How Ready Are You for the Holidays?

The answer to this question just might be, “We are as ready as we will ever be.” In other words, whatever doesn’t get done, hopefully no one but you will notice. And the truth is, that’s perfect! Who will notice if we didn’t get the garland up by the staircase, the second tree in the living room, or even the extra gift for Uncle Joe? Chances are, nobody will ever notice these things… so why stress about them?

The truth is, not stressing about every little thing is sometimes easier said than done. Many of us tend to fall into the “perfectionist” category. This is the main reason we become so overwhelmed and frazzled by the holidays. We are too busy trying to decorate the perfect tree, buy the perfect present, or cook the best turkey with stuffing that we forget to enjoy the process. Go out shopping with your friends to buy presents, have your children help decorate the tree while sipping hot cocoa, and throw the turkey in the oven. It will all turn out fine, regardless of how much time we spent on everything.

SOME QUICK HOUSEHOLD TIPS TO MAKE THE HOLIDAYS GO SMOOTHLY:

Clean Out the Fridge: Go through your refrigerator and throw out anything over a week old to make room for desserts, trays your guests may bring, and of course… the leftovers!

Clear the countertops: Make some room for platters of cookies, festive floral arrangements, and to display your holiday cards.

Freshen up the Powder Room: Spruce things up with decorative soaps and scented candles for holiday aroma and ambiance.

Stock up the pantry: Have your favorite holiday spices, candied yams, and cranberry sauce on hand. It’s also a good idea to set aside a pile to donate to a food drive or local soup kitchen.

Clean the Chimney: Have a chimney cleaning service professionally clean the chimney so you can enjoy warm fires around the fireplace with your family and friends.

Shine the Silverware: Shine and polish your silver and wash the good china so your holiday table will sparkle!

Remember, don’t worry about making it all perfect; do what you can and then surrender to the flow of the holidays. Chances are, you will have much more fun in the process!  For more household tips or to schedule a cleaning, please visit our website at: www.homeservicesenterprise.com.

Check Your List Twice – Holiday Cleaning

Residential Cleaning

The holidays will be here before we know it, and the last thing you need to worry about is cleaning your home in preparation for decorating, holiday dinners or parties, and guests dropping by. That’s why it’s a good idea to get a head start on cleaning and organizing the house now. There is much to be done with shopping, decorating, and cooking meals during the holiday season. If your surroundings are clean, uncluttered, and organized, the holidays will be less stressful and much more enjoyable for you and your family!

Here is a simple checklist to follow:

Begin Early

Start your cleaning early so you can break things down into smaller tasks. This will also leave more time for the longer (and often more enjoyable) projects like wrapping presents, cooking, baking, and polishing the silver.

Make Lists

No one can remember everything! Make lists for tasks and chores around the house or errands to be run. This will help keep you on track with your schedule.

Divide Cleaning

Set aside a fixed time each day to tackle a room or an area to clean, like right after your morning coffee or after dinner. You will be amazed at how much you can check off your list in under an hour.

Spot Cleaning

Take shortcuts when cleaning certain areas when you don’t have a large block of time to do a thorough cleaning. This will tide you over till you can get to it again. Something is better than nothing.

Simplify

Instead of cleaning around the clutter, just throw it out! This is a good opportunity to de-clutter your rooms and to donate or throw out items you no longer use.

Enlist Help

Dividing chores among family members gets the entire family involved and also cuts down on the time needed for cleaning. Set aside a specific time each week, like a Saturday morning when the whole family home and they can dust rooms and help tidy up the house.

Home Services Enterprise can assist with cleaning and organizing your home for the holiday season. Visit our website to schedule a cleaning with us.

Quick Tips to Sanitize the Kitchen & Bathroom

House cleaning

October is National Kitchen and Bath Month. And with the holiday season fast approaching in the Rockville area, there’s never been a better time to get a head start on the two rooms that get the most wear and tear in our homes. The kitchen is the “heart” of every home; the gathering place where family eats, connects, and catches up with each other. The bathroom may not be the heart of the home, but there’s no denying its importance… it’s the place where we freshen up, groom ourselves, and get ready for the day!

 Some quick tips to sanitize the kitchen:

  • Wipe down all countertops and appliances
  • Clear and wipe out all drawers and cabinets
  • Defrost and wipe out the freezer
  • Pull the refrigerator out and clean behind it
  • Clean the stove and under the range
  • Run the dishwasher with vinegar
  • Run the garbage disposal with baking soda and some frozen diced lemon cubes
  • Throw out any old food in the pantry, fridge, or freezer

 Some sanitizing tips for the bathroom:

  • Clear out all drawers and replace any liners
  • Wipe down all countertops and the sink
  • Clean all tile and inspect seals, caulk, and grout
  • Clean the tub and the toilet
  • Wipe down the shower doors and clean shower
  • Replace the shower curtain
  • Disinfect and update any First-Aid Kits
  • Throw out old and expired hygiene and beauty products

These quick tips will sanitize and freshen up your home in no time. If you simply do not have the time in your schedule to sanitize your home, Home Services Enterprise can whisk in and freshen things up for you.  You and your family will be ready to entertain holiday guests in no time!

Back to School? Time to Clean and Organize!

Home Organization

Now that the kids have gone back to school in the Rockville area and summer vacations have come and gone, the house is empty and (hopefully) quiet. This is the perfect time of year to clean and purge your home of unwanted items. Why not go through all the things you and your family members have accumulated all year long and decide what you’d like to keep, donate, or throw out?

With everyone is out of the house for most of the day, it’s much easier to go through and clean, organize, and donate things that are no longer wanted. Once that is accomplished and your home is more spacious and less cluttered, it’s time to clean and organize!

Home Services Enterprise offers a wide variety of Standard Cleaning Services and Special Services.

Standard Cleaning Services:

  • Dust all surfaces and under all furniture
  • Clean windows, ledges, and frames
  • Clean fans, vents, and doors
  • Dust and polish all baseboards, light switches, and doorknobs
  • Hand wash all floors
  • Clean bathrooms including sinks, tub and shower, toilet, and treat mildew
  • Vacuum all carpets and under furniture
  • Change bed linens
  • Scrub kitchen counters and sink
  • Clean interior and exterior of refrigerator, oven, and microwave
  • Load and unload dishwasher
  • Collect and take out trash

Special Cleaning Services:

  • Windows – cleaning interior and exterior
  • Walls – cleaning and washing
  • Plants – watering, dusting, and trimming
  • Decluttering and organizing – closets, kitchen, garage, children’s rooms, storage areas, paperwork,  and offices
  • Exterior – cleaning garage, sweeping deck, cleaning and polishing outside light fixtures, cleaning and polishing outdoor furniture
  • Laundry – washing, folding, ironing
  • Polishing – silver flatware, serving and decorative pieces

With all the cleaning services that are offered, you can enjoy that same old-fashioned cleaning that your mother and grandmother were proud of in their day. Your home will feel refreshed both inside and out!

Go Green & Clean! – Kitchens & Bath

Cleaning home and office

These days, most people are at least somewhat concerned about all of the chemicals that can be found in our food, cleaning products, clothing, and just about everything else. The good news is that it’s getting easier and easier to find natural products. The bad news is that these products are typically quite expensive.

The great news is that making your own cleaning products with the supplies most of us already have at home will be less costly and much healthier for both you and our planet. You may even have memories from childhood of our mothers and grandmothers using these methods. There are three natural ingredients found in most homes – vinegar, lemon juice, and baking soda – that are used not only for cooking and baking, but also for cleaning your home.

How Vinegar Works as a Cleaning Agent: Vinegar’s active ingredient, acetic acid, is a strong cleaning agent that dissolves dirt, grease, and grime build-up. It also kills germs, mold, and bacteria. Use white vinegar because it’s less harsh and will not stain light surfaces.

Using Vinegar in the Kitchen: Mix equal parts vinegar and water, then pour it into a spray bottle. Spray this on your stove top, appliances, and countertops, then wipe them down. Using vinegar and water to clean tile floors in kitchens will leave them shiny and clean.   

Using Vinegar in the Bath: Using straight vinegar, wipe down the bathtub, toilet, sink, and countertops. Use equal parts vinegar and water to mop the bathroom floor.

Lemon Juice and its Uses: Lemon juice is a natural ingredient that can be used to clean certain items in your home. Lemon juice can dissolve mineral deposits and soap scum. It’s also a good for cleaning and shining stainless steel, copper, and brass fixtures throughout your home. Lemon juice has the added benefit of keeping your home smelling fresh and clean.

Baking Soda: Baking soda is a great deodorizer for your home. Place an opened box in your refrigerator to absorb odors from food.  Baking soda also acts as a mildly abrasive cleanser that can be used to scrub surfaces throughout your home.  It will keep odors away and your home smelling clean.

Want to clean your home with eco-friendly natural products but don’t have the time in your busy schedule? You can count on Home Services Enterprise to use ecologically responsible cleaning products throughout your home. Give us a call today. 301-674-9564

Prepare for a Happy Homecoming After Vacation

Home and Office Cleaning

Are you and your family getting ready to head out of the Rockville area for a vacation or road trip? Sometimes we get so focused on where we’re going, we forget to prepare for our inevitable return home.

Tidying up the house before you leave will create one less thing to take care of upon your return. Here are just a few things you can do to prepare for a happy homecoming:

  • It’s always a good idea to pick up any clutter throughout your home and straighten up each room.
  • Freshen up the bathrooms and wash any clothes sitting in the hampers.
  • Clean out your cabinets and fridge of any leftover food and throw out any produce that will not keep.
  • Check on your bills’ due dates and pay any that are scheduled to be paid while you are away.
  • Don’t forget to arrange for stop and start on any newspapers and mail that you have delivered during your time away.
  • And perhaps most importantly, empty all trash cans throughout the house to avoid lingering odors.

Hiring a house sitter can also provide peace of mind. Knowing that someone will be there to keep an eye on your vacant house is one less worry. They can bring in the mail, set out the trash, and turn on any lights inside at various times while you are away. House sitters can also take care of any pets that you are not able to bring with you on vacation. Either way, it’s always a good idea to have your veterinarian’s contact information nearby in case of an emergency.

Home Service Enterprises can come in and spiffy up your home while you are away so that things will be fresh and clean when you return. With a little planning and organization you can rest assured that your home is well taken care of in your absence. Relax, smile and have a great trip!

Allergies and Air Ducts – Keeping Your Vents Clean

House cleaning

Allergy season can be tough, and people try all kinds of things to keep their allergies to a minimum, from taking medicine to staying inside. Unfortunately, staying inside your home during allergy season will not necessarily limit your exposure to allergens.

All types of allergens, such as dust, mold, mildew, and pet dander can be a bothersome issue inside your home year-round. Whether you or your family members have indoor allergies, outdoor allergies, or no allergies, everyone will benefit from having all of the indoor vents and air ducts cleaned. There are air vents and ducts in every room in our households, but we sometimes forget about them and often overlook cleaning them. They tend to attract all kinds of household debris that is neatly hidden behind a cover, including allergens such as dust, mold, and mildew – and even pet dander.

Here is a checklist on what to look for when considering having your air vents and ducts cleaned:

  1. If the components of the heating and cooling system have any visible mold, or if surfaces of ducts have visible mold and mildew on them
  2. If the inside of the ducts are clogged with debris, dust, and/or mold
  3. If debris and/or dust is released through the heating and a/c system registers

If you do see any sort of visible mold, mildew, or dust on any of your air vents, ducts, or even overhead fans throughout your home, it is strongly recommended that you remove all mildew and dust to prevent allergens from entering the air you breathe. Alternatively, you can have Home Services Enterprise come in and professionally clean for you. Having your air ducts cleaned may also require an air conditioning and heating service technician to come into your home and professionally clean out the air ducts for you.

Keeping the all of the vents in your home clean is crucial for reducing allergens in the air that you breathe each and every day. If you or any of your family members suffer from any type of allergies, keeping your home dust-free is an important step in maintaining a healthy, symptom-free lifestyle.

Time to Move Out? Dorm Cleaning 101

Residential CleaningNow that the semester is nearly over, college students everywhere – from the Rockville area and across the country – will be cleaning and moving out of their dorm rooms.  This can be an arduous task for students. Even though the dorm rooms are usually on the smaller side, they tend to accumulate a lot of things during the school year. Of course, after the end of each spring semester, college students have to clean all of their belongings out of their dorm rooms.

Most colleges use these dorm rooms to house students for summer classes, and therefore require that all belongings be removed – and a thorough cleaning done – by a certain deadline.

There are 3 main pieces of dorm furniture to tackle and clean, and it’s best to start in this order:

  • Clean off your desk and pack up books, supplies, and laptops.
  • Clean out your trunk or dresser and place folded clothing on your bed.
  • Clean out your closet and remove clothing; fold and place the clothing on your bed.
  • Pack all of your clothes in duffel bags and/or suitcases.
  • Remove all bedding, blankets, and pillows from the bed and pack in a large bag.

Now that all the pieces of dorm furniture are cleared off, they are ready for a thorough cleaning. Wipe down the desk and the trunk with cleaning wipes and clean the inside of the closet, wiping it down as necessary. The bed can be sprayed with a disinfectant spray for freshness.

Always have large trash bags on hand to throw away unwanted clutter. If you have a refrigerator and/or microwave, clean them out, wipe them down, and throw away any remaining food you no longer want. Clean out the bathroom if there is one inside your dorm room. Pack away all toiletries and clean the bathroom thoroughly.

As a college student living on your own now, you are learning how to become independent. You are responsible for your own living quarters – clearing them out and cleaning them per school regulations. If there is no time in your schedule to clean the dorm room thoroughly or you need any additional help, you can call on a professional cleaning service to professionally clean for you. Keeping small places clean is not easy, and good cleaning habits will keep your roommates happy and your parents impressed!

A Breath of Fresh Air – Allergy & Asthma Cleaning Tips

Asthma & Allergy cleaning tips

It’s time for spring cleaning! This may bring memories of watching our mothers or grandmothers taking all of the rugs outside, throwing them over a clothesline, and beating them with a broom. There was a very good reason for this annual ritual. It was time to clean and literally beat out all of the dust, allergens, and dirt that got trapped in the carpets throughout our homes during the winter. They would tie rags to brooms and wash down the walls. Screens would be removed, hosed down with water, and put back on newly scrubbed window panes.

The good news is that today, it’s much easier to remove dust, dirt, and allergens from our homes. We have disposable wipes, vacuum cleaners, and even professional cleaning services to clean and freshen up our homes for spring!

For anyone who suffers from allergies or asthma, a thorough spring cleaning is essential for keeping the air in your living environment as healthy as possible. Regular cleaning is necessary to reduce allergens and asthma triggers in any household. Of course, we also need to be careful to use cleaning products that won’t trigger a wheezing or coughing fit. Anyone prone to allergies and asthma must always choose their cleaning products carefully.

Here are some good spring cleaning tips to follow:

  1. Carpets: Always vacuum thoroughly and often. If not daily, then at least once a week.
  2. Curtains: Remove and wash if possible, or vacuum. Curtains are dust traps and often overlooked when cleaning. If soiled, remove them and take to professional cleaners.
  3. Walls: Use a dampened dust mop and wipe walls down, from top to bottom.
  4. Ceilings: Vacuum with vacuum extensions or clean with a dampened mop.
  5. Throw Rugs: Vacuum or take them outside to shake out the dust daily or weekly.
  6. Windows: Clean inside and out. Be sure to remove the screens and clean them, as well.
  7. Linens: Include all bedding and pillows in your spring cleaning. Dust mites love to hide here. Try using dust-mite-proof covers for pillows and mattresses, and wash your linens weekly.
  8. Picture Frames: These can be big dust collectors. Wipe them down with a damp cloth all around the edges, and clean the glass with vinegar or your favorite glass cleaner.
  9. Nooks and Crannies: Clean out all of those hard to reach spots that collect hidden dust and dirt.
  10. Knick-Knacks: Go through the house and wipe them all down.

Always give a thorough cleaning in each of these areas of your home to help prevent any members of your household from suffering the effects of springtime allergies and asthma.  A clean, fresh, and dust-free environment will go a long way towards keep everyone happy and healthy.

Decluttering and Organizing Your Home and Office

Organizing and DeCluttering

Everyone can always benefit from a clean, efficient, and organized work space – whether you’re a student trying to study for a test, or a work-at-home mom trying to run a business from home. As we head into spring, you may find that the clutter from the winter has begun to take over. From back-to-school shopping last September to the Holidays and beyond, now is a great time to clear out what’s no longer needed.

Our work spaces should always be a high priority when it comes to staying organized. Studies have shown that keeping an organized desk helps to boost productivity. When you start with a clear work surface, your mind opens up to the project at hand more easily, without being distracted by any other unfinished projects that may be lying around your office.

Where should you begin? The biggest trick is to not bite off more than you can chew. Start with a small area; even as small as one desk drawer. If that goes well and you have time to move on, tackle the next drawer or perhaps a shelf. You can always take on more if you finish a small section. Sticking with small sections allows you to reach completion on small projects in a short period of time, whereas trying to do a whole room at once can feel overwhelming.

If you simply do not have the time to go through and clean out, organize, and de-clutter your home or office, you can always hire an expert to come in and take care of that for you. Cleaning services and organizing experts are available to come in and assist you or even take care of the whole job for you.

We all tend to accumulate things throughout the year, and especially during the winter. The key is, are you getting rid of what’s no longer needed, or just pushing it into a corner of your office? Accumulating too many things leads to disorganization and chaos, which can have a negative effect on productivity. Get off to a good start this spring with a fresh, clean, and organized work area. You will be happier and healthier – and so will your family!