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 service for a clean home.

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? Note, most likely hiring a nude maid service will not be tax deductible.

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.

Roommates You Don’t Know You Have (Until Now)

Whether you’ve been living in your studio / 2-bedroom apartment / multi-bedroom house for a while or the movers just pulled away from your street, here’s some bad news: you have roommates you don’t know about.

They are shamelessly snickering and hooting while you’re rolling out of bed (after hitting that snooze button twice), struggling to cook “Quaker Quick Oats” (saving money on breakfast means you can hit up Chipotle for lunch AND get guacamole, nah mean?) and/or pleading helplessly with your children to get in the car.

Moreover, these roommates are not helpful; they will not shine the counter-tops, rinse the dishes or disinfect the bathroom while you’re out. Instead, they will (continue to) party very, very hard, engage in unspeakable acts all over your sacred living space and sadly, won’t be showing any signs of slowing down upon your return.

Amongst amateurs, these infidels will remain dominant. They will effectively conduct guerrilla warfare by hiding in the hills and crevices of your bedroom(s), bathroom(s) and kitchen(s), striking opportunistically. While you may venture into a Duane Reade once a month, purchase some “Wet Wipes” and cause your tenacious tenants some slight distress, they will ultimately overcome your anemic assaults and continue to fester within your homeland (read: near your kids/pets / you).

The Good News

With proper, professional assistance, you can win this war in nuclear fashion. An experienced and well-equipped service (Maid Sailors) will arrive at war with an arsenal appropriate for fully sanitizing every major chamber of your home. Thereby eradicating your unwelcome guests. You don’t need to buy supplies beforehand and you certainly won’t need to store anything afterward. Maid Sailors come equipped with what amounts to a mini-Rite Aid in their duffel bags, allowing them to effectively and efficiently sterilize every square inch of your habitat.

So, exactly who are these roommates? The researchers at Maid Sailors have profiled two prominent squatters that are probably reading this article alongside you right now. (Pro-tip: if you book your cleaning now, you can probably finish reading this at a Starbuck’s while your home is secured in the meantime.)

1. Donnie the Dust Mite

Last check-in: Your bed (jumping), sheets (lounging) and pillows (napping real quick).

Hobbies: Donnie doesn’t bite but you might be allergic to him. If so, he’ll be busy posting statuses on your laptop (while you’re away) about how he made you sneeze, gave you a stuffy nose and made you cry (that itchiness of the eyes, tho).

Relationship status: Donnie isn’t a player, but he interacts a lot (if you know what I mean). Normally, Donnie might only be around for 20 days. But if he links up with his main chick (Diane the Dust Mite), she can live up to 70 days and lay 60–100 eggs during the last month of her life.

Fun-fact: Donnie is a real “sneakerhead.” He has eight legs, which means he has to buy 4 pairs of Jordans in order to remain the envy of his other microscopic friends.

Eviction solution: A professional can evict Donnie by thoroughly washing and drying your bedding (sheets, pillowcases, comforters, etc.) and exhaustively vacuuming your floors and carpets; additionally, these vacuums should have “high-efficiency particle air filters (HEPA)”, which will collect Donnie’s waste and his girl’s eggs.

2. Elizabeth Coli (Elizabeth often goes by “E. coli”)

Last check-in: As the Notorious B.I.G. line goes, “…she be sittin’ in your kitchen, waiting to start hittin’.” Your sink (her personal pool), food-ridden dishes (her beach chairs), cutting board (doing pilates) and countertop (tanning, obvi).

Hobbies: This chick can be a femme fatale as they come. If you’re not careful, she’ll make you anxious, have you sitting on a toilet seat for hours. And literally make you sick to your stomach.

Relationship status: Like Kanye West, Liz loves herself more than she can ever love another being. She will clone herself multiple times and her appetite (for herself) is sadly insatiable; within a 12 hour period, there can potentially be up to 17 million versions of Liz. Maybe having an all-out lovefest in your kitchen.

Fun-fact: This single-celled Cinderella is quite the social butterfly. In addition to her common hangouts, she’ll also be attending happy hours in your blender. And rubbing shoulders with other microbial bad girls in a litany of additional kitchen appliances.

Eviction solution: Having a professional conduct a thorough sanitary-onslaught on both your bathroom and kitchen will do the trick. A Maid Sailor will have the time and tools to disinfect your cutting boards, countertops, dishes, utensils and table surfaces. In the bathroom, anti-bacterial soaps and wipes will be used to cleanse your toilet, floors, tubs and even the handles.

4 Cleaning Wipes that Will Make Cleaning a Whole Lot Easier

Cleaning wipes are the most convenient, easy, and effective way to clean your home. There’s no spray, powder, or cloth with cleaning wipes. It’s just the package and the wipes.

There are several types of cleaning wipes available to use around your home. From disinfectant wipes to stainless steel wipes. Just about any household tasks that involves a surface cleaner can be done with a cleaning wipe. Learn to save time, money, and elbow grease by using the following four wipes around your home.

Disinfectant Wipes

Disinfecting wipes are the most common type of cleaning wipes. Clorox and Lysol wipes are a household name. These wipes work well to clean surfaces exposed to germs, such as the kitchen counter or bathroom toilet.

Disinfectant wipes have become so popular among households that wipes with abrasives or scrubbing features have graced the marketplace. Now these wipes give you the opportunity to scrub dried on dirt and kill germs all at the same time. Need I say more? 

Stainless Steel Wipes

Do you have a hard time cleaning your stainless steel kitchen appliances? Don’t worry, stainless steel can be a hard upkeep. Stainless steel wipes tend to work better than regular stainless steel cleaner, they’re inexpensive, and they don’t leave streaks!

Dusting Wipes

Ah, dusting wipes. The perfect way to dust and polish all at the same time. These wipes remove dust. polish, and shine your wood with a simple wipe. Not to mention the fact that the pledge dusting wipes have an amazing lemony scent which is just an added bonus.

Glass Wipes

What’s the easiest way to clean smudges, fingerprints, and splatters off that glass coffee table? Bust out the Windex wipes! Personally, I think these should have eliminated spray Windex the moment they were put on the shelves.

Windex wipes make it easy to give glass surfaces a thorough cleaning without having to spray Windex or another glass cleaner. No need to use extra paper towels, just grab a wipe from out of the pack and start using it. Most Windex wipes have plenty of liquid so that you can get a good use out of each one.

DIY Wipes

You can also make your own cleaning wipes. They cost around nothing to make and do a great job of killing bacteria.

What you’ll need:

  • A roll of paper towel
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • An old wipe container or coffee canister
  • 1 teaspoon of dish soap
  • 5 Drops of tea tree oil
For full instructions on how to make your own cleaning wipes click here.

Using Essential Oils Around Your Home

Using essential oils in your home

If you’re unfamiliar with essential oils and what they can do, get ready to be schooled on the amazing uses of essential oils. These oils are, in my opinion, the best thing on the market. That’s because they are so versatile. Each one of them has several different uses. I use essential oils every day around the house to clean, in my face wash and mouthwash, and of course in my humidifier in my office.

So today I’m excited to share with you the many different ways you can use essential oils throughout your home. I’ll also share the best place to buy them too! So continue reading!

What are essential oils?

Essential oils are plant-based oils that have been concentrated into hydrophobic liquid. They are a type therapeutic oil that you can use for a variety of sickness, illness, allergies, and more. Basically, they are a wellness solution that empowers you to dodge harmful chemicals while energizing your life. With them, you’ll be able to ditch the stress and negativity, in order to reclaim your natural radiance

What can I use them for?

As I said above each essential is unique. Each oil has its own purpose as well as many others. One thing to be sure of is to never clean your electronics with oils, not even cleaning your iPhone. Although there are hundreds of oils on the market today, below is a list the main ones that you’ll find in most marketplaces.

Lemon Oil:

all-purpose cleaner

  • Keeps cut fruit like apples and avocado fresh 
  • Add a few drops of lemon oil into hot water to soothe a sore throat

Eucalyptus Oil:

  • Relaxes the human body, mind, and soul
  • Soothes feet pain
  • Fights off colds and sinus infections

Tea Tree Oil:

all-purpose cleaner

  • Freshens breath
  • Mixed with borax this oil makes a great carpet cleaner
  • Kills germs

Lavender Oil:

  • Reduces anxiety, stress, and tension
  • Increases spiritual awareness
  • Relieves itchy scalps
  • When mixed with two tablespoons of coconut oil lavender oil helps repair dry cracked feet 

Frankincense Oil:

  • Helps relieve sore muscles
  • Using five drops of Frankincense, five drops of grapefruit oil and some coconut oil on your skin can help reduce stretch marks
  • Elevate your spirituality by diffusing frankincense in your home

Peppermint Oil: 

  • Combined with sea salt and baking soda you can create toothpaste with this oil
  • Breathe this oil in through your nose to relieve nausea
  • Improves mental focus
  • Clears respiratory tract

Black Pepper Oil:

  • Soothes muscles and joint pain
  • When inhaled directly it can reduce symptoms of anxiety
  • Add a drop to your food to aid digestion

Lemongrass Oil:

  • Wards off unwanted insects
  • Adds extra flavor to soups and teas
  • Helps relieve muscle pain
  • Kills germs

Rosemary Oil:

  • When added to your shampoo this oil helps thicken hair and reduce dandruff
  • Helps aid the improvement of your memory
  • Improves your overall gallbladder function

Sweet Orange Oil:

  • Mixed with lemon oil and inhaled during pregnancy can reduce morning sickness
  • Boosts your energy level
  • Freshens the air
  • Disinfects countertops 

Sandalwood Oil: 

  • Helps relax during yoga and meditation
  • mixed with frankincense and lavender sandalwood helps reduce wrinkles
  • Promotes healthy skin
  • Enhances overall mood and energy levels

Pro Tip: Add about 10 drops of your favorite oil into your vacuum bag or dust container for a great smelling clean.

Where can I get them?

You can get essential oils at any grocery store like Walmart or Meijer near the vitamins. Or you can find them at pharmacies like CVS and Walgreens in the same section. But the best place to get them is in bulk on Amazon. This way you aren’t spending $7-$12 a bottle. Instead, you’ll spend around $20 for nine different oils. Which is a good bargain if you ask me.

For more essential oils and their uses check out this post.

The Best Essential Oils to Use for Green Cleaning

Essential oils are great for cleaning. They can be used as an additive along with non-scented green cleaning products or they can be used to create your own green cleaning products

Not only do these oils help you clean, their aromatherapy properties help you in other ways. From elevating your mood to enhancing your breathing. Take this from someone who uses them on a regular basis, essential oils are wondrous.

Below are some of my favorite oils to clean with. You can grab an empty spray bottle, fill it with water, and add about five drops of the oil you want to use to create your own cleaner. Or you can add two to three drops of oil to an existing green cleaner. 

Tea Tree

Tea tree oil is one of the most powerful essential oils on the market. Scientific studies have shown the oils antibacterial actions and its ability to inhibiting certain bacteria including flu viruses, combating Staph infections, and even treating the herpes simplex virus. It’s also known to help treat respiratory conditions, such as asthma, coughing, and sinusitis.

When it comes to cleaning, tea tree is often combined with lemon, orange, or lavender oil to create the ultimate green cleaner. You can use it on any household tasks. But be advised that since this is one of the strongest essential oils you’ll want to use with caution.

Sweet Orange

Studies show that sweet orange oil inhibits the growth of E. Coli and Salmonella from refrigerated beef. So aside from it being uplifting and mood elevating, orange essential oil makes a great kitchen cleaner. Use it to clean out the fridge, wipe down countertops, clean cutting boards, and wash pots and pans.

Lavender 

Cleaning with lavender helps to relieve a stressful day. Aside from its relaxing qualities, it’s also an antiseptic, antiviral, bactericidal, and a fungicidal oil. These properties not only make it an effective cleaner, they make it effective for evening cleaning.

Using this oil to clean the house after a get-together, a birthday party, or a shower will help relax everyone in your home. A study done in 2005 revealed that lavender essential oil does indeed have a relaxing effect on the nervous system allowing you and your family a more restful nights sleep.

Lemon

Similar to orange oil, lemon essential oil has been proven to elevate your mood. But that’s not all it’s good for. Lemon oil is also great for cutting through grease, killing odor and bacteria, and prohibiting the growth of mold.

This oil is great to use in the kitchen and bathrooms where there is potential for various odors and smells. Use it on countertops, in the kitchen sink, and when cleaning the toilet.

Pro Tip: Adding a drop of lemon oil to your hand soap will help eliminate strong smells such as onions.

Peppermint

Due to its antiseptic properties, peppermint oil is another powerful essential oil to use as a homemade green cleaner. When combined with tea tree, lemon, or lavender oil peppermint oil makes a wonderful multi-surface cleaner. Use it around the house for a great clean and to increase alertness or enhance your performance.

Grapefruit

Grapefruit oil is similar to tea tree oil in the sense that it is very strong and should be used with precaution. When combined with tea tree, grapefruit oil has been known to balance out the strong smell while enhancing the antibacterial properties for a better clean.

Raising A Family In Hoboken: What You Need To Know

Whether you’ve recently moved to Hoboken or are considering a move here, you probably have a lot of questions. These questions may be multiplied if you have children or plan on starting a family in the near future. Hoboken is a wonderful town and can be a great place to raise kids, but there are some things you’ll want to know.

You Might Be in the Minority With Kids

For starters, consider the fact that the average citizen in Hoboken is just 30 years of age, is not married, and doesn’t have children. In fact, children make up a very small percentage of the town’s 50,000 people. And while Hoboken can be a great place to start or raise a family due to its low crime and great schools, it is important to understand that you may be in the minority as a parent.

The good news is that there are plenty of online parenting groups that make it easy to connect with and meet other local parents not just in Hoboken, but in the nearby Jersey City and NYC-metropolitan area as well.

Finding Housing for Families in Hoboken

Another potential challenge to consider when it comes to raising a family in Hoboken is simply finding a residence that’s large enough to accommodate a growing family within your budget. The cost of living in Hoboken is already significantly higher than the national average—and housing prices are no exception. Whether you’re looking to buy or rent, you should be prepared to shell out top-dollar for a space that has enough bedrooms, bathrooms, and overall square footage for a family.

Median prices per-square-foot in Hoboken are well over $700, so if you’re looking for a place that has at least two bedrooms and two bathrooms with plenty of living space, you should be prepared to spend a pretty penny. Furthermore, because single-family homes can be difficult to come by in Hoboken, you may have a harder time finding a property in your budget that has yard space for kids.

The good news? There are plenty of parks and area activities to keep your kids entertained without necessarily having yard space of your own. Many condominium buildings have a common yard space that may even include playgrounds or parks. And as an added bonus, you won’t have to worry about doing any yard work or lawn maintenance, as this will likely be built into your monthly HOA cost already.

Hoboken Has Excellent Schools

There are more that 30 different schools across Hoboken, which is pretty impressive when you consider that the entire town of Hoboken consists of less than two square miles. This includes some colleges as well as elementary, middle, and high schools. Private schools can also be found across Hoboken, though the public schooling system here is excellent. Whether they choose to enroll their children in public or private school, parents can feel great about their children’s quality of education in Hoboken.

Family-Friendly Activities in Hoboken

While Hoboken is largely known for its nightlife in the form of bars, taverns, and breweries, there are plenty of family-friendly activities to enjoy in Hoboken as well. Because the town is situated right along the Hudson River, many families enjoy regular trips to the waterfront for activities such as fishing and walking. The riverfront also has some great parks that have activities for children of all ages. And of course, setting up a picnic along the water can always make for a great afternoon activity. You can also view our Hoboken activity guide.

Hoboken also has a movie theater, which is a popular spot for families. Here, you can catch the latest movies without having to go far from home.

Still, because of the nightlife in Hoboken, parents should be aware that noise levels (especially at night) can be higher than what you would find in other cities. The high population density, combined with the proximity of bars and clubs, means that the streets of Hoboken can get quite loud at night. Some parents with smaller children may have a harder time adjusting to this, but setting up a white noise machine in your child’s room can help to drown out any street noise. And if you have the ability to choose, you might opt for a unit on an upper floor of your condo or apartment building.

Tips for Busy Parents in Hoboken

Many parents who choose to raise families in Hoboken do so for a number of reasons. For starters, they may work in New York City but prefer to raise their children away from the hustle and bustle of a large city. Many parents are also drawn to the low crime rates in Hoboken, which have always been pretty low but have fallen even more in the past couple of years. All of this, combined with the smaller-town feel of Hoboken’s streets, can make it a great place to start or raise a family.

Still, there are some tips worth keeping in mind if you’re thinking about moving here with children of any age. For starters, understand that the majority of Hoboken residents don’t own cars and that parking can be a challenge. If you have a mini-van or other larger vehicle to accommodate your family, you will probably have a hard time finding a place to park it. Some condominiums or apartments will offer parking lots or parking garages for this purpose, but they will come at a premium.

With the availability of public transportation and the easy walkability of the town, many people get around just fine without a car all year-round. Even if you’ll be working in nearby Manhattan, you should have an easy time getting in and out of the city each day without a car. Meanwhile, you and your children will enjoy getting more exercise by getting around without a vehicle.

Another tip worth keeping in mind for busy Hoboken parents is to consider budgeting for a professional cleaning service. Doing so will allow you to maximize your time with your family while still keeping your home in order. Maid Sailors offers a wide range of professional cleaning services to suit your needs, including move-in/move-out cleanings, routine cleanings, green cleanings, and even deep-cleanings at affordable prices. We also serve NYC and the surrounding areas, including Hoboken.

Find out more about our wide range of professional cleaning services by contacting us today, or schedule your first cleaning using our online form. Either way, having a cleaning service at your Hoboken home is a great way to free up more time to spend with your family—and it’s more affordable than you might think!

cleaner

Natural Homemade All-Purpose Cleaner Recipe

This simple natural homemade all-purpose cleaner recipe takes only 2 – 3 ingredients and is unbelievably effective.

 

Items that you will need for the homemade all-purpose cleaner recipe:

  1. Empty spray bottle
  2. Water
  3. Bottle of White Vinegar
  4. Bottle of essential oil (lavender or citrus)

When you have a clean and dry spray bottle ready, mix the following together:

  1. 1/2 cup water
  2. 1/2 vinegar
  3. 15- 20 drops of the essential oil of your choice (optional), although good choices are pine, lavender or one of the citrus fruits.

 

Combine together in the spray bottle and shake well. The essential oil really is only added to both cover the vinegar smell for those who find it offensive, and also to leave a fresh, residual scent in the air.

 

This recipe can be used to clean all of your surfaces but it is especially effective on appliances, back-splashes and surface areas such as countertops.

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 in ways you may not anticipate, like keeping your high-traffic office space clean and hygienic —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!

10 Pros And Cons Of Living In A NYC Doorman Building

When it comes to the idea of living in a doorman building—especially in New York City—people generally love or hate the idea, but rarely is anyone indifferent about it. Without a doubt, there are many advantages and disadvantages, most of which can really only be learned with first-hand experience.

Regardless of your current opinion on doorman buildings—or even if you don’t have a current opinion yet—here are 10 pros and cons for you to consider before packing your bags and moving in (or out) of your current place of residence:

Pros Of Living In A NYC Doorman Building

1. Safety

Safety is always a plus, and a doorman is good at keeping strangers and unwanted guests at bay. See someone loitering outside your building?—the doorman will take care of it. Want the peace of mind that you’re never totally alone at night in your building?—rest easy. The doorman is at the front desk, and he has everything under control. Even just the presence of a watchful doorman is good at keeping unwanted or illegal activity to a minimum. A good doorman pays attention to who is coming and going and generally has a good sense when something isn’t right. They are also beneficial to let your apartment cleaner come in when you are not home.

2. Luxury

Without a doubt, having someone waiting in your building who will open the door for you or greet you as you enter is seen—at least by the general public—as a luxury. And having a doorman can certainly give a good first impression to family members who visit you or people who stop by your building for a visit. If your doorman also serves as a concierge of sorts—or if you have a separate concierge service in your building—pat yourself on the back. You are one of the lucky few who gets to live in a full-service building. Not too shabby! The doorman himself is perceived as a value add—let alone the actual value he brings in the services he provides.

3. Deliveries

With online shopping in the U.S. at an all-time high, having a doorman who is always available to accept deliveries—and then to keep an eye on those deliveries during the day—is a great bonus. You’ll never have to worry about the pesky neighborhood kid taking off with one of your packages from the front steps. Nor will you need to rearrange your schedule for your FreshDirect delivery or to meet the FedEx guy. If you need someone to sign for something, your doorman will be able to handle that.

4. Assistance

Living in NYC can require juggling acts to get from the front door of your building to the taxi waiting for you on the curb (and vice versa). Carrying groceries or balancing an armload of packages can be tricky at times. And luggage?—that can feel nearly impossible. A good doorman will take note of your troubles and try to help, which can be very, very handy.

5. Gatekeeper

If you live in a doorman building, you now have someone to whom you can direct your complaints or concerns. If the neighbor is playing his music too loudly (again!) you can call the doorman. If the front lobby looks like a herd of elephants came marching through after a mudwrestling tournament, you can tell the doorman. If you’re even concerned that you may have forgotten to shut off your stove before leaving for work, you can call the doorman. Bottom line: Your doorman is there to help you.

Cons Of Living In A NYC Doorman Building

1. Privacy

While it is good to know that the doorman is always there and is paying attention to who is coming and going, it can also feel like a violation of privacy that the doorman is always there and is paying attention to who is coming and going. His omnipresence can feel like a pro and a con, depending on the day and the situation. Some people don’t like feeling like every guest must first be trotted past the ever-present doorman, and some feel like they must explain why someone is coming for a visit and why he or she stayed the night. No deliveries or activities escape his notice. The doorman basically knows everything, and that can make some people feel uncomfortable.

2. Cost

A full-time doorman means a full-time salary (and generally benefits are included as well), and the cost of the doorman is typically added to the rent of everyone who lives in the building. So depending on how many units there are or aren’t can make a world of difference in how much you need to pay every month for the benefit of having a doorman. According to a Wall Street Journal article, those who live in luxury condos in NYC pay as much as 65% more per square foot in buildings with doormen. Which, depending on how valuable or not their services are to you could be worth it. On the flipside, buildings with doormen typically have a higher resale value than those without. So the investment is not without its potential reward. If you live with a tighter budget or you’re looking to save money month to month, living in a doorman building may not be your best use of funds.

3. Gossip

Let’s be honest. Most human beings are naturally nosey, and doormen are no exception. While it isn’t always the case, doormen have been known to gossip on occasion. And why not? They’ve seen and heard a lot on the job. Unfortunately, some doormen are known to talk amongst themselves—or to others in the building—about the things they’ve seen or heard. And if you have nosey neighbors who are happy to compare notes with the doormen, the combination can feel intrusive. If you’re a private person, living in a doorman building may not be right for you.

4. Chitchat

In reality, this one may actually fit in the “pro” category depending on your personality and preferences. If you like seeing a familiar face on your way in and out of your building and don’t mind the occasional chat about your day or your plans, then a doorman building may be a perfect opportunity for you. On the other hand, if you’d rather get from the curb to your leather or fabric couch as quickly as possible without so much as a “hello” to your neighbor, than you may not want to live where a doorman will always greet you. By the nature of their work, doormen can be pretty chatty.

5. Tips

As if the cost of having a doorman is not already high enough, it is typically expected that the doorman receives tips, especially during the holiday season. On average, the holiday tips run between $25 and $150 on average. A very small percentage of tenants don’t tip their doormen, and it is known to have a negative effect on them.

Doorman In NYC Overview

NYC is truly a city with endless opportunity, and whether or not to rent or own a place that comes with a doorman is one of the many exciting possibilities available to you. Your best bet is to make a list of your own priorities and determine whether or not the pros outweigh the cons.

Ways to Keep Your Home Smelling Good

There’s just something about walking into your home after a long day at work and having it smell fantastic. Am I right? A clean smelling home is a happy home. But how do you keep your home smelling good? If you’re having trouble keeping your home odor-free try some of these tips!

Make Scent-Filled Jars

Are you into canning? A fun DIY project that you can do to keep your home smelling good is to make your own scent-filled mason jars. Fill them with your favorite scents with items like cinnamon sticks, driedfruit, or even essential oils and add simmering water and you’re good to go!

Keep The Garbage Disposal Empty

Have you noticed a stench lingering in your kitchen but have no idea what it is? It could be the garbage disposal. You always want to make sure that any food that goes down there gets rinsed out. You can squirt some soap down there and some hot water and let it run through after the food has been eaten up. That should help the smell go away.

Pro Tip: If the smell persists, take a small lemon wedge along with some baking soda and run it through the disposal.

Use Candles

This one is a no-brainer. Candles have been around for centuries and they’re the best way to keep your home smelling good. Try placing them strategically in places that are likely to absorb the fragrance for a longer lasting smell. 

Indoor Plants

A great way to keep your home smelling good is to bring the outdoors indoors. You can do this by getting an indoor plant, or two. Indoor plants help clean the air in your home. Many of them offering a wonderful aroma to leave your home smelling beautiful.

Dryer Sheets

Did you know you can use dryer sheetsoutside of the laundry room? We even wrote a post about it. Check it out. You can use dryer sheets all around your house to keep it smelling wonderful. Try leaving them in your dresser drawers to help keep your clothes smelling fresh. Or Place one under your garbage bag in the bottom of your garbage can to help mask the smell of old food.