City of Anacortes Residential Spring Clean Up May 13

spring-cleaning

From 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday, May 13, the City of Anacortes will hold a Residential Spring Clean Up at its Operations Facility located at D Avenue and 37th Street.

Get your household cleaning done and bring your residential garbage and yard waste at no charge!

The gate to the facility will close promptly at 12 p.m. so it is advised to arrive early to ensure you can drop off your items and two forms of ID are required.

For more information about fees and items being accepted, click here.

Things to Clean Just Once a Year

THINGS TO CLEAN

Cleaning: some hate it, some love it. For those who are not huge fans, there is good news! Not everything in our homes needs to be cleaned daily, weekly, or even monthly. Here are a few things that (typically) only need to be cleaned once a year:

Upholstered Furniture
If you have pets, vacuuming your furniture at least weekly is a must. If your furniture sees a lot of wear and tear, call in a professional! Don’t be the home where guests are afraid to sit on the couch- give a furniture cleaner a call once during the spring and vacuum and spot clean the rest of the year!

Drapes and Curtains
We often underestimate the amount of dust in our home, and this can be evident if curtains or drapes are moved. Minimize this by taking them all down each spring and throwing them in the wash. It really is as easy as that. If you have curtains that can’t go in your regular washer and dryer, send them out to be dry cleaned! Your allergies will be happy you did.

Vents and Air ducts
Have you ever looked closely at the air ducts in your home? Try it. You are likely to find a buildup of dirt and dust on one side of the vent or the other. Just take a duster, slightly damp cloth, or vacuum wand and clean it off! It’s simple, and you won’t need to worry as much about dirt and dust being blown about your home.

Carpets
Just like furniture, carpets should be vacuumed regularly- especially if you have pets. But when was the last time your carpets were shampooed? If you have more than one furry friend, this should likely be done every six months. If not, once a year is sufficient to remove that layer of dirt that your vacuum just doesn’t reach. Don’t want to pay a pro? Rent a carpet cleaner and do it yourself!

Clean Around Large Appliances
When we think about truly deep cleaning the kitchen, we often think of pulling out the refrigerator and cleaning behind it. This should also be done with the stove, as who knows what has made its way back there throughout the year.

When you think of large appliances, however, do your washer and dryer come to mind? If it has been a while since you’ve cleaned around these essential parts of your home, add it to your yearly list! The buildup of lint and dust around a dryer can be a huge fire hazard, and it builds up more than we know. Vacuum your lint tray, underneath the washer and dryer, and have your dryer vent cleaned every 12-18 months.

Last But Not Least: Purge
Purging can be therapeutic for many, and terrifying for many more. The fact remains however, that we all have things we don’t use. Once a year, go through your garage, closets, and other storage spaces and get rid of those things you haven’t used since you went through it the year before. You will find so much more room for the things you really love!

Taking Care of Large Appliances

Appliances

The large appliances in your home can be some of the most expensive items you own. Fortunately with a little light maintenance, you can prolong both the life of and quality of your appliances. This is specially important if you are thinking of selling your home in Anacortes.

The number one rule with any appliance, whether it be your washer and dryer or stove top, is to wipe up any spills as soon as they happen. However, since some appliances are used differently and more regularly than others, some require a little more attention on a more frequent basis.

Oven and Stovetop
After time, your oven will start exuding odors such as slight burning smells when turned on to preheat. When this happens, you can either utilize the self-cleaning feature that many ovens have, or wipe down the interior with a store-bought oven cleaner. When using a cleaner like this, you should absolutely wear rubber gloves and possibly a face mask as they possess very strong chemicals. To minimize oven residue, you can also purchase an oven liner that sits underneath the oven grates and catches any crumbs or spills that can easily be wiped off with soap and water.

Stovetops are some of the most-used areas in the kitchen, and have the potential to collect the most bacteria. Whether your stovetop has electric coils, gas burners, or a glass surface, crumbs and bacteria always have places to hide. If you have either coils or gas burners, be sure to remove them and wipe them, and the areas underneath them with soap and water. With glass stoves, check the seam that runs around the edge of the stove; it is a great area to collect crumbs and dust.

Microwave
Microwaves are one of the easiest things to clean, however are commonly one of the most ignored. To easily remove spills and crumbs, microwave a cup of water for 2-3 minutes, then allow it to sit for about 30 seconds once finished. The steam from the water will be absorbed into the food stains and will then only need to be wiped down with a damp cloth or sponge. To remove any odors, spray your cloth or sponge with vinegar or lemon juice to remove smells completely.

Refrigerator
Does anyone actually enjoy cleaning the refrigerator? This is one large appliance that can trap smells, hide bad food, and help us to ignore our food hoarding tendencies all at once- and this is just the inside of the beast.
Condenser coils, outside vents, and gaskets collect dust, pet hair, and anything else floating around. One can easily use a vacuum wand to remove loose debris, them simply wipe down with a damp cloth or paper towel. You might be surprised at how different your fridge looks!

Washer and Dryer
Lint and dust can build up in cracks and crevices of your washer and dryer and if left unattended, can eventually become a fire hazard. Wipe a dryer sheet (it picks up tons of dirt!) or cloth along the back of your washer and dryer to pick up any lint remains, hair or dust. Also wipe along the ledge inside the washer lid, as soap and dirt can build there as well. Once or twice each year, pull both appliances away from the wall to check that large dust bunnies haven’t begun inhabiting that area. You should also have your dryer vent cleaned yearly to prevent fire hazards and the overheating of dryer coils.

So remember, just a few minutes of your day will not only help your appliances stay clean but also extend their life. If you are thinking about selling your home in Anacortes, clean appliances will help add value to your home!

For more tips on adding value to your home, text, call or email us today! We will be happy to help you.

Allergy-Proofing Your Home

Allergy-Proofing

 

Spring is the prime time for dust and all of the typical allergens to make themselves known in our homes. Whether you are renting your home, already own it, or are looking to sell your home in Anacortes, take the time now to set up a defense against sniffling noses and sore throats, before the full heat of summer hits.

To give you an idea of the best ways to begin allergy-proofing your home, here are the most common allergens, where they are found, and how to combat them!

Mold
If you live in an area with high humidity mold is absolutely something you need to be cognizant of. Kitchens and bathrooms are known for growing mold of all kinds, and basements can hide the majority of mold growth in places you wouldn’t expect. Mold goes crazy in cracks where water can seep in, high ledges (such as the tops of showers), faucet bases, and under carpets that may have been subject to a leak. Also, keep an eye on shower curtains to make sure pink mold hasn’t begun growing on the bottom. Anacortes is definitely high humidity, so if you are buying or living in the area, make sure you keep an eye out!

To combat: spray and wipe these surfaces twice weekly with either bleach, or a water/vinegar mixture. This will both clean it up, and keep it from growing as frequently.

Dust Mites
Dust mites are one of the hardest allergens to protect against, as they live where humans and pets most shed skin (gross).

To combat: The most problematic areas for dust mites are mattresses and pillows however you can protect yourself by using anti-allergen coverings and washing your bedding and curtains regularly. Certain essential oils, such as Melaleuca, can also help deter dust mites when sprayed on mattresses.

Pets
We love our furry friends, and Anacortes is definitely a pet friendly town. However, the dander from their skin is what causes allergic reactions in many people. Dander builds up unknowingly in corners of walls, carpets, and furniture upholstery.

To combat:
• Bathe your pets regularly! Just like humans can shed dandruff, pets shed the same way.
• Try to keep your pets off furniture, and clean pet beds a few times each week.
• Vacuum, then dust three or more times each week.
• Use quality filters in furnaces and air conditioners.
• Sanitize any overly-dusty areas regularly to prevent dirt and grime build up.

Moving to Anacortes soon? Let us know if you would like a personalized tour of Anacortes neighborhoods. Let us show you the true beauty of Anacortes. Also, read about our favorite Cleaning Tips and Tricks to make your move an easy one!

Cleaning Tips and Tricks for Your Big Move

cleaning tips and tricks

To clean your home is to free it from dirt, pollutants, and other elements. Not only that, but cleaning can also translate into organization and proper storage of your possessions and eliminate clutter! Either way, cleaning is an important task and although not always fun, can be simplified with a few easy tips and tricks that will make things easier when you decide to move.

Roll With It
When storing clothes, roll them rather than folding them. This not only prevents fold lines, but also results in your clothing taking up less space. You can maximize your storage space and still keep your clothes free of creases.

Stain Removal
If you want to remove stains from counter tops, appliances, flooring or other surfaces, consider using baking soda or a vinegar/water combination. Either of these is less harsh than typical cleaning products and still provides a quick fix for most of your stain removal needs. You may also consider anti-bacterial liquid soap and water.

Categorize and Organize
Before starting to clean, create categories for your clutter. By separating your items by intent such as keep, donate, and discard, you will be able to move through your cleanup quickly and efficiently.

Getting Rid of Dust
When you clean, you are likely to stir up a little dust here and there. Regardless of how much or how often you clean, dust is a part of life and it is bound to find its way into a few corners. If you want to reduce the presence of dust in your home, try using a portable air cleaner in the room where you are cleaning.

Cut it Out
Instead of simply tossing out your old bills or credit card offers, shred them with a cross-cut or confetti-cut paper shredder. This will prevent any unscrupulous crook from sifting through your garbage and discovering personal financial information. If you don’t own a paper shredder and don’t have the extra money for it in your budget, simply use a pair of scissors to cut anything with your name, address, social security number, or banking information.

This is the perfect time to sell your home in Skagit County call us today for a free estimate of your home’s worth!

Spring Cleaning: Natural Cleaning Products

Spring Cleaning

The first day of spring has come and gone, and it is time to get that layer of dust off the furniture and clean out those closets!

The purpose behind spring cleaning is to create a clean home that feels welcoming and happy. Why not add “healthy” to that list? Around this time we are often still working on those New Year’s resolutions to maintain a healthy lifestyle, so this might be the perfect time to consider incorporating health into your cleaning regime as well.

Certified Organic cleaning products have become increasingly popular with the rise in use of essential oils and home remedies. Home owners are taking into consideration the ingredients that are in most household cleaners and the effects they might be having on themselves and their families.

When it comes to household cleaners, GreenHome.com advises us to choose cleaning products that “are made from naturally occurring, non-toxic substances. Be sure to avoid cleaners containing phosphates, chlorine, and VOC’s, all of which are toxic to humans or damaging to the environment.” And let’s face it, for those of us that have bleached anything and experienced its lingering lung-stinging aroma, it probably isn’t the safest substance to use in abundance around the home.

Now that we know a few of the ingredients we should be looking for, which products are genuinely the best options? We’ve compiled a list of our top five natural cleaning brands, using factors such as affordability and availability.

1. Mrs. Meyers Clean Day
2. Method
3. Seventh Generation
4. J.R. Watkins
5. Honest Company

Looking for more of the DIY approach?

Try some of these common household items to take care of some of your cleaning needs:
• Baking Soda- Use as a water softener or add to your dishwasher to help remove stuck-on food.
• Vinegar- Easily dissolve calcium build-ups in coffee pots, and sinks. Vinegar also gets rid of foul odors in drains by taking odors with It as is evaporates.
• Lemon Juice- Not only does it smell great, but it removes stains, deodorizes toilets, and inhibits mold build-up. Try slicing off an end and rubbing it around the edge of your sink, then simply wiping away the dirt and leftover juice.

Want more Spring cleaning tips?  Email us at Info@JeanGroesbeck.com and let us know! We are always happy to provide helpful home tips.

Refresh Your Home with 5 Spring Cleaning Tips!

Spring came early this season and it is here in Anacortes! Flowers are blooming, birds are singing and that means it is time to spruce up your home. During the winter months there are areas of our home that collect dust and harmful allergens. It is time for spring cleaning! If you are thinking of selling your home this spring, having a clean and clutter free home will help getting your home sold faster! Here are 5 helpful tips to freshen up your home and add value to your investment.

1. Dusting:

Baseboard Heaters, Vents, Light Fixtures and Fans, and Walls

Using a vacuum attachment makes for an easy solution to cleaning out the dust that is collected throughout the year and especially through the winter months when they are most in use. Dust tends to build up on and in baseboard heaters, vents, light fixtures and fans. Walls tend to get sticky and can collect dust as well, washing your walls helps both with cleanliness and visual appeal. A combination of vinegar, dish soap, and water is a safe and effective solution to battling the collected dirt on walls throughout your home.

2. Windows:

Window tracks and Panes

Mold develops in the tracks of window tracks due to humidity, not only is this harmful to our health but is also a very bad eye sore. Light scrubbing with a combination of dish soap, water, and vinegar will allow for the best results in eliminating mold and mildew in your window tracks. Washing your windows will allow you to have a more bright and beautiful results when the sun starts to shine!

3. Kitchen:

Refrigerator, Oven, and Cabinets

Wiping out your refrigerator can help you eliminate clutter and purge out unwanted items. Crumbs are collected in refrigerators, ovens, and cabinets. Taking the time to clean these areas of your kitchen helps avoid unwanted house guests, such as insects and mice. Reduce clutter in your cabinets and evaluating the moisture under your sink can help reduce the build of mold.

4. Laundry Room:

Dryer Vents and Areas Around Your Washer and Dryer

Dust is collected when your dryer vents are not cleaned out properly, this dust can then travel throughout your home. Using a vacuum attachment makes for an easy solution for collecting the unwanted debris that is unable to escape your vents. Pulling out your machines and cleaning the areas around your washer and dryer can again, eliminate extra debris.

5. Bedrooms:

Mattress and Under the Bed

Vacuuming your mattress and box spring will assist in eliminating dust mites in your bedroom. Dust and dander tends to collect under the bed, cleaning this area can make your room feel refreshed and inviting.

These helpful cleaning tips for the most forgotten areas of your home can help make for a more relaxing and refreshing start to your beautiful home this season! It will also keep your home in great shape for years to come. If you are planning on selling your home soon,these tips can also help add value to your home.

If you would like more tips on how to add value to your home or if you are wondering how much your home is worth, please contact Jean Groesbeck (360) 941-3734, Jean@JeanGroesbeck.com or comment below!