Potomac Yard | Del Ray | Old Town Alexandria Real Estate News

May 7, 2024

COMING SOON: Lorton Home on Half Acre No HOA

Beautiful Single-Family Home in Lorton's Lorfax Heights Coming Soon!

Are you in the market for a detached home in Lorton VA?  How about a detached home in Lorton VA on a half acre lot?  How about a detached home in Lorton VA with NO HOA?  If so, then our upcoming listing is definitely a must see!

This beautifully updated home offers an inviting front porch, rear sunroom extension, newer deck with TREX finishes, four spacious bedrooms, and three brand new bathrooms.  You'll enjoy the long driveway, two-car garage, plus extra parking pad that holds two cars.

This home is walking distance to all three zoned schools, which are Halley Elementary, South County Middle, and South County High School.  For the commuters, easy access to Fairfax County Parkway, 123/Ox Road, and I-95 for north and south points.

Want to schedule an appointment to see this home in person?

The owners are putting the final touches on this beautiful home to make it ready.  It will be 'Active' and live for showing appointments on May 17.

There is plenty of time to finalize your mortgage approval and drive through the Lorfax Heights neighborhood to check it out.  The listing address is 8718 Lorfax Drive.  Please call Tamara Inzunza, Listing agent at 703-623-8759, or fill out our contact form for questions.

Nov. 3, 2023

After Closing: 35 Tips to Furnish Your New Home for Less

35 Tips to Furnish Your New Home

Buying a new home is one of the most exciting experiences in life. And if you’re like most homebuyers, you’ll be planning your furniture placement and decor before the ink dries on your offer.

But before you run to the nearest home decor outlet, take a deep breath. First, you’ll need to delay any major purchases before you close on your new home. A large outlay or additional line of credit could lower your credit score and, thus, impact your mortgage terms.1 Second, moving and closing costs can add up quickly, so it’s important to be strategic with your remaining budget.

But don’t worry! There are plenty of ways to save on home essentials, and we’ve rounded up some of our favorites to share with you. 

PRIORITIZE WHAT YOU REALLY NEED BEFORE YOU START SHOPPING

According to Home Advisor, the national average cost to furnish a new house is $16,000, but it can easily soar higher.2  That’s why we recommend starting with a thorough assessment of what you already have and what you actually need to start life in your new place. Here are some steps to help you prioritize your purchases and keep spending in check. 

  • Make a list of everything you need. Going room by room could help you brainstorm—for example, you might list items ranging from a mattress to blackout curtains for your new primary bedroom.
  • Inventory what you already have. Cross the big (dining table) to the small (kitchen knives) off your list as you go.
  • Divide the remaining items into three groups: things you need right away (a mattress), items you’d like to have in the near future (a coffee table for your living room), and pieces that can wait (an area rug).
  • Calculate your budget. Figure out how much money you’ll have available for immediate purchases after the sale has closed, and start researching the items on your priority list to understand how they’ll fit into your budget.
  • Remember, don’t rush the process. Bringing older items to your new space doesn’t mean you need to keep them forever. Consider hanging onto pieces that can tide you over for a year or two until your bank account has recovered from the costs of a home purchase.  Resist the urge to break the bank just so that you can post a picture of new furniture on social media.  Likes and comments won't help you with the payments.  Sites like Pinterest can offer creative way to spruce up and breathe new life into older items.


Before you start shopping, make sure you know which appliances and fixtures are included with your home purchase. We can inform you of the standard contract terms when you’re making an initial offer and note any additional items that you would like to request.

TIME YOUR PURCHASES TO MAKE THE MOST OF SEASONAL SALES

Did you know that some home items predictably go on sale at certain times of the year? If you can wait to buy these pieces when prices are lower, you could save significantly. Here are some of the best times to buy household essentials:3,4

  • Bedding and linens: January
  • TVs: Black Friday/Cyber Monday and late January (before the Super Bowl)
  • Furniture: February and August, as well as Black Friday, Memorial Day, and Labor Day
  • Large appliances: Labor Day through October
  • Small kitchen appliances: May
  • Mattresses: Holiday weekends, especially Memorial Day, Labor Day, and 4th of July
  • Vacuum cleaners: April
  • Tools: June
  • Outdoor furniture: August through October


Generally speaking, holiday weekends (as well as Black Friday and Cyber Monday) tend to be great times to find deals. If the item you’re looking for is seasonal—like patio furniture or holiday decorations—waiting until the end of that season usually pays off.

FIND ALTERNATIVE SHOPPING SOURCES

Can’t wait for a sale? It’s time to think outside of the box (the big-box stores, that is). There are plenty of surprising places to find great furniture and houseware deals. 

  • Check out overstock and liquidation stores. These stores purchase items other retailers haven’t sold and offer them at a steep discount. The inventory can be hit or miss, but you can often get a great deal if you find what you’re looking for.5
  • Try private membership/warehouse stores. Retailers like Costco and Sam’s Club often have great deals on home goods. If you’re not already a member, ask family or friends if they are willing to take you to look around before you commit.
  • Consider open-box items.  When buyers return items like furniture or electronics, retailers can’t always sell them as new, even if they haven’t truly been used. Look online for open-box deals from retailers like Wayfair and Amazon Warehouse or visit local retailers to see what they have in stock.
  • Give scratch-and-dent appliances a chance. These appliances are brand new but sold at deep discounts because their external packaging was damaged. Typically, this means that flaws are purely cosmetic—but it’s always possible that the merchandise has suffered more serious damage. So, be sure to check out the appliances carefully and ask about included warranties.6
  • Expand your window treatment search. Window treatments can be surprisingly expensive, but it’s often possible to save by buying off-the-shelf offerings in standard sizes. If you need a custom size or material, consider ordering online from a discount supplier and installing them yourself.
  • Shop secondhand. In addition to thrift stores and garage sales, Facebook Marketplace, NextDoor, and Craigslist are all great places to find deals in your area. 


Are alternative shopping sources still a stretch for your budget? Check out local Freecycle or “Buy Nothing” groups, which are often hosted on Facebook. Participants offer big and small items they no longer need—everything from furniture to clothing hangers—for free to other members.7,8 Also, you'd be surprised at who will come to your rescue when making an "ISO: " post.  That means "in search of".  Many times, friends and neighbors have things in storage that they're no longer using, and could use a little dusting off and voila, it's a perfect fit for your decor.

DON’T BE AFRAID TO NEGOTIATE FOR A BETTER DEAL

Many people don’t realize that prices for home goods, from furniture to appliances, are often negotiable. While asking for a discount can be intimidating, it’s common practice in many industries, although more so at independently-owned stores than chains. Here are a few tips:9,10

  • Comparison shop before you walk into a store. If you can find a lower price for the same item elsewhere, many retailers will match it.
  • Ask the store associate or manager for the best price available. They may be able to offer additional discounts or coupons.
  • If you can pay in cash, ask if you can get a discount for doing so. The seller may be happy to offer a small price reduction to avoid paying processor fees.
  • Call ahead to ask about applicable discounts. Some retailers offer price reductions for active military, veterans, teachers, first responders, or senior citizens on certain days or times of the year.
  • Point out scratches or dings to the sales associate. They may be willing to offer a discount to compensate for the imperfection.
  • Ask about floor models. Many stores offer these pieces at a lower price, even if they’re in like-new condition. 


After you’ve negotiated a killer deal, don’t forget to ask for free or discounted delivery! Sometimes furniture and appliance stores will offer complimentary delivery or installation if you spend a certain amount or purchase multiple items.

 

 

MAKE THE MOST OF REWARD PROGRAMS AND COUPONS

Every penny counts when you’re on a budget—and spending a little extra time maximizing reward programs and discounts is usually worthwhile. 

  • Sign up for a change of address kit with the United States Postal Service. You’ll need to do anyway to forward mail to your new address, and it comes packed with valuable coupons.11
  • Make sure you never miss a sale.  Sign up for your favorite retailers’ email lists and follow them on social media for discounts and sale alerts.
  • Take advantage of loyalty programs. If you’re making a big purchase or getting multiple items from one store, ask about free loyalty programs. Signing up often comes with an introductory coupon.
  • Consider store credit cards (carefully). Store credit cards can offer significant discounts—but only charge items you can pay off right away to avoid interest, and never open new lines of credit until your home purchase is complete, since it can affect your credit score.
  • Enroll in coupon and cashback programs. When you’re shopping online, programs like Rakuten and Honey can help you find coupon codes and give you cash back on purchases.


While you’re at it, why not set up a housewarming registry?
12  You can share the link with family and friends if they ask what you need—and you can also use it to score discounts. Many stores offer a percentage off to help you buy unpurchased items on your registry. 

GET CREATIVE

If you want to avoid a cookie-cutter home aesthetic—and save a few bucks—try reimagining your existing furniture and how it could fit into your new space. Here are a few of our favorite strategies. 

  • Repurpose what you have. Instead of buying a new item to fit a specific purpose, ask yourself if you can use what you have in a different way. For example, repurpose an old dresser as a television stand or use a mismatched dining chair in your home office.
  • Upgrade existing items. Sometimes, a new coat of paint or varnish, or simply swapping out drawer pulls and handles, can lend a new lease on life to an old piece of furniture. You can also keep this strategy in mind if you see second-hand items that would be just right if they were a different color or had nicer fixtures.
  • Reupholster instead of buying new. If you have a tired-looking sofa or chair that’s still comfortable and stable, think about getting it reupholstered in new fabric instead of replacing it.
  • Get handy. Building furniture is certainly not for everyone, but with some basic tools and help from the internet, you may find that simple items like headboards are well within your grasp. You might also be able to repair pieces you already have and avoid shopping altogether. 


Do-it-yourself projects can be fun, but they aren’t for everyone. If you’d like some professional help, reach out for a list of our recommended service providers.

WE’RE HERE TO HELP

We know budgeting for a new home can be overwhelming, and we want to make the process easier for you. If you’re considering a home purchase, we can advise you on a realistic budget and help you review your options. We can also offer insights on other financial considerations and programs and incentives that can help make homeownership more attainable. Reach out for a free consultation. 

                           

Posted in Buyers
Oct. 23, 2023

Facebook Live at 12:05 | How to Buy an Alexandria VA Home with an Assumable Loan

Facebook Live at 12:05 with Marti Watson

Mortgage interest rates have just clipped 8%, making affordability less affordable.  But what is there was a way to buy a home and get the below market rates of yesterday (or yesteryear)?

It's possible with an assumable loan.  With an assuamable loan, you're buying the home but you're also buying the current seller's loan and interst rate.  How exactly does this work and what's involved?  Watch my latest episode of Facebook Live at 12:05 where Marti Watson of Potomac Title Group Services walks us though how this works.

Despite high interest rates, the Alexandria VA real estate market is still a sellers market.  Buyers are facing competition and that can mean offering more than the asking price just to win, a double whammy of price and monthly mortgage payment.

In some cases, buying a home with an existing assumable loan, could mean the difference between hundreds, or thousands of dollars in your monthly mortgage payment.

If you have questions, let's connect and see what other strategies will help you buy a home in today's market.

 

Posted in Buyers
Oct. 16, 2023

Download Your Alexandria VA Fall 2023 Home Seller Guide Today

Whew!  Mortgage interest rates, inflation, the supply of homes at record lows, and it's still a seller's market.  There's no doubt that there's a lot going on right now in the economy and in the real estate market.  It can be overwhelming, confusing, and down right frustrating.  And when you're frustrated, a lot of times, you can become paralyzed.

It's totally understandable to be overwhelmed right now.  The good thing is, we've prepared this 2023 Fall Home Selling Guide to break it all down, show your the facts (not the fear), and the graphics to help it to all make sense.

Here are some of the headlines in this quarter's guide:

  • How Equity is a Game Changer for those Looking to Sell
  • Today's Housing Inventory is a Sweet Spot for Sellers
  • Your Needs Matter More than Today's Interest Rates

Download your free copy today.  You're already here, so there's no registration.  I want you to have the right information, and the accurate information you need to help you make the best decision for you and your family when it comes to selling your home in today's market.  When you're ready, let's connect and put the right plan together to help you get to where you need to be on time.

 

Posted in Home Selling
Oct. 9, 2023

Just Sold: 2-Car Garage Townhome in Woodbridge

15373 Ballerina Loop Woodbridge VA

Beautiful Tayloe Ridge Home Just Sold

This luxurious Tayloe Ridge home has just sold.  Only two years young, this home included modern finishes, an abundantly spacious floorplan, and lots of storage, just what today's buyers are looking for!  With over 2800 square feet, this home had a spacious main level that's perfect for receiving and entertaining guests and a comfortable eat-in kitchen with oversized island and top-of-the-line appliances. The upper level offered a full laundry room (not closet), wide hallway, and larger than standard sized secondary bedrooms, and a primary bedroom with luxurious bath.  The lower level had 9' ceilings, a true 4th bedroom with full-sized window and closet, full bath, and additional storage.

Located between the Cardinal Drive Corridor and Dale Boulevard, this is home near Fannie Fitzgerald Elementary School is great for commuters who need to quickly get to I-95 for a north- or south-bound commute.

What makes me different as a top listing agent?  This seller called me after being frustrated with the previous listing agent.  Even though we're in a seller's market, the previous agent did not have a defined marketing plan or a communication plan to capture as many buyers as possible or to keep the seller informed on market conditions and showing feedback.

We received not only one offer, but three!  The seller had an assumable loan, which we incorporated into our marketing strategy, and one of the offers that we received was from a buyer who wanted to assume the loan (which had a 2.25% interest rate).

Are you considering selling your Woodbridge VA home?  If so, I'd love to interview with you to see if I can help you sell your home on your terms.  Let's connect so we can put together the right strategy for you.

 

Posted in Just Sold
Sept. 1, 2023

What Barbara Corcoran Says About Mortgage Rates and Home Prices

What Barbara Corcoran Says About Mortgage Rates and Home Prices

'Shark Tank' star Barbara Corcoran recently appeared on Good Morning America to chime in on mortgage rages and prices.  Here's what she had to say:

Corcoran explains,

"The housing market is surprisingly strong, everybody's surprised by it. Houses are not staying on the market, they all sell, one third of them sell for over ask price, and there are just not enough houses to go around. So, as a result of that, the housing market is as strong as ever and it's so frustrating for buyers."

For those asking about waiting until the interest rates come down, Corcoran predicts,

"Every buyer on the sideline is going to jump into the market...and houses are going to go up in price all over again."

Does the Alexandria VA real estate market back up Corcoan's assessment?  Let's take a look.  

Regarding housing not staying on the market long, here's how long it's taking homes to sell:

 

When you look at the interactive chart, you'll see that it's like slicing through a piece of bread.  Clearly December 2022 and January of this year, buyers had time to look at home and think about what they were buying, but notice the dive that started in February.  Homes went from a median of 34 days on the market, to 12.  And February was the last month (the second month, first quarter) where we had double-digit days on the market.

Are homes in Alexandria VA selling for over asking price:

Can you spot the window of opportunity that buyers had?  Yep, right around the end of the year 2022.  In November 2022, Alexandria homes sold at 98.4% of original list price, in December 97.8%, and at the very start of 2023 for 97.5%  After January, sellers were getting exactly what they were asking, or more.

And finally, what about the statement, "there's just not enough houses to go around.";

For this, I wanted to go back 10 years so that you can really grasp and follow the decline in inventory.  Remember, in order to have a bubble, it must be preceded by a flood of listings.  When you look at the number of active listings in Alexandria VA, you'll see that we're not even close to the number of active listings that we saw in 2013-2018.  So, we would need double the number of houses for sale, and we still wouldn't be close to the levels of inventory that we saw in 2008 when the crash happened.

What are your thoughts on Barbara Corcoran's comments and the Alexandria VA real estate market?  Comment below.

     

Posted in News
May 1, 2023

Real Estate Review | What Are the Experts Saying About the Spring 2023 Housing Market

Real Estate Review |
What Are the Experts Saying About the Spring 2023 Housing Market?




The housing market’s been going through a lot of change lately, and there’s been uncertainty surrounding what will happen this spring. You may be wondering if more homes will go on the market, what’s next with home prices and mortgage rates, or what the best advice is for someone in your position right now.

Take a look at what the industry experts are saying right now about the spring housing market and what it means for you:

Selma Hepp, Chief Economist, CoreLogic:
We see more competition among buyers . . . Housing supply also tends to grow during the spring months. And this is also the time of year when relatively more migration happens, as people graduate and move elsewhere looking for jobs.”
Greg McBride, Chief Financial Analyst, Bankrate:
“I don’t expect big moves in prices in the span of a month, but like the flower buds of spring, the housing market is showing signs of improvement. A pick up in activity with inventory still low does bode well for home prices.”
Rick Sharga, Founder and CEO, CJ Patrick Company:
If you can find a home you love and can afford at today’s prices, don’t wait. Home prices in most of the country are unlikely to crash, and mortgage rates will only come down very gradually if they decline at all this year.” 
Jeff Tucker, Senior Economist, Zillow:
“The market is still much friendlier this spring for buyers who can overcome affordability hurdles, but buyers are going to see more competition than they might expect because there are not many homes on the market to go around. New listings are increasing, which they almost always do this time of year, but not nearly as quickly as usual.”

Active Listings in Alexandria VA

Take a look at the inventory of homes in Alexandria VA over the past two years:

Use your mouse to hover over the interactive chart above.  As you can see, we're entering the spring market with an inventory of homes in March 2023 4.1% higher than March of last year.  But in looking at the overall trend, you can easily see how the inventory levels in Alexandria VA are nowhere near what they were in 2021.  This goes to Jeff Tucker's point where you can expect to see buyers competing, simply because there's not a lot of homes to choose from in the market.

Bottom Line

If you’re thinking about selling your house, this spring’s a great time to do so while inventory is still so low. And if you’re in a good position to buy, lean on your local real estate professional for the best advice. Whatever your plans, let’s connect to make sure you’re able to navigate the spring housing market with confidence.

           

 

Posted in Buyers, Sellers
April 25, 2023

Coming Soon | 1BR Reston Condo at The Savoy

Coming Soon | 1BR Reston Condo at The Savoy

Reston Town Center Condo Coming Soon

Thinking about renewing your lease? This condo may be an opportunity for you to own for less than rent.  Why not take advantage of low monthly condo fees with an abundance of community amenities, walking distance to metro, and a move-in home that has been freshly painted, plus a garage space that conveys.

Located steps away from the Reston Town Center, Inova Reston Hospital, and close to metro, this second floor condo will be listed at $310,000.  Who wouldn't want to be close to a wide variety of restaurants and shopping, also Dulles Toll Road, and Fairfax County Parkway.

Interested in More Information?

The address is 12000 Market Street, Unit 242, Reston VA.  To be notified when this home goes active on the market, give me a call at 703-623-8759 or fill out our Contact Form today.  

 

April 5, 2023

Why Aren’t Alexandria VA Home Prices Crashing?

Why Aren’t Alexandria VA Home Prices Crashing?

There have been a lot of shifts in the Alexandria VA housing market recently. Mortgage rates rose dramatically last year, impacting many people’s ability to buy a home. And after several years of rapid price appreciation, home prices finally peaked last summer on a national level. These changes led to a rise in headlines saying prices would end up crashing.

Even though we’re no longer seeing the buyer frenzy that drove home values up during the pandemic, prices have been relatively flat at the national level. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), doesn’t expect that to change:

[H]ome prices will be steady in most parts of the country with a minor change in the national median home price.”

You might think sellers would have to lower prices to attract buyers in today’s market, and that’s part of why some may have been waiting for prices to come crashing down. But there’s another factor at play – low inventory. And according to Yun, that’s limiting just how low prices will go:

“We simply don’t have enough inventory. Will some markets see a price decline? Yes. [But] with the supply not being there, the repeat of a 30 percent price decline is highly, highly unlikely.”

As you can see in the graph below, we’ve been at or near record-low inventory levels for a few years now.

Locally, here in Alexandria Va, the inventory levels look similar:

 

That lack of available homes on the market is putting upward pressure on pricesBankrate puts it like this:

“This ongoing lack of inventory explains why many buyers still have little choice but to bid up prices. And it also indicates that the supply-and-demand equation simply won’t allow a price crash in the near future.”

If more homes don’t come to the market, a lack of supply will keep prices from crashing, and, according to industry expert Rick Sharga, inventory isn’t likely to rise significantly this year:

“I believe that we’re likely to see low inventory continue to vex the housing market throughout 2023.”

Sellers are under no pressure to move since they have plenty of equity right now. That equity acts as a cushion for homeowners, lowering the chances of distressed sales like foreclosures and short sales. And with many homeowners locked into low mortgage rates, that equity cushion isn’t going anywhere soon.

With so few homes available in Alexandria for sale today, it’s important to work with a trusted real estate agent who understands your local area and can navigate the current market volatility.

Bottom Line

A lot of people expected prices would crash this year thanks to low buyer demand, but that isn’t happening. Why? There simply aren’t enough homes for sale. If you’re thinking about moving this spring, let’s connect.

   

Posted in Buyers
April 1, 2023

Homeownership 101 | Stress-Free Home Cleaning: 27 Practical Tactics for Busy Households

Stress-Free Home Cleaning: 27 Practical Tactics for Busy Households

Let's face it, keeping a clean and orderly home is a challenge for many of us. Between busy work schedules, social obligations, and family commitments, it’s tough to keep up with daily chores—let alone larger seasonal tasks.

The effort is worthwhile, however. A sanitary environment can keep you and your family healthier by minimizing your exposure to germs and allergens.1 Plus, researchers have found that organized, uncluttered homes have quantifiable mental health benefits, too, including reduced stress, improved emotional regulation, and increased productivity.2

The reality is, we enjoy our homes more when they are in good order. It’s much easier to relax without piles of unopened mail or a messy kitchen reminding us of work to be done. And don’t we all feel more inclined to entertain family and friends when our homes are well-kept?

That’s why we’ve rounded up our favorite tactics—from overall strategies to little tips and tricks—for keeping things tidy without spending all our spare time cleaning.

 

Set a Schedule for Daily and Weekly Cleaning

We’ve all been there—you put off vacuuming or mopping your floor for a few days, only to realize that weeks have passed. Creating a cleaning schedule that works for you is the best way to stay on top of things and avoid overwhelm. Here are a few of our favorite strategies:

  1. Designate a day of the week for each task—then, add them to your calendar so you can’t forget.
  2. Create a shared schedule that assigns specific responsibilities to each member of the household. Post it in a prominent place, like on the refrigerator, or create a shared digital calendar.
  3. Carve out 15 minutes a day for cleaning and decluttering. Set a timer on your phone and get as much done as you can before it goes off.

It may take some trial and error to find the tactics that work best for you. The most important thing is to make a habit of cleaning so that clutter and grime don’t have a chance to build. And if you’d like some professional help, reach out for a referral to one of our favorite cleaning services!

Tackle Bigger Chores Seasonally

Many home care tasks are seasonal by nature and only need to be completed once or twice a year. But when we don’t have a plan to tackle them, it’s all too easy to put them off. Here are a few tips to stay on top of these chores:

 

  1. Mark days on your calendar in advance to attend to annual or semi-annual chores, like cleaning gutters, washing windows, turning mattresses, and shampooing carpets.
  2. Schedule just one primary task each weekend instead of blocking out a full two days. This will help ensure a good balance between chores and relaxation.
  3. Designate a date two to four times a year, depending on your lifestyle, to put away out-of-season items like clothes, holiday decorations, and sporting goods.
  4. Take some time to sort through your seasonal items when you pack them away. Then you can toss, sell, or donate items that you no longer need or enjoy.

 

Remember—breaking down these larger tasks can make them less overwhelming. If you space them out so that you can handle them one by one, even the most time-consuming chores become a lot more manageable.

And since all your time is valuable, don't hesitate to delegate these larger home care tasks to professionals. Give us a call for a list of our recommended service providers.

Reduce the Barriers to Cleaning

Set yourself up for success by ensuring you have the tools on hand to tackle small tasks with ease. Here are a few ways to make your cleaning supplies more accessible:

  1. Store a broom, dustpan, and vacuum on each floor of your home so they’re easy to reach.
  2. Stash containers of disinfecting and glass wipes under every sink for a mid-week wipe-down.
  3. Place extra bags beneath the liner of your garbage pails, so you’ll have a replacement ready when you take out the trash.
  4. Keep a paper shredder and recycling bin handy so you can dispose of unwanted mail as it’s opened.

By strategically placing your tools and supplies in the locations where you’re most likely to need them, you’ll make cleaning less of a chore and more of a habit.

 

Stop the Clutter Before It Starts

From coats to shoes to mail, it’s all too easy to find clutter taking over your home. Once these piles start to form, they can feel overwhelming—which only makes it harder to address them.

To avoid this problem, stop the clutter before it starts. Assign every item a home and create storage spaces and “drop zones” in key locations.3 Here are a few ideas to get you started: 

  1. Install coat hooks and shoe racks in the entryway for easy access.
  2. Add a key caddy or shelf for essential items to get you out the door.
  3. Hang a letter bin to capture mail and newspapers as soon as you walk into the house.
  4. Place a donation box in each closet for items you no longer want or need.

It can take a little time to get in the habit of returning items to their assigned space. But once you do, staying on top of clutter will become far more manageable.

Are you considering a larger organizational upgrade, like a custom closet or pantry system? Reach out for a free consultation to find out how the investment could impact the value of your home! 

 

Tackle Small Tasks Right Away

Sometimes, the mental load of thinking about a chore you need to do is worse than the chore itself. Plus, handling small tasks right away can reduce the need for lengthy cleaning sessions.3 

Try working these changes into your routine:

  1. Learn to clean as you cook, rather than piling it all up for later. As you wait for water to boil or food to cook through, wash the bowls and utensils you used for prep.
  2. Hang bath towels on a bar immediately after use. By allowing them to properly air dry, you can cut down on the frequency of laundering.
  3. Bring items with you when you leave a room. For example, return plates and cups to the kitchen right away rather than letting them stack up in your home office.
  4. Take out the trash when you leave for work, school drop-off, or errands. This will save you the time and hassle of a second trip.

 

If you implement these small changes, your home will stay neater—and you’ll minimize the number of dedicated cleaning sessions you need to take on each week.  

Embrace an Evening “Shutdown” Routine

Kitchens can get dirty and cluttered fast. But a few minutes spent cleaning up each evening can prevent the mess from getting out of control.4

Imagine your kitchen is a restaurant and you’re tidying it up before closing down for the night. These simple steps will prepare you for the morning rush:

 

  1. Wipe down all surfaces, including countertops, stove, microwave, and sink. Then toss your soiled washcloth in the hamper and lay out a fresh one for tomorrow.
  2. Load and run the dishwasher every night so you can empty it the next morning.
  3. Prepare for breakfast by programming your coffee pot and setting out some grab-and-go options.

 

We all know it can be hard to find the energy for chores in the evening. But if you complete these small tasks each night, you’ll start the next day off right in a tidy, clean kitchen. 

Think Outside of the Box When It Comes to Storage

Most of us have limited storage space. Unfortunately, without the right spots to stash our items, it’s easy to become disorganized.

But we’ve found that using household items in innovative ways can help keep mess and clutter under control.5 Here are a few of our favorite swaps:

  1. Place a magazine file in your kitchen for cookbooks, takeout menus, and meal kit cards.
  2. Hang a pocket-style shoe organizer inside your pantry door to store granola bars, spice jars, and other small items.
  3. Separate dress and athletic socks by turning an old shoe box into a drawer divider.
  4. Repurpose jam jars by using them to store office supplies or bathroom essentials.
  5. Store out-of-season clothes inside rarely-used suitcases, so all that space doesn’t go to waste.

A little creativity goes a long way when it comes to making the most of your space. Just be sure that you’re creating systems you can stick with and not putting things where you might forget about them later!

 

WE’RE HERE TO HELP YOU MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR HOME

Keeping your home clean and organized can be a continuous struggle—there’s no need to feel ashamed of that. But taking the time to implement systems that work for you can make life more pleasant and less stressful in the long run.

Remember, we’re not just here to help you buy or sell a home. We want you to love living in it, too. Reach out today if you need referrals for house cleaners, window washers, or other service providers that can help you make the most of your space.

 

                    

 

The above references an opinion and is for informational purposes only.  It is not intended to be financial, legal, or tax advice. Consult the appropriate professionals for advice regarding your individual needs.

 

Sources:

1.     Healthline -
https://www.healthline.com/health-news/5-health-benefits-of-spring-cleaning

2.     Forbes -
https://www.forbes.com/health/mind/mental-health-clean-home/ 

3.     My Domaine -
https://www.mydomaine.com/house-cleaning-schedule

4.     Housewife How-Tos -

https://housewifehowtos.com/clean/10-tips-to-keeping-a-clean-house/

5.     Better Homes and Gardens -

https://www.bhg.com/decorating/storage/projects/simple-solutions/

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