home tips

15 tips & tricks to move like a pro

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Congratulations on finding your new home! Next comes the fun part, the actual move.

Now that you know you will be moving, it is time to start getting those boxes and packing away your items. You know that you should pack fragile items together, use packing tape instead of masking tape, and to label your boxes, but there is more. We thought of some unique moving tips and wanted to share them with you.

Utility move

Avoid a weekend in the dark without water by scheduling a transfer as soon as possible. It can take a few days to set-up electric, water, gas, and more during your move, so when you know your move date, call your utility companies.

Overnight ready

Odds are, after your move you won’t want to start unpacking boxes to find your essentials. Instead of searching for your toothbrush and favorite pajamas, pack an overnight bag. Keep your overnight bag in the car with you, and you’ll be able to say goodnight without hunting through boxes.

New home prep

If possible, try to get to your new place and clean the kitchen and bathroom before you move.  Try to clean more if you can, but those two rooms are the most important. Also, set-up your bathroom with your shower curtain, clean towels, and don’t forget the toilet paper.

Pack ahead

Packing can be stressful, but it is even more stressful to pack on the day of your move. Don’t be extra sleepy on moving day because you stayed up all night packing. Be ready for your move in advance.

Leave the drawers

Instead of emptying all of the drawers, pull them out and wrap them with saran wrap. You’ll save box space and can avoid having to unpack and reorganize them.

Create a number system

When packing your boxes, also create a numbered spreadsheet. Label the box with the number and put a list of items for that number on a spreadsheet. This will keep you from having to dig through every bathroom box to find your hairdryer.

Purge unwanted items

When packing, don’t just throw everything into a box thinking you will donate items as you unpack. It is easier to discard and donate unwanted items before you move. As you pack, decide if you really need the items you are boxing up.

Bag it up

When taking down TV mounts, removing doors, or other hardware, make use of sandwich bags. Put all of the nuts and bolts in the bag, use a Sharpie (https://www.sharpie.com/) to label the bag, and tape it to the item.

Take a photo

Before removing the cords from appliances or technology, snap a photo. It will be easier for you to plug the cords in the right spots later if you can glance at a guide.

Use what you have

Make use of baskets, trunks, hampers, luggage, and more for packing. Not sure you can carry a box of heavy books? Use a rolling suitcase to pack your favorite reads.

Color coding

Color is your friend when it comes to moving. You can write the room each box goes to on the box, or you can use easy to see color. Grab a few rolls of different color tape and add it to the box. Write the name of the room on the tape just to be safe.

Schedule a pick-up

At least a week or two before you move, schedule a nonprofit to come pick-up your unwanted items. It will keep you from having to load up the items and take them over for donation. Not sure who to donate to? We recommend Focus On Home.

Be a good host

If your friends and family are helping you move, make sure you have plenty of water, drinks, and snacks. Also, opt to buy pizza for your helpers. If you’ve hired movers, it is still nice to offer treats and drinks.

Change your address

Don’t forget that you need to update your address. Have your mail forwarded by USPS, update your address on all of your credit cards, store accounts, magazine subscriptions, PayPal, your bank, and driver’s license. Try to get this done within two weeks of moving.

Schedule LifeSquire to organize

Now that you are in your new home full of new spaces, it is time to get organized. Schedule LifeSquire to come organize your new home. We specialize in organization and can set-up any room or closet for easy use.

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For more moving tips, see our previous post 8 ways to make moving a breeze.

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

9 ways to get your home ready for the summer heat

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While it may seem like the most important thing you need to do to prepare for summer is to pick out the best sunscreen, there is more. As the temperature heats up, your home should be ready to beat the heat. No one wants to come home to a scorching home, an algae-filled pool, or a cracked foundation. Besides getting a standard A/C tune-up and the regular home things you do, here are some other ways to make sure you stay cool this summer:

 

  • Gutter gleam. Your gutters are clogged from all of the leaves that fell during the fall. Keep your gutters from overflowing by having the debris removed.

  • Shingled out. Cold winter temperatures and spring storms can take a toll on your shingles. Avoid finding leaky spots by having your roof inspected. Get any repairs completed as soon as possible to keep your home in tip-top shape.

  • The white stuff. When your windows let in air, your air conditioner has to work harder to keep your home cool. Have the LifeSquire handyman add a fresh coat of caulking around your windows to beat the leaky window heat.

  • Water more than the plants. When the ground under your home dries out from summer heat, it can mess up your home’s foundation. During dry summer days, make sure to water your home’s foundation at least once a week. When in drought, water the foundation several times a week.

  • Fix your tools. During the summer months, you break out a lot of tools and equipment. Have the tune-up on your lawnmower taken care of. Clean your grill before your next meal. Have your pool inspected so that you can spend the summer in the cool water. Whatever tools you use, give them a check before they are regularly used.

  • Waterworks. Freezing temperatures can wreak havoc on your plumbing. It is always a good idea to have a plumber come out for a pipe inspection to stop and prevent any leaks.

  • Trim around the bushes. Your trees will bloom and grow all season. Have them trimmed to avoid problems with power lines and other objects that don’t need to be consumed by branches.

  • Streak-free. After the winter weather and spring pollen, your windows aren’t exactly spotless. Book window cleaners to come out and put the shine back in your glass.

  • The cool down. Your attic holds a lot of heat. Before the temperature gets too bad, have your insulation checked. Add extra insulation to your attic to help beat the heat.

 

When you get all of the maintenance and chores out of the way, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the summer months. If you don’t have time to complete them all, LifeSquire can help. 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

7 home organization tips to conquer the clutter war

7 home organization tips to conquer the clutter war

Did you start this year off by watching Tidying Up with Marie Kondo on Netflix? We did too. You may want to immediately start wanting to find out what sparks your joy, but moving too quickly and taking on too much too fast will turn into organization overload.  Here are some of our best tips to set you up for home organization success:

Start in one place

You may want to grab the trash bags and embrace the minimalist life, but it is important to start in one place. Instead of creating a huge mess by tackling every room at once, pick one place in one room to start. Once that spot has become an organization masterpiece, move on to the next.

Visibility, Accessibility, Flexibility

The most important concepts to remember when organizing are items should be visible, accessible, and flexible. Choose organization containers that are clear and easily labeled to make it easy to identify the contents. You create accessibility by prioritizing the need of the contents. Put the less used items higher on the shelf than every-day items. When you decide on your storage systems, pick containers that can adapt and grow as your needs change. Make sure all of your containers are flexible and able to solve a variety of home organization problems.

Maximize wasted space

Cabinets are an organizers dream come true, but most homes don’t come fully equipped with enough of these little storage miracles.  Luckily there is a solution to the lack of cabinet space, and that is to make use of wasted space. Take time to think about places that can be transformed into organizational havens. Some places you should use include under beds, over and behind doors, closet floors, and more.

Go container crazy

Containers not only help keep your items in one place, they can also dress up a shelf while keeping your items hidden. Make use of baskets, boxes, trays, and more when you’re organizing. We recommend taking a trip to The Container Store to get all the containers you need and more. Variety is key.

Say yes to color

Color coding your life is more than just creating a perfect rainbow in your closet. It doesn’t matter what room you are trying to organize; you can enhance it with color. A great way to make use of color is clearing up paper clutter with a color-coded filing system. You can also use color to help your kids keep their toys in place. If you have multiple children, give each child a colored bin for storage of their toys. You can also use multiple colored bins to organize by type of toy. Never say no to color.

The 2-year rule

Becoming a clothing and shoe hoarder is easy. When it comes to clearing out your closet, we suggest the 2-year rule. If you haven’t worn the clothing or shoes in the last two years, it is probably time to donate it. Once those clothes are out of the way, go through your remaining items and separate them into three piles: keep, discard, and donate.   

Give back

Over the past eight years, LifeSquire personal assistants have been organizing homes and offices throughout the Oklahoma City metro area.  We have helped people minimalize and enhance their homes through organizational bliss. In doing so, we have donated thousands of items to different local nonprofits. This year, LifeSquire has partnered with local nonprofit, Focus On Home.  LifeSquire wants to bless this nonprofit with donations from our organization projects. If you’d like to help us bless families in need, contact us about your home good donations after you’ve minimalized.

 

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Content Marketing Manager

The 10 best handy tips from the LifeSquire handyman

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Recently the LifeSquire handyman grabbed his tool belt and came to our office one night after work to share some of his knowledge. At LifeSquire, we do a lot of tasks for our clients, but we also always strive to push the boundaries and do more. So when our handyman said he’d like to teach us some tricks of the trade, we dropped the grocery bags (not really) and joined him for a learning session.

After the class, we decided the tips we learned were so valuable that we had to share them with you. So here are ten handy tips from our handyman.

Picture perfect

  • When hanging a picture or something else on the wall, always put the nail at a little bit of an angle to take the pressure off of the drywall.

  • Don’t just hang a picture on the wall with a nail, use a hook as well. Using a hook will keep the sheetrock from tearing. Make sure you check the weight limitations for the hooks.

  • Make picture hanging easier when you mark the top of the picture on the wall. Use a pencil and draw a line at the top of the frame. Measure, on the picture, from the top of the frame to the hanger and use this measurement for proper hook placement. Make sure you put the bottom of the hook at the measured mark so that the picture will be in the proper location.

Wall repair

  • If you need to fix cracks in your walls, fill them with painter’s caulking. Make sure it isn’t silicone based, otherwise you won’t be able to paint over it.

  • Holes in wood are easily fixed with the help of water putty. Once the putty is dry, just sand and paint over the spot. It’s an instant fix.

  • Do you need to touch up some paint, but forgot what color your walls are? Pick a place in the room that is a low traffic area. Use a box knife to cut into the wall until the tip of the blade is white. Cut a square that is at least an inch wide. Peel the paint off and take it to your paint store. They can analyze it and get you the matching color. Use spackle to patch the spot and paint over it with your new paint.

Miscellaneous tips

  • Toothpicks are for more than your teeth. If you have a screw that won’t stay, add a toothpick. A stripped screw can be really annoying, so just put a toothpick or two in the hole before putting the screw back in. The toothpicks will help secure the screw.

  • Clogged drains are an easy fix when you have a wet-dry vacuum. Remove the drain cover and use the vacuum to remove the clogs. If you need extra suction, seal around the nozzle with a wet rag.

  • When the lights go out, you can easily find your flashlight if you wrap glow in the dark tape around the handle. The tape will glow for about 8 hours.

  • Get light scratches out of wood with the help of a walnut. Break the walnut open and rub it on the scratch several times. Rub your finger along the scratch to heat up the oil the walnut left. Once it’s warm, the wood will soak up the oil, and the scratch will fade.

 

These are just a few of the tips we learned from our handyman, and we hope they help you. If you need handyman service, contact us. Our professional handyman is taking appointments and will get the job done.

Post written by Deaven Cavnar, Digital Media Specialist