Warm weather is almost here! This means bonfires, budding plants and spring cleaning. A lot of us have a routine for spring cleaning: vacuum, mop, wipe the windows, etc. But here’s a list of spring cleaning tips you might forget about.
The key to decluttering is to get rid of extra items you no longer need. You know that vase that you don’t really like, but you’ve been too busy to take to the donation center? Put it in your trunk because you’re going to have a lot of things to donate!
When you switch your wardrobe from winter to summer, take stock of what you have. Evaluate each piece of clothing you come across, and if you haven’t worn it in a while or it never really fit quite right, put it in the donation basket. This should be done for your closet, your partner’s closet and your kids’ closets. And while you have the closet empty, grab a flashlight and shine it into the far corners and crevices. Check for cracks, droppings, pests and the like. You can do one better and schedule your pest control service before you fill your closet back up! Ask your Gregory Technician to do a quick check in the closets to be sure you don’t miss anything.
Before you place your spring clothes in the closet, give them a good shake. Pests such as spiders like to hide in the folds of clothes, and you might get a nasty surprise if you’re not careful. You should also be mindful of any close toed shoes you haven’t put on in a while. Pests like to hide there, too!
Clean out the pantry and spice cabinet
We know most of you will keep up with the general things like bread, chips, eggs, and things we use most often. But what about canned food? Check the expiration dates on items you don’t use often like cake mix, spices, jams,jellies, and, of course, canned food. We forget about items like these since they have a long shelf life, but you don’t want to be caught without a good cake mix when your child says at 8:00 in the evening “Oh yeah! We have a school bake sale tomorrow, and my teacher told me to bring cupcakes!” We’ve all been there, and we know you don’t want to make a run to the store at 8:00 PM.
Another major thing you want to look out for are pantry pests. The most common types of pantry pests include Indian meal moths, beetles, weevils and pillbugs. When cleaning out your pantry, take a look at the condition of your food packages. Damage to any cardboard or paper packaging could be a sign of these pests. To prevent an infestation, store your food in sealed plastic containers. This makes it harder for pantry pests and other vermin (like mice) to get into your food. You should also take a flashlight and shine it into the far corners of your pantry and cabinets while they’re empty. Look for any dirt, oil marks, or droppings. Before placing your food back in your cabinets, give the shelves a wipe down with a warm, soapy washcloth or disinfectant wipe.
Update your desktop
Cleaning up your computer is a very overlooked component of spring cleaning, but cleaning up your files will not only get you more organized, it will also clear out much needed space! You’ll also need to update your computer with your latest pictures and documents from your phone. This is essential since you can clear out old pictures and make room for new memories. There are several ways you can organize, and everybody does it differently. Here are a few ways to get started if you don’t know where to begin.
Pictures are the most fun to organize! Taking a trip down memory lane definitely makes the experience more enjoyable. There are a couple of different ways to organize pictures: category, date, or person. A category can be something like “portraits” or “family gatherings.” Categories can also include events like “Sam’s Birthday Party.” That way is one of the easiest ways to keep track of your pictures. Another way to keep track of photos is by date. Organizing by month tends to be easiest, but this way is the hardest to keep track of because ten years down the road, it’s hard to remember the exact month when your youngest lost their first tooth. Lastly, you can organize by person. This is most beneficial when organizing portraits since those are pictures with single subjects. It can get a little tricky when there are multiple people in one photo.
Important documents are, well, important. Keeping them organized makes your life easier when paying bills, moving houses, or enrolling your children in school. We find it best to organize by categories like “Medical Records” or “Tax Information.” This way, you can easily find the item you need which will make the task of filing taxes so much easier.
Back it up
One last note when updating your desktop. BACK IT UP. We all have stories of how we lost precious pictures and important documents because our computer crashed. With so many options available to us, backing up your computer is very easy to do. Cloud based storage is a popular option, but external hard drives are great, too.
Inspect exterior for cracks and ripped window screens
One of the biggest ways pests can invade homes is through ripped window screens and cracks. There may also be holes around the utility pipes leading into your home that should be sealed using steel wool, caulk or a combination of the two. For a quick how-to in repairing window screens, visit Sunset.com. They discuss repairing small, medium and large sized holes in your window screens. You can also watch this video provided by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) if you want a more visual representation of how to patch a window screen.
You should also check around your crawlspace to check for moisture issues, cracks and crevices. Cockroaches love moisture and darkness which is the way most crawlspaces are. Termites are also big fans of moisture and, of course, wood. If you don’t know what to look for when it comes to termite damage, call Gregory! We will happily inspect your home for termite damage and moisture issues.