Author Archives: HSE

Going Green in Your Home

It’s not just “trendy” these days to adopt a more environmentally conscious lifestyle—it’s actually better for our health and our diets, cleaner for our food and water supplies, less invasive of our planet’s oceans and lands. But it can also be expensive! Sure, a hybrid car cuts down on emissions and gas use, but the cost of a whole new vehicle? Organic foodstuffs contain fewer chemicals and toxins, but the price tags rise with the health benefits. And who has the time to clean cloth diapers, the resources to purchase only all-natural cosmetics, or the convenience of finding recycled-only goods?

Some eco-friendly measures are easier to commit to than others, like reusable grocery bags, glass water bottles, and cloth dishtowels over paper towels. And luckily for the average consumer, going greener when it comes to your housecleaning is another area where you can easily make great strides without breaking the bank. At all.

Three back-to-basics staples, in particular, should be stocked in every home—not only because they’re cheap, pure, and environmentally responsible, but because they’ve been doing the trick for centuries and show no signs of losing their effectiveness! Go greener today in your home and your life by making your own cleaning products out of these tried-and-true ingredients:

  1. VINEGAR: The active ingredient in vinegar is acetic acid, which can be a strong cleaning agent that dissolves dirt buildup, grease, and grime. It also kills germs, mold, and bacteria. To make an all-natural spray that can be used all over your kitchen and bathrooms—on the stovetop, appliances, and countertops … on tile floors, tubs, showers, sinks, and toilets—simply mix equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle that you can buy at any discount or dollar store. Opt for white vinegar to eliminate the possibility of any staining or discoloration.
  2. LEMONS: Lemon juice is another natural ingredient that can be used for cleaning, either concentrated or diluted with water. The citric acid in lemons, with its low pH and high antibacterial properties, dissolves mineral deposits and soap scum. It also shines stainless steel, brass, and copper fixtures; it sanitizes cutting boards; it can be nuked in half a cup of water to clean your microwave; it’s a terrific scrubbing and de-griming agent (frying pans, coffeepots, etc.); and with a little help from an old toothbrush, it can be used to clean grout. The applications are virtually endless. And of course there’s the added benefit of the fresh smell that will infuse your home!
  3. BAKING SODA: Look in any refrigerator in America. Chances are, there’s an open box of baking soda tucked in the back somewhere. That’s because baking soda is a known deodorizer that absorbs unwanted scents and smells. But it’s not just for sitting on a shelf! On its own or combined with water, dish soap, and/or vinegar, baking soda can be used as a non-abrasive cleanser on hard surfaces in the home—walls, furniture, floors, you name it. It gets the smell out of drains and garbage disposals. It cleans sponges, batteries, grills. It can even be used as a fruit and veggie wash.

Check out any number of DIY listings online to find out how to use these three products most beneficially, effectively, and harmlessly—on their own or in combination. Then, if you want more ideas on how to “greenify” your home, consult the experts at Home Services Enterprise for more tips or to undertake the tasks for you. We’re an eco-friendly company that uses natural products upon request, such as microfiber cloths to keep dust from becoming airborne for allergy and asthma sufferers.

301-674-9564  |  www.homeservicesenterprise.com

De-Clutter Your Closet to De-Stress Your Life

Life can get messy. Any step you take to simplify even one aspect of your surroundings or clear out any single space that’s gotten unruly will bring much-needed cleanliness, order, and freshness to your days and a welcome sense of relief to your mind.

Periodically going through your closet is an excellent opportunity to get rid of the old and the obsolete so you can enjoy a newly optimized and organized corner of your world. This isn’t an easy task for some people, however. We get attached to our things, we worry about discarding something we may want around some day, and we hold on to hope that those pants will fit again one day or that jacket will come back in style.

Now’s the time to put your decision-making skills to work and dive into the task with some basic guidelines steering you and some direct steps you can follow that will take you from cluttered to calm before you know it!

  1. Take one item at a time out of your closet.
  2. For each individual item, ask:
  • Are you still wearing this now or have you worn it in the past two years?
  • Do you love it?
  • Does it reflect your current personal style?
  1. If you answer yes to all three questions, the item is a definite keeper. If you answer no to two or more of these questions, it’s time to toss it on one of two piles: (a) donate to charity or (b) give to someone you know who you think will appreciate it.
  2. When you come across something “iffy,” try it on, honestly assess yourself in a full-length mirror, and decide if the article fits well enough and looks good enough to keep.
  3. Repeat this process for every single item in your closet: clothing, shoes, scarves, ties, belts, hats, purses, robes, bathing suits—you name it.
  4. Bag or box up your give-away piles and remove them from the room, storing them somewhere out of the way (like your garage or car trunk) until you get a chance to permanently dispose of them.
  5. Now, to finish preparing your “clean slate,” empty your entire closet of all the items you’re keeping so that you can access every nook, cranny, shelf, and cubby. Thoroughly clean all surfaces and spaces at once (including vacuuming the closet floor).
  6. Now it’s time for the fun part! As you reload, bring items back in and organize by colors and by seasons. The things you wear and use often should be within easiest reach; seldom-worn attire like formal wear can be placed in more out-of-the-way areas.

Whether this takes you half a day or a full weekend, the rewards will be well worth the effort … And just think of all the space you just created to shop for new items that perfectly suit the new you!

Home Services Enterprise does far more than just cleaning. If you need some help getting your spaces in tiptop shape, carting off your unused belongings, or organizing any other area of your home or office, we’re at your service!

Call Home Services Enterprise today at 301-674-9564 to schedule an appointment or visit our website: www.homeservicesenterprise.com

The Balancing Act of September

Ask any American family on the street what the busiest time of the year is for them, and they’ll answer September more often than not. Far more often. Getting back-to-school routines in place and getting back in full work mode after the warm, lazy days of summer vacations and long summer weekends can be grueling at worst, challenging at best.

When you’re struggling to regain your balance with everything you’ve got going on, the last thing you want to think about is housework. New drop-off and pick-up times, new after-school activity schedules, new homework requirements, new lunch box requests … dusting and mopping and scrubbing and vacuuming are at the bottom of your list!

So why not call in some assistance to help you balance it all? A professional house cleaning and organizing service can do just that—taking tedious chores off your plate by, literally, cleaning the plates for you! Professional assistance offers:

  • Flexible schedules. The standard cleaning schedule is a thing of the past, and consumers can now name the days, times, frequencies, and spans that work best for their lives, their families, and their budgets. Schedule one cleaning at a time or set up a regular appointment. Want to be home or not at home when the cleaners are there? It’s your call. Do you work odd hours and so have unusual appointment time requests? Not a problem. Today’s market is about accommodating the customer and adding value to their busy lives.
  • Flexible services. Professional cleaners don’t just cross the threshold anymore with buckets and brooms. They come armed and equipped to help organize your home as well, to help store and sort, to water plants, do laundry, and de-clutter. And they do windows too! Whether you’re looking for weekly tidying up, a monthly “full sweep,” or a seasonal deep cleaning, you can pick and choose from a comprehensive list of services designed to bring order, neatness, and peace of mind to your residential and office spaces.
  • Flexible crews. To offer specialty services, you’ve got to have specialty workers willing and able to do the job right. There are many things that customers prefer not to do themselves—cleaning the oven and cleaning out the fridge, tackling the garage or attic or basement, deep-cleaning the carpets, to name a few—and that’s when it’s time to call in the pros. A professional agency will work with your particular time, budgeting, and home needs to provide customized care delivered by qualified professionals.

Call Home Services Enterprise today at 301-674-9564 to schedule a cleaning or visit our website: www.homeservicesenterprise.com

Prepping for Back-to-School Time

Doesn’t it seem like it was just a few weeks ago when your kids were chanting “No more teachers, no more books …”? And yet here we are again—already in August, when families across the country are preparing for the return to school.

As the countdown begins, parents everywhere find their schedules getting more hectic and their to-do lists growing longer. But there are actually several steps you can take to make this school year the best one yet!

  • Make a checklist of what needs to be done. Your daughter needs a new lunch box? Your son’s backpack has a tear? You’ve been meaning to look up healthy meal options you can send them on their day with? Still need to fill out those permission forms that have been sitting on the counter? Now’s the time to take care of whatever can be accomplished in advance, so you’re free to attend to more time-sensitive homework assignments and book reports once they start rolling in. Space out all these tasks so they’re more manageable time-wise.
  • Take a clothing inventory. The simple process of getting dressed in the morning can become stressful when drawers aren’t organized, closets are in disarray, clothes no longer fit, and the jacket most appropriate for the weather isn’t hanging in the coat closet within easy reach. Now’s the time to go through all your kids’ clothing—sorting out what to donate, what to hand down to younger ones, what seasonal items can be stored in bins, and what to hang up versus fold neatly away. In the process, you’ll identify gaps in the wardrobe—socks, shoes, sweatshirts—and you’ll make room for them. There’s nothing like starting off a new school year with a clean, fresh slate!
  • Go school supply shopping. The earlier you can check this item off, the better—before stores run out of the folders that are trending, the required type of pens and pencils, and book bags and gadgets that pass your kids’ approval. The best way to tackle this is to arm yourself with a detailed list of what you need to buy. Not only will this ensure that you don’t forget anything, but it will prevent you from making unnecessary and impulse purchases, saving you both money and repeat last-minute trips to the store. You can even make a game of this, dividing up the list and letting your kids hunt down the items in the aisles themselves.
  • Create a designated study area. Setting aside a particular part of your home for your kids to do their schoolwork is a great idea that signals when it’s “work time” and instills solid study habits. In this space, for example, cell phones are on silent and distracting music isn’t playing. Not only that, but you can set up storage bins or crates to neatly organize and arrange all those school supplies you just bought. This doesn’t have to be a big project or space—you can open up a corner in their bedroom, rearrange furniture to put a comfortable chair here, a compact desk there, situate a lamp just right to ensure good lighting. Whatever you can do to provide a calm and quiet place for their studies will get your kids off to a great start and keep them going that way all year.

Home Services Enterprise can help with all your organizing and home-optimization needs. Call 301-674-9564 today to schedule an appointment or visit our website: www.homeservicesenterprise.com

Readying Your Home for Your Vacation

Planning a vacation can be fun for everyone—where to go, how long to stay, checking out the local attractions, booking exciting activities and excursions. For homeowners, however, the thought of leaving your home unattended for a week or even longer can be worrisome. Who will take care of your pet? Will your plants die without watering? What if something goes wrong—a pipe breaks, the power goes out, the alarm goes off, an intense storm hits?

Preparing for a smooth departure and taking steps ahead of time to deal with any unexpected developments that might arise while you’re away will go a long way toward easing your mind and making your getaway truly relaxing!

THINGS YOU’LL NEED BEFORE YOU LEAVE:

  • Extra keys to the front door, back door, garage door
  • Timers for lights, inside and out
  • Padlock for gates for added security

SIX TIPS TO READY YOUR HOME: 

  1. Notify a neighbor or family member of the dates you will be away and provide them with emergency contact numbers. Either give them key(s) to your home before you go or leave them somewhere secure where they can access them. A garage door opener is another option, with the added bonus of easy access to garbage or recycling bins that might need to go out to the curb. Ask your neighbors to be on the lookout for any suspicious activity around your home.
  2. Make arrangements to stop mail and newspaper delivery or have them picked up by a trusted friend or neighbor. (Nothing signals you’re away more than a pile of newspapers on your front stoop.) While they’re there, have them water plants as needed.
  3. A great security measure is to set automatic timers for various lights inside your home that will turn on before dark and back off by morning. Timers and/or sensor lights for the outside of your home are highly recommended for extra security.
  4. If you have pets, make arrangements for either a pet care facility, a pet sitting service, or a steady visiting neighbor or friend who can come and care for your pet as often as needed. If you plan on using a facility, call early to make a reservation since they fill up quickly during the summertime!
  5. Turn off your water, inside and outside, to prevent dripping faucets, running toilets, or even worse, a flood in your home.
  6. Call Home Services Enterprise to schedule a house cleaning while you’re away. We can organize and clean your home in your absence, taking care of things like disposing of any spoiled food in the fridge, so that you can return to a spotless and welcoming home!

To schedule a cleaning, call 301-674-9564 or visit: www.homeservicesenterprise.com

 

A Month-by-Month Guide to Organizing Your Home

A house that is well organized and less cluttered feels calmer, looks better, and operates more efficiently than a home that goes neglected and disorganized, with clutter strewn about. Easier said than done, however, since the pace of life these days often keeps people too busy to attend to wish-list tasks and too exhausted to undertake them even when they have the time. Not only that, but it’s hard to know where to even start a significant cleanup project, so sometimes people just don’t begin at all.

But organizing a home doesn’t have to be so overwhelming and taxing. The trick is to start small and not try to tackle the whole thing in one fell swoop. Use this monthly checklist to break down large chores into smaller, more manageable increments completed throughout the year, and your house will be running like a fine-tuned machine in no time!

Monthly Checklist:

  • January: Pack up all your holiday decorations and return them to clearly marked boxes and bins as you clean and straighten common areas of your home as you go. Didn’t use that tree stand, tablecloth, or wreath the past few years? Make a donation pile of no-longer-used holiday items and drop them off at your nearest Goodwill the next time you’re running errands.
  • February: Now that all your holiday cooking and hosting is over, it’s a good time to clean out the pantry, dispose of expired and unused foodstuffs, and reorganize your kitchen shelves.
  • March: It’s almost tax time, making it the perfect opportunity to go through all your files and drawers of paperwork and bills, throwing out anything you no longer need.
  • April: This is the month of spring cleaning—a reenergizing and rejuvenating time of year to get home surfaces sparkling and home textiles aired out. But first, you have to restock all your cleaning supplies: make one trip to the store for kitchen, bathroom, dusting, vacuuming, and sanitizing supplies.
  • May: Now that the warmer weather is here, sort through your family’s winter clothes—in dressers, drawers, and closets—laundering what needs to be cleaned, storing what won’t be needed until winter, and donating items no longer worn.
  • June: It’s a great month to attend to the kitchen, so open the windows and turn on some tunes as you clean and organize kitchen cabinets and drawers and weed out any pans and cooking utensils you no longer use. You can even add a backsplash or paint an accent wall a new color to freshen things up!
  • July: The long days of summer offer the chance to take on the bathrooms while there’s daylight to spare. Go through cabinets and medicine closets, eliminating whatever’s not needed to make more space and then straightening up everything that’s staying. Set up accessories—like electric toothbrushes, hair styling tools, and cups and soap dispensers—in such a way to eliminate morning chaos as everyone gets ready for the day.
  • August: Before a new school year starts is a prime time to get the kids’ rooms in order: fold clothes, clean out closets, go through the toy chest and donate unused items, get the bookshelves back in order.
  • September: It’s time to put the summer things away and get the winter apparel back out again. Shop for school supplies, organize and label your kids’ school supplies and lunch boxes, maybe even map out a weekly meal calendar so you know what groceries to buy and prep for quick breakfasts, wholesome lunches, and ready-to-go snacks.
  • October: As fall sets in, get your family room ready for quality family time by organizing your movie and video game collection, tidying up the software and technology in the entertainment center, and dusting off the books and photos in the room.
  • November: In preparation for the holiday season, clean windows, draperies, and carpets so your house looks its best and is ready for company. Stock the guest bathroom if you’re expecting visitors.
  • December: With all your closets and cabinets in order, you’ll be ready to wrap all those holiday gifts you now have time to shop for, decorate your home, and get to all that cooking and baking!

Feel free to reorganize this checklist any way that works best for you—like starting in rooms that you use the most or with the chores you enjoy the most—and know that you can begin at any time. It’s never too late or the wrong time of the year to launch a home improvement initiative that will improve your quality of life!

Home Services Enterprise is happy to help with cleaning and organizing your home. Call 301-674-9564 or visit www.homeservicesenterprise.com.

 

Reducing Allergens in Your Home This Spring

Those who suffer from seasonal allergies know to avoid the outdoors, with all its triggers and irritants, at particular times of the year. But did you know that staying indoors presents its own set of dangers? If you have pets, for example, animal dander is likely present in your home, which can set off sneezing and coughing, as can mold and mildew. House plants, draperies, bedding, carpets—these can all contain mold as well, along with dust mites that cause swelling and itching.

The first step in combating indoor allergens is to open your windows and doors to let the stale air out and the fresh air in. You’ll also want to use fans to keep the air circulating throughout your home.

There’s more you can do to prevent health issues and allergy flare-ups by reducing the allergens in your home:

  • Check the moisture in your home. Moisture is one of the main contributors to allergens because high moisture levels can lead to mildew in your home. The best way to keep the air clean and dry is by using air-conditioning and dehumidifiers. Also remember to regularly change the air filters in the furnace to purify the air and filter out allergens.
  • Clean curtains and carpets. Window coverings, carpeting, and all kinds of upholstery collect dust and allergens over time. Vacuuming regularly and having them professionally cleaned occasionally to remove dirt and dust will cut back on the allergens and keep your furniture and carpets smelling fresher. If the carpeting is the main source of your allergens, you may want to consider removing it entirely and replacing it with tile or wood floors.
  • Change cleaning solutions. Fumes and odors from over-the-counter cleaning products can often cause breathing problems for allergy sufferers. Green products, however, use natural and organic ingredients that don’t carry the same risk. Or make your own tried-and-true cleaning solution of vinegar, baking soda, and hot water. Going green with your cleaners will not only improve the air quality in your home, it will neutralize various allergens lurking in it.

Home Services Enterprise uses all green cleaning products to keep the air in your home fresh and the environment clean. Book a cleaning today: www.homeservicesenterprise.com  |  301-674-9564

Spring Is in the Air: Tips to Freshen Your Home

Home house and office cleaning

Home is where the heart is. But getting a breath of fresh air your home this time of year may not be as effortless as it sounds. Following the colder months of winter, when our doors are fastened tight and our windows are sealed shut, the air quality in our homes can feel stuffy and stagnant, making for a less comfortable (not to mention even a less healthy) living environment for you and your family. Compounding the stagnation of winter are the chemicals we inhale from our carpets, draperies, furniture, paints, fabrics, and other items in our homes that collect dust, dirt, and mildew.

Springtime, though—with its warm, sunny days that beckon us to let the sunshine in and bring the outdoors indoors—is the most opportune season to renew and re-energize the air inside your home. Follow these tips, and you’ll breathing easier in no time!

FOUR TIPS TO FRESHEN YOUR HOME:

  1. Clean your vents: Dusting and cleaning out your vents will eliminate the dirt and debris that accumulates inside them and is then distributed in the air that circulates around your home. Cleaner vents will also reduce any allergy and asthma issues your family members may suffer from. You can do this yourself or you can hire a professional duct cleaner to do the cleaning.
  2. Dust and vacuum: Thoroughly dust all surfaces in your home, including windowsills, window treatments, baseboards, ceilings, and ceiling fans. Don’t forget to dust off any household plants and their leaves, which collect a buildup of dust and dirt. Take advantage of your vacuum’s brush attachments to allow you to access those hard-to-reach places where dust accumulates.
  3. Clean bedding and blankets: Laundering and airing out bedding is another important step to take, especially for people with allergies and asthma. Sheets should be washed weekly, and blankets and pet bedding should be washed regularly as well.
  4. Open the windows: Opening windows on all available sides of your home will let a breeze blow in to clear out the stagnant air. You can even leave the windows open all night (if your allergies can handle it) to awaken to crisper, fresher-smelling air throughout your home!

Home Services Enterprise can swoop in today to help bring the freshness of spring into your home. To schedule a cleaning, call us today at 301-674-9564 or visit our website: www.homeservicesenterprise.com.

 

Going Green in Your Home Office: Good Tips for the Environment

home house office cleaning

If you work from a home-based office, then you’re already contributing to the environment by reducing your carbon footprint via telecommuting. Way to go! But did you know you can do even more to be eco-conscious, right from the comfort of your own desk? Regardless of how large or small your workspace, there are ways to make it more eco-friendly and productive.

“Going green” doesn’t have to be as difficult or intimidating as some people think; in fact, it’s quite easy and convenient. Not only that, but it will benefit your wallet as well, since a home office — outfitted with computers, technology, printers, chargers, adapters, and other electronics — typically uses more energy and resources than any other room in your house. These simple steps that anyone can take will help both you and your surroundings.

THREE WAYS TO GO GREEN:

  1. Save on resources: Be conscious of how you use your office equipment, turning it off, shutting it down, putting it to sleep, unplugging it, or making use of screen savers whenever possible to conserve energy. This will preserve the life of your technology while also decreasing your energy bill.
  2. Recycle: Adding another bin next to your trash can in your office will remind you to separate items that can be recycled, like batteries and printer cartridges, instead of just throwing them away. When we take measures to reuse, less is added to trash heaps and more is renewed and refurbished.
  3. Cut down on your printing: Before sending something to your printer, ask yourself if a hard copy is absolutely necessary. It’s much more cost-effective and environmentally conscientious to reduce waste and save ink — and your paper supply and printer cartridges will last much longer to boot!

Start practicing these eco-friendly habits around your home today to create a cleaner environment for you and your family and to impact the future environment as well. Both you and your world will be better for it.

Home Services Enterprise is committed to protecting our environment by using ecologically responsible products to clean your home and office. To set up a cleaning, call 301-674-9564 or go to: www.homeservicesenterprise.com

Customize Your Cleaning with Our Special Services

Everyone’s life is so busy these days, making finding the time to get to household chores more difficult and stressful than ever. How long is your to-do list every day? How are you supposed to regularly attend to cleaning and household tasks amid all your other obligations, like your work schedule, family responsibilities, school activities, and more?

Well, with Home Services Enterprise, you can pick and choose the services you need on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. We offer a menu of special services that allows you to customize your own cleaning list and concentrate on the areas of your home or office that require the most attention. This frees up your own time so you can relax and enjoy life more!

HSE’s special cleaning services include:

  1. Windows: cleaning interior and exterior windows
  2. Walls: washing and cleaning
  3. De-cluttering: closets, kitchens, garages, children’s rooms, storage areas, offices, and supply areas
  4. Organizing: home or office, kitchen cabinets, bathroom shelves and cabinets, mail, bill paying, and plant watering
  5. Laundry: washing, folding, and ironing
  6. Polishing: silver flatware, serving and decorative pieces
  7. Exterior Cleaning: garage, decks and patios, outdoor furniture, and outdoor fixtures
  8. Outside Work: gutters, cement, asphalt, brick, stone, landscaping, retaining walls, and walkways

With the convenience of a fully customized cleaning service tailored to your needs and your schedule, you can book appointments for your home or office starting in increments as little as one hour. What better way to quickly and affordably reduce your stress and make your life a little easier?

Call today to schedule an appointment: 301-674-9564.