Marjory Tracy | Easton Real Estate, Fairfield Real Estate, Westport Real Estate


One of the many challenges of putting your home on the market is keeping it clean!

That task can be even more difficult if you have kids, pets, and a busy schedule. If everyone is always rushing off to their jobs, classes, lunch dates, meetings, practices, or appointments, it's hard to keep your home in a perpetual state of cleanliness and order.

Probably the first step to keeping your house ready for real estate showings is to remind your family to clean up after themselves. While this may require more than one reminder, any amount of cooperation will help keep messes to a minimum. Implementing some sort of reward system or even a competition among siblings, can go a long way toward maintaining a semblance of order in the house. Some parents even post a calendar of assigned chores to make sure everyone does their fair share.

Professional Help May Be Needed!

Getting your home ready for real estate showings can feel like a monumental task, especially if you have a large house and a messy family! The good news is that you can hire some outside help without depleting your kids' college funds! Many households already have a house cleaning person or service that comes in at least a couple times a month to keep things looking civilized. If your house is actively being shown to prospective buyers, however, you might want to consider having your housekeeper clean the house a little more frequently than usual. That way, you only have to do some minor tidying up when your real estate agent notifies you about a scheduled house showing in a few hours or tomorrow morning.

If any of your rooms are carpeted and the floors haven't been professionally steam-cleaned for as long as you can remember, it may be time to hire a carpet cleaning service. Carpeted floors have an unfortunate tendancy of locking in stains, allergens, and ground-in dirt for months, if not years! Although you can often improve the appearance of your carpets by cleaning them yourself, it often requires the services of a professional carpet cleaning service to really get those stubborn stains out. You can often get recommendations from neighbors, friends, relatives, or coworkers, and can look for online reviews of carpet cleaners on social media websites.

Once you've cleaned, dusted, and sanitized the inside of your house, there may be one more area to tackle before you're ready to have your house shown: its exterior! Your home's siding may be covered with filmy layers of dust, grime, splatters, and environmental pollutants -- a condition which thankfully can be reversed by using the services of a local power-washing company. While not all power-washing services are created equal, a reliable one can remove years of accumulated filmy deposits from pollen, birds, spider webs, acid rain, snow blower splatters, rust, smoky emissions from backyard barbeques, vehicle exhaust emissions, and other miscellaneous air pollution.

So even though the environment, your family, and the wear and tear of normal, everyday use will take its toll on the appearance of your home, there are many things you can do to reverse that process and restore many aspects of your home's original freshness, charm, and appeal!


In an age of endless distractions, it can be hard to keep ourselves (and our families) accountable when it comes to doing chores and keeping the house clean. However, the digital age has also brought us an endless number of tools to fight the urge of being lazy and scrolling through our Instagram feeds for hours at a time. In the iPhone app store there are hundreds of productivity apps designed to help you accomplish things throughout the day. The realm of cleaning and chores is no exception. Browsing through those apps, however, can be just as daunting as the chores they're helping us do. So, we've built a list of the top eight most useful iPhone apps for cleaning and chores around the house. (Many of these apps are also available on Android as well.)

1. Chorma

Do you have a full house but it seems like you're the only one doing household chores? Chorma will help you change that. It's designed for family, couples, roommates, and anyone else who is in need of dividing up chores. You'll be able to sync between devices and earn rewards as you complete chores. This incentivizes cleaning (if having a clean house just isn't that big of a deal to you).

2. Tody

I have no problem doing chores. I just always do them days too late. If that sounds like you, then Tody is for you. This app allows you to set the frequency that certain chores need to be completed. There will be small reminders in the app letting you know if and how many days you are overdue for cleaning the toilet. This really adds on the guilt factor if you're the type who needs a bit of extra persuasion to get some cleaning done.

3.  Unfilth Your Habitat

Calling your cleaning tasks "chores" can sometimes make you feel a bit childish when trying to get some cleaning done. Unfilth Your Habitat is definitely not for kids. This is made obvious by the name of the app, which has been censored here to read un"filth" rather than the other "f" word. This app will motivate you with guilt and shame, but will reward you for completing your tasks.

4.  EpicWin

If you like playing video games, specifically role playing games (RPGs), EpicWin is the productivity app for you. The app is an RPG/to-do list where your epic adventures are your chores.

5. BrightNest

BrightNest is the all-inclusive homemaking app. It has cleaning tips, home decor advice, and a personal schedule for helping you spruce up your house.

6. SimplyUs

SimplyUs is the app for busy couples that helps them stay productive together. The app lets you share your calendars (Google, Yahoo, etc.), to do lists, and more.

7. Sortly

If you plan on moving in the near future or if you're a collector of any kind, Sortly will help you catalogue and keep track of your entire home inventory. It helps you print labels for moving boxes, tells you how many boxes you need, and much more.

8. The Fridge App

The Fridge app is an electronic version of the sticky notes you would put in your home for your family. It can sync between your whole family and will give them updates on any new posts or changes that are made.

Using harsh chemicals around your home isn’t always the best way to clean. There’s a natural substance that you probably have right in your kitchen that’s perfect to clean the kitchen and every other room of the house. This substance is vinegar. Here, we’ll give you all the ways that you can use vinegar to clean up even the toughest of dirt in and around your home. Bathroom You can pour a cup of vinegar right into the toilet. You can let the vinegar sit overnight. If the toilet is really in bad shape, you can add baking soda or borax to use as an abrasive scrubbing agent. Once you scrub, flush, and notice how clean your toilet is! Vinegar is also great for cleaning the drain in the tub. You can also use vinegar straight or diluted for general cleaning around your sink and shower, as vinegar works wonders on soap scum. One great tip to get rid of hard water is to use vinegar on your shower head. Fill a plastic bag with vinegar and tie it around your shower head so that it is submerged. Let it sit overnight and remove the bag the next morning. Let the water run for a few seconds and you’ll have a much cleaner shower head! Kitchen When you’re working with food, why would you want to use toxic chemicals around the kitchen? You can wipe up spills in your fridge with a mix of water and vinegar. You can also use vinegar to clean countertops, cutting boards, your microwave and plastic containers. Just be sure to rinse everything after you use the vinegar for a cleaning job well done. Bedroom You can actually use vinegar to disinfect your mattress. Create a mix of rubbing alcohol, vinegar and some tea tree oil. Place in a spray bottle and spray on your mattress to help rid your mattress of dust mites, mildew and other odor causing bacteria. Once it dries, vacuum your mattress and it will be like new. Wood Furniture and Hardwood Floors Mix vinegar with olive oil to clean wood. You can add lemon or orange if you’d like a fresh scent. This will help to clean and maintain your wood furniture and floors. Carpets While you need to test your carpet for colorfastness, vinegar is a great substance to condition your carpets. You can mix vinegar with an essential oil for scent and spray on the carpet to get rid of dust mites. Cleaner Laundry Did you know that you can use vinegar as a fabric softener? By adding a cup of vinegar to the last rinse cycle, your clothes will come out soft and clean. These green ideas are perfect for your green home. Who knew that something as inexpensive as vinegar could be so versatile? .

Clutter can be categorized as a nuisance, an annoyance and simply the bane of many’s existence. It accumulates so quickly and it seems like it comes out of nowhere. Between you and your family or roommates, there are often multiple people contributing to the clutter. And it can make your rooms feel cramped and look messy. Here are a few tips for cleaning up that clutter and keeping it at bay. Clean: Take note of the areas that attract the most clutter and determine why that type of clutter builds up in that area. Taking control of where and why clutter is piling up will only help you in the future. Once you have a handle of the type of clutter and where it’s coming from, sort through it. Throw out or recycle what can be tossed and put away anything that has a storage location. Dust and vacuum the de-cluttered area after de-cluttering. Storage: Having the appropriate storage is essential for clearing up clutter and keeping it from piling back up. Often times clutter accumulates because there is nowhere to put things. Whether it’s hooks and shoe storage for entryways and mudrooms or drawers or bookcases for bedrooms or workspaces, storage is essential. Process: Whether it’s clutter in your mudroom or entryway, on your dining room table, the chair in your bedroom, or on top of your desk, there must be a process for putting things away and therefore eliminating any chance of clutter. If considering an entryway with optimal storage make sure children hang up their backpacks and coats when they enter the home and store their shoes in the appropriate place. If children usually do their homework on the dining room table then make sure they understand it needs to be picked up each night. Having a small storage container nearby will make this even easier. Eliminating clutter altogether is a feat many cannot conquest, but adding a process will be sure to help. Cleaning and eliminating clutter is the easy part, but keeping that clutter away is a much larger task to undertake. It will take time to remember to put things away or throw out unnecessary things and keep processes in place. However, you will be much happier in a clutter free, clean home. Think of all the extra space you will have to eat, sit and walk! Having a process in place for children, and anyone else for that matter, is essential for having a clutter free home.



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