you to meet life’s other challenges.