Monthly Archives: August 2015

Business Fall Cleaning & Maintenance Checklist

Fall in Wisconsin is an opportunity for businesses, both internally and externally. This season is your chance to prepare for the inevitable deep freeze and snow that comes with our Midwestern winters, and to clean your office space and warehouse in preparation for winter business and all the melted water that gets tracked in during the winter. As a business manager, you can seize this opportunity in one of two ways: you can in-house the work to your maintenance and janitorial employees or you can outsource the work to an external company. Outsourcing does make sense for many businesses, regardless of size, as we discussed in our recent blog post. However you handle your business fall maintenance, you can utilize the same fall cleaning and maintenance checklist:

  1. Clean out the file cabinets & clear off desks. Is the pile of papers on employee desks as tall as your staff members? Though you’re all busy, set an hour or afternoon for cleaning desks and shared common cabinets. Bring in a shredder or large boxes for unneeded papers. Sort, organize and shred all unnecessary paper piles.
  2. Deep clean your kitchen. Even with regular cleaning, a quick deep clean by a professional can keep your kitchen functional and extend the life of your appliances.
  3. Remove the dust from curtains and blinds. Dust and grime can build up in your curtains and blinds and you may not notice; this can cause allergy issues for staff members.
  4. Organize and inventory. In your warehouse and office, clean, sort and take inventory of office supplies, product and raw materials. Dust and take stock of what you have so you’re prepared to process orders and customer inquiries efficiently and expediently.
  5. Give the floors a professional cleaning. Get your floors ready for the inevitable tracking of snow, ice and salt across your warehouse and office floor. Take this opportunity to get your floors cleaned beyond regular vacuuming and an occasional spot clean. Hire a professional cleaning service to wax, polish and carpet clean your facility during business off hours so your floors are protected from the winter grime. If you have area rugs by your exterior doors, get those professionally laundered as well—before the snow falls.
  6. De-landscaping. Now is the time when a thorough landscaping is not optional, especially when preparing for winter. Hire a maintenance service to clean out dying vegetation (such as flowers, shrubs, etc.), trim trees so you don’t have any issues with ice building up and dropping branches, clean up branches and leaves so your storm drains are clear and clean off walks and steps before they are coated in snow.
  7. Keep your outside as maintained as your inside. If you own your building, or are have an agreement with your landlord to maintain the parking lot, pick up the parking lot, lawns and outside areas around your workplace. Hire a professional cleaning service to power wash the building, seal the parking lot and keep the exterior of your building looking professional and clean. These small preventative tasks can save you a lot of headaches when the snow comes in, and even a few trips and falls from ice that dams up around your blocked storm drains.

How to Clean Your Home Better & Faster

cleaning your home better and fasterWe’re all looking for ways to do things better; especially when you have 30 minutes until company is coming over and your home looks like a disaster area (you know what we’re talking about!). Why shouldn’t you want to clean your house better and faster? Life is busy enough as it is, without having to spend all your time cleaning. (And if you don’t want to spend any time cleaning, give us a call!) Here’s a few tips to get your home cleaner, faster:

Rid your house of the “stuff” collecting dust. Be strategic about what you need to dust, and the amount of things collecting dust. To be clear, you don’t have to get rid of all your valuables or your knickknacks; just make sure you’re only dusting what you want. Tour your home and rid your home of any items or furniture that has sat around for years without any use. You’ll have less to clean at the end of the day, giving you more time for fun. In the same way, purge your closets, garage and basement so you don’t have to worry about excess items to clean and store.

Keep up with the daily cleaning. No doubt about it. If you wipe down your counters after every meal, or clean the toothpaste after you brush your teeth, you’ll have less to do when it’s time for a deep clean. Your cleaning job is also easier; it’s a lot harder to clean that hardened food spill off the counters later, or to scrub that toothpaste out of the sink. Daily maintenance is the key; try to train yourself, and other members of your household to clean up as they go.

Carry your cleaning tools around for fewer interruptions. When you start cleaning your home, gather all your supplies before the cleaning begins. If you do so, you won’t have to stop your cleaning to go after another bottle of cleaner. You can just keep moving from room to room, cleaning as you go—and getting done sooner.

Recognize and stop those unnecessary cleaning tasks. Are you still rinsing your dishes? Are you pre-soaking every load of laundry? Unless you absolutely have to (like if you have a nasty stain), STOP. You’ll be a more efficient cleaner, and a quicker cleaner, by eliminating unnecessary cleaning.

Stop the dirt at the door. An ounce of prevention saves you time and effort. Place rugs by all the doors. Ask guests to take off their shoes at the door. Make sure your kids rinse off sand and mud before they come in. If possible, use a mudroom as a staging area for your kids, pets and visitors to shed the dirt and snow before they track it into your home.

Call a cleaning service. When you’re traveling for work, ferrying the kids to school and after school activities or working extra hours to keep up with a demanding job, something’s got to give. Usually the casualty of a busy life is our home—specifically, the cleanliness of our home. That’s when it makes sense to contact a cleaning service to clean your home, or parts of your home. We have a friend who hired a cleaning service to only clean her bathrooms, another who hired a cleaner just to fold laundry. Likewise, if you need a cleaning service only before you entertain, set it up. Or if you only want a certain room clean, give your cleaning service specific instruction. They work for you when you need it, and being home cleaning experts, can get your home cleaner faster.

Real Dirt on 10 Common Cleaning (and Cleaning Service!) Myths

cleaning mythsWant the straight scoop from the cleaning experts on ways to clean your house—and ways not to clean your house? We’re here to clear up those common cleaning myths you hear (and boy there are a lot of them!) and give you truthful information straight from the professional house cleaners:

Cleaners made with natural ingredients won’t damage my household surfaces. No matter what kind of cleaner you use, you should always test a small area that is not visible to make sure you won’t damage the household surface. Even household cleaners made with common household ingredients can be abrasive or discolor your carpets, counters or flooring. An example of this? Vinegar mixed with water can dull the finish on some kinds of hardwood flooring.

You have to be rich to hire a cleaning service. Not true! Hiring a cleaning service is far more affordable than the myth implies. In addition, the old adage “time is money” rings true when considering whether to hire a cleaning service. Do you make more money working at your own business or cleaning your house? Do you want to spend every minute of your time away from the office cleaning your house?

You don’t have to carpet clean until your carpets are REALLY dirty. If you’re only worried about how the carpets look, then you should only carpet clean when your carpets look dirty. However, if you are worried about the dirt you can’t see: allergens and the dirt trapped that causes poor air quality, then annual carpet cleanings are right for you. Don’t think that a regular household carpet cleaning can do the same job as a professional carpet cleaning either; professional carpet cleaners can do wonders that those rent-a-cleaners can’t.

Cleaners clean the whole house. Home cleaning services are flexible. If you only want the cleaners to clean the high traffic areas, or just the bathrooms and kitchens, contact the cleaning service and specify the jobs you want done. They clean the areas you want, when you want.

Use newspapers to clean your windows, because they work just as well as paper towels. Not true. Newspapers can leave ink stains and streaks. Next time you wash your windows, use paper towels or rags and a good window cleaner for a beautiful streak-free shine.

You have to be home when the cleaners come. You don’t have to be home when the cleaners come. Just call your cleaning service and make the necessary arrangements for entry.

Disinfecting and cleaning is the same thing. This myth is partially true. To be clear: there are times when you disinfect and clean a surface—but not always. A disinfected surface is clear of bacteria and germs, but it is not always cleaned. A clean surface may be clean, but may still have bacteria and germs on it.

Vacuum cleaning wears a carpet down. This is blatantly false. Vacuum cleaning actually keeps your carpets looking their best. Foot traffic, dirt and grime tracked through and fading from sunlight

Bleach is the only cleaner you need. While bleach may be the perfect cleaner for some jobs, bleach is actually too abrasive for all your cleaning jobs and can cause damage and discoloration.

People who hire cleaning services are lazy. Not sure where this myth came from, but let’s be serious. Sometimes it makes more sense to hire a cleaning service, such as before guests arrive or when evaluating what your time is worth. Hiring a cleaning service does not have to mean that you give up cleaning your house. We have a friend who hired a cleaning service to only clean her bathrooms. Likewise, if you need a cleaning service only before you entertain, contact a reliable cleaning service and set up the appointment. Or if you only want a certain room clean, give your cleaning service specific instructions. A cleaning service can also provide references and give you an estimate so you have a clear idea of cost. They work for you when you need it, giving you freedom and time so you can keep up with busy schedule and still have a beautiful, clean house.