How to Do Deep Cleaning of Your Closets

Most of the time, our closets are usually full. The overcrowding comes with a lot of chaos. For example, it becomes challenging to find the cloth you need. Other times, you may even fail to get something to wear. Shocking, right? After all, how can you not have anything to wear if you have an overflowing closet? But it happens. If you find yourself in this scenario, you don’t need to worry. There is a solution in the form of deep cleaning your closets. Here’s how you can go about it. 

1. Set the Mood

Let’s be real; most of us don’t look forward to cleaning our closets. That’s why we try to put it off as long as we can. To make the cleaning process fun, you need to set the mood. For example, you can turn on the music and dance along to it or listen to an uplifting podcast. The goal is to be in a happy mood. 

2. Remove Everything From the Closet

If someone were to tell you to remove a few items from your wardrobe, you’d get confused about which ones to withdraw from the pile. Deep cleaning your closet requires you to get rid of some stuff to make it look more organized. Also, you want to first clean the closet before putting your items back. The first step towards achieving this is removing everything from the wardrobe. 

3.  Start Cleaning 

Closet

A dusting cloth and some water are the basic things you need to clean your closet. Use the damp cloth to wipe away dust, dirt, and other undesirable stuff from the shelves, drawers, and cabinets. Don’t forget about the doors too. There may be some moisture left afterward, which may damage your clothes. Therefore, ensure you get another piece of dry cloth and go through the areas mentioned. 

Since we are doing deep cleaning, you can opt for a mild household cleaner instead of water to dust the closet. If you are dealing with glass surfaces, then a glass cleaner will come in handy to ensure there are no fingerprints or smudges left on it. Kindly note that you should only use mild cleaning agents for your closets to avoid damaging the surfaces.  

Floor

It is time to clean the floor. Sometimes, our closets become humid, which causes them to give out a musty smell. Baking soda acts as a natural deodorizer, and that’s why you need it when carrying out deep cleaning. You can sprinkle it on the carpet and leave it for 15 minutes as you do other things. After that, get out your vacuum cleaner and clean the carpet. You will notice a fresh smell after that. When vacuuming, go through all the corners of the closet to ensure the whole space is clean.  

Ceiling and Walls

You can’t leave out the walls and ceilings to have your broom ready and start dusting and getting rid of cobwebs. A duster with a long handle will also do a great job. While dusting, remember the light fixtures too. 

4. Sort Out Your Items 

Now that you have a clean closet, you don’t want to stuff back every single thing you took out. It is time to go through each item and decide if you wish to keep it, throw it away, donate it to charity, or someone you know who needs it more than you. You may have some clothes or shoes that cost you a fortune and you don’t want to give away. If this is the case, you can put them aside and sell them online. Once you have the items you have decided to donate, also set them aside and get on with the process as soon as you can to avoid cluttering your space. The items to be discarded should go into the trash bag immediately and out of your closet.  

5. Put Everything Back

The items you’ve decided to keep cannot stay on your bed. Therefore, start reorganizing them. Having various storage options will help everything to fit in nicely without being crowded. 

After sorting out the clothes you’ll be putting back into the closet, you can go a step further and ensure they smell great. You can mix essential oils with water and then spray the liquid on your clothes. You can also give your shoes a pleasant smell by spritzing the cotton balls with perfume before you put them in the shoe section.  

Final Thoughts

Your closet needs cleaning; you can’t avoid that. However, it doesn’t have to make you cringe. You can follow the above tips to make the process fun and ensure your closet space is clean, organized, and free of clutter. It is essential to do this regularly because it will avoid the issue of having an overflowing and cluttered closet. 

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.

How to Clean a Lazy Susan

The Lazy Susan cabinet has been a kitchen staple for many decades; this type of corner cabinet typically opens to reveal a series of turntables, which can be used to store food and small kitchen appliances. The tables can then be spun to retrieve food and other items as needed. When properly organized, a Lazy Susan cabinet can really come in handy—providing clever storage space in even the smallest of kitchens.

Over time, however, a Lazy Susan can easily become disorganized and even downright dirty. Crumbs from food stored inside a Lazy Susan can build up, as can grease from food, utensils, and small kitchen appliances. This can not only be unsightly for you (and your house guests) to look at but could pose a health risk as well. Furthermore, a disorganized Lazy Susan can add unwanted clutter to your home—and if you haven’t cleaned out this cabinet recently, there’s a good chance your Lazy Susan is harboring expired food or other items you no longer use.

By taking the time to properly clean and organize your Lazy Susan on occasion, you can keep it clean and potentially free up some storage space in the process.

How to Clean a Lazy Susan

Not sure where to begin when it comes to how to clean a Lazy Susan? We’ve got some practical tips and step-by-step guidance. One of the biggest challenges people tend to face when cleaning out this cabinet is its somewhat awkward set-up. The back of the cabinet can be somewhat difficult to reach, as can areas of the cabinet’s base. Still, with the right tools and a little elbow grease, you can have your Lazy Susan clean and organized in about 30 minutes.

Remove Items From Shelves

The first step is to take everything out of your Lazy Susan. This will allow you better access to the shelves so you can properly clean them. It will also give you an opportunity to take inventory of what you’ve been keeping on the shelves so you can decide what you want to keep and what you need to get rid of.

Don a Pair of Cleaning Gloves

This is also a good time to put on a pair of quality cleaning gloves. This will protect your hands from exposure to any cleaning chemicals you may be using. A thick pair of reusable cleaning gloves is recommended here (like the type you would wear when cleaning a bathroom), but even a disposable pair of latex gloves would work here.

You’ll also want to make sure you’re working in a properly ventilated area if you’ll be using any harsh kitchen cleaners or degreasers. If your kitchen has a window, you may want to crack it open; otherwise, a properly placed box fan should do the trick.

Vacuum Up Loose Debris

Using the hose attachment on a vacuum, begin by vacuuming up any loose debris from inside the Lazy Susan. The smaller the hose attachment you have to work with here, the better. Pay special attention to the corners/dividers of Lazy Susan shelves, as these tend to accumulate lots of crumbs and other debris. If you’re able to access any of the cabinet’s base, use your vacuum hose to remove any loose debris from here as well.

Create a Cleaning Solution

Next, it’s time to work on cleaning the shelves more thoroughly. Over time, grime and grease can build up in layers on these shelves. This is especially likely if you use your Lazy Susan to store small kitchen appliances or cookware, such as pots and pans.

In most cases, you can create your own cleaning solution to cut through everyday grease and grime. To do this, simply mix a few drops of your favorite dish soap into a bucket of warm water. From there, you can use a sponge or rag to scrub away grime from the shelves. For the best results, wipe in circular motions. Follow up with a dry cloth or paper towel to dry.

Use a Degreaser For Heavy Buildup

If you’re happy with the results from using your own cleaning solution, there’s no need to complete this step. However, if you’re still noticing lots of grease and grime buildup, then you may need to follow up with a heavy kitchen degreaser to get rid of it all. You can find these products at your local grocery store; always do a spot test in an inconspicuous area before using on your shelves, though (especially if you have wooden shelves).

When sprayed and left on for a short period of time before wiping clean, a kitchen degreaser can break down even the toughest of grime so you can restore your Lazy Susan cabinets to their original cleanliness.

Wipe the Shelves Clean and Dry

If you used a kitchen degreaser or any other harsh chemicals, be sure to wipe the shelves down one last time to remove any chemical residue. From there, you can use a clean cloth or fresh paper towel to dry your cabinets out completely.

Organize Your Clean Cabinet

Now, all that’s left to do is to replace the items you removed from your Lazy Susan. This is a great chance to properly organize everything and toss out items you no longer need or use. You may even wish to add some organization to your Lazy Susan in the form of small storage bins or other accessories. From there, you’ll be able to easily locate everything you need in your freshly cleaned Lazy Susan cabinet!

Let the Professionals Handle It

In most cases, you should be able to get your Lazy Susan cabinet cleaned within about 30 minutes of your time. Of course, your time is valuable—and there are other things you’d rather be doing. That’s where our team of cleaning professionals can help. Contact Maid Sailors today to set up your cleaning appointment. Our deep cleaning services include a thorough cleaning of homes that have not been professionally cleaning in over 3 months (like your Lazy Susan and more!).

Best Facebook Advertising Agency

These days, having a strong social media presence isn’t just a good idea—it’s an absolute must for businesses of all sizes. From startups to large organizations, being active on social media can help you better connect with your target audience and raise brand awareness. It’s no secret that Facebook remains one of the largest and most widely utilized social media platforms in the world. In fact, each month, Facebook sees over 2.5 billion active users. What this also means is that if your business isn’t spending at least some of your advertising budget on Facebook ads, you could be missing out big time.

One of the key reasons business owners don’t engage in social media advertising (Facebook ads included) is a lack of understanding. You may feel intimidated by Facebook’s advertising platform and may not know where to begin. This is where working with a professional Facebook advertising agency can really pay off. Specifically, Facebook advertising agencies exist to help you optimize your marketing budget, boost your brand awareness, and ultimately increase your bottom line through the use of customized and targeted Facebook ads.

We’ve put together this guide to help inform you about what it is that Facebook advertising agencies do, and how to determine whether it’s in your company’s best interest to hire one. We also provide tips for choosing a Facebook advertising agency that aligns with your organization’s needs, plus useful information on typical pricing structures for these agencies. Ultimately, we hope this guide will prove to be a useful resource as you move forward with your company’s social media advertising strategy.

Top 5 Facebook Advertising Agencies

To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of some of the top-rated Facebook advertising agencies out there today. This list can be an excellent starting point if you decide to move forward with hiring a Facebook advertising agency.

1. Voy Media

Voy Media offers a wide range of advertising services, ranging from Facebook and Instagram ads to mobile advertising and retargeting. The professionals here specialize in creating and implementing customized Facebook advertising campaigns to boost your bottom line. And when you work with Voy Media, you always have a dedicated account strategist to answer your questions and help you succeed.

2. MuteSix

MuteSix boasts a large team of more than 150 professionals working to take your Facebook advertising campaign to the next level. They use a personal-driving, ROI-focused approach to execute successful campaigns, running split-testing when needed to make the best use of your advertising dollars. In fact, 82% of their clients have doubled their revenue within their first year working with MuteSix.

3. AdvertiseMint

AdvertiseMint’s team of social advertising experts is here to help you yield the best return on your company’s advertising budget. When you work with them for your Facebook advertising, you have a team of copywriters, video editors, designers, and analysts working with you from day one. AdvertiseMint also offers month-to-month contracts, so you’re free to try out their services with no long-term commitment.

4. Abacus

When Abacus launched, it was a dedicated Facebook advertising agency. Today, it has grown into a full-blown social media advertising platform—but Facebook ads remain a large part of what these professionals are about. From helping you narrow down the scope of your audience to building ads that truly engage your audience, Abacus can help with it all.

5. Bamboo

Bamboo offers creative services, managed services, and strategy services for your Facebook advertising campaign. When they first launched, they worked with startup businesses to help scale their companies. Today, they continue to work with businesses of all sizes and scopes, ranging from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies.

Advantages of Using a Facebook Advertising Agency

Still not 100% convinced that working with a Facebook advertising agency is right for you in the first place? That’s okay. In reality, hiring a Facebook ad agency isn’t the right decision for every business at every stage—but it is a wise choice for many. By taking some time to review the advantages and potential drawbacks to working directly with one of these agencies, you can ultimately make the decision that best suits your business at this exact point in time.

Save Valuable Time

Many businesses haven’t thrown their hats into the Facebook advertising ring because they simply don’t have the time or resources to do so. Think about it; if your business doesn’t have a dedicated social media strategist or advertising professional, the amount of time you’d need to put into learning about how Facebook advertising works is substantial.

This is where working with a Facebook ad agency can really save you a lot of time and hassle. When you have these kinds of advertising professionals on your time, you don’t have to worry about learning the ins and outs of Facebook’s advertising platform. Instead, you can focus on other important aspects of your business while you let the professionals do all the work.

Maximize Your Budget

No matter how big or small your Facebook advertising budget may be, one fact remains: you want to stretch your dollar as far as you can while having the maximum impact. Again, this is where a Facebook advertising company can be extremely valuable. Many of the advertising agencies are used to working with startups and smaller businesses where budgets are tight—so they know what it takes to maximize each dollar.

Even if you have a larger budget to work with, a Facebook ad agency will ensure that none of that money goes to waste by creating and executing ad campaigns with the highest ROI possible.

Stay on Top of Changes

Facebook’s advertising platform, like anything on the Web, grows and evolves all the time. Changes are made often, and keeping up with these can be laborious and time-consuming. At the same time, staying on top of these changes is important because oversights can be costly and affect the success of your ad campaign.

Having a dedicated Facebook advertising team on your side is useful here because social media advertising is what these professionals do for a living. You’re paying them to stay in-the-loop when it comes to changes in Facebook’s advertising platform, so you can stop worrying.

Save on Onboarding/Training Costs

You may be wondering to yourself, “why can’t I just hire my own social media specialist to handle my Facebook Ads?” And truthfully, there’s nothing stopping you from going this route. However, there are some important things to consider when you think about hiring a part- or full-time social media professional for your business.

For starters, you’ll need to spend a fair amount of time searching for the right candidate for the job. From there, you’ll need to go through the costly onboarding process and, of course, make sure you’re offering the same benefits to your social media specialist that you are to the rest of your employees.

And if there’s any turnover in your social media position, you’ll need to repeat this process. You could avoid this hassle by hiring an outside Facebook advertising agency instead.

Grow Your Business

Last but certainly not least, understand that your business (no matter what industry you’re in…even a home cleaning service) has so much to gain from Facebook advertising. You could be just one campaign away from really taking your company’s success to the next level. There are many specific ways in which Facebook ads can grow your business (aside from the obvious conversions and returns on your investment).

Perhaps most importantly, successful Facebook ads create brand awareness and help target your ideal audience. By boosting your social media presence and spreading the word about all that your company has to offer, a well-executed Facebook ad can turn your brand into a household name very quickly.

Potential Disadvantages of Using a Facebook Advertising Agency

Now that you have a better idea of the many reasons why businesses enjoy working with Facebook advertising professionals, it’s a good idea to consider some of the potential drawbacks as well. From there, you can make an informed decision for your own business.

Up-Front Costs

All that knowledge, expertise, and customized service comes at a premium. Hiring a Facebook advertising agency is going to eat up a chunk of your company’s marketing budget; there’s no way around that. This cost can often be difficult for businesses to justify, especially for smaller businesses that may not have much in the way of a marketing budget to begin with.

At the end of the day, however, Facebook advertising is actually one of the cheapest and most effective ways to grow your brand. And when you start to see the kind of return on investment your business can achieve with the right Facebook ad campaign in place, it becomes much easier to justify those initial costs.

Security Concerns

Yes, hiring a Facebook advertising agency means you’ll inherently be trusting somebody you don’t know with your company’s social media account and its password. This can be unnerving for some, especially when you consider all the security threats on the Web today. Ultimately, however, you should have nothing to worry about in this regard as long as you have taken the time to properly vet the company you’re hiring to trust with your business Facebook account.

Lack of Control

Another obstacle some business owners face when it comes to hiring a Facebook advertising agency is the perceived lack of control over how their ad campaigns turn out. While it’s true that yes, you’re going to be giving up some control to the creative professionals you’ve hired, any experienced ad agency is going to take the time to ensure you’re 100% happy with the ads they’re going to run before they launch them.

This means not only will you be able to see a preview of ads before they’re launched, but your feedback will be taken into account before major decisions are made. Likewise, any reputable ad agency is going to speak with you extensively to find out what your preferences are and what kind of brand message you’re trying to create before they even begin brainstorming your next campaign.

All of this is to say that when you hire the right ad agency, you’ll still have plenty of control over the entire process.

How to Choose the Best Facebook Advertising Agency

If you’ve decided that hiring a Facebook advertising agency is right for you, be sure to check out the list at the beginning of this guide. This is a great starting point to help you find the agency that best suits your needs. Of course, your needs may vary depending on the size of your business, your advertising budget, and even the industry in which you operate. With that in mind, there are some additional steps you may want to take before you choose an ad agency for your business.

Know Who You’re Working With

Make sure you can get a true feel for who you’ll be working with throughout your campaign. Ideally, you’ll be assigned an account manager or other point-of-contact whom you can call, text, or e-mail with questions anytime. Other members of your team may include a design expert, strategist, and content manager. Regardless, be sure that you have all the names and contact information of the people who will be working on your team before you sign any kind of contract or formal agreement.

Check Out Examples

Any reputable Facebook advertising agency will likely have some case studies published to their website or otherwise readily available for you to review upon request. These case studies will provide you with some real-world examples of companies or other organizations they’ve helped to achieve success through Facebook advertising campaigns. These case studies can also be a great way for you to get a better feel for the kind of creative content the agency comes up with, which can help you further decide whether they may be a good fit for your organization.

Look for Certification

One of the first things you should do before you even think about working with a particular ad agency is to make sure they’re Facebook Blueprint Certified. This certification is offered directly through Facebook and requires the passing of an exam to receive. The purpose of this certification is to ensure that advertising agencies and other social media marketing professionals are proficient in Facebook’s advertising platform and how it works.

By choosing an agency that is certified, you can be sure that the professionals you’re working with are up-to-date on Facebook’s (and Instagram’s) advertising essentials. Having this certification also shows that the agency you’re thinking about hiring takes their work seriously, as earning this certification is not free.

Avoid Long-Term Commitments

If you’re just dipping your toes into the world of Facebook advertising, you probably don’t want to make any long-term financial commitments with an agency. Unfortunately, not all agencies offer short-term contracts, so this is something you may need to shop around a bit to find. Ideally, you’ll actually want to find an agency that will allow you to go month-to-month initially. This is a great way to see what the agency can do for you while having the peace of mind in knowing that you can stop using their services at any time.

Working with an agency that doesn’t require a long-term commitment also gives them more incentive to continue earning your business.

Make Communication a Priority

One of the most important aspects of working with a remote Facebook ad professional is communication. Being able to get ahold of a point-of-contact quickly and easily when you have questions/concerns is a must. You can “test” an agency’s communication by making note of how long it takes for them to respond to your messages or return a phone call at this stage. If you have to wait more than 24 hours for a response, then it’s probably time to move onto another agency.

Before you sign a contract with a Facebook advertising agency, you may also want to see if there is any kind of clause on communication. Are you guaranteed a response within a certain number of hours? Are you guaranteed to be able to get in contact with somebody 24/7? These are important things to look for when working with any kind of social media professional, as social media never shuts off!

Take Online Reviews Seriously

Don’t neglect to do some research of your own when finding out about an advertising agency’s reputation with their clients/customers. Taking the time to read some third-party reviews can truly give you a better feel for how past clients have been treated by the company and what kinds of results they have seen.

Be Clear About Pricing

Budget is most likely a concern as you look to hire a Facebook advertising agency, so you’ll want to make sure you truly understand what you’re paying for and how your payments will be handled. For example, some companies may require an up-front fee, whereas others may not collect any money until they achieve a return on your investment.

There are so many different payment structures out there when it comes to Facebook advertising agencies today, so be sure to read the next section thoroughly to better understand how some of the most common payment platforms operate.

Understanding Facebook Advertising Agency Pricing

The following Facebook ad pricing structures are outlined below in order from most common to least common. Be sure to shop around to find an agency that aligns with your preferences in this regard.

Agency Rate

An agency rate refers to a flat rate (often a percentage) that is charged for their services. This rate is typically a set percentage of the total amount of your advertising budget. For example, an agency with a 10% rate would charge $100 on a $1,000 Facebook advertising campaign. The nice thing about this type of pricing structure is that services are often all-inclusive with this type of rate; this means you likely won’t have to spend extra for creative services, content writing, or other add-ons.

Flat Rate

Another option is to go with an agency that charges a flat rate. This is usually a flat monthly fee that the company charges you regardless of how much you spend on Facebook ads that month. This can be appealing to small businesses or organizations with limited budgets, as it provides a predictable monthly cost.

Agency Plus Flat Rate

In some cases, you may find that an agency wants to combine the agency rate and flat rate model of pricing. This means you’ll pay a percentage of your ad spending directly to the agency, on top of a flat monthly rate. If you decide to go this route, make sure that what you’re spending on a combined agency/flat rate isn’t more than what you’d be spending with an agency that sticks to just one of these pricing models.

Revenue Share

Less common (but still an option with some agencies) is a revenue-sharing model, which means that your agency only gets paid based on the revenue or ROI that they generate for you. The nice thing about this kind of payment structure is that it gives your ad team more incentive to work hard and achieve results. However, some businesses don’t like the idea of paying directly out of their returns.

The Bottom Line on Facebook Advertising Agencies

If your business isn’t currently taking advantage of Facebook advertising, now is a good time to get started. And if you don’t have the time or resources to research and launch your own campaign, hiring an experienced Facebook ad agency can be one of the best decisions you make for your business. The key, of course, is finding the right agency for the job. Find a Facebook ad agency that treats your company’s marketing budget as if it were their own; driven to helping you maximize your Facebook ad ROI and building your brand’s reputation in the process.

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.

NYC Sanitation & Garbage Pickup Schedule

Whether you’ve recently moved to one of NYC’s neighborhoods or will be visiting a vacation rental home in the city, understanding your trash and recycling pick-up schedule is a must. All of New York is served by the New York City Department of Sanitation (DSNY) not only for trash removal but snow/ice removal and street cleaning as well; this department provides these services to nearly 6,000 miles of city streets.

While putting out your trash may seem pretty straight-forward, there are some things you should know if you’ll be living in NYC or staying here long term. For starters, different neighborhoods within the city have different trash (and recycling) pick-up days—and these can sometimes be affected or delayed by holidays or other events.

It’s also good for you to know some basic etiquette rules when it comes to putting out your trash, as well as the proper protocol for getting rid of larger items that won’t fit in your trash bins (such as furniture). We’ve compiled this guide to provide you with more-or-less everything you’d ever need to know about trash pick-up here in New York City!

When is My Neighborhood’s Trash Pick-Up?

The quickest, easiest, and most accurate way to determine your home’s trash pick-up date is to enter your address directly on the DSNY website. Upon entering your address, you’ll immediately have access to your trash pick-up schedule, including dates for recycling and organic waste pick-up. There is also a convenient DSNY app that you can download, which provides similar information.

In general, most NYC neighborhoods have trash collection days a few times a week, although recycling is generally picked up once a week. This can vary based on where you live, however, so be sure to check the DSNY website or app direction.

What About Pick-Up Times?

Regardless of your pick-up day, you should typically put your trash out sometime after 4 PM on the day before your scheduled pick-up. For instance, if your neighborhood’s trash pick-up is on a Friday, this means you should put your bins out to the curb after 4 PM the day before. It’s also a good idea to take your bins back in as soon as possible once your trash has been picked up.

Recycling in NYC

Many residents of NYC recycle, and DSNY provides recycling pick-up services for most neighborhoods at least once a week. Currently, recyclables that are picked up in these bins include:

  • cardboard
  • paper
  • metal
  • plastic
  • glass

If you don’t already have a recycling bin and would like to enroll in the city’s recycling program, contact DSNY directly to request a bin and service. Keep in mind that there are restrictions on what can be recycled; for example, while cardboard can be recycled, the cardboard must be free of food debris. This means that you may not be able to recycle that cardboard pizza box if it is soaked with food grease or melted cheese.

The best way to be sure about what can and cannot be recycled curbside is to check the DSNY website directly.

Understanding Sanitation Holidays and Delays

There are a number of national holidays and other dates where your trash pick-up may be delayed. In most cases, pick-up will be delayed on major holidays and resume the following day. For example, if your trash is normally picked up on Wednesdays but a major holiday falls on a Wednesday one week, your trash pick-up will most likely be delayed until Thursday.

Some examples of major holidays where there are typically trash delays in New York City include:

  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • President’s Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Columbus Day
  • Veterans Day
  • Christmas

What if I Have a Large Item to Get Rid Of?

One of the most common questions people have about trash pick-up in NYC is what to do if you have garbage that’s too large to fit inside a bin (or larger than four by three feet) For example, you may have a piece of furniture or other oversized items (such as throwing out a mattress) that you’d like DSNY to pick up for you.

Can You Recycle or Donate It?

First of all, it’s a good idea to check and make sure the item you’re trying to get rid of is not something that can be recycled. If it is recyclable, you can go this route and the only thing you’ll have to do is leave the item out by the curb with your regular trash bins on your designated recycling pick-up day. Another option would be to donate these items; some local charities may offer free pick-up of your unwanted furniture or other items—and you may be able to deduct the value of them from your taxable income as a tax write-off.

If the item needs to be trashed, however, there are some additional steps you’ll need to follow. For starters, understand that items too large to fit in your bin will only be picked up by appointment. This means that if you simply leave these oversized items out with your regular trash by the curb, you could end up being fined.

Scheduling a Heavy Trash Pick-Up

The good news here is that scheduling a pick-up appointment with DSNY is relatively quick and easy—and you can schedule an appointment Monday through Saturday. The DSNY website (or app) allows you to schedule these pick-ups up to four weeks in advance, and you can have up to 10 items picked up at a time.

There are some general rules to keep in mind when it comes to heavy trash pick-up in NYC. For starters, if you’re looking to get rid of a box spring or mattress, understand that you’ll be required to seal these in plastic bags before setting them out to the curb. The purpose of this is to prevent the spread of bed bugs, and you could be fined up to $100 if you fail to seal these items before you set them out.

If you’re getting rid of carpet, lumber, or rugs, you’ll also be expected to tie these together in bundles of no larger than two by four feet.

Putting Out the Trash: General Rules and Etiquette

Now that you have a better understanding of when to put your trash out and how to handle requests for heavy-trash items, it’s a good idea to revisit some basic rules and etiquette that applies not just to trash pick-up in NYC, but most cities.

Bring in Your Bins

For starters, try to bring your trash bins in as promptly as possible after it is picked up. Leaving empty bins out by the curb can create a hazard because strong winds can blow these bins into the street. From there, they become a dangerous obstruction to traffic. Even if the wind doesn’t blow them into the street, bins can make it difficult for pedestrians to get around the city.

Don’t Overfill Trash Cans

When putting out trash, be considerate of the people who will be picking it up. Sanitation workers have a difficult and often thankless job, but they play a vital role within the city. With that in mind, try to keep your bins from being over-filled. If bins are overflowing, they can be difficult for workers to remove, and trash may end up being spilled onto the street. Ideally, you should be able to close the lid on your trash bins, and they should not be too heavy to lift. If you have a hard time getting them out to the curb, there’s a good chance that a sanitation worker is going to have a hard time emptying them.

Clean Trash Bins Occasionally

There are many reasons to clean out your trash bins every so often. For starters, dirty bins will start to smell—and those unpleasant smells will spread down the street and through the neighborhood, which is unpleasant for everybody. Stinky trash cans will also attract insects and rodents, neither of which you want on your property or in your neighborhood.

When was the last time you cleaned out your trash cans? If it’s been more than a few months, you may want to set aside some time to give them a thorough cleaning. The best way to clean a trash can is to simply rinse it with a solution of bleach and hot water. This can be much easier if you have access to a garden hose, but it can be done using a large bucket of warm water as well.

Cut Down on Smells

In addition to cleaning out your trash bins regularly, there are some other steps you can take to minimize stenches and odors in your bins. Spoiled food is one of the biggest contributors of unwanted smells coming from your garbage can. If you have a tendency to throw out old food or leftovers in your bins throughout the week, you may want to consider taking another approach.

Many NYC residents, for example, will keep a small container in their fridge or freezer where they keep food scraps throughout the week. On trash day, you can simply throw this container into your bin so that it isn’t sitting out for days before being picked up. You can also simply wait to clean out your fridge of leftovers and unwanted food scraps until just before you take your bin out to the curb before trash day.

Be Mindful of Pedestrians

It’s no secret that NYC is a city with lots of foot traffic. If you live on a street that sees a fair amount of pedestrian traffic, be extra careful with the placement of your trash bins on pick-up days. Do your best to ensure that your bins are left directly next to the curb and that they aren’t impeding any sidewalks or walkways.

Contacting DSNY With Questions or Complaints

DSNY handles trash pick-up and other services for nearly 6,000 miles of New York City’s streets. While these workers typically do an excellent job, there are occasions where your trash pick-up may be missed or other issues may arise.

If your trash isn’t picked up after you’ve put it out, there are a few steps to take before making a complaint with DSNY. Start by checking the DSNY schedule online (or through the app) to be sure your pick-up date is correct and hasn’t changed. From there, be sure that your bins were set out the night before and that there aren’t any obstructions around your bins keeping them from being picked up by workers.

You’ll also want to consider whether a major holiday may have caused a delay in your trash pick-up.

If none of these explanations applies to you, then you may want to contact DSNY or file a complaint through the DSNY app to have the situation resolved. In general, you should expect to hear back from them with a resolution within a couple of days.

Looking for More Help With Keeping a Tidy Home?

Keeping up with your home’s trash pick-up is just one of many weekly responsibilities you have to stay on top of, and this is true regardless of whether you rent or own a home in New York City. If you’re looking to free up some of your valuable time, why not look into hiring a maid service?

While a maid service typically will not take your trash out to the curb for you, these professionals can help with many other aspects of keeping your home clean and tidy so you can spend your time doing other things that you actually enjoy.

At Maid Sailors, we offer dedicated cleaning services to the hard-working people of New York City. Whether you’re looking for a one-time deep cleaning or recurring maid services, we offer transparent pricing and a 100% satisfaction guarantee for your peace of mind. We also offer a wide range of other cleaning services, including move-in/move-out cleaning, organization, laundry, and green-cleaning services to suit your needs.

Schedule your first cleaning with us today by calling (212) 299-5170; you can also request an appointment online using our convenient online form!

How to Clean Wood Furniture Properly So It Lasts Forever

A beautifully designed piece made from real, solid wood like mahogany, oak, or even pine can be a lovely addition to any type of decor. Woodworking has been an incredible form of art for hundreds of years, but it has seen an incredible resurgence in the past few years as wooden furniture has grown in popularity.

In fact, 60% of woodworkers agreed that their sales have increased since 2017! When the wood is cared for properly, it can last for years without showing any signs of wear and tear – and it can even be passed down to generations as a family heirloom. But ensuring that your wooden furniture stays in like-new condition requires care and attention. This type of material requires careful cleaning and conditioning to keep your investment pieces looking brand new for years to come.

Unfortunately, many people do not know how to really care for wood furniture – and assume that a basic dusting and leaning is “good enough.” The good news is a real, proper cleaning is not very complicated or even time-consuming – once you know how to do it properly. Let’s discuss.

Dust With The Right Tools

Although it seems pretty simple, dusting is actually one of the most important things to do on a regular basis to keep your wooden furniture clean and in prime condition. The average home accumulates over 40 pounds of dust per year – and this dust can cause the color of wooden furniture to fade over time. Plus, it just looks dingy!

Many people do not know the proper care and handling protocol for dusting wooden pieces. Using the wrong tools and products to dust can actually cause severe damage to your wooden furniture – or are simply ineffective.

Most commonly, people dust off furniture with:

  • Feather dusters
  • Treated cloths
  • Wool dusters
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Terrycloth towels

While these are decent materials to use,  if they are not used properly, they are fairly ineffective.

For example, using a dry microfiber cloth or feather duster does not actually remove dust from the furniture. It simply pushes it around – often into the air you breathe – until it resettles once again. This means that all of the work you just did to dust your furniture was basically for nothing! Furthermore, real feather dusters can actually create light scratches on the furniture.

Some people use wet dusting cloths in order to absorb the dust on furniture. But using a damp cloth can cause pretty bad damage and even create water stains if it is too wet! Instead, it is best that you get a soft cloth wet and then ring out as much water as possible until it is just barely damp. It is also important that the fabric you use is thin and absorbent – the LA times actually recommends using (clean) cotton underwear! Also, be sure to wipe away areas where oils from hands and fingers tend to collect, such as drawer pulls or armrests. You should also aim to dust your furniture off once a week to keep the accumulation to a minimum.

Clean With Proper Chemicals – Not Just Water

While water is fine in a pinch for a weekly dusting off, you should also be cleaning your wooden furniture from time to time with the correct chemicals. You should never ever use an all-purpose cleaning spray on wooden furniture. This can damage the wood itself as well as discolor any treatments, paint, or stains.

If there is a sticky spot that needs cleaning, it is best to dissolve a mild dish soap in water, soak a cloth in it, and wring it out as much as possible to wipe the area off. Then, you should immediately dry it with a towel. Oil polishes and liquid furniture sprays are good to use to create a protective layer that conditions the wood. This helps to hide surface smears like fingerprints. However, don’t try to DIY it by using a cooking oil like coconut or olive oil – as this can actually attract more dust!

If your furniture needs a real deep cleaning and has built-up grime, consider using a mineral spirit cleaner. You can easily find this online, but many hardware stores and home centers sell this, too. Just be sure to test it first on a hidden section to ensure that it does not interfere with the color or finish.

Apply Wax as Necessary

If you want to create a glossy finish on your wood and protect it from any nicks or scratches, you should wax it to create a protective finish on the exterior. Finishing waxes can actually affect the color of the furniture – so be sure that you are using the correct color for your piece or opt for a clear wax.

It is best to apply furniture wax with a cheesecloth that is porous for an even application. First, apply the wax generously onto the cheesecloth and rub it on in the direction of the wood grain – not against it or in an up and down motion. You can also apply it in a soft, circular motion in small areas.

Once you start to see that the surface is fully saturated, take another clean, soft cloth to wipe away the excess and buff the surface. This will create a shiny, protective coat!

If you do wax your furniture, avoid using liquid or aerosol furniture polishes – as they will remove this wax layer and leave a film over the top. It is recommended that you use furniture wax once a month, especially for older wooden furniture.

Conclusion 

The key to making your wooden furniture last long and look beautiful is to establish a good cleaning routine. But we all know that life gets in the way, and sometimes other things on the to-do list take priority over a weekly cleaning or monthly waxing.

Author

Riley Swanson is a lifestyle blogger, passionate about food, fashion, home improvement, and traveling. She is also an avid traveler and shares her traveling experiences in her blog Riley+Christian Travel.

Hiring a Yard Clean Up Service

Keeping the inside of your home clean and tidy can be time-consuming enough—but maintaining your lawn and its landscaping can seem like a near-impossible task for many. From weeding and mowing during the summer months to leaf and debris removal during the spring and fall, there’s a lot of responsibility that comes with owning land.

In addition to hiring a yard care service, many busy landowners also choose to employ yard clean-up services to keep their lawns looking their best all year round.

What Does a Yard Clean-Up Service Offer?

Specific services offered by a yard clean-up company can vary, but most offer the same basic options that include some or all of the following.

Leaf/Debris Removal

If you have a lot of trees on your property, you’ll likely be faced with the large task of removing them all towards the end of fall. This can be time-consuming, especially if you don’t have a leaf blower and are relying on an old-fashioned rake and lawn waste bag to get the job done. A yard clean-up service can handle the removal of leaves from your property, as well as other debris (like fallen branches or other yard waste).

Weed Removal

Weeds are a more common problem during the spring and summer months. Not only do weeds detract from the appearance of your yard and the curb appeal of your home, but they can pose a threat to healthy grass and plants on your property.

A yard clean-up service can handle weeding your yard and landscaping beds so they can look their best. This can also be done during the spring months to give you a “clean slate” before you plant any flowers, shrubs, or other seasonal plants on your property.

Tree and Shrub Pruning

Many yard clean-up companies also offer tree- and shrub-pruning services to keep your plants and shrubs healthy. Pruning is typically done during the fall months, but this can vary depending on the types of plants or trees with which you’re working. A yard clean-up company will know how much to prune to keep your shrubs and/or trees healthy and encourage proper regrowth in the following seasons.

Mulch Installation

Adding a new mulch bed or refreshing an existing mulch bed can be a lot of work, which is why many people hire yard clean-up services to have this project taken care of. A new or refreshed mulch bed on your property can also add lovely curb appeal to your home. A professional company will have the tools needed to lay mulch and will save you the hassle of hauling it to your home.

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Yard Clean-Up Service

Now that you have a better understanding of what a yard clean-up service entails, is hiring one right for you? If you’re still not sure, it can be helpful to weigh some of the possible pros and cons.

Advantages of Hiring a Yard Clean-Up Service

Perhaps the biggest benefit to hiring a yard clean-up service, as hiring a moving help service, is that it saves you an enormous amount of time and hassle. Depending on the size of your yard, you could easily spend hours of your valuable time each week taking care of your lawn. Combine the sheer amount of time required to maintain a lawn with the back-breaking physical labor that goes into it—and it’s easy to see why hiring a professional could be worth the money.

When you hire a reputable yard clean-up service, you can also rest assured that these are trained and experienced professionals working on your lawn. They’ll have access to some of the best tools, equipment, and other resources to get the job done efficiently and to keep your yard looking great.

Thinking of selling your home in the near future? A poorly maintained lawn can detract from your curb appeal, which may make it harder to sell your place. Many people looking to sell a home will hire yard clean-up services to freshen things up and make sure the home is presentable both inside and out before listing.

Potential Drawbacks of Hiring a Yard Clean-Up Service

As you can probably imagine, one of the biggest potential drawbacks of hiring a lawn clean-up service is the cost. DIYing your yard clean-up won’t cost you a thing (other than maybe the cost of a rake, some yard waste bags, and other basic supplies)—whereas hiring a professional isn’t cheap. Still, it’s important to think about the value of your time and energy when considering whether the cost of hiring a clean-up service is worth it. For many homeowners, it is.

When you hire a yard clean-up service, you’re also trusting the professionals to properly care for your yard and know what they’re doing. If you hire somebody who isn’t knowledgeable about a particular tree or shrub on your property, for example, he or she may end up harming or even killing the plant/tree by over-pruning it. For this reason, it’s important to make sure you’re choosing an experienced and knowledgeable professional for this type of work.

How Much Does a Yard Clean-Up Service Cost?

If you’re thinking about hiring a yard clean-up service after weighing some of the pros and cons, you may now be wondering how much this type of work is going to cost you. Ultimately, the cost of hiring a yard clean-up service can vary greatly depending on the region where you live and a number of other factors. For example, you’re going to spend more on yard clean-up in the middle of New York City or the Bronx than you would in Seattle or Minneapolis, where the cost of living is lower.

In general, however, you should expect to spend around $700 to hire a professional yard clean-up service for several hours of work. Be sure to also consider some of the most common factors that may affect the rate you end up paying.

Hourly or Flat-Rate?

Most yard clean-up companies will charge by-the-hour, but this isn’t always the case, so it’s important to ask. If the service is being charged by-the-hour, make sure to find out if any other costs will be incurred (such as the cost for materials if you’re having a mulch bed installed).

Timing/Notice

The time of year you’re looking to hire a yard clean-up company and how quickly you need the work done may also affect how much you pay. Generally, the demand for yard clean-up is higher during the spring and fall months, so you can expect to spend more during this time.

If you need a quick turn-around on yard clean-up, you can also expect the work to be more expensive. This may be the case, for example, if a tree limb fell on your property during a heavy wind storm and you need it hauled away as soon as possible.

Yard Size/Services Needed

The exact services and the size of your yard that needs to be cleaned up will also have a major impact on the price you pay. Lawn size can play an especially big role in your price if you’re looking to have a service like all-over weeding of leaf-blowing done.

Tips for Choosing the Right Yard Clean-Up Service

As you begin exploring yard clean-up services in your area, you may be overwhelmed by the number of companies available. How can you choose the one that’s best for your exact needs and budget? By following these tips, you can “weed out” the less reputable companies and find the best yard clean-up service in your area.

Seek Out Transparent Pricing

Any reputable yard clean-up company worth your time should be happy to provide you with an on-site quote for the exact services you’re requesting. It is important that the company actually come out to your property to provide you with the quote in order to ensure its accuracy; if the company will only provide you with a non-binding estimate over the phone, it may be time to look elsewhere.

When you receive a quote from a yard clean-up company, make sure to find out exactly what’s included. The written quote should provide a detailed break-down of costs so you can see what you’re paying for. Don’t hesitate to ask questions about costs; a reputable company will be happy to answer them for you.

Consider Availability

If timing is a factor on your yard clean-up job, make sure the company you’re looking at is available when you need them. For example, if you’re planning to list your home for sale next week and need the work completed before them, you’ll want to be sure the clean-up crew is available for a rush job.

If you prefer to be home when the clean-up crew is working on your yard, you’ll also want to check the specific scheduling availability for the company. Many clean-up crews only work regular business hours during the week, whereas others may accept requests for weekend services.

Make Sure Workers Are Vetted

For your protection and peace of mind, make sure the company you end up hiring takes time to carefully vet their workers. This means they should be background checked. If a company cannot assure you that their workers have been vetted, then it’s time to move onto another business.

Get Peace of Mind With a Guarantee

Ideally, you’ll also want to choose a company that offers some sort of satisfaction guarantee on their services. This way, if you’re unhappy with the clean-up work for any reason, you can have the crew come back out and correct any issues or mistakes.

Check Out Reviews and Testimonials

Reading online reviews and testimonials is a great way to learn more about a yard clean-up company’s reputation within the community. Check for third-party reviews (rather than trusting reviews published on a company’s website directly), as these will tend to be the most reputable and honest.

If you’re thinking about hiring a less experienced company that doesn’t have a lot of reviews, don’t hesitate to ask for at least a short list of references that you can contact personally.

Find Out Exactly What’s Included

Some yard clean-up companies may try to lure you in with a low estimate/quote, only to nickel and dime you when it comes time for you to pay. Make sure you know exactly what’s included and what may not be included with your quoted price. For example, if you’re paying for leaf removal, be sure that the leaves will actually be bagged up and removed entirely from your property rather than left in bags on your lawn. Some companies may charge extra for hauling things away, so it’s best to check ahead of time.

Don’t Overlook Insurance Coverage

Liability insurance is a must when hiring any company to work on your property, so ask for proof. Never hire a yard clean-up service that cannot provide you with proof of liability insurance. It’s not worth the risk! Overall, hiring a yard clean-up service can be an excellent way to keep your yard tidy while saving you time and hassle. Just be sure to heed our tips and advice to find the right crew for the job!

How to Make Your Restaurant Prepared For The Holiday Rush

The festive season is one of the busiest in the year. This season comes with broad opportunities to make a significant connection with customers. This creates a brand image you would like customers to associate with your brand in the New Year. The holiday season is a wonderful opportunity to grow your sales. Here are ways to prepare your restaurant to cash in on the holiday season.

Festive Decoration

To put your restaurant in a festive mood, decoration is necessary. There are various Christmas and New Year decoration ideas to include in your restaurant. The decoration in your restaurant should be visible by people outside with some exceptional decoration at the entrance. Include lights, Christmas tree, and muffins on all tables for a festive ambiance. Customers will love this as soon as they step into the door.

Special Menu

Give your customers something new during the holiday season. Prepare a special menu for the holiday season. Include special meals you have not been serving or include some of the mouthwatering favorites including salads and cold meat. For the older generation, prepare traditional roast meats, plum pudding, and baked vegetables. Don’t miss the traditional Christmas dessert made with meringue base with whipped cream and fruit topping. You can create a special Christmas menu and one for the new year.

Enough Supplies

The best way to avoid stress and frustration during the festive season rush in your restaurant is to have enough supplies. Now is the moment to order wholesale restaurant supplies online before the season heats up. A reputable supplier will have a range of supplies in various categories to match your business requirements. Ensure to purchase supplies wholesale to ensure that your stocks don’t run out during the festive rush and to benefit from special discounts.

Efficient Customer Relationship Management

Calls and sending texts to people on your client list is part of a customer loyalty program. Ensure to target people who came to your restaurant during last year’s festive season. Calling or texting them asking whether you can book them this season too is a great idea. Customers love businesses that warmly invite them. The efficient use of your CRM builds customer relationships and fosters better rapport with existing customers to encourage retention and loyalty.

Alternatively, avail a range of royalty offers to attract new and current customers. When contacting the customers, begin with a warm greeting before inviting them to your restaurant for your festive preparations. Talk about your royalty program to make your invitation more appealing. This will make you except customers and create better relationships with customers for brand loyalty.

Organize a Festive Season Event

Most people prefer spending the festive season with their loved ones. However, you can lure them to your restaurant by organizing special theme nights. These will attract a crowd on days such as New Year’s eve. Alternatively, you can organize special nights for celebrations until the New Year comes. People are fascinated by special musical nights or events for putting them in a celebratory mood. Such events are socially exciting and fun-filled to put attendees in a festive mood.

Offer Gift Coupons and Freebies

The Christmas season is filled with immense spending opportunities. These make most people run out of cash. Fortunately, you can lure people to come to your restaurant with a promise to help them spend less. Additionally, with the immense gift-giving during the festive season, there is no reason why not to give a loved one a gift or shopping voucher.

These will attract more customers to your restaurant. People love vouchers for offering flexibility and various options. Dining coupons at your establishment are a wonderful gift option to boost sales. Keep the validity if the vouchers and gift cards longer. This will keep people flocking your restaurant beyond the festive season.

Preparing for Chaos

People are usually in a celebratory mood during the festive season. However, some customers can get rowdy after some drinks. This is true when you host an event or party at your restaurant. So, it pays to plan for this chaos. This is very important since one rowdy customer can become unruly and disrupt the peace of other customers and the ambiance of your establishment.

Have someone to take care of such people before your place becomes a war zone. Hire some bouncers to keep a keen eye on whoever might have the potential to cause chaos at your restaurant. This will ensure that all your customers make the most of their experience. Additionally, it saves you from this extra stress of trying to keep things in order.

Bottom Line

The festive season is the busiest throughout the year making it a wonderful opportunity to make some good money. This requires adequate preparation to ensure serving customers without any mishaps. Buying supplies for your establishment in bulk at wholesale price is a proactive idea to save yourself the stress when the season heats up.

Hiring a Moving Help Service

If you’re like most people, planning a move isn’t exactly your idea of a good time. Whether you’re moving across town or across the country, there are a lot of logistics to worry about before the big day. The good news is that you always have the option of hiring a team to help you with your move—and doing so can take some stress off your plate.

If you’re thinking about hiring moving help, this is something you’ll want to look into sooner rather than later. Moving companies can book up quickly, especially during busy seasons of the year (including summer). The sooner you decide on whether to hire moving help, the sooner you can get the ball rolling.

Not sure where to begin? Take a look at our guide to hiring moving help, which covers everything from determining whether you need moving help to what to look for when hiring a professional.

Hire Moving Help or Handle it Yourself?

Is hiring movers right for you? There are some potential pros and cons to think about for your next relocation.

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Moving Professional

Hiring a moving professional can cut down on the stress involved in moving, especially when it comes to transporting your belongings from point A to point B. The right movers will have the experience, equipment, and know-how necessary to tackle your move efficiently. You can even have them pick up storage right from your doorstep so you do not have to do any of the heavy lifting yourself.

Of course, hiring movers isn’t cheap. You can expect to shell out a pretty penny for professional moving services—and these costs can be difficult to justify if you’re already on a limited budget. Availability for professional movers may also be limited, so you may have a hard time finding help if you’re moving during a busy time of year (like a weekend in the middle of the summer).

Pros and Cons of DIYing Your Move

The main benefit to handling your own move without the help of a professional is that of saving money. By loading up all your own belongings and transporting them yourself, you’ll potentially save hundreds or even thousands of dollars. And if you don’t have that much to move in the first place, this could be a wise choice.

However, you also need to consider the value of your time and labor. When you move yourself, you generally won’t have access to the same tools and equipment that a professional moving company would. You also won’t have the experience and expertise as somebody who moves furniture and boxes for clients on a daily basis. As a result, it could end up taking you several hours to do what a moving team could do in less than an hour.

When you begin to think of things this way, it can be easier to see why spending the money on a team of moving professionals may be worth it.

Tips for Hiring Moving Help

If you decide to move forward with hiring a mover, the first thing you’ll need to do is to decide when you would need moving services. Because moving companies can book out far in advance (especially in heavily populated areas), having some flexibility here will be helpful.

From there, be sure to keep a few key considerations in mind as you being exploring your options for professional movers.

Find Out What They Can (And Can’t) Move

Most moving companies will have policies on specific items they cannot handle or transport for liability reasons. Firearms, for example, are a common item that many moving companies will not deal with. The same may also apply for especially large or heavy furniture, such as pianos. If the company you’re looking at does handle these types of items, keep in mind that you may be expected to pay extra.

What Other Services Are Offered?

In addition to moving services, you may also be interested in other services to help you prepare for relocating. Some companies, for example, may offer assistance with packing in preparation for your move. If you’re looking to take a hands-off approach with your move and cut down on your stress, you may want to find a company that offers packing and/or unpacking services as well.

If you’ll need a storage unit after your move, you may also want to find a moving company that offers this as well. In this case, your movers may be able to drop your belongings off at your new place and then take any excess boxes or furniture over to your storage unit on the same day, saving you time and hassle.

Inquire About Their Pricing Structure

Cost is almost always a concern when hiring a professional mover, so be sure to find out how your moving company calculates their costs and how you’ll be expected to pay. For the most accurate estimate, you may want to find a company that can provide an in-home quote on your services; some other companies may provide a quote based on an itemized list of boxes and furniture that you provide.

Regardless of cost, be sure to also find out what type of deposit (if any) will be required of you and what types of additional expenses you can expect. For example, if your moving company doesn’t include gratuity with your quoted price, you may need to set aside some extra cash to tip your moving team. If you’re moving a long distance, keep in mind that there may be fuel surcharges added to your estimate as well.

Moving companies can also vary greatly in how they charge for their services. One company may charge a flat-fee for your move based on the amount of furniture and boxes you have. Another moving company, on the other hand, may charge an hourly fee based on the estimated number of hours your move will take.

Is Your Estimate Binding?

Speaking of pricing, it’s important to find out whether the quote/estimate you’ve received from your moving company is binding. If it is, then this means you should not end up with any added expenses or surprise charges. A non-binding quote, however, is meant to give you a general idea of the price but can fluctuate based on how long it takes your moving team to complete the job.

Ideally, you’ll want to find a company that will provide you with a binding estimate. This will help you avoid surprises down the road, which can help you avoid additional stress as you prepare for your move.

Ask What Equipment They’ll Use

A professional mover needs to have access to the right equipment to get the job done quickly, efficiently, and with no damage to your personal items. Don’t hesitate to ask a moving company for an inventory of their equipment. Furniture dollies can really cut down on moving time, so there should be at least one dolly available for each mover on your hired team. You may also want to ask what supplies will be used to protect your flooring or wrap your furniture items during transport, as well as what extra costs use of these materials may incur.

Make Sure They’re Fully Insured

Never hire a moving company without obtaining proof of liability insurance; this type of insurance is a must whether you’re moving locally or long distance. Specifically, liability coverage is designed to protect both you and your moving company in the event that any of your belongings are lost or damaged during the move.

With many moving companies, your quote includes basic insurance coverage for a specific dollar amount per pound of furniture/boxes. Make sure you’re comfortable with this amount, and don’t hesitate to ask for additional coverage if your moving company is handling anything especially valuable.

Find Out Exactly What’s Included

Always be sure to find out exactly what’s included with your moving estimate versus what may not be included before you book any services. After all, inclusions and exclusions can sometimes vary greatly from one company to the next.

For example, if you’re moving into a high-rise apartment building in New York City, you may need access to a freight elevator to move your furniture and other heavy items to your new place. Obtaining a reservation for an elevator is something your moving company should handle—though some moving companies may charge extra for this and some may not.

If any of your furniture needs to be dis-assembled and re-assembled, you’ll also want to find out whether this will cost you extra. With a moving company that charges by the hour, assembly should simply fall into the hourly rate. However, if you’ve received a flat-fee quote for your move, furniture assembly may end up costing extra.

Ask for References and Referrals

Ideally, you’ll want to find a moving company that has at least a few years of experience. However, a newer moving company can still be a great choice if they have great reviews and referrals. Don’t hesitate to ask a potential moving company for a list of references that you can follow up on, especially if they’re a newer company without a lot of experience.

A list of references can put you into contact with past clients who have used the moving company’s services in the past. This can help you get a better idea of what to expect from the company based on past clients’ experiences. Online reviews can also be useful for this, but it’s important to make sure the reviews you’re reading are legitimate.

What About Background Checks?

When you hire movers, you’re inherently inviting them into your home and trusting them to handle your personal belongings. With that in mind, it’s important to be able to fully trust your movers. Many moving companies will perform thorough background checks on the movers they hire for your peace of mind and protection. If you’re thinking about hiring a moving company, be sure to ask if they run criminal background screenings on their movers. If not, then you may want to find a company that does.

Other Services to Consider

Finding the right moving team for your upcoming relocation will take some time, research, and careful planning. At the end of the day, however, hiring a capable and experienced moving team can provide you with peace of mind and much-needed stress relief during this chaotic time.

To make settling into your new place go even more smoothly, you may also want to consider hiring a professional maid service. A move-in/move-out cleaning from Maid Sailors, for example, can save you the hassle of scrubbing your new place from top to bottom before you move in. Instead, let our team of professional cleaners take care of this for you so you can simply move in and begin getting unpacked!