how to clean mold in washer machine

7 Tips to Prevent Mold in Your Front Load Washer

Does the idea of mold growing in your front load washer make you cringe? If so, you’re not alone. Front load washers are often overlooked when it comes to cleaning maintenance, which can cause issues like mold to develop over time. The good news is that you can prevent this mold from developing by following these seven tips to prevent mold in your front load washer.

Air Circulation

The most important thing you can do to prevent mold from growing in your washer is making sure it is getting enough air circulation. This means opening the door after every use and ensuring there are no physical obstructions blocking the venting.
Also, be mindful of how much laundry detergent you are using, as detergent will build up on the rubber seal and cause mold growth if not washed away.

Water Temperature

An important factor of preventing mold from growing in the washer is water temperature. If you are experiencing a problem with mold, try lowering your wash cycle’s water temperature. This can be done by pressing and holding the power button for 3 seconds to enter the Settings menu. From there, select Options, then Wash Cycles and finally Water Temperature. The ideal water temperature for cleaning clothes is about 120 degrees Fahrenheit or below.

Adding Bleach

One way to prevent mold from growing in your front load washer is by adding bleach. I would recommend adding a cup of bleach every time you do a load of laundry and rinse it out with water before you put the next load of laundry into the machine.

Don’t Use Fabric Softener

The best way to prevent mold from growing in your washer is by not using fabric softener. Fabric softener coats your clothing with a coating of detergent and oil, which will cause the soap scum to grow and cling onto the fabric. It also makes it harder for the water to get deep inside the fibers of the clothes. Instead, opt for cold-water wash cycles and use half as much detergent as usual.

Avoid Piling Your Clothes

1. Sort your laundry into colors and only wash one color at a time.
2. Check the pockets of your clothes for anything wet or sticky before putting them in the machine.
3. Add an extra rinse cycle if you notice any residue on your clothes after washing or drying them.
4. Use less detergent and make sure it is a detergent made for HE washers.

Vacuuming, Again and Again

Many people don’t think about vacuuming their washing machine, but it’s an important part of preventing mold. If the lint filter is dirty, then water and soap can easily run down into the washer drum and create a perfect environment for mold to grow. The more often you vacuum your washing machine, the less likely it will be that mold will develop.

Use Detergent Suited to Front-Loading Machines

Front load washers are a great option for eco-conscious consumers looking for a way to minimize their carbon footprint. However, they require special detergent that is suited to the machine’s design. You can find front load washer detergent at most big box stores and local cleaners. Be sure not to use liquid detergent, as it will clog the machine and cause mold buildup.

Book A Cleaning Service in NYC

Cleaning companies in NYC tend to offer laundry services when you book them for a cleaning. Interested in getting your home cleaned (and reducing effort to keep your washer clean)? Book a cleaning with Maid Sailors Cleaning Service!

All You Need to Know About Window Film

Window film is an innovative idea that has many purposes. For one, security window film is shatterproof, so in the event, it is broken, it will not shatter into a million pieces. It holds itself together on the film, so the likelihood that someone gets injured on a piece of glass is practically non-existent. The different types can make your windows private or semi-private. The availability of different levels of darkness is also an option.

When choosing a type of film for decorative window film has many different patterns and colors so you will be sure to find one that will fit in with your home décor and look great on the outside as well, you can choose many different designs that look like stain glass window film or film that looks like cut glass. There are so many choices for your home you can be assured of getting the one that is perfect for your décor.

The home with window tint will be cooler in the hot summer months, which will save you money on utility bills. You will have more energy because the heat that seems to drain us of every ounce of strength we possess will be blocked. Therefore, you will feel like getting a lot more accomplished without feeling so tired. Plus, window film will save your interior and its possessions.

Security Window Film Stops Smash and Grab

Window Security Film can prevent the smash and grab thief from getting into your store and stealing the items you use to showcase your business. We see use on jewelry stores, pharmacies, and stores selling anything of value that is displayed in the storefront windows.

Window Film For Safety

Do you need a reason to use residential window film other than the fact that it protects your furnishings from sunlight fading, makes your home more energy-efficient and is great looking? If so, let us consider this scenario. It’s the middle of the afternoon, your husband is away on a business trip, and you are getting ready to do some laundry. When walking past the front window, you notice a suspicious car sitting across the street. The occupant seems to be watching your home. The great thing is – you can see him, but he cannot see you because you have a dual-reflective window film on your windows.

Instead of feeling like you are under surveillance, you can watch to see what this person is going to do without being detected. Going window to window throughout the house, you are secure in the knowledge that he has no idea of where you are in the house because he cannot see your movements through the windows of your home in the bright afternoon. Because you have Dual Reflective Window Film on your windows, the watcher has no idea of what room you are in or even the fact that he is being watched.

Of course, this is just a scenario, but in today’s world, anything is possible, and having window tinting on your windows can help you in many positive ways.

Window Tint and Stain Glass Films

If you prefer, there are window film styles that do not show. No one will ever know they are on your windows, and you will still have all the benefits, or if you like the look of stained glass, there are several styles of this type available. There are stain glass doves, fish, abstract, and Venetian stain glass film. Clear etched grapes make a beautiful statement. This would be great for the Mediterranean style architecture. Cut glass bubbles and ice icicles are types of films that can help you to protect your privacy. Throw out those heavy, dusty drapes and let some light in without worrying about people being nosy or invading your privacy.

Stained Glass Window Film would also be great for shower doors, dividers in your home, and any other use you can think of for the attractive look it will give your home. The stained glass film would be perfect for a divider to separate your kitchen/dining area into two rooms instead of one large room. If you are ready to get rid of the bulky drapes, blinds that require constant cleaning, and the foil on your windows decorative or stain glass window film will be your choice for all the benefits it provides.

Best Time For Window Tinting

November to March is a great time to have your Windows Tinted not only does window film add an extra layer of protection on your windows to protect you and your family from shattering glass entering your home in case of an accident, but it also protects against the sun’s damaging UV rays.

Even in the wintertime, the sun’s UV rays enter your home and can damage your woodwork, painted walls, artwork and pictures on the walls, plus it damages your floor coverings even if it is just wood flooring…

So, to reduce heat, glare and UV damage and also keep the environment green, the use of window tinting is becoming more popular day by day.

Is Duct Cleaning a Complete Waste of Money?

So many people want to know if air duct cleaning is a waste of money. Commercial cleaning firms, health studies and scientific journals conclude that the heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning system in a home and building is probably a good idea. Duct cleaning usually involves a complete cleaning of the HVAC’s air handler, coils, grilles, housings, fans and motors. Cleaning air handling units, heating and cooling coils, and air handling units can improve running efficiency.

Reports by the National Institutes of Health say there is not enough proof to determine if duct cleaning actually improves inner air quality (IAQ) or building occupant health. The following information may help you to decide if your home will benefit from HVAC duct cleaning.

Why Duct Cleaning Is Important? 

The ductwork in your heating and cooling system (furnace/air conditioner) constantly collects dirt, dust and dander while idle and while in operation. This means when you turn your system on, those particles can spread around your home or business and eventually impact the health and safety of your home’s occupants or your business’s employees. Here are a few more reasons:

1. Creates a Cleaner Living Environment

Having your air ducts professionally cleaned reduces the dust that would otherwise circulate throughout your living space, landing on your furniture, your bedding, your flooring…just about everywhere. Fortunately, a thorough air duct cleaning reduces the amount of interior cleaning and dusting necessary to maintain a hygienic home.

2. Reduces Allergens and Irritants

In addition to dust, air ducts frequently contain harmful contaminants and micro-organisms. These include pet dander, bacteria, pollen, mildew, mold spores, and similar toxins. People who suffer from allergies, asthma, and other respiratory problems are particularly sensitive to these airborne particles. A periodic air duct cleaning promotes healthier living…otherwise, the dirty air in your home just keeps re-circulating over and over.

3. Removes Unpleasant Smells and Odors

Pets, household cleaning agents, paint fumes, mold, tobacco use and even food preparation all contribute to stale smells in the air ducts. Every time the furnace or air conditioner is running, these odors will repeatedly flow through the house. Even an accumulation of dust and dirt over the years can lead to a musty scent coming from the ductwork. Detailed cleaning of the air ducts removes all odor trapping particles, resulting in a fresher smelling home.

How Often Should I Get My Air Ducts Cleaned? 

It is highly recommended getting your vents cleaned every two to three years. If the residents of your home are young children, adults who stay at or work from home, elderly family members or individuals with allergies, asthma or chronic illnesses, we recommend more regular cleaning of every year to keep these at-risk individuals safe and free of allergens, dirt, and debris.

What Happens if You Don’t Clean Air Ducts

If you choose to not clean your air ducts, air quality will reduce over time as debris collects in your duct system. There are a variety of items that can begin to grow in your ducts and create safety risks for your family and home. Here are some of the side effects of not cleaning your vents:

  • Mold spore development
  • Fungus growth
  • Asthma, sickness or cold induction
  • Pet smells from dander and fur
  • More allergy symptoms
  • Musty odor development
  • More frequent dusting

How to Tell If Your Ducts Need Cleaning? 

Unsure if you need your ducts cleaned? Here are some signs you should have your ducts professionally cleaned sooner rather than later:

  • Discovering Mold: If you spot mold in or near your air ducts, you should immediately get your ducts cleaned to keep your home safe. The professionals can help you with both mold removal and air duct cleaning.
  • Discovering Pests: If you find pests inside your home, chances are they are using your duct system to get around. Air duct cleaning can eliminate the organic matter that pests leave behind.
  • Dust and Debris: If you find yourself constantly dusting your home, the buildup of dust and debris in your ducts could be to blame. Finding dust and debris everywhere is a sign your ducts could use a cleaning sooner than later.
  • Pets: The more pets you have, the more dander and fur in your home. Your duct system draws this dander and fur, spreading germs, allergens and smells while idle or with each use of your heater or air conditioner.

Is Duct Cleaning A Waste Of Money? 

There is a lot of misleading information about duct cleaning on the internet. It’s easy to get confused by or misinterpret what you’re reading. The first question you may be asking, is if duct cleaning is a waste of money. It’s a very valid question to ask, and the answers you will find online may vary wildly. It all boils down to one thing. Duct cleaning is a waste of money only if you use the wrong company.

What Is The Purpose Of Duct Cleaning?

A cleaning every 5-7 years by a company that doesn’t make the duct cleaning a waste of money can provide relief from a whole host of problems. Proper duct cleaning can reduce the amount of dust being pushed out into the home by the HVAC system. If you find yourself needing to dust multiple times a week, and it’s been a long time since you’ve had the ducts cleaned, this may be a great solution.

If someone in the home has allergies, duct cleaning may help relieve the severity of some of their symptoms. Every time you come in from outside, you are bringing in allergens and even harmful particulates. They are taken in by the return ducts and circulated around the home by the HVAC system. A regular duct cleaning can help reduce the number of these particulates building up and being pushed back into the home. Additionally, if there is suspected mold spores or growth in the ductwork, a thorough cleaning will remove the mold and keep it from spreading into the rest of the home.

Another reason for duct cleaning, is renovations to the home. Whether you’ve just bought the home and are fixing it up, or you’ve been there for a while and it’s time to update it, duct cleaning should always be done after you’ve finished the renovations. Think of all the dust, debris, and contaminants that are released during the renovation process. When the air is on, all those particulates are picked up by the HVAC system. This is not something you want to breathe in, and duct cleaning after the work is a fantastic way to finish the process.

Trust Air Duct Cleaning Professional Companies 

Moreover, professional duct cleaners use brushes, vacuums and specially-designed blowers to clean the return, supply, and intact ducts throughout the home. Duct cleaning should be thorough, and should include a cleaning of the coils, air handler, housings, registers, motors, grilles and fans of the system. Although the jury is still out about whether duct cleaning improves air quality and helps people with respiratory allergies and illness, some states make HVAC duct cleaning a routine part of public buildings.

Refresh Your Living Space With Homemade Potpourri

Keeping your home smelling its best isn’t easy. Whether you’re notorious for forgetting to empty that kitchen trash can or you simply have pets who leave their signature scents throughout your home, unwanted and lingering smells are a problem many people deal with. Before you resort to buying harsh air fresheners or room sprays, however, have you thought about trying potpourri?

Better yet, you can actually make your own potpourri in just a matter of a couple hours—and the lovely scent can last for many months to come.

What is Potpourri, Exactly?

Specifically, potpourri refers to a mixture of natural ingredients, such as dried flower petals, herbs, and spices that are placed in an open bowl or other containers to release their natural scents. Potpourri is most often used in homes to add a pleasant fragrance to a particular room or living space, and it’s not uncommon for the scent of a single potpourri batch to last for months or even years.

Potpourri can be bought at many home goods stores and even some grocery stores, but you can also make your own at home using some simple ingredients.

Benefits of Making Your Own Potpourri

Why make your own potpourri when you could just pick some up at the store or use a traditional air-freshening spray? There are a few reasons, actually.

Keep Your Home Smelling Great

First and foremost, potpourri will keep your living space smelling fresh. A single bowl of potpourri can easily spread natural and lovely scents throughout a large space, and there’s no need to plug in an air freshener or spray an odor neutralizer. Simply pour the potpourri into a shallow bowl or other containers that will allow the scents to release and circulate throughout the room and you can enjoy the fragrance for many months or years to come without having to lift a finger.

Avoid Harsh Chemical Fragrances

When you buy an air-freshener spray, these often contain harsh chemicals and other questionable ingredients. Do you really want to be spraying those into the air that you and your loved ones breathe? Potpourri is all-natural, using ingredients such as dried citrus, flower petals, and spices—so you never have to worry about potential contact with dangerous ingredients.

Save Money on Store-Bought Options

Even if you find a natural air freshener or odor neutralizer, the cost compared to a batch of homemade potpourri can be very high. By making your own potpourri, you can save yourself some money—especially if you choose ingredients that you already have on-hand or that are in-season (and thus less expensive).

Customize Your Scent

Part of the beauty of making your own potpourri is simply being able to personalize your scent to suit your tastes. There are so many possibilities when it comes to potpourri scent combinations, such as a cinnamon-based potpourri for the holiday season or a citrus one for the summer months. Many people enjoy being able to pick and choose the exact ingredients that go into their batch of homemade potpourri for a truly one-of-a-kind home fragrance.

How to Make Homemade Potpourri

Now that we’ve convinced you to try your hand at DIY potpourri, where should you begin? Follow our simple step-by-step guide and you’ll be on your way to a fresh and fragrant creation in no time.

Choose Your Scents

Begin by brainstorming some scent ideas. What are some of your favorite types of fragrances? Perhaps you tend to gravitate towards food-based scents like citrus, rosemary, or cinnamon. Or maybe you’re more a fan of florals. You may also want to consider a seasonal scent based on the particular time of year. For example, some fresh tulips and daffodils could make an excellent base for a springtime potpourri.

If you’re stumped on which ingredients you should include in your potpourri to achieve your ideal scent, there are plenty of “recipes” to check out online!

Gather Your Supplies

Begin by making a shopping run for the ingredients you need. Make sure you have parchment paper and a large baking sheet, as you’ll need these to dry out your ingredients. Many potpourri ingredients can be found at your local grocery store, though you may need to head to a florist if you’re looking for specific flowers or other plants.

Spread Ingredients Onto Parchment Paper

Once you have all your supplies gathered, it’s time to spread out your first batch of potpourri onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. For flowers, it’s generally best to snip off the heads of smaller flowers before spreading them; for large flowers, you can even remove and spread individual petals if you desire.

Next, add some more scent to your potpourri by layering sprigs of fresh herbs, citrus slices, or both to your mixture. Spices, such as cinnamon sticks or cloves, can also be added during this step. If you’d like a boost of scent, you can also add some essential oils to a small spray bottle and lightly spritz the entire mixture for good measure.

Dry Ingredients in the Oven

Next, pop the entire baking sheet into the oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit (93.33 °C). To completely dry out the ingredients,  you’ll probably need to leave them in the oven for about two hours. Keep a close eye on them, though, to make sure nothing begins to burn.

Spritz With Essential Oil

Remove the baking sheet once the ingredients are dried out to the point of being brittle but not charred. From there, you can add a little extra scent if you desire by spraying some more essential oils onto the entire pan. From there, simply allow the potpourri to cool completely before gathering it into a bowl or other open container to display openly and enjoy!

Other Ways to Keep Your Home Smelling Fresh

Setting out some homemade potpourri is one of the best ways to keep your home smelling fresh. And of course, what is more beautiful than a carefully arranged bowl of potpourri? Still, if you’re looking for help in keeping your home smelling and looking its best, you may also benefit from hiring a professional maid service.

At Maid Sailors, an Airbnb cleaning service and professional cleaning service, are committed to helping you keep a clean and tidy home from top to bottom. Let us do the dusting, vacuuming, sweeping, and more so you can spend more time doing the things you enjoy! Contact us today at (212) 299-5170 or book now using our online request form. Your satisfaction is always guaranteed, so you have nothing to lose (and a lot of free time to gain)!

Top Living Room Decoration Ideas To Increase Your Home’s Aesthetic Appeal

A living room is one of the many places in your home that you spend most of your time relaxing in leisure. For most, it is probably the place to enjoy themselves with a cup of coffee or a book to read. Like most of the best painting companies emphasize, one should have a comforting while an attractive living room that not only will give a satisfying ambiance but also appeal to your visitors.

Here are some catchy living room decoration ideas that can increase the aesthetic appeal for your home:

Go With Light Colors

Many of the painting services recommend light color interiors with green, gray, etc. especially for living rooms because they create a sense of openness and harmony. For some people, experiencing spacious places is relieving, and it gives them a comfortable environment to spend their time in solitude or with a company. The light colors can go well with dark-colored furniture with crème colored upholstery.

Use the Floor Completely

Another element that can make your living rooms more appealing is a renovated floor. Flooring services focus on matching the floors with the interior design and the paint you intend to go with. For most, a wooden floor or laminate floor with wooden style sheets will go perfectly with the design as well as fit your budget too. In addition, you can also choose to put a carpet or a rug that matches the theme of the furniture you have.

Install A Bold Wallpaper

One of the many trends for decorating your living rooms includes wallpapers. Wallpapers are one of the items that can easily venture with the interiors of your living room. Whether light-colored or dark-colored wall paint, you can easily install an appealing wallpaper, mosaic, abstract art, etc. can go really cool, bringing out an attractive contrast. Note that cleaning wallpaper is a bit tricky as you do not want to discolor it. 

Choose Wisely

What good are the renovations and additions if you aren’t able to put them according to the theme of your place? Although designing your home is totally at your exposure, still, you should put a perfect artwork into place. Painting services focus upon choosing the theme that you want whether traditional, tropical vibe, urban appeal, etc. Brainstorm your layout and then go for the design. Choosing trendy colors and combinations of light and dark will help arouse the appeal of your living room efficiently.

Lighting Is Good

Lighting and chandeliers are some of the many elements that bring out a cool and inspiring look in your living room design. There’s no need to install heavy chandeliers especially if you’re living room is already crowded. Although attractive, it will make your place overwhelming and congested. Install small or medium-sized lanterns or ceiling lights that come in elegant designs. Ensure that they do not block the light and find a perfect spot.

Installing Blinds

Another element that can increase the appeal of your living room is the blinds that you install. A good painting company will illuminate why blinds are an efficient way of not only controlling the light that comes in the room but also help to control the energy consumptions. You can easily go with dark-colored blinds including brown, black, charcoal, etc. with light-colored wall paint. Or you can choose to install light-colored with a dark painted background.

Get Shelves 

Shelves are an efficient way of sorting and storing stuff. You can add shelves alongside the fireplace you install or in addition to it. It is not necessary that the shelves have books though. You can choose to place a jar with fragrant leaves or add decoration pieces too. Note that if you do place shelves on your fireplace, you will need to clean your fireplace consistently if you use it to prevent soot buildup on the shelves.

Go Green

Houseplants are an efficient way of improving the oxygenation of your home. Although you would need to take good care for the plant in order to mitigate the chances of any pests or leaves dying out. If you are a fan of gardening, you can choose to install small flowerpots including anthurium, chinses money plants, coffee plant, etc. that would add to the aesthetic appeal of your living room.

Get Good Seating

What good is a living room if it can’t even give you a comfortable sitting? Although it’s not the fault of the living room but of the designer. You may think getting high-class furniture or velvet coated sofas will add to the exotic attractiveness of your living room. However, a simple rocking chair can also bring out the comfort that you want. In other words, choose furniture that would not only go best with the theme of your living room but also give maximum utility. Simple yet elegantly made sofas could do the same. Choose contrasting colored furniture, particularly if you want a carpet placed underneath it.

Stay Neutral

Just like unisex t-shirts, getting neutral-colored furniture will also add to the ambiance of your living room. A light crème colored sofa would go best with any dark-colored blinds, carpet, and walls, as recommended by many painting services. You can also choose to add linens and other items as a compliment.


It is not necessary that you keep to a specific niche of interior designing and focus on creating a theme of only traditional or modern style for your living room. Blending these both can also help provide a stunning outlook for your living room. Give some contemporary touches with patterned carpets or textured fabrics that will give out a great appeal.

Make Some Space

One of the most important things to keep in mind is that you need not stuff your living room with items, furniture or extras that would make your place look crowdy. Remember you can still make a statement with a low number of articles elegantly placed. Keep your audience in mind. If you expect guests every now and then, you may want to consider adding sitting arrangements. However, is you seldom expect guests that it is ok to have a low number of sitting added with hanging or a rocking chair near the windows that would give you a relieving place to spend your time in leisure. 

Why You Should Get Renter’s Insurance

If you pay rent on your residence, you should have a renter’s insurance policy for your protection and peace of mind. Even if your landlord or property management company doesn’t require tenants to carry renter’s insurance, there are so many reasons to have one. By having a better understanding of what renter’s insurance is and what it covers, as well as what to look for when shopping for a renter’s insurance policy, you can make sure you’re protected as a tenant.

What is Renter’s Insurance?

Specifically, a renter’s insurance policy is designed to provide property damage and personal injury liability coverage to those who rent their homes. A renter’s insurance policy can apply to any residential rental, whether it be a single-family home, apartment, duplex, or any structure in between.

One of the most common misconceptions renters have is that it’s their landlord’s responsibility if something happens to their rental unit. And while this may be partially true, the fact remains that the average landlord’s insurance coverage does not include protection for tenants’ personal property, nor does it include liability protection for tenants and any dependents living under their roof.

What Does Renter’s Insurance Cover?

A renter’s insurance policy, then, can provide you with added protection when you’re renting out a home, apartment, or other dwellings. If somebody breaks into your apartment, for example, your renter’s insurance policy can kick in and pay to replace items that are stolen such as jewelry or appliances such as a flat-screen TV. And with bodily injury liability coverage, your renter’s insurance policy can also protect you if a visitor is injured inside your rental.

Renter’s Insurance May Not Cover…

Of course, a renter’s insurance policy doesn’t cover everything—and it’s important to be aware of the limitations of a renter’s insurance policy before you buy. For example, if you have roommates, understand that their belongings will not be included as part of your protection. Theft or damage protection only applies to your personal items and the belongings of any dependents living with you. If you have a rental with roommates, they’ll need to purchase their own individual renter’s insurance policies.

It is also worth noting that a renter’s insurance policy will not cover pest-related damage to your property. For example, if a mouse gets into your apartment and chews through one of your television cables, this won’t be covered. However, your landlord may be responsible for covering property damage caused by pest problems in such a situation.

Reasons to Carry Renter’s Insurance

Now that you have a better understanding of what renter’s insurance is (and what it’s not), hopefully, it’s a little more clear as to why you need this type of coverage. Still not convinced? Consider these key benefits to carrying renter’s insurance.

Your Landlord Might Require It

These days, many landlords and property management companies are actually requiring that tenants carry a minimum amount of renter’s insurance coverage before moving in. This is a stipulation often included in the lease agreement, so if you’re planning on renting out a place in the near future, be sure to check the terms of your lease. If this is a requirement, you will need to provide proof of renter’s insurance at the time of your move-in. In addition, you may need an end-of-lease cleaning.

Protects Against Theft of Property

No matter how safe or secure your rental may be, it’s never a bad idea to have extra protection in place in the form of personal property protection and theft coverage. Unfortunately, a theft can happen to anybody at any time—and it’s not always in the form of somebody breaking into your home. A renter’s insurance policy will protect you even in a situation where somebody you allowed into your home (such as a friend or relative) ends up stealing some of your belongings.

The main thing to remember when it comes to seeking reimbursement for property theft is that you need to be able to prove not only that the property stolen was yours, but that it had a certain value as well. This is where keeping records of the amount paid for big-ticket items (such as flat-screen televisions and other electronics) as well as their serial numbers can come in handy if you ever need to make a claim.

Includes Bodily Injury Liability Coverage

Another reason to have renter’s insurance that many tenants don’t even think about is that it provides bodily injury liability protection; this means that if somebody is injured inside your rental, you can be protected against legal action. Consider, for example, that you’re throwing a party at your rental home and somebody trips on a rug in your living room, resulting in injuries. Without bodily injury coverage through your renter’s insurance policy, you could be held legally and financially responsible for that person’s medical bills and other costs related to the accident. You will also need cleaners for your post-party cleaning!

With a renter’s insurance policy in place, you can enjoy added protection and peace of mind if an injury ever does occur on your rental property.

It’s More Affordable Than You Might Think

All too often, tenants are initially hesitant to purchase renter’s insurance because they assume it will be too costly. In reality, renter’s insurance is extremely affordable—especially when you consider all that it covers. Prices for renter’s insurance can vary based on the amount of coverage you need and where you live, but it is not uncommon to pay less than $15 per month for coverage.

Your Policy Can Be Tailored to Suit Your Needs

Renter’s insurance policies, like many other types insurance, can be tailored and customized to suit your lifestyle so that you aren’t paying for more coverage than you need. With most renter’s insurance policies, you can decide how much protection you want against theft/damage, personal injury, property damage, and more. You can also customize your deductible and other key aspects of your policy to make sure it works for you.

Shopping Around for Renter’s Insurance

Ready to start shopping for renter’s insurance? There are a few tips to keep in mind that will help you find the right policy for the right price.

Don’t Overlook the Deductible

Start by making sure you’re comfortable with the deductible you choose. After all, the deductible is the amount that you’ll be required to pay out-of-pocket before your coverage will really kick in. A higher deductible will mean lower monthly payments, whereas a lower deductible will increase your monthly payments slightly.

Know What’s Covered vs. What’s Not

Since renter’s insurance policies are totally customizable, you’ll want to make sure you have a solid understanding of what will be covered versus what may not be covered by your specific policy. For example, theft of your flat-screen TV and TV mount may be covered, but the theft of your roommate’s video game console won’t be unless he or she has purchased their own separate policy.

Calculate the Amount of Coverage You Need

Deciding on how much coverage you need can be difficult, as this will require you to roughly estimate the total value of your belongings. The good news is that there are some free tools available to help you decide on the right coverage amount for your needs, the size of your rental property, and other factors. The main thing to keep in mind when deciding on how much coverage you need is the replacement value of your most precious/valuable items. This may include anything from electronics to clothing and jewelry.

Consider Additional Policies

Not all items may be covered by a renter’s insurance policy and may thus require their own “rider” policy or additional coverage purchased. Wedding and engagement rings are common examples of types of jewelry that often fall outside the scope of a traditional renter’s insurance policy. Check with your insurance company to see if you can add a rider policy for these items so you can enjoy added protection and peace of mind.

Understand the Claims Process

Before choosing a policy with a specific insurance company, make sure you understand exactly how their claims process works and that you’re comfortable with it. Claims processes can vary from one company to the next, as can the total amount of time needed to process and complete a claim.

Compare Identical Quotes Between Companies

As you’re comparing quotes to find the best value for your money, make sure you’re comparing apples to apples. Check to be sure, for example, that the deductibles and coverage amounts are the same on each quote—and that they include the same type of coverage as well. Above all else, you’ll want to choose the policy that offers the best value—not necessarily the policy that’s the cheapest. Remember that you generally get what you pay for when it comes to renter’s insurance coverage.

The Bottom Line on Renter’s Insurance

If you don’t already have a renter’s insurance policy in place, now is the time to start shopping around. For a relatively small monthly cost, the right renter’s insurance policy can provide you with additional protection and peace of mind that your landlord’s insurance most likely does not.

8 Tips To Transform Your Living Room Space

Your living room is the room that you often find yourself spending a lot of time in. It’s where you watch TV with your family, sit down and visit when you have company. Your living room is also probably one of the first areas that your guests will see when they enter your home.

You want it to be comfortable and visually appealing while making the most of the space you have. There are many different ways that you can transform your living room with spending little to low money.


Sometimes, simply rearranging your furniture can help you make the space look and feel more pleasant. This can help you make the most of your living room and give it that fresh, new, look.

When you arrange your furniture in different areas, you also want to rearrange the pictures, flat screen TV and any decorations you have on your wall too.

If you have any decor or furniture that you can bring from another room into your living room you can add a unique flare that you didn’t have before. Sometimes, using what you already have to make something new is all it takes to make it feel truly transformed.

Change the Color

If you are looking for a louder statement than simply hanging around your furniture, you can go with a whole new look by changing up the color. This can be done by painting the room or even adding wallpaper, which has made a comeback recently.

If you aren’t sure that you want to go as drastic as painting the whole room a completely different color, you can paint an accent wall and tie everything together with the new wall decor.

Decorating Your Floor

If you have hardwood floors, you can add a little flare by getting an area rug or a type of carpet that can fit underneath your coffee table or end tables.

If you have carpeting, you can also do this which is fun because you can find area rugs that tie in color from the carpeting and your furniture to bring everything together.

Furniture Covers

If you aren’t ready to throw out your perfectly good furniture and start from scratch, you can buy covers that can change up the color scheme of your living room that is tailored to fit your chairs and couch. This is a great way to make something old look new while saving a little bit of money in the process.


Lighting can make or break your living room space. You want a light that isn’t harsh but gives you enough light to entertain or spend time reading. Certain lighting techniques can also make a small space look larger and warmer.

If you want to add smart lighting or any new type of lighting to your living room, you can hire an electrician who can rewire and get you set up with the perfect system that can create a nice mood for your living space. If you are an electrician who specializes in lighting systems for the home there are options for you to manage these projects.

Natural Lighting

Make use of the windows you may have in your living room by letting in some natural light. If you have heavy curtains up, you can switch to sheer curtains that cover your windows but make the natural light come in softly.

There are also fun window decals that you can put over your windows that allow privacy while giving a neat prism effect as the light catches through them.


Having indoor plants has great health benefits and also makes the room look fresh and comfortable. Some indoor plants act as filters against allergens and other respiratory irritants in the air. On top of purifying your air, they provide a great aesthetic environment to the area.


Sometimes, the simplest things can make a big difference. You can opt to change out all of your pictures. You can stick with a theme when it comes to your wall decor and little knick-knacks that you set out on your tablespace.

Portraits on canvas add a great pop of color and make family portraits look more colorful and lively. Tapestries are also a fun way to decorate a wall and add a little color.

There are also things you can add to any flat surface such as a coffee table or end table. Lamps with decorative lamp shades, figurines or plaques that have inspiring messages on them can all help to tie into your space and make it look new.

Transforming your living room can be fun and can add a sense of newness to something that may have felt old and tired to you. If you are uncertain of where to start, you can always start with something small. Any one of the choices above can work. Or you can do all of them and enjoy your new space.

Understanding Hoarding Disorder

During the past decade, a considerable amount has been written and broadcast about hoarding. Attention to hoarding has even reached the level that more than one widely-watched television program has been in production.

Regardless of the attention paid to hoarding, it remains a largely hidden phenomenon in many situations. The reality is that you may have a person who is hoarding in your life and yet you may have no idea that is occurring.

Another factor to bear in mind is that hoarding can be challenging to evaluate. Challenges associated with evaluating hoarding stems not only from the fact that it more often than not is a fairly well-hidden endeavor but because issues connected to hoarding change over time and are of different severities. For example, a significantly disorganized person is not classified as a hoarder. Moreover, hoarding itself is classified in different categories based on a consideration of a variety of factors.

If you suspect a person in your life is hoarding, a starting point for you is self-education about hoarding disorder. A starting point for understanding hoarding is to better understand how the disorder is evaluated and rated in the first instance.

Definition of Hoarding Disorder

Hoarding is a mental health disorder. It is more than the accumulating “a bunch of junk,” as some observers remark when encountered with hoarding. Rather, hoarding disorder is defined as a persistent inability to part with or discard possessions due to a persistent perceived need to save them. An individual with hoarding disorder experiences a keen, even overpowering, sense of stress at the thought of getting rid of items. The resulting excessive accumulation of items can result in a residence becoming unlivable and making it very difficult for house cleaning services to help you.

Five Levels Associated with Hoarding

Experts in assisting people with this disorder have developed a five-tier system for classifying hoarding.

Level One

At Level One, no extraordinary issues at a residence necessitate special consideration. A person at Level One may be disorganized, but he or she is not suffering from hoarding disorder. Indeed, a person at Level One may be chronically disorganized. Nonetheless, doors, stairways, and windows appropriately are accessible. These are no sanitation issues. Pet control is obvious, both in regard to sanitation as well as behavior.

Level Two

Level Two does not rise to the level of hoarding. Nonetheless, there are significant issues at a residence. For example, at least one major entryway into a residence is blocked and unusable. Moreover, at least one major appliance or the HVAC system has not been working properly for a period of time. Clutter obstructs some living spaces. Animal control may be an issue, both with sanitation and behavior. Other odors may be present in a residence, arising from dirty clothes and dishes.

Level Three

When a situation rises to Level Three, it is considered the “pivot point” at which a person can be classified as afflicted with hoarding disorder. Signs of Level Three include HVAC devices not working for more than one season as well as damage to the residential structure itself. There is very likely to be an insect or rodent infestation at a residence. The amount of clutter has increased to the point that primary areas of a residence are not accessible or functional. Unsanitary conditions exist, including severely soiled food prep areas and uncleaned toilets.

Level Four

When a situation reaches Level Four, hoarding is considered serious. Clutter at the residence has extended to the point that things normally kept inside are outside a residence. Structural damage is more significant. Sewer issues may exist. Insect and rodent infestations are highly likely. Living space in a residence is markedly diminished. More than one room cannot be used for its intended purpose

Level Five

Level Five represents a state of severe hoarding. Some individuals seeing a Level Five hoarding situation fairly would call it “catastrophic.” All living spaces in a residence are unusable for their intended purposes or impassable all together. Bathtubs, showers, sinks, and toilets are not functional. Appliances do not function. HVAC systems do not work. Rotting food and human urine and excrement are present. Dishes and utensils are unusable if present at all. Clutter has completely taken over a residence.

Five Hoarding Assessment Categories

In determining what level is assigned to a particular residential situation, five assessment categories are utilized.

Zoning and Structure

The first assessment is whether a residence is in compliance with zoning ordinances. (A consideration of health code compliance also comes into play.) The structure itself is examined for integrity and damage.

Pets and Animals

The second assessment considers the overall control over and cares for animals that are at the premises. This also includes an examination of the presence of pests and vermin.

Household Functionality

An examination of household functions and functionalist is a key assessment. A major consideration is whether rooms in a residence can be used for their intended purposes.

Safety and Health

The safety and health assessment is an evaluation of the overall sanitation at a residence.

Personal Protective Equipment

Finally, based on an overall evaluation of the state of a residence, a determination is made as to whether biohazardous conditions exist warranting the use of personal protective equipment to undertake hoarder property cleanup. A determination is made as to whether a biohazard remediation professional must be called in to assist in remediation the hoarding situation. Professional assistance of this nature is necessary when dealing with a Level Five hoarding situation.

Plants And Colors That Go Best With A Bright Front Door

There is nothing more welcoming than beautiful, bright front doors. Painting your door a bright, bold color is among the easiest techniques to change the entire look of your outdoor and create a beautiful or a welcoming first impression.

Once you have selected a vivid shade of orange, red, purple or lime, it can be difficult to know other outdoor colors that work well with it. You can make your entryway with beautiful garden plants and paint colors that complement your bright front door. Here the main ways that plants and colors go best with bright front doors.

Color Strategies

To achieve a beautiful outdoor, you should balance your bright front doors with outdoor paint and the window trim in a neutral color that will enhance and complement your door color. Evergreen shrubs, flowering plants and potted flowers placed by your entryway provide you and your family with another opportunity to match a bright front door. You can also pull bright paint colors into your landscape with flowering plants and bright berries in a similar hue or utilize the blue-green or dark-green plants to balance the bold door.


Coral is an orange-pink paint that makes your home exterior feel cheerful, attractive and a little daring to implement or use on your front door. You should emphasize bold coral with the outdoor paint in medium grey or charcoal. In both summer and spring, coral mixes well with the tropical blooms and lush foliage such as peachy-petaled rose and creamy yellow trumpet. During winter, the coral acts as a welcome sport in the darker and sparser landscape.


Wake up your home’s exterior with an unexpected range of light turquoise plants and flowers. The bright, spring-like color seems equally fresh both on traditional and modern homes. It pairs well with light grey or white outdoor paint. For landscapes that work well or favor foliage plants over flowers, you can pair them with a blue-green front door with Stachys Byzantine or a silvery lamb’s ear. You can also match your door and entryway with medium-green shrubs such as pittosporum and boxwood. Also, egg blue paint looks charming, particularly with mixed pastel-colored blooms and cottage-style perennial beds.


A rich red-orange outdoor color is an essential and useful transitional color. You can use it to create stark and make your modern home feel more inviting and warm. It also provides the traditional-style homes with a contemporary edge. To achieve the much-needed beauty, you should mix it with outdoor paint colors in cool-toned grey such as weathered natural wood and charcoal. For plants and flowers, chose those with blue-green foliage and grey-green foliage such as the dusty miller or the honeybush that acts as a cooling complement for the fiery-hot paint.


Lime green is a common color selection for a bright front door particularly those on the contemporary-style homes. Your home will feel modern and fresh without looking like you are trying all your best to make it beautiful. Also, it works well with various exterior paint colors like grey, white, black, navy, brown and beige. Pull your lime color into your garden beds with various accents of chartreuse foliage plants like the coral bells or Mediterranean spurge. For beauty and more drama, you can pair chartreuse with blue-green or dark plum-colored foliage plants such as the purple smoke bush.

Meyer Lemon

Meyer lemon makes your home exterior feel more fresh and beautiful. It also makes your front door feel carefree and contemporary. A yellow color also works well with a traditional-style home when you picture it with white trim or light grey siding. To achieve a modern look, you can use both yellow and stark white or black color palette which is readily available.

Variegated or dark green foliage plants, as well as yellow-centered flowers, would make excellent entryway shrubs for this look. Draw the yellow lemon into your landscape with the citrus tree in front of your yard. All the citrus fruits ripen during the winter, providing both homeowners and visitors with a welcome surprise of color in a subdued landscape. Also, a splash of punchy orange color on your front door immediately attracts or draws attention to entryways from a sidewalk. Shiny or bright shades of orange colors work well with mid-century modern-style homes with neutral color palettes or clean lines.

8 Top Home Improvement Projects For Spring Cleaning

Spring will officially have sprung on March 20, and we couldn’t be more excited for the warm weather, sunshine and cleaning potential. Americans love cleaning in the spring—about 66 percent of them say they partake, according to a recent survey—but simultaneously find it hard to get motivated. One of the very best ways you can get yourself pumped up about sweeping, mopping, dusting and purging is to make a priorities list and work your way through it. Here are some of the top cleaning and home improvement projects you can add to your seasonal bucket list.

  1. Air it Out: Rug-Beatings and Deep-Sweepings —We tend to deep clean in the spring because we shutter the doors and windows during the winter, trapping in the dust, dirt, and allergens. When it’s finally time to crack the windows, the first thing you want to do is tackle all the dust that’s settled to get rid of that dingy, stale feel. Remove any removable floor coverings—area rugs, runners, welcome mats, etc. —and take them outside for a good beating and some deep vacuuming. Inside, dust all surfaces with a microfiber cloth before giving the floors a thorough sweep.
  2. Prepare to Chill: Ceiling Fan Upgrades—Did you know that you’re supposed to change the way your ceiling fan rotates in the spring? When the weather starts to warm up and your goal is to cool your space, be sure that your fan is moving forward (counter-clockwise) to maximize the cooling effect. Now’s also a good time to clean and upgrade your fans. Add a new fan to the porch or patio or upgrade your old, energy-hogging models to save you some money on cooling. It’s always a good idea to replace ceiling fans in the spring so you’re not scrambling when it’s especially hot.
  3. KonMari for All: Part With the Excess—Are you, as much of the world, crazy for KonMari? The ultra-popular organization method—made famous by Marie Kondo in her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and it’s coordinating, new Netflix show—can help you do a massive purge so that your space is prepped for deep cleaning and big DIY projects. The idea is that you keep only what “sparks joy” and get rid of everything else. Once you’ve purged the excess, you can get serious about installing new storage racks or investing in storage cabinets and closet systems.
  4. Efficiency Upgrade: HVAC Maintenance —Like the ceiling fan, your home’s air conditioning system does the vast majority of its heavy lifting during the summer months. One of the best things you can do to prepare for warmer weather is to make sure that it’s operating properly and efficiently before it kicks into high gear. This means having an expert come out for an inspection and, possibly, making some replacements and upgrades. You may want to consider repairing or replacing your economizer to ensure that your unit is running as efficiently as possible.
  5. Revel in the Ventilation: Paint and More —Now that it’s comfortable enough outside to keep the windows open for prolonged periods, you can use some of those chemical cleaners and paints that you might avoid when you’re cooped up in the house. Most professionals recommend doing any big house-painting projects in the spring because it’s warm enough to ventilate with open windows but dry enough so it doesn’t take too long for the paint to dry. You can also begin to use some of your harsher cleaners—in moderation, of course—as long as you’re in a room with open windows. 
  6. Get Ready for Rain: Basement Waterproofing—Basement waterproofing can be a huge and costly job, but it’s vital for keeping things dry, especially in old homes. Spring is the best time to get the basement waterproofed, especially if you notice water pooling or puddling after a heavy rain. If you’re not able to invest in a whole waterproofing job, which can run you as much as $10,000, at least make sure that you’ve got the moisture in-check with dehumidifiers. This will help prevent mold, mildew and gross odors.
  7. Lighten Up: Install Outdoor Light Fixtures—Of course, a big portion of your springtime to-do list will be outdoor tasks, like mulching, gardening and scrubbing down the patio furniture. While you’re thinking about fresh-air living, consider the lighting. Now is a great time to take stock and install all types of outdoor lighting—security lights, landscape lights, architectural uplighting and general lighting (and make sure they’re all LED fixtures to save you some money on your energy bill). This way, as soon as it’s warm out, you’ll be able to enjoy the porch or patio to its fullest.
  8. Cha-Ching: Focus on High-Value Upgrades —If you still aren’t sure where you should funnel your DIY dollars, consider doing a few small things that can help increase the value of your home. You might be surprised to learn the highest payoff upgrades. For example, the experts say that painting your front door black could raise the value of your home by $6,000! Other great ways to boost your home’s value without a huge spend include landscaping, painting, building a deck and finishing your basement.


Making the Most Out of Spring Without Overdoing It 

Spring is the perfect time to start checking off that ever-growing chore list, but if you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t fret! Many of these jobs can be done just as effectively when the summer rolls around, so don’t try to cram them all into a few short months. Focusing on the highest priority spring home improvement projects, both big and small, will help you make the most out of your living space so you enjoy it for longer.