Fall Cleaning: Just as Important as Spring Cleaning

Spring cleaning always gets the spotlight. Why? Because people feel like they need to make a fresh start after a long and grueling winter. But fall cleaning is just as important; after all, you’ll be indoors for three months or more, why not spend it a clean place?

The first and most obvious thing to do is get your furnace inspected if you own your own home, and change the filter even if you don’t. You’ll want to enjoy consistent heat throughout the winter, as well as clean air coming out of the vents.

Then, you’ll want to initiate a thorough cleaning. The first step — as always — is to purge some of the things you don’t need. The holidays are coming, and you can make space for new stuff — or all of the guests you’ll be hosting at your Thanksgiving, Christmas and Super Bowl parties.

Town & Country magazine has a list of 50 things that you probably don’t need to keep: condiment packets, outdated reference books, canvas totes, unworn costume jewelry, extra mugs, leftover paint and old phones. They’re just taking up space.

Bag up any lightly used clothing and household goods that might be of use to someone else and contact ClothingDonations.org for a contactless #donation pickup. A truck will visit your house on the appointed day to take that #junk away for good.

Then, start a targeted, room-by-room dusting and cleaning. Take as many hours or days as you need, but concentrate your efforts to make sure everything gets organized, dusted, wiped, mopped and sanitized.

Dust, pollen and insects such as moths probably blew into your home over the summer. Don’t let pests set up shop and overwinter in your basement or rafters. “See who’s hiding where and giving them a squish or kick to the curb before they start snacking on you or your clothes,” Apartment Therapy says.

Think of fall cleaning as a fresh start on a new season — one in which you’llbe spending a lot of time indoors. Don’t you want to live in a clean, sparkling and healthy home? Get started while you can still can!

Now’s a Great Time for a Garage Sale

With the summer nearly over and the leaves starting to turn, you might think that it’s too late to have a #garage, #yard or #tag sale. But late summer and early fall are great times to weed though your old stuff and sell some of it.

First of all, the #weather is favorable – not too hot and not too cold. This is the time of year that people in cooler regions try to take advantage of the great outdoors before it’s too late, and people in hotter regions venture out of their air-conditioned living rooms.

Offer people something to do while they’re out enjoying the weather, and they will come. What’s more, you won’t have the competition you would for a big summer sale. More people are in town — not visiting relatives, at vacation rentals or at summer camps.

Furthermore, this is a fantastic time to go through your extra #stuff and #declutter. If you have children, you can take all of those outgrown school clothes and resell them. You can also get rid of any outdoor games or summer sporting goods that didn’t get used.

Offer a warm beverage such as coffee, cocoa or cider to entice passersby to your sale, Bob Vila suggests: “You might rope in some hesitant shoppers and maybe even meet a few new neighbors.”

Stage a #sale now, and you’ll make money to use during the #holidays. #Thanksgiving and #Christmas will be here before you know it, and you can put a dent in the cost of hosting and giving long before the twinkly lights go up.

If you have extra #holiday tchotchkes to sell, now is the time; you’ll be helping other households get a jump on the season, even as you increase your home’s usable storage and living space.

Observe and post any precautions against the #coronavirus you’ll ask patrons to take at your sale. You may wish to provide disposable masks and hand sanitizer to any browsers who didn’t come prepared.

Finally, be sure to schedule a ClothingDonations.org pickup for the days following your garage sale. You’ve decided to get rid of that stuff, and stuff that goes unsold that you continue to store inside your house or garage is still #clutter.

Fall is not only a beautiful season; it’s also a great time to get things done. Have a garage sale while you still can! You and your neighbors will be happy you did.

Start Planning Fall Home Improvement Projects Now

One of the curious aspects of the #pandemic is that it forced people to stay home more — and all that staying at home helped many launch renovations and other projects to make their space more useful and livable.

With things are nearly back to #normal in many parts of the country some 16 months later, people are in a more celebratory mood, using their summers to travel, visit friends, go out to restaurants and generally do all of the things that the coronavirus curtailed.

There are likely a few household projects that still need doing, however, and you might want to plan ahead to get them done when the weather turns cooler and the kids return to (in-person) school.

Likely projects for areas with cold winters include upgrading your furnace, replacing single-pane windows and adding insulation, says Family Handyman. You should also clean the gutters and replace any missing shingles to protect your roof against leaks.

If any exterior painting needs doing, early fall is one of the best times to do it, the Spruce says; pick a dry week with temperatures above 50°F. You can paint interiors at any time, but it’s always nice to give your space a fresh new look ahead of the holidays.

Wait for the fall to do any projects that involve lumber — new building, flooring, decking, etc. — to give prices a chance to stabilize. Wood products continue to be in short supply, and costs are high as a result.

Upgrading your home office is a good project to tackle this fall if you’re one of those lucky people who will continue to work from home (#WFH) once the pandemic subsides. Consider a new desk, shelving, artwork or an attractive background for your Zoom call.

One household project you can tackle at any time of the year but is especially important to do ahead of DIY projects is #decluttering. Go through that room, closet or garage, weed the #stuff you don’t need, and contact ClothingDonations.org for a free #donation #pickup.

Your fall projects will be easier to accomplish once you get that #clutter out of the way. And once you complete your fall home #renovations, you’ll have an attractive, functional and clean new space to call home.

Donate Your Garage Sale’s Unsold Items

If you’re serious about #decluttering, don’t bring any items that didn’t sell back into your home. You had already made the decision to get rid of them, and your home is probably cleaner and more organized as a result. Contact ClothingDonations.org to schedule a free, contactless #donation #pickup and say goodbye to that extra #junk forever. “The point of a yard sale is usually to declutter and make some money, not to bring back in the very items you’ve already determined could be let go,” Huffpost says.

Set Aside Garage Sale Items All Year Long

To sort out the stuff you’d like to sell at your #garage, yard or tag sale, designate a shelf, box or area where you can set aside saleable items you no longer want throughout the year. In this way, you can #declutter the rooms in your home in small, manageable steps, while planning to eventually recapture some of the money you spent. “When you’ve collected enough, it’s sale time,” HGTV says. Sort your items into categories, price them clearly and advertise your sale with signs and online classifieds.