Cleaning Your Home Efficiently: A Guide To Stress Free House Cleaning 


A lot of people dread cleaning their house, and that results in the job being pushed back further and further. But cleaning up doesn’t have to be that ominous task. If you plan things well, you can spread out the work and keep your house tidy without needing to do a giant, exhausting cleaning job. These kinds of jobs always go smoother when you have a strategy and know how to organize your time. Keep reading to find out how to clean your home efficiently.

Getting Started

“Any time you decide it’s time to clean, turn on some music for fun. Having music, or even a podcast, one can really help keep you motivated and entertained as you clean,” writes Donna Sharp, lifestyle blogger at StateofWriting and big assignments. Whatever puts you in a good mood really, for a lot of people that’s lively music.

One easy task to start with is simply picking up the clutter around your room. This can also be a great opportunity to look at the things lying around and decide if you really need them, or if they can be given away or thrown out. The fewer things you have, the less mess, and the fewer things to store or pack up when you move.

Regular Chores

There are some things that really should just be done every day, even if you don’t always feel like it. An obvious one is making your bed. Making your bed is about more than just tidying up your bedding and pillows. Once you get into the simple habit of making your bed, it becomes easier to move on to other cleaning jobs.

You get that little sense of accomplishment and that’s powerful. Before you know it you’ll be loading or unloading the dishwasher, taking out the trash, and wiping down the surfaces in your kitchen. You might find it helpful to create cleaning checklists to keep on track. Study Demic and Academy advisor are all great online writing tools that can help you create and format your checklist.

Dusting and Vacuuming

Dusting is important to keep a clean home, and it’s especially important to do this and improve the air quality if you have allergies. Try and give all your hard surfaces dust about once per week. If you’re having trouble reaching some spots high up, try tying a damp cloth on the end of your broom. Blinds can be tricky, but don’t let that be your excuse to skip over them. Try pulling on the string to close them all one way and you’ll find it goes a lot faster.

Then just reverse them the other way and repeat. Don’t forget those hidden spots like the tops of ceiling fan blades, the top or your TV, picture frames, and all your cool, conversation-piece knick-knacks. Give every room a vacuum, beginning by checking to make sure your bags aren’t full. Don’t forget your upholstered furniture, it collects dust too. A lot of times you will find some lost socks and mitts you thought were gone forever. You might even find a quarter, the Holy Grail of checking under cushions, while you’re vacuuming.

Cleaning The Bathroom

The bathroom is probably the most dreaded room for most people to clean. It can be pretty off-putting, but it’s got to be done, and who doesn’t love stepping into a sparkling clean bathroom? Begin by removing any bathmats and wastebaskets, and then giving it a good vacuum. Then you can remove all your soaps, shampoos, and other items from the shower.

“Get some warm water all over the shower walls and tub. Use some tile and grout cleaner, remembering to let it sit for a while and do its job. Give everything a good scrub using some all-purpose cleaner,” recommends Kay Tolbert, interior design blogger at Academized and Paper Fellows. When you’re done, rinse it off and dry with a cloth. Spray cleaner on your vanity and give it a good wash. Scrub your sink as well, rinsing it out when you finish, and wringing out your cloth. Give the front of your cabinets a quick wipe down. Spray some glass cleaner onto a cloth and clean your mirror. Use the all-purpose cleaner to wash the floor and leave it to dry. While that’s drying you can throw your towels and rugs in the wash and replace them with clean ones.

Conclusion

Cleaning isn’t something many people look forward to, but there are ways of making it more approachable and enjoyable. Put on some tunes to get yourself motivated. Stay on top of those regular chores and make them a daily habit. Do yourself a favor and keep your air quality high by dusting and vacuuming regularly. Don’t procrastinate cleaning that bathroom, just breaks it down into steps and tackle them one at a time. You’ll feel great once it’s all done.

About the Author

Freddie Tubbs is a lifestyle blogger at UK Writings and Boom Essays. He regularly shares his posts at online magazines and blogs, such as the Vault and Essay Roo.

The Ultimate Guide To Moving To NYC

Moving to New York City can be equal parts exciting and nerve-wracking. Exciting because NYC is the beating heart of the U.S., and nerve-wracking because there’s so much to do to get ready for the big move. In order to make your move to The Big Apple just a little easier, we have put together a moving checklist, a breakdown that allows you to take care of one moving-related task at a time.

Two To Three Months Before The Move

__ Edit your belongings. As much as you may dread the task, there is something about sorting through your belongings that is deeply satisfying. Go through each room of your home and decide what you can’t live without, what you want to denote, and what needs to be tossed. Keep in mind that living space in NYC is at a premium and you’re unlikely to have the space to keep everything. Besides, wouldn’t you rather move only with the belongings you truly need or enjoy?

__ Call a Realtor or leasing agent. If you haven’t already established a place to live, now is the time to get a Realtor or leasing agent on the job. They’ll need to know what you’re looking for, where you’d like to live, and how much you plan on spending. It is vital to work with an agent who will dedicate himself to finding you what you’re looking for in plenty of time for you to visit and sign a lease.

__ Compile a moving binder. Keeping everything in one place may just save your sanity. It’s the perfect place to keep your moving estimates, home listings, an inventory of everything you plan to move, utility turn-off and turn-on schedule, and receipts you’ll need for next year’s taxes.

__ Research moving companies. Whether you plan to hire a moving company or rent a truck and move yourself, now is the time to gather quotes. Do not rely on a phone or online quote if you’re hiring a moving company. Request an on-site visit and a written estimate (with a “not to exceed” price). Make sure the company you’re working with has a U.S. Department of Transportation number. It’s also a good idea to check with your state’s Better Business Bureau to get a sense of the company’s reputation.

__ Research auto transport companies. If you plan on having your personal vehicles transported, now is the time to get estimates and schedule a pick-up. Ask how long the trip will take and get an iron-clad delivery date.

Six To Eight Weeks Before The Move

__ Choose a mover (or truck rental company). Now is the time to confirm your reservation and make sure you have everything you need – including the moving date and costs – in writing.

__ Visit NYC. Hopefully, your agent has a few homes for you to view. Ideally, you will find something you love and sign a sales contract or lease.

__ Take measurements. Once you’ve signed a sales contract or lease, measure the dimensions of your new home. Remember to measure the doorways in order to ensure your furniture will fit through. Because so many buildings in NYC are walk-ups and not doorman buildings, you’ll also need to measure how much room you will have navigate furniture up the stairs.

__ Eat up. Create a menu plan that allows you to use the perishable foods in your freezer.

__ Find a cleaning company. Ask anyone who has ever made a big move what their least favorite task was and they are likely to tell you that it was cleaning their old home before move-out and cleaning their new home before move-in. Hire a cleaning company to come in behind you as you’re moving out. The last thing you’re going to want to do is clean a home you’re no longer going to live in when you’re already tired from the move. At the same time, schedule a cleaning company to clean your new home before you move in. As much as you might hope that your new place will be spic-and-span on move-in day, that is often not the case. Besides, living in a new space is so much more pleasurable when every surface is clean.

__ Order moving supplies. Unless a moving company will be packing for you, you’ll need to gather bubble wrap, tape, boxes, and permanent markets. Don’t forget specialty boxes for items such as televisions, dishes, and your wardrobe.

Four Weeks Before The Move

__ Send change-of-address cards. It may seem a bit early to send your new address out to friends and family, but you’re likely to be too busy over the next month to find the time. While you’re at it, pick up a change-of-address package at the post office and have your mail forwarded. If you’d rather, you can change your address online through the US Postal Service website.

__ Begin packing. Place at least one box in each room of your home. As you pass an item you rarely use, wrap it in bubble wrap and slip it into the box. You may be surprised by how few items you actually use on a daily basis.

__ Make a list. Items like an expensive television, computer, or musical instrument may require extra insurance. Make a note of those items as you come across them.

__ Label everything clearly. The more clearly you label a box and its contents, the easier it’s going to be to find what you need in your new home.

__ Arrange for a transfer of records. If you have children, have their school records transferred to their new school district. Request that medical records be transferred for each member of your family. Finally, ask your veterinarian to provide you with a copy of your pet’s health records. Be sure to keep those veterinarian records with you as you travel with your pet(s).

Two Weeks Before The Move

__ Get tuned up. If you plan on driving to NYC, ask your mechanic which services are needed. At the very least, have your car(s) tuned up.

__ Contact moving companies. Call your mover, truck rental company and/or auto transportation company to confirm arrangements.

One Week Before The Move

__ Put together a safe box. Empty the contents of your safe deposit box and place them in the safe box. Add important items such as jewelry, passports, social security cards, and other vital information. You’ll personally transport the safe box on moving day.

__ Pack last minute items. Now is the time to pack the toaster, coffee maker, and other items used on a daily basis.

__ Have prescriptions refilled. Make sure you have enough of the medications you’ll need until you have a chance to meet your new doctor in NYC.

Days Leading Up To The Move

__ Pack your suitcases. You will need enough clothes to get you through until boxes are emptied. Now is a good time to get suitcases packed for every member of the family. While they may not have a suitcase, make sure each of your pets has the supplies they need packed and ready to go.

__ Clean the refrigerator and (if needed) defrost the freezer. Whether you’re taking it with you or not, make sure it’s empty and clean. If you’d like, this is one of the jobs a professional cleaning crew can take care of for you. Most of them specialize in move out cleanings that you do not have to worry about.

__ Get payments in order. Think of all the people you’re going to need to pay over the course of your move. In addition to the moving or truck rental company, you may have to pay for a hotel stay, and meals along the road. Go by the bank for any money orders, cashier’s checks, or cash you will need.

__ Enlist a babysitter. If you have young children or pets, make sure someone is looking out for them when the movers are there. Small children and pets are both tripping hazards for the movers and frankly, none of it is much fun for kids or pets.

__ Get generous. There are items — such as alcohol and plants — that a moving company cannot legally transport. Your current neighbors would probably love to be the recipients of both.

Day Of The Move

__ Verify moving company. If you have hired a moving company, make sure the USDOT number painted on the side of the truck matches the number on the written estimate. Verify that your not-to-exceed estimate is going to be honored.

__ Count boxes. Moving-related losses do happen. It’s not uncommon for moving companies to misplace a box or two. Carefully examine the packing slip before signing off on it. Do the same (with even more care) when your belongings are delivered. Once you’ve signed, you’re telling the company that they have delivered everything as promised. If you later realize that something was lost in transit you have no evidence to support your claim.

Like any journey, making the move to NYC begins one step at a time. The only task you need to focus on is the one right before you. Follow along with this checklist and you are sure to get everything done precisely when it should be.

How To Get Your Security Deposit Back In New York City

When you’re renting a residential dwelling in New York City, there’s a good chance you’ll need to place a security deposit at the time you sign your lease. The purpose of a security deposit is to cover damages to the unit that you cause during your stay. This may include anything from accidentally breaking a set of blinds or scuffing the floors. When you move out, your landlord assesses the property for damage and deducts any necessary funds from your security deposit to cover repairs. The remainder of the money should be returned to you.

Ideally, you’ll be able to get your full security deposit back when you move out—but that can be easier said than done! Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to maximize your chances of getting your full security deposit back and to do so without a headache.

Check The Terms Of Your Lease

Start by reviewing your lease so you know exactly what you agreed to when you signed it—especially if it’s been a while since you signed your original lease agreement. If you can’t locate a copy of your lease, contact your landlord or head down to the leasing office. They should have it readily available in their files and will be able to provide you with a copy.

As you review the terms of your lease, look specifically for any clauses related to your security deposit. Make note of exactly how much of a deposit you paid (a total of one month’s rent is pretty typical) along with what could cause you to forfeit some or all of your deposit upon moving out if you do not get a moving out cleaning.

In some cases, for example, breaking your lease for any reason could be grounds for the landlord to retain your full security deposit. Most often, however, deductions from a tenant’s security deposit will occur when damage has been done to the unit itself. Some common items that could result in lost security deposit funds include:

  • failing to patch holes in walls
  • failing to repaint to a neutral color before moving out
  • damaged window treatments
  • damaged or stained floors/carpeting
  • lingering smells or odors (from pets or cigarette smoke)

If any of these apply to you, you’ll want to go out of your way to make any necessary repairs before you move out. For holes in walls left by art/decor that you hung up, a small amount of spackle and patching paint can go a long way. You may even be able to inexpensively replace broken window treatments, such as blinds, before you move out.

Schedule A Professional Cleaning

One of the best ways to maximize your ability to collect your full security deposit upon moving out is to schedule a professional cleaning of your apartment. This cleaning should include such services as:

  • sweeping, mopping, and vacuuming
  • dusting of all hard surfaces and baseboards
  • window cleaning and disinfecting
  • deep cleaning of kitchen appliances
  • thorough bathroom cleaning and bleaching

A lot of times, lingering smells and odors may be eliminated with a deep cleaning of your apartment. In some cases, however, additional services (such as a professional carpet cleaning) may be required. Still, scheduling a professional cleaning is a great way to make sure your apartment is as clean (or cleaner!) when you move out as it was when you moved in. As a result, you may have an easier time getting your security deposit back.

When you opt for a professional cleaning service before moving out of your rental unit, you can also save yourself a lot of time and stress. More than likely, you already have enough on your plate when it comes to planning your move. You may be spending a lot of your time packing and trying to get the details of your move arranged (hiring movers, finding a new place to live, etc.). With all that in mind, the last thing you want to have to worry about is cleaning your apartment before you turn in the keys. In fact, you might even want to consider hiring the same company to deep clean your new place before you move in so you have one less thing to worry about!

Hiring a maid to perform a deep clean of your place before you move out can take a lot of the stress out of moving and save you valuable time so you can focus on other aspects of your move. Meanwhile, when you hire a professional, you can enjoy the peace of mind in knowing that only the best of cleaning supplies and equipment will be used to deep clean your rental unit from top to bottom.

Insist On A Walk-Through

When you moved into your rental unit, you should have been provided a checklist that allowed you to make note of any imperfections or damage to the unit prior to you moving in. The purpose of this checklist is to ensure that you’re not held responsible for any damage that was pre-existing. Before you move out, make sure to obtain a copy of this checklist from your leasing records and compare it to the current state of the rental unit. This will give you a better idea of any damage that may have occurred during your stay that you will be held responsible for.

When you hand in your keys, insist on a walk-through with your landlord or with a leasing agent from the property management company. This way, you can be present as they inspect your apartment and make any notes on your checklist. If you are living in a doorman building you may also ask your doorman. You can also avoid surprises when it comes to your security deposit by being present at the time of the walk-through.

In addition to doing a walk-through with your landlord, it’s also a good idea to carefully document the condition of the unit when you move out. This should include taking detailed pictures on your phone (and backing them up somewhere safe) so your landlord cannot claim that any damage done after you moved out was your fault.

Reach Out To Your Landlord

Keep in mind that while your landlord is required by state law to refund your security deposit (as applicable with your lease agreement terms) in a timely manner, you’ll actually need to be the one to reach out to your landlord or property management company with your new contact information. Otherwise, they won’t know where to send your check!

Specifically, be sure to provide your new mailing address or a PO Box where your security deposit check can be delivered, along with additional contact information (such as your cell phone number and e-mail address). In most cases, you should expect to get your security deposit back within 30-60 days.

If You Don’t Get The Full Deposit Back…

There are many reasons as to why you may not receive your full security deposit back. One common mistake tenants make is assuming that they can skip out on their last month’s rent because they paid a full month’s security deposit when they moved in. This is typically not the case, as the deposit is meant specifically to cover damages to the unit and not designed to cover rent. Check your lease agreement if this is something you’re wondering about, but if you didn’t receive your deposit back at all and didn’t pay your last month’s rent, this is likely why.

If your landlord needed to use any of your security deposit to pay for damages to the unit before renting it back out, these costs should be outlined in detail and submitted to you. For example, if your landlord needed to have the carpets deep cleaned to remove stains you caused while living in the unit, he or she should send you an itemized list of all expenses related to having the carpets cleaned. The same applies to any other repairs or services that may have been required.

You don’t have to (nor should you) take your landlord’s word for what these repairs and services cost! Don’t hesitate to ask for documentation or receipts if they aren’t automatically provided to you. After all, this is your hard-earned money at stake.

When To Seek Legal Intervention

In most cases, disputes surrounding security deposits can be worked out between you and your landlord with a little bit of communication. If you believe any of your security deposit is being unfairly held from you, however, you may need to speak with a lawyer and take the matter to small claims court. The same applies if it’s been more than two months since you moved out of your rental unit and still haven’t received any correspondence regarding your security deposit. If this is the case, start by contacting the leasing office to ensure they have your forwarding information.

If your deposit is being held for any reason you don’t agree with, it may be worth scheduling a consultation with an experienced attorney. He or she will be able to determine whether or not you have a case to go to small claims court in an effort to recover your deposit. The same applies if your landlord tries to return your deposit without any accrued interest; in New York, landlords are legally required to pay interest (usually a small amount below 1%) to a tenant if they own a rental building with six or more units.

The Bottom Line

It’s very common practice for landlords to collect security deposits from tenants before they move in. And as long as you take good care of the rental unit and follow the terms of your lease, you should have no trouble collecting your security deposit (plus a little interest) when you move out.

Leaving your rental unit in tip-top shape can make it easier to collect your deposit when the time comes, so consider hiring a professional cleaning company to handle this for you. Maid Sailors specializes in move-in/move-out cleanings for this exact purpose, and services include deep cleaning, dusting, vacuuming, mopping, and so much more! Schedule your move-out cleaning today or contact us to find out more about our cleaning service options in New York City and the surrounding areas. We sincerely look forward to serving you!

Are Home Cleaning Services Tax Deductible?

Everybody’s busy. Although, as you well know, there’s busy, and there’s BUSY. You need more time to focus on your career, but your home keeps getting dirty. So, you struggle to make time to clean it. You somehow succeed in getting all the housework done. You do a little victory dance! But, in no time at all—there it is again, dust and dirt and emerging chaos everywhere you look in your house. At this point, hiring a cleaning service is the obvious solution. But, you’re not even sure that’s tax deductible?

Why Do I Need A Home Cleaning Service?

Having help with housekeeping and laundry service frees you from the kinds of chores that add value to your life but that don’t directly add value to your career progress. Delegating the housekeeping work provides the support you need in order to be able to spend more hours on what you do best—use your professional skills to earn a living.

The reality is that you probably paid plenty of money and effort to acquire those skills. You may be finding yourself increasingly frustrated and stressed by a sense that you’re squandering valuable time on housecleaning that could be so much better spent sharpening your job/business skills and applying them to earning more. If that sounds like you, then you probably need to offload a major burden on your schedule by getting yourself a reliable cleaning service.

Advantages Of Having A Home Cleaning Service

  • Higher productivity at your job, due to more time to spend on value-added projects
  • Increased satisfaction with your home and life, due to consistently clean and orderly house
  • Better preserved belongings, due to keeping them free of dirt and dust buildup
  • Reduced stress, from having a big time-consuming mass of tasks completely removed from your hectic schedule.

Disadvantages Of Having A Home Cleaning Service

  • Cleaning services aren’t free. But wait, you’ll make more income if you devote the same amount of additional time to your job that you’ve been spending on cleaning! Sweet! So, you can actually scratch this one off of the list of disadvantages.
  • You’ll have someone in your home during cleaning, while you’re working at home, or relaxing, or while you’re out. A pretty minor inconvenience in exchange for a better living.
  • Throwing yourself into cleaning as a form of exercise will need to be replaced with another type of workout, like walking in the park, or even running in the park, or doing Yoga, or maybe that Zumba thing.

Are Home Cleaning Services Tax Deductible?

Having a cleaning service may be something you already do routinely. Maybe you need the service so you can put in more time at the office instead of at your house doing cleaning chores. Or, maybe you want to spend more time with your family and have more spare energy to enjoy it.

Or, maybe you have a home office. If so, you’ve figured out that working from home does not mean that you have more opportunity to clean. On the contrary, people working at home often work longer hours than those who go out to the office. That’s partly because when working at home, you may find that you don’t really have clearly defined blocks of time off, like whole evenings and weekends, as people who work at an outside office do.

Meanwhile, the mopping and laundry are crying out to you, louder and louder. But, even though you’re home most of the time, you don’t have time to clean as frequently as necessary to live and work as comfortably as you could if you just had more time—or help with the cleaning. Yeah, you’re definitely someone who needs professional housekeeping services to make your work and private life manageable. But, does the IRS see it that way?

So, you hire people to clean your home office and the rest of the entire house. You use the cleaning services regularly, and it becomes a budgeted item included in your whole home expense. Now you’ve become aware that, for a qualifying home office, you’re entitled to some tax deductions. But, is your house cleaning service one of those?

Can You Deduct Home Cleaning Services As Home-Based Business Expense?

If you have an office for your home-based business or freelancing work that you’re using in a way that qualifies, under IRS description, as a home office, then there are tax benefits you may be able to claim. The IRS allows you to claim business tax deductions for a range of typical expenses associated with operating a home office, regardless of whether you rent or own your home.

So, before you fill out and file your business tax return, find out what your allowable deductions are, and capture all of those that apply to your home office.

How Much Of My Home Cleaning Services Expense Is Tax Deductible?

There are lots of home office expenses that you can deduct from your business tax return, such as phone expense, office equipment, depreciation, security systems, utilities, office supplies, insurance, cleaning services and numerous others. Whatever portion of your home is used regularly and exclusively for business purposes, a percentage of expenses for maintaining that portion is tax deductible. This includes routine maintenance and cleaning expense for your home office.

Cleaning Services Help Keep Your Home and Home Office Clean

Beyond the joy of having a clean home and work environment, there’s the joy of getting a business tax deduction for home office cleaning. Since you’d gladly pay to have the room(s) you’ve dedicated to your home office cleaned as part of your regular whole housecleaning anyway, it’s kind of a bonus to be able to deduct it.

Note: In addition to now having this good general information, of course, unless you’re a tax whiz, you still need to consult your accountant for tax advice.

Having a professional housekeeping service to help you maintain a clean and orderly living and work spaces is, naturally, an essential for optimum productivity and quality of home and work life for busy people. It also saves you time to focus on the things that you would rather be doing, like spending more time on work projects, enjoying being with your family and friends, practicing your Cha-cha moves. And, now that you know you can also benefit from a business tax deduction for a portion of the cleaning in your home, making the decision to get the cleaning help you need is a no-brainer.

Maid Sailors NYC

We are an NYC cleaning service. We’re proud to be among the most trusted and efficient cleaning companies in the city, serving our clients in all five boroughs with the very best in cleaning and laundry services. Maid Sailors offers regular cleaning, deep cleaning, organizing, laundry service, green/eco-friendly cleaning, office cleaning and other services. Call Maid Sailors NYC at (212) 299-5170 anytime, to discuss your home and office cleaning service needs.

Your Guide To Getting Rid Of House Flies

Flies can be beneficial to the environment—but when they’ve invaded your home, they become more of a pest than anything. If you’re dealing with a house fly infestation, you may be wondering what to do next. Are you destined to share your living space with these insects forever? Definitely not, but there are some proactive steps you’ll need to take in order to get rid of the flies in your home and keep them from coming back.

Common Causes Of House Flies

It can be helpful to understand what often causes a house fly infestation to begin with. Most of the time, house flies are attracted to sources of foods ranging from animal food (and even animal waste) to organic matter. And while flies only have a life span of about three months, a home can quickly become infested, as female flies can easily lay up to 500 eggs. With this in mind, it’s easy to see how an infestation in your home can seemingly happen overnight.

How To Prevent and Get Rid of House Flies

The good news is that there are ways to get rid of house flies, reclaim your home, and prevent them from coming back.

Seal Off Points of Entry

Start by keeping additional flies from entering your home in the first place by locating their point of entry, if possible. Look specifically for common sourced, such as torn window screens or gaps around doors and windows. Take time to add weather-stripping around windows and doors, as well as caulking or repairing other small gaps around the exterior of your home as needed. While you’re dealing with flies in your home, it’s also a good idea to leave your doors and windows closed.

Use Natural Deterrents

Rather than bringing in chemicals to handle a fly problem inside your home, it’s a good idea to start with natural solutions. Consider, for example, fly paper or store-bought fly traps. These are designed to lure flies before trapping them, and can be easily placed both inside and outside your home as needed.

Another natural solution for house flies is to use plants such as lavender, mint, and basil—all of which cause a reaction in house flies and may be enough to keep additional flies at bay. You might consider keeping these plants in small pots around your home or even setting up an herb garden outside your home. You can also make your own fly-repellent spray by mixing water and essential oils such as lavender, mint, basil, or lemongrass. You can spray this mixture around your home about once or twice a month for best results.

Clean Up After Your Pets

Another important step you can take to prevent house flies in your home is to make sure you’re cleaning up thoroughly after your pets. House flies are attracted to both animal food and animal waste—and since pet food is often left out in the open, it’s a common source of house flies. Consider feeding your pets at scheduled times during the day and putting away any food they don’t eat until their next scheduled feeding. Take time to sweep and vacuum food crumbs from around their bowls regularly as well.

When it comes to pet waste, make sure you’re scooping your cat’s litter box at least once a day. Not only will this keep your home smelling fresh, but it will reduce the chances of house flies being attracted to your home as well. Outdoor pet messes should also be cleaned up regularly to keep flies away from your home.

Make Sure Food Is Properly Stored

One of the most common causes of house fly problems is poor food storage. All it takes is a few crumbs or dishes left out in the sink to attract a swarm of house flies. Avoid leaving any food out in the open, including drink glasses. Once you’ve finished drinking from a glass, rinse it out thoroughly with warm or hot water to remove any residue from the glass that could attract flies. Remember, it doesn’t take much.

When it comes to storing your food, you might want to consider moving some food items over from your pantry to your refrigerator, where they won’t be a temptation for house flies. This includes items like condiments and bread, both of which will stay fresher for longer in the fridge than they would on a shelf.

Scrub and Rinse Out Trash Cans

Over time, your home’s trash bins can become dirty with old food particles and drink spills. Take time to wash and thoroughly scrub them out at least once every few months, and consider using trash bin liners to keep them cleaner in between scrubbings.

When to Call An Exterminator

In most cases, a house fly problem can be resolved without the need for an exterminator or any heavy pesticides. Still, if you have followed all the tips here and are still struggling with keeping house flies at bay, then it may be time to call in an exterminator to assess the situation and come up with a game plan for getting rid of the flies in your home once and for all.

Schedule A Professional House Cleaning

Keeping a clean and tidy home is by far the best way to avoid a house fly problem. Of course, deep cleaning a home can be extremely time consuming and physically demanding. This is where it can be beneficial to hire a professional house cleaning service. With a deep house cleaning from an experienced professional, you can have your home cleaned from top to bottom. This may include:

  • cleaning of kitchen cabinets to remove food crumbs
  • thorough sweeping and mopping of floors
  • thorough vacuuming of carpeted floors
  • taking out of trash and recyclables
  • cleaning of countertops and kitchen appliances

This deep cleaning can help to get rid of crumbs and other sources that may have attracted house flies to your home in the first place. At the same time, you won’t have to lift a finger. A professional house cleaning can provide other services as an added bonus, such as making of beds and cleaning of interior glass fixtures to refresh your home.

By following these tips, you can have a home free of annoying house flies in no time. Interested in scheduling a professional house cleaning? Maid Sailors is here to help. Schedule your professional cleaning today or find out more about our specific cleaning services offered by calling our office at (212) 299-5170. We look forward to making your home sparkle!

How To Avoid Brokers’ Fees In Boston

If you’re looking to rent an apartment in Boston or the surrounding area, you may already be prepared for high rental rates. For a studio apartment alone, it’s not uncommon to pay over $2,000 per month in many of Boston’s neighborhoods. What you might not be prepared for, however, are the additional expenses that can come along with renting in Boston. In addition to security deposits and first/last month’s rent, there’s a good chance you’ll be asked to pay a “broker fee” upon move-in. By having a better understanding of what brokers’ fees are, what they entail, and how to potentially avoid paying one, you can stretch your dollar when shopping around for a rental in Boston.

What You Need To Know About Brokers’ Fees

In the Boston rental market, brokers’ fees are extremely common. Specifically, a broker fee is charged when a tenant uses a brokerage service to help them find an apartment or other residential rental. These brokerage services are more-or-less the equivalent of using a real estate agent to help you buy a home. A broker may provide services such as finding rental listings that meet your criteria, scheduling and showing apartments, and helping you “close the deal” on your rental.

There are a couple other characteristics of brokers’ fees you should be aware of as you prepare for your Boston rental search.

They’re Typically Paid By The Tenant

In most cases, tenants are completely responsible for paying a broker fee. That’s because you’re using their service to help you find and secure your apartment. Specifically, a broker will help you from the first point of contact when you’re searching for an apartment until you receive your keys. Some of the specific services a broker can provide in the Boston area include:

  • finding rentals that suit your criteria and budget
  • organizing your rental/lease applications and other paperwork
  • scheduling visits and showings at apartments
  • assisting with your credit check and application
  • attending your lease signing

They Can Really Add Up

Unfortunately, broker fees can be substantial and can make the costs associated with moving into your Boston apartment extremely high. In many cases, a broker will charge a full month’s rent in fees, whereas others may charge a percentage of the total lease agreement. (usually between 10-15%).

For example, if you sign a one-year lease agreement on an apartment that costs $2,000 per month in rent, a broker who charges 10% will collect $2,400 up-front from you. Combine this with other move-in costs, such as paying first and last month’s rent plus a security deposit, and it’s not uncommon for total move-in expenses to be several thousand dollars up-front in the Boston market. Yikes!

Ways To Avoid Paying A Brokers’ Fee In Boston

Does the thought of spending thousands of dollars on a brokers’ fee stress you out? You’re not alone. The good news is that there are strategies you can employ to potentially lower your broker fee or avoid paying it altogether.

Ask Your Landlord To Cover Them

One option to consider is that of asking your landlord or property management company to cover your broker fee. You’ll never know unless you ask, right? Keep in mind that you’ll have greater chances of success here if you’re looking at an apartment that a landlord is having a hard time renting out. If the unit has been sitting for awhile, there’s a good chance the landlord is losing a lot of money on the property and will be more likely to agree to pay a broker fee for the right applicant. In addition, some landlords may even cover your Boston apartment home cleaning.

This is where having a great credit score and rental history can also pay off. If a landlord knows you have excellent credit, plenty of income to cover your rent, and a great rental history, he or she may be more willing to cover your broker fee. That’s because your landlord will have greater confidence that you’ll be a profitable and reliable tenant. This is where it can be helpful to come into a meeting with a landlord and bring a leasing application that’s already been filled out. This way, you have everything ready to go.

Avoid Working With A Broker Altogether

While there are certainly many benefits of working directly with a broker, there is also something to be said for acting as your own broker and finding your own place for rent. In doing so, you can avoid paying broker fees altogether. It is important to understand, however, that some rental properties and landlords will only rent to those with a broker representing them—so you’ll need to go out of your way to find rentals that don’t have this requirement.

This will take more time and resources on your part, but in the end, it may be more than worth it when you’re able to find a great property without having to work with a broker at all. To find these kinds of properties, you can check sites like Craigslist; if possible, you may also want to consider driving around the Boston neighborhoods where you’re interested in living and look for “for rent” signs.

If you know somebody renting in Boston who is currently moving or planning a move in the near future, you might also consider asking them to put you in contact with their landlord when their lease is about to run out so you can potentially snag their rental before anybody else.

Time Your Move-In Strategically

Sometimes, timing your move-in can also work in your favor to help you avoid broker fees. Think about the times of year when there is bound to be less demand for rental housing in the Boston area. One of the least popular times of year for leasing is right around the late fall and early holiday season. By now, most who were looking for an apartment at the start of the school year have moved in, and very few people are interested in moving during the cold and busy holiday season.

This is where things can really work to your advantage. By looking for apartments during this time of year, you’re more likely to run into landlords and property managers who are eager to rent out properties so as to avoid losing out on more income. You can (and absolutely should!) try to negotiate to have them cover some or all of the broker fee in this case. You might even be able to negotiate a lower rental rate or foregoing a security deposit. Ultimately, it’s all about finding a landlord who is desperate for a reliable tenant.

The Bottom Line

Avoiding a broker fee is not always possible in the competitive Boston rental market, but there are certainly some strategies you can use to your advantage as you embark on your apartment search. When renting, always be sure to read your lease agreement carefully—specifically as it relates to broker fees and security deposits. To increase your chances of getting your security deposit back without a headache, consider hiring a professional move-in/move-out cleaning service.

The Ultimate Guide To Moving Day In Boston

Each year, the city of Boston finds itself swept up in a maelstrom of madness, confusion, and frustration. The pandemonium brought in its wake leads to fits of despair from those caught up in its clutches. Is it a parade? One of those big street festivals that take up space everywhere? No, nothing so peaceful. My friends, we’re referring to the local horror show known as Moving Day in Boston.

How did such a thing come to be? Why does the city continue suffering through the effects of Moving Day every single year? Is there no one who can free the city from the grips of this insanity? If you’re one of the chosen, well, many destined to be impacted by the storm, you can mitigate some of the effects by following this handy guide to Moving Day in Boston.

What Is Moving Day In Boston?

Moving Day in Boston refers to a period, starting around September 1st when the leases on many apartments and other rentals expire. You also have an influx of students coming in after Labor Day and looking to move into a new place to live for the next semester or two around that same period. So you have thousands of people trying to navigate the narrow winding streets of Boston in huge moving trucks.

Can Something Be Done About Boston Moving Day?

Why not just shift the dates, maybe stagger them in a more year-round fashion? They managed to accomplish similar to this in Montreal, Canada. They had their version of Moving Day on May 1st for many years which caused many of the same headaches currently experienced in Boston. Shifting the date to July 1st, which falls on a national holiday in Canada, made things much more manageable.

There are a few reasons why no one’s tried something like this in Boston. The massive number of new and returning students is one of the biggest reasons why it’s not practical to shift the dates to a different period. The current dates align best for families to take time off to bring their kids and set them up for college life.

Apartment owners benefit by having spaces available during the influx of students. So there’s no incentive for them to shift lease dates to something that’s potentially less lucrative. It seems that the current version of Moving Day is here to stay, along with the myriad of problems it brings.

Why Local Residents Dread Boston Moving Day

Did we mention a large number of moving trucks driving around? Getting around Boston traffic on an average day can be challenging. Throwing in lots of large, bulky vehicles driven by unsure drivers looking in vain for parking slots makes getting around nearly impossible. Moving Day also brings people dumping their trash and unwanted furniture along the city streets. Going to your local bakery can feel like being forced to navigate an unauthorized obstacle course.

How You Can Make It Better

We won’t pretend this guide will solve all your Moving Day-related issues. Accept that your life will be terrible to a certain extent for that period. What we can do is offer advice on making it less awful and possibly getting through it without turning on the friends who did end up showing up to help you throughout the day. Those who aren’t moving will also find ways to get through this period with less frustration.

Preparing For Boston Moving Day – Movers

Accomplishing specific tasks ahead of time can make Moving Day easier to manage. The worst thing you can do is wait until the last minute to prepare. Doing that guarantees being hit with the full force of the worst Moving Day has to offer. Spare yourself a little pain and try doing these things at least a few weeks before your move-in date.

Make Sure You Have Enough Cash

Make sure you have money available to pay any fees or moving costs. You’ll need to pay for the rental of your truck, or else risk losing out on your reservation. If you’re hiring a moving company, they’ll expect to be paid as well. Try budgeting out more than you think you’ll need to spend for that day. Doing so helps you avoid getting caught short at a critical moment during the move.

Hire a Truck (And Movers) Ahead of Time

The longer you wait, the harder it will be to get a truck to assist in your move. Getting a head start allows you to compare quotes from different companies and pick the best one, not just the best of what’s left. If you are booking early, check to see if the company’s contract guarantees your truck will be available on Moving Day.

Don’t count on showing up at a truck rental company the day of without a booking and getting the size van you need. Whatever’s left — IF there’s anything left — will likely not be large enough to handle all your things. That means extra trips you’ll have to make attempting to navigate Boston traffic on moving day. Your things could also end up being pretty banged up from being crammed into too small of a space.

If you do end up with no truck, your next best option is looking for a one-way rental from a different area. You can move your things, and then drop the truck off at the nearest rental location for that company.

Organize Your Things

One of the best things you can do is have your items packed, organized and ready before moving day. That means putting everything into properly labeled boxes with the right packing material inside. Remember, even the best movers can occasionally stumble as they’re taking your things up a flight of stairs.

If you’re going to rely on friends to help you move, it’s a good idea to put enough padding inside boxes to protect anything delicate. Make sure you put a label on indicating “Fragile” to prevent it from being handled roughly. Having your things ready to go allows your movers (or friends) to load items inside of moving trucks at a faster pace.

Apply For A Street Occupancy Permit

Finding a parking spot for a regular-sized car in Boston is difficult on a normal day. Imagine trying to find one on Moving Day for your truck along with everyone else. One way to avoid the madness is paying for a reserved parking spot near where you’re moving.

It’s going to cost you at least $100.00, but you’ll have a spot waiting for you and avoid accumulating parking tickets. Think of the gas you’ll save not having to drive around the block multiple times as you wait for a spot to open.

You can apply for a permit no sooner than one month before your moving date. Some areas of Boston require you to apply in person, so check to see what the requirements are for the part of town where you’ll be living.

Make Plans To Get Rid of Your Old Stuff

If you’re moving to a different apartment that you’re sprucing up with nicer things, you need to plan out what’s going to happen to your old items. You can schedule a pickup of items like an old couch through the city of Boston’s public works. That’s better than leaving your old things out on the curb, much to the disgust of current residents.

Pay For A Cleaning Company

The last thing you’re going to want to once you arrive at your new apartment is clean from top to bottom. Sure, you can HOPE that the apartment owner made an effort to tidy up, but it’s not going to be the deep clean you want for the place you’ll be residing in for the next year. Do you think you’ll feel like cleaning up a mop after dealing with the chaos of Moving Day?

Spare yourself and spring for a Boston cleaning company like Maid Sailors to come in and clean for you. It only takes 60 seconds to make a booking online. They bring cleaning supplies, are bonded and insured, and only hire certified professional cleaners. You can get some much-needed rest at the end of the day and leave the dirt and grime to the professionals.

The chaos of your move might not leave you in the frame of mind to clean the space you’re leaving behind. Hiring a cleaning service for that task leaves one less thing on your plate.

Preparing For Boston Moving Day – Non-Movers

The impact of Moving Day isn’t limited to the movers. Non-movers staying put still have to deal with the fallout. Here are a few ways you can make things a little more manageable during this period.

Get Your Car Out Of There

You’re going to have a lot of drivers navigating the streets of Boston in a large vehicle they may not fully know how to operate. Why leave your car there as the potential collateral damage of their “learning curve?” Find a place you can safely leave your vehicle until the madness ends.

Know What Areas To Avoid

Many popular Boston neighborhoods become an absolute nightmare to move around in during Moving Day. Renthop, an apartment hunting site, collects data centered around the most densely populated Boston areas during this period. You can use them to figure out how to navigate around the city and avoid the worst of the chaos.

Settling In

One good thing about Moving Day in Boston is that it eventually comes to an end. You’re moved in, and hopefully fully immersed in your Boston apartment and used to the normal flow of traffic when getting around the city. We hope our guide made managing the day a little easier.

If you decided to spring for a Boston cleaning company earlier, you might miss the feeling of having to do absolutely nothing to get such a clean apartment. Why not continue enjoying one of the few things about Boston Moving Day by scheduling regular cleanings? You can call Maid Sailors at (212) 299-5170 or visit their site online to find packages that fit your apartment and budget. Enjoy your space and the peace of knowing that Moving Day is officially over. Until next year.

A Comprehensive Guide To Tipping Your House Cleaner

Hiring a professional maid service can be a great way to keep your home looking its best while saving yourself the time and hassle of cleaning on your own. As with many services, however, one of the most common questions people have is in regards to tipping. Should you tip a house cleaner? If so, how much? While there are no cut-and-dry answers to these questions, there are some general etiquette tips and considerations that can be kept in mind when making the decision of whether or not to tip a house cleaner.

Should You Tip Your House Cleaner?

It’s rare to see a house cleaning service that requires tips, though some may build tipping into their standard rates. If this is the case, this should be clearly outlined to you in your service contract so that you don’t feel the need to tip any additional money. These days, more and more cleaning services have also begun to simply pay their cleaners a higher wage in order to forego the pressure for their clients to tip altogether. Again, this is where knowing the policies of your cleaning company can be informative.

Another thing to keep in mind when deciding whether or not to tip a house cleaner is whether they’re the owner of the cleaning company or not. Generally, company owners do not expect tips because they’re able to more-or-less set their own rates and wages. An employee of a cleaning company, on the other hand, may rely on tips (much like servers at restaurants or stylists at hair salons) to make a living wage.

If in doubt, it’s never a bad idea to tip your house cleaner—especially if he or she has gone above and beyond your expectations to provide exceptional service. Some cleaning companies don’t allow their cleaners to accept tips—but if this is the case, your cleaner will politely decline.

Cash Tip or Something Else?

If you want to show your house cleaner some appreciation but don’t feel comfortable tipping in cash, keep in mind that there are other options as well. Instead of tipping cash, you might consider gifting your house cleaner with a gift card to a local coffee shop or restaurant that you know he or she frequents. You can also consider gifts like a nice bottle of wine or even something handmade to show your appreciation.

Maid Service Tipping Etiquette: When To Tip and How Much

Some other common questions people tend to have about tipping house cleaners is how frequently they should tip and how much. This will really depend on your specific circumstances and the frequency of services provided. If you hire a professional cleaner for a one-time service, for example, you can either forego tipping altogether or offer a one-time tip.

Things can get a little more complicated, however, when you have a recurring cleaning service. Your cleaner probably won’t expect to receive a tip every single week that he or she comes to clean your place. Instead of tipping a small amount at each cleaning, you might consider providing your cleaner with a slightly larger tip once every month or even once every few months.

The exception here would be if you have a different cleaner with each service. You wouldn’t want one cleaner to reap the entire tip for a month’s worth of weekly cleaning services if there were other professional cleaners who came in throughout the month. In this case, it may actually be better to offer a small tip with each weekly cleaning instead of tipping a larger amount once a month.

So, how much of a tip should you leave? Generally, it’s good to follow the same tipping etiquette here as you would with a hair stylist, taxi driver, or similar service. A tip of 15-20% is considered industry standard, so if your house cleaning services are $100, then a $10-$15 tip would be greatly appreciated. If you have more than one cleaner coming to your home, it is completely acceptable to split the tip between both cleaners; you are by no means expected to tip them each $10-$15, though if you received truly exceptional service, you might consider doing so.

Other Maid Service Tipping Considerations

Another consideration to keep in mind when deciding whether or not to tip is the state of your home when your house cleaner comes in. If you know that your home hasn’t been cleaned in a while (you may need a deep cleaning!) and that you have an especially difficult project, such as a dirty bathroom or filthy kitchen, then you may want to consider tipping your house cleaner even if you wouldn’t other normal circumstances.

If you’ve hired a professional cleaner through an agency, it’s never a bad idea to contact the agency directly and ask for guidance on tipping. Some larger companies may rely on tipping customers to provide their cleaners with living wage, whereas others pay their cleaners a living wage that doesn’t count on tips. This can vary greatly from one city or region to the next, so reaching out can help you get a better idea of what other clients have done and how much they have tipped.

The Bottom Line On Maid Tipping

Generally, tipping is not expected or required when it comes to house cleaning services. It is always nice to show your appreciation, however, if you have a house cleaner who does a great job or if you know your house cleaner’s living wage relies on gratuity. Tipping your house cleaner with each service is perfectly acceptable, though some people who have a regular house cleaner may prefer to issue a monthly tip or even a large year-end “bonus” of sorts, which can come in handy around the holiday season.

If you choose to tip, 15-20% of your total service is generally a good amount to go with—but you may consider more or less depending on your specific circumstances.

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to tip your house cleaner is entirely yours. Your house cleaner isn’t likely to do a poor job of cleaning your home if you fail to tip every single time, and many cleaners won’t even expect a tip. But like many other positions in the service industry, it is nice to be recognized for a great job with a cash tip or other form of gratuity, such as a gift card or other token of appreciation.

At Maid Sailors, we do not require tips and our professional cleaners will never solicit tips from their clients, but you are always welcome to add a gratuity to your bill if you believe you’ve received exceptional service. Contact us today to set up your next house cleaning!

Best Laundry Services In NYC

If you live in New York City, then you know just what a hassle doing laundry can be. Few are lucky enough to have their own washer and dryer, and many end up lugging their laundry down to the local laundromat once a week or more to make sure they have clean clothes. If this sounds like a familiar struggle to you, then it may be time to consider using a professional laundry service.

A laundry service can pick up your dirty clothes, professionally launder them, fold them, and deliver them back to you at a time that’s convenient. Talk about life-changing! On the flip side, if your NYC rental does have access to a washer and dryer, you may also be able to schedule laundry service as part of your regular cleaning services as well.

Top Laundry Services In NYC

Not sure where to begin on your search for the best laundry services in NYC? We’ve got some recommendations.

1. Hangr Lane

This company is known for its excellent customer service and its substantial new-customer discount. You also have the option of setting up your pick-up using their app or doing so directly through their website. From there, you can choose a pick-up time and your laundry will be returned to you same-day, in most cases.

2. Hamperville

This particular company serves parts of Queens and Brooklyn, as well as all of Manhattan. They offer wash and fold services as well as dry-cleaning starting at about $1.50 per pound, which is pretty competitive. They also have a convenient laundry-tracking tool on their website that will let you know exactly where your clothes are in the laundering process.

3. Boomerang

Customers rave about the easy-to-use app offered by Boomerang, which keeps things simple by allowing you to press a large orange button to request laundry pick-up immediately. Once your laundry is done, you’ll be notified and you can press the same orange button to request delivery of your clean clothes—usually same-day or the very next day, depending on when you placed your order.

4. WashClubNYC

WashClubNYC is a popular laundry service that takes on both residential and commercial customers, and they currently serve both the Manhattan and Brooklyn neighborhoods. Their services start at just $1.34 per pound but also include an 8% gratuity.

5. Cleanly

Customers love that Cleanly delivers your fresh laundry in sealed plastic bags inside of reusable laundry bags for extra convenience and freshness. Their app is also a breeze to use and makes it easy to customize your order, from designating low-heat drying to choosing warm wash versus cold wash. Cleanly is also known for their excellent customer service.

Benefits of Using A Laundry Service

Not sure whether a laundry service is right for you? There are a few key benefits to consider.

Save Time and Hassle

How much time per week or month do you spend at the laundromat? If you’re like a lot of NYC-dwellers, then you spend a fair share of your time lugging laundry to and from the laundromat—which is no easy feat on its own, let alone if you live in a high-rise apartment building.

With a professional laundry service, you can eliminate trips to the laundromat and enjoy the convenience of having your laundry picked up directly from your residence and brought back to you, clean and folded, when it’s done. This will save you the precious time (and of course, the hassle) of taking your clothes to the laundromat and dealing with crowds, broken machines, and other frustrations.

And when you consider how much your time is worth, it’s easy to see how a professional laundry service can be some of the best money you spend.

Take Care of Your Garments

When you leave your clothing and garments with a professional laundry service, you can also enjoy the peace of mind in knowing that your clothing is in good hands. If you have garments that need special attention while washing or drying, simply bring it to the attention of your laundry service and they will take care of it.

Having your clothing professionally laundered can keep your garments in great shape for much longer than if you were to launder the same items yourself. As a result, you may find that your clothing lasts longer and doesn’t need to be replaced as often, which can save you money.

Save Precious Square Footage

Even if you have an NYC rental with washer and dryer hook-ups, you probably know all too well that square footage is a precious commodity when it comes to NYC rental living. Rather than spending your money on a washer and dryer and sacrificing the square footage that comes along with doing so, why not leave your laundry up to the professionals?

Potential Drawbacks of Using a Laundry Service

Of course, hiring a laundry service does have some potential disadvantages, so it’s important to consider these as you decide on whether or not this is right for you.

Can Be Expensive

The most common reason people tend to give for not wanting to use a laundry service is that it’s too expensive. In NYC, most companies charge per-pound of laundry, and it’s not uncommon for rates to hover around $1.50 per pound. This may be outside of your budget, especially if you have a lot of laundry that needs done on a regular basis.

On the other hand, many laundry services offer special discounts that can make it more affordable. For example, some offer a first-time customer discount, and others may offer a substantial discount if you pre-pay. This can help to offset some of the costs. When thinking about price, it’s also important to factor in the time and hassle you save by not having to launder your own clothes or take them to your local dry cleaner.

Potential Delays or Errors

As with any pick-up/delivery service, there is always the possibility of there being errors or delays. NYC traffic can be unpredictable, so a laundry delivery could occasionally run late or be delayed until the next day. This can be a problem, especially if you were counting on wearing a specific outfit to an event. Fortunately, a lot of these kinds of problems can be avoided by simply choosing a reputable and experienced laundry service.

What To Look For In A Laundry Service

If you’re thinking about using a laundry service, of course, you want to find the right one for your needs and budget. As you shop around, then, there are a few things worth looking for that can help you make the best decision.

Specific Services Offered

Begin by making sure you find a company that offers the specific services you need. For example, if you need same-day pick-up and delivery, make sure you look for a service that offers this as a guarantee on orders placed by a certain time. If you have special garments that need to be laundered, such as delicates, you’ll want to go out of your way to find a service that knows how to care for them properly.

Laundry services can vary widely in the specific options they offer customers, so this is where you’ll need to do a little research. For example, some companies may offer wash and fold services only, whereas others may also offer dry cleaning and tailoring as well.

Subscription or One-Time Service?

There may be occasions where you simply don’t have the time (or energy) to make it to the laundromat; when this happens, having a laundry service you can turn to for a one-time wash and fold can make all the difference. Many NYC companies offer one-time laundry service, but there are a handful that require you to enter into a subscription in order to use their services. Be sure to consider your needs and find one that works for you.

Keep in mind, also, that many companies with laundry subscription services also offer discounts to subscribers. You may be able to save 10% on your services, for example, by having them done weekly or even twice a month. This can be a great option for those looking to save some money.

Schedule Limitations

NYC is the city that never sleeps, but what about your laundry service? Some offer 24/7 service 365 days a year, whereas others may have more rigid hours of business. You’ll want to consider how time-sensitive your need for clean laundry is when deciding on a service. If you tend to wait until the last second to do your laundry and then need it done ASAP, you’ll probably want to find a service that’s available 24/7, seven days a week. If you’re able to plan your laundry needs a little further in advance, you may be able to do just fine with a company that has more traditional hours.

Pricing Structure

In NYC, you will find that most laundry services charge by the pound—with per-pound rates averaging around $1.50. Be sure to confirm the pricing structure of the laundry service you’re considering, though. Some may charge additional fees for folding, delivery, or separating dark and white laundry.

You’ll also want to find out where a company stands when it comes to tipping, too. Some companies will automatically include a gratuity with their fees, whereas others may not.

Convenient App Interface

These days, using a laundry service is all about convenience. While any laundry service should be able to accept orders via telephone and through their website, not all have yet gotten on-board with having their own app. Using a laundry service with a user-friendly app can make your life even easier. You can use the app to request a pick-up, track your laundry throughout the process, and receive an alert when it’s done. From there, you can use the app to arrange a delivery time that’s most convenient for you.

Can A Cleaning Service Handle Laundry?

There are certainly many advantages to using a professional laundry service when you live in NYC. From saving the time and hassle of going to your local laundromat to enjoying the convenience of pick-up and delivery of clean, folded laundry, these services can make your life a lot easier.

Another option to consider, though, is turning to your cleaning service to handle your laundry. This option will be best for those who have access to either have a washer and dryer in their rental or have access to one in their building. By adding laundry services onto your existing maid service, you can check one more item off your list. Not to mention, having your laundry done by your house cleaner means not having to worry about scheduling pick-up or delivery times. In many cases, it’s also more affordable to do things this way.

How Maid Sailors Can Help

At Maid Sailors, we’re proud to offer laundry services as part of our available cleaning services. All of our cleaners are laundry experts, and each customer’s laundry is carefully and diligently cared for. This service is available to all customers who have access to a washer and dryer either in their rental unit or in the building. Please be aware that this service is not offered as a standalone option; it must be combined with an existing cleaning service, and customers must provide both detergent and fabric softener.

Still, if you’re looking for a way to save time and money on your laundry services, Maid Sailors is here to make your life easier. Allow us to tackle that pile of laundry as we clean your apartment so you can come home to a clean apartment and freshly laundered clothes. By going this route, you can also avoid the hassle of finding a separate service to handle your laundry needs.

Ready to find out more about our laundry services or our cleaning options? Contact our team at Maid Sailors today! In the meantime, we hope this will serve as a useful guide to finding the right laundry services in NYC to make your life easier. At Maid Sailors, that’s what we’re all about.

How Much Office Space Do You Need?

When you’re launching a business of your own, there’s a good chance you’ll need some dedicated office space for you and your employees. One of the biggest challenges, however, can be determining exactly how much office space your company needs. On the one hand, office space can be costly—so you don’t want to pay for more than you realistically need. On the other hand, you don’t want your employees working in tight quarters and you need some room for your business to grow.

Not sure where to begin when it comes to calculating your office space needs? There are a few factors worth taking into consideration.

Top Considerations For Office Space

When calculating a rough estimate of how much office space your business will need, it’s important to consider the number of employees, their individual workspace needs, and your company’s plans for future growth.

Number of Employees

Start by tallying up your current number of employees. If your business is yet-to-launch and you haven’t hired your entire team yet, estimate the total number of employees that you will hire to be working in your office. From there, you can come up with a general estimate of space needed based on average square-footage needs per employee. For a high-density office, for example, you’ll generally need between 80 and 150 square feet per employee. This is about what you’d see in a space such as a call center.

A more average per-employee square footage amount would be closer to 150-250 square feet per employee. This would accommodate a more “traditional” office layout. With this number in mind, you’d need about 10,000 square feet of office space per 50 employees.

Employee Workspace Needs

Speaking of office layouts, you’ll want to consider your employees’ unique workspace needs as well. Depending on the type of business you’re running, it may make sense to have most of your employees working in cubicle spaces with a few dedicated offices here and there. In other cases, may want to opt for a more open and shared workspace.

Will any of your employees be able to work from home? Remote workers can be a great addition to your business because they don’t have the same physical space needs, which can save you money and resources when it comes to your search for office space. Of course, if you have an employee who will only be working from home part of the time, you’ll still need to take him or her into consideration when calculating square footage needs.

Plans For Future Growth

While it certainly makes sense to shop for office space based on your company’s current needs, it’s also a good idea to take anticipated future growth into consideration. Of course, you don’t have a crystal ball, so it can be difficult to know exactly how your business will scale. Hopefully, though, you took the time to write a detailed business plan that should give you a general idea of where your business will be in one year, three years, or even five years down the road.

If you’re seeking a short-term office lease, you don’t need to worry as much about accommodating for future growth. However, it’s generally best to choose an office space that will offer at least a little room to grow, since relocating your company can be costly, time-consuming, and can even interrupt your day-to-day operations.

Ideally, you may want to consider leasing office space within a building where additional space will be available as you need it. This way, you can have the option to expand as your company grows without necessarily having to relocate.

Additional Rooms and Spaces

When seeking out office space for your business, it’s important to look beyond your individual employee’s workspace needs. Yes, all of your workers will need at least a small amount of space to call their own. But what about other spaces, such as conference rooms, break rooms, and storage spaces? You’ll want to take these into consideration as well. And of course, the more employees you have, the larger these spaces will need to be in order to accommodate them. A break room, for example, will require at least 25 square feet per employee while occupied. And while it is unlikely that all your employees will congregate in the break room at the same time, it’s a good idea to make sure the space can accommodate the majority of them at once.

Questions To Ask When Touring Office Spaces

Now that you have a better idea how to determine the right square footage for your company’s needs, there are a few questions work asking as you begin touring office spaces for lease.

Do You Offer Any Special Amenities?

Some office spaces may come with amenities to make your life (and your employees’ lives) a little easier. For example, you might find that one office space offers an on-site fitness center, whereas others may have a cafeteria where your employees can grab a quick and nutritious lunch. Other office landlords may even offer dry cleaning or laundry services. Before you begin touring properties, take some time to consider the types of amenities (if any) that would be most convenient for you and your workers.

On the other hand, if a “bare bones” office space is more along the lines of what you’re looking for, you may actually want to avoid office listings that mention long lists of amenities—as you’ll likely end up paying a premium for them.

What’s The Parking Situation?

If the majority of your employees will be driving personal vehicles to work, make sure they’ll have access to convenient and ample parking. You don’t want your workers having to park a substantial distance from the office and walking the rest of the way, as this could not only lead to poor morale but late arrivals as well.

Depending on the location of your office, you may also want to look for proximity to public transportation and/or access to bike racks. This is especially true if your office will be located in a busy downtown location where it is likely that fewer workers will be driving their own vehicles to work.

How Long Ts The Lease Term?

When your business is first starting out, you generally don’t want to be locked into a long lease term because your needs will change and evolve. You may find yourself needing to expand or even cut back substantially. With this in mind, you’ll want to find an office space with a lease term that will suit your needs. A “standard” office space lease is generally anywhere from five to 10 years, but shorter terms are available. Just keep in mind that a shorter lease term will likely also mean higher rent, as you will pay a premium for a shorter lease.

Other Services To Think About

In addition to your monthly cost of leasing office space, there are some other services you may want to budget for as well.

Professional Office Cleaning

Hiring a professional office cleaning service to come in and clean your office space on a regular basis is a great idea. Not only does it save you from the time and hassle of cleaning the space yourself, but it can help boost worker morale and productivity. When your workers come into a clean and organized space, they’re more likely to feel valued and appreciated, which can improve outlook and job performance.

Furthermore, with a cleaner office, you can cut down on the risk of employees spreading sickness. And when employees take fewer sick days, everybody wins.

Water/Beverage Delivery

Keeping your employees well hydrated will also work to your advantage, so you may want to consider using a scheduled water/beverage delivery service for your office—especially if there is no on-site cafeteria or beverage machines in the break room. A water delivery service can be a great way to keep your workers refreshed while they work, and you can even consider having additional beverages (such as coffee and tea) delivered to improve productivity.

IT/Phone/Internet

Your business will need reliable phone, Internet, and other IT services to provide your clients with the best experience, so make sure to shop around and find the best local provider. Keep in mind that some office spaces will include business Internet, phone, and even cable with your monthly rent—but this is not always the case. Ideally, you’ll want to be able to bring in a provider of your choosing.

Deciding on how much office space your business needs can be a challenge, especially if you’re getting ready to launch a brand-new company. As a general rule, you can expect to need about 200 square feet of office space per employee—but again, this can vary greatly depending on your office layout/configuration, employee workspaces, and the need for additional rooms or common areas.

Now that you have a better idea of where to begin when looking for your next office space, you can begin the process of touring available office space near you. With a little time and diligence, you’ll find the ideal space for your growing business!