Category Archives: Cleaning

Cleaning floor stains the no-hassle way

Isn’t it always the way when you’re running late for an important meeting that you happen to spill your coffee on that favorite cream cashmere carpet of yours or tonight’s tomato soup ends up pooling on the hardwood floor after you knock the bowl over? You need stain removal and fast. Read our guide and be much better prepared for next time:

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·         Hardwood floors

Hardwood floors are beautiful, but they can be difficult to clean if we’re talking spills and stains.  Best plan of action is to get moving quick. Wipe the stain then set to with a brush, vacuum, damp mop or a brush. Don’t use any hard chemical cleaners though as this will actually make the stain worse. Always use a special hardwood cleaner.

·         Tiles

These are great for floors. They require little effort with cleaning – whether you spilled liquid, greasy solids or brought along a train of mud last time it rained.  Grout lines on the other hand, will suck up your spill and leave a trace unless you get in there fast. Scrubbing usually gets best results, especially when used in conjunction with a scouring agent or baking soda. Although tiles can easily be cleaned using a mop, warm water and cleaning agents, a good idea is to give your tiles a water resistant covering every once in a while, to make stain cleaning even easier and faster.

·         Carpets

There’s a very powerful secret for cleaning carpet stains: never scrub. This will just leave your carpet looking distressed, even when the stain is gone.  Instead, dab repeatedly with some detergent solution, and keep some pressure on the stain with a warm damp cloth.  Carpets can take a while to dry to try to avoid using too much water as that’ll just cause a whole new stain.

Carpets, tiles or hardwood floors – stains needn’t be a headache. Deal with the stain quickly to prevent lasting damage, and always have the right cleaning products at hand for your specific kind of flooring. Then again, you could always call on us here at Budget Maids. We provide fast-acting household cleaning services in Potomac, a cleaning service in Olney and maid services in Rockville and surrounding areas of VA and Maryland.

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Time to start planning the Big Spring Clean

This year, do yourself a favor and start planning your home’s Spring clean well ahead of time.  Sure, we don’t always have time for a thorough Spring clean every year but really, when was the last time you ditched those old, broken, unused or unwanted items in your home and garage?  Or even cleaned up the yard in one big cleaning marathon? 

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Often our homes seem to be ruled by clutter and busy schedules don’t give us any time to tackle it. Here’s what we would do in your position:

Set aside time

Proper and deep Spring cleaning takes time.  In fact we could easily be talking a few weeks.  But don’t despair, the after-clean high and a year of organized household items and shining carpets will be well worth your time and efforts. 

Look at your calendar and mark down at least three weeks for your big Spring clean project.  Do this well in advance so that you know not to overbook yourself or the rest of the family during this period. 

Write down a schedule

This may sound a bit OTT, but bear with us for a second: make a list of the deep cleaning tasks you wish to do this Spring.  For every household, this list is different and it helps to identify your needs and priorities. 

De-clutter, then clean

Always start your Spring clean project with a thorough de-clutter of your home.  Kids grow up. Fast. There are dozens of charity organizations that will appreciate their discarded toys and games so round up the kids for some de-cluttering and organizing.  Sort all belongings into three groups: to keep, to store and to give or throw away.  This way your home could probably be rid of at least a third of its current clutter. Now isn’t that a nice thought?  And with the clutter out of the way, getting down to the actual cleaning will be much easier.

Spring cleaning is all about de-cluttering and making space for a new season in your life.  But Spring cleaning your home is a mammoth task, so why not call on Budget Maids for efficient and expert help? We offer maid services in Vienna, home cleaning in Falls Church and house cleaning services in Arlington and throughout Maryland and VA.  For further tips and advice, stay tuned for Part 2 of our Big Spring Clean next week.

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Keeping your home clean of creepy critters

No matter how regularly we clean, scrub or polish our homes, pests will always manage to find their way into our homes. These little critters are not only a potential health threat, but they also create a less than inviting atmosphere – who wants to share their space with a spider hiding in the cupboard or a cockroach under the bed?  Here are a few ‘green and natural’ tricks to keep pests away for longer. 

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Pests with an appetite

Every kitchen has probably seen them at one time or another – ants, pantry moths and cockroaches.  They are hanging around your kitchen because they’re looking for food. So, your first line of defense is to ensure all food is properly sealed. It also means wiping worktops, cupboards, the floor and other surfaces where leftover food could be lying. Try wiping with vinegar as this is regarded as an excellent pest deterrent.

Keep ‘em dry!

Many of these creepy critters will stay away if rooms are dry and well aired.  Insects and rodents are looking for a sip of water too, so never leave out a glass of water or spilled liquid on the floor or table. If you have any water leaks in the bathroom, it’s a good idea to fix these as soon as possible too.  Some insects will be seeking damp corners so try and get these as dry as possible.

Deal with the dishes

If you know your home is prone to pests, never leave dirty dishes in the sink; pests can live on the smallest of food scraps.  Once the dishes are dried and packed away, wipe down the basin with a vinegar cloth to cancel out all food odors.

Kitchen garbage is one of the easiest ways to attract pests – big and small, so make garbage removal the golden rule in your home.  If you would like help cleaning your home then why not call on Budget Maids to help you out?  We offer house cleaning in Columbia, maid services in Arlington and cleaning services in Reston and all surrounding areas of VA and Maryland.

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Carpets and Tiles: cleaning your home flooring

The task of renovating or upgrading your home flooring shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s important to take time to carefully think about your lifestyle before jumping into flooring choices, for instance.  Ask yourself questions such as whether you have time to clean and polish your flooring on a regular basis. And do you actually like doing that anyhow? What about the pets and the kids? If you are planning on renovating your flooring anytime soon, take a look at our tips:

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Carpets v tiles: which to choose?

Carpets add warmth to your home and are super comfortable and luxurious.  But they do require a lot more cleaning and TLC than tile flooring.  They need to be vacuumed, washed and dried and even deep cleaned whereas tiles can do with some basic sweeping and mopping.  If anyone in your home is suffering from allergies, then carpets are out, really. Having said that, tiles really can’t beat the luxurious feel of a thick, white carpet in the bedroom. So why not restrict carpets to bedrooms and areas where there isn’t a lot of traffic?

Ceramic tiles – the easy cleaning flooring

When it comes to a tile floor, there are no tiles as easily forgiving, durable and great looking as ceramic.  Tile flooring is low maintenance, easy to clean and looks smart once it’s been given a quick wipe-over with the mop. Therefore, just think about all that extra time you’ll have on your hands you would normally have spent cleaning.

The best of both worlds

You could actually have the best of both worlds – a tile floor’s quick and easy cleaning and the warmth of carpeting but investing in a loose rug for your tiled floor. It would be easier to clean than a carpet and, if you only use it during the winter months, won’t even need that much cleaning anyway.

Whether you opt for tile or carpet flooring, here at Budget Maids we offer cleaning services for all surfaces. We specialise in house cleaning in Potomac, cleaning services in Falls Church and maid services in Rockville and surrounding areas of Maryland and VA.

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Home cleaning advice for asthma sufferers

Many of us are staying indoors these days due to the cold weather that’s hit the east coast. Which is fine for the majority of us. The asthma sufferers, however, are having a really hard time right now because it’s not always easy to keep your home allergy free.

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According to theCenters for Disease Control and Prevention, one in 12 US citizens suffer from asthma, and a high percentage of asthma attacks are caused by our homes and other indoor environments.   

It’s always best to consult a doctor of course, when it comes to helping with asthma attacks but here at Budget Maids we can share some basic home cleaning advice that can help alleviate a sufferer’s situation:

Allergens are everywhere

Allergens play a huge role in causing asthma attacks, and the bad news is that they’re everywhere. But knowing where to clean and following through on a regular basis will certainly help reduce your home’s allergen load.  You’ll find allergens on surfaces such as carpets, pets, upholstered furniture, scatter cushions and the likes.  Dusting the furniture and cushions will actually do very little to help and in fact will only worsen the situation. Wash or dry-clean these items instead.

Vacuuming for dust mites

‘Fraid to say it folks but we all have dust mites in our home. And this is particularly bad news for asthma sufferers. One way to reduce the number of dust mites is to vacuum thoroughly, and regularly (up to three times a week). Cleaners with double filter bags are best. 

Wet wipes

Dust can escape even the best cleaner, but it can never escape a wipe with a wet cloth. Gently wash or wipe surfaces in your home which you’re aware collect dust (rather than use a duster which simply sends dust clouds into the air, creating a bigger nightmare for asthma sufferers).

Regular household cleaning is a must to help keep asthma under control and we can help out here at Budget Maids. We offer home cleaning in Columbia, house cleaning in Arlington, and if you just need a helping hand to get around to everything, maid services in Vienna and surrounding areas. 

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A foolproof way to keep your home clean

Almost everyone struggles with home cleaning at one time or another… schedules change, holidays happen and well let’s face it – it’s not difficult to lose motivation.  Before you know it, household cleaning has gotten behind schedule and catching up seems like a mammoth task.  There is however one foolproof way of keeping your house clean, all the time. And here it is:

A little goes a long way

No matter how big or small your living space, doing a little every day means no more cleaning marathons on a Monday or even worse, the weekend.  It’s easy to get discouraged by huge cleaning tasks, or trying to clean your home from top to bottom in one single day.  That’s why doing a little every day, is such a manageable way of cleaning your home on-the-go, bringing you peace of mind when the all-important weekend comes round.

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A routine that rocks

It’s easy to say you’re going to do a little bit of cleaning every day, but not so easy to keep to that promise. Falling back on old habits, or worse – doing no cleaning during the week at all – happens.  The answer is to create a routine that works specifically for you.  Find a time of day you can set aside for cleaning – it needn’t be more than 15 to 30 minutes.  A particularly good time is when everyone else is either sleeping or out.  

Family time

Household cleaning can also double as family time.  Apart from your weekday cleaning routine, have a set time for weekend cleaning when the rest of the family can help out.  It means you can choose one day in the week when you do no cleaning at all.

Write a cleaning rota to help keep everyone accountable and remind them of what they have to do (very few people of us genuinely have no time for household cleaning).  Admitted, cleaning isn’t the most exciting part of the day… but think of the rewards.

Remember too, when you need expert cleaning help, to call us here at Budget Maids.  We offer professional household cleaning in Arlington, maid services in Potomac and cleaning services in Rockville and other parts of VA and Maryland.

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Organize your home cleaning in 2014

As you waved goodbye to 2013, admit it – there was a little voice there reminding you what you hadn’t achieved last year. And which is why you, me and half the world sat down and made another set of New Year’s resolutions for 2014.

Alongside losing weight, vowing to save more and quit smoking, organizing our lives better is often one of those resolutions that keeps popping up. One way to achieve this domestic organizational heaven is to get on top of home cleaning. And here’s exactly how to do it:

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Nothing like a schedule

Ever been truly impressed at how some people just manage to always keep to a routine?  Well, routine means a schedule and – most importantly – keeping to it (no point in having a schedule if you pick and choose the tasks you like rather than stick rigidly to it).Stick to that schedule long enough, in fact, and it’ll become so routine that you don’t even notice you’re doing it half the time. So, identify specific days for particular home cleaning tasks. For example, it could be you do laundry on Fridays, bathroom and kitchen cleaning Saturdays, tidy up the backyard Sunday etc. 

Always organize

Organizing your home and belongings is your first step to a clean and well-maintained home.  Let’s face it, it’s impossible to clean a floor that can hardly be seen below the layers and heaps of family stuff.  Draw up a foolproof plan for your home to ensure that things are kept where they should be – whether this means having to create extra storage space and shelves. Alternatively just get rid of stuff you no longer need or use. 

Clean as you go

‘Clean as you go’ – it’s the single most powerful resolution for a clean and neat home all year round. Spilled some coffee?  Clean it up, now.  Spot a dirty kitchen floor while cooking?  Instantly give it a swipe with a cloth. Try to create a culture of cleaning, clearing and putting away without delay in 2014.

Keeping on top of a home while juggling a career, coping with family demands, caring for aging parents and trying to do your bit at the church social are a huge challenge. But you can make it easier by being organized in your home cleaning routine at least.

If you find you don’t have time to clean and tidy your home though, why not call on us here at Budget Maids?  We’re famed for our attention to detail and delivery on time-intensive cleaning tasks. We offer home cleaning in Olney, cleaning services in Reston, and maid services in Falls Church as well as throughout the VA and Maryland areas.

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3 quick refrigerator management tips

Spending the festive season with family and friends means plenty of celebration dinners and generous lunches.  These can take time preparing of course and the last thing you want is for something to go wrong with your refrigerator. So, make sure you give it plenty of TLC over the festive period by taking the following tips into account:

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  • Best before dates – they serve a purpose
  • The easiest way to manage your fridge and to ensure that sufficient storage space is available, is to get rid of all that food lying at the back of your refrigerator which is well past its ‘best before date.’ Another good idea is to give away all that food you just know you’re not going to get round to eating to a local homeless shelter or some other kind of organization in need.  Bad food gives off a smell which actually affects the taste of other food stored in your refrigerator so it really is a ‘must’ to get rid of it as quickly as you can.
  • Use the freezer
  • No-one wants to be slaving away in the kitchen during the holiday season – so save yourself some time by quickly prioritizing all that left over food rather than just stacking it all in the refrigerator. For instance, if there’s food there that isn’t going to be used within the next two or three days then put it in the freezer rather than the refrigerator. That way you’ll still have it in three days time and your refrigerator won’t resemble a food mountain.
  • Dealing with the odor
  • Feel that your refrigerator could do with a clean to get rid of that odor of stale food but you’ve no time? Then don’t worry. What you can do is soak three balls of cotton wool (each around the size of a large walnut) in vanilla essence and place them in your fridge to help neutralize the smells.

Don’t waste family time on house cleaning chores during the festive period. Instead, call on us here at Budget Maids instead. We offer a whole range of services such as house cleaning in Olney, cleaning services in Oakton and maid services for Columbia and other areas of VA and Maryland.

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Dealing with the mess in home remodeling

Construction work or extensive home remodeling – can both be exciting as you contemplate the outcome but they can also turn out to be energy-intensive processes. And not just in term of the work or shifting stuff around. There’s all that cleaning up to do too.

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If you’ve begun some home remodeling and currently finding yourself at breakingpoint then this is pretty much the post for you. Read our advice here on how to deal with ongoing and post-renovation clean-ups:

Airborne grit or dust

Once grit or dust becomes airborne, it means more cleaning work for later on unfortunately. Try to keep grit and dust from becoming airborne by gathering as of this as you can and trap in a sealed container until it can be removed.

Construction dust

Never-ending construction dust is a huge headache and will prove much more difficult to clean up than ordinary household dust. Check that your air filters are functioning optimally and replace them once the first layers of construction dust are out of the way. Once all the obvious dust has been removed, water is a brilliant way to trap and remove the finer construction dust. Then, wash all hard surfaces such as floors, walls, cupboards and tiles with warm soapy water.

Vacuum power

Prepare yourself for some extensive vacuuming. Before getting started, go over your vacuum machine to ensure it is working to the best of its ability – it will need to give its all in ridding your home of renovation dust after all. Vacuum only after the worst of the construction dust has been removed by the air filter or washing. Vacuum your furniture (even if it has been protected by dust-proof material) as well as carpets, floors, furniture, cushions, mattresses – everything in the room in fact.

Washing blinds, curtains and carpets

Construction dust has a way of creeping into every possible corner. Washing blinds, curtains and carpets are an absolute must. It may sound like a lot of effort, but it really is a guaranteed way to rid your newly renovated home of the last of the construction mess.

Cleaning up a home after either construction or remodeling is not an easy task (as you can see from the above) so, if you need professional help to deal with the dust then do call on us here at Budget Maids. We offer excellent cleaning services in Columbia, house cleaning in Vienna and maid services in Rockville, as well as other areas of VA and Maryland.

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Keep your christmas cleaning routine up to date

It’s that time of the year again folks – festivities, celebrations and family get-togethers.  Sure, it’s a merry time, but it’s also the busiest time of the year for most households.  Whether you’re opening your home this holiday season for family members from far away, friends or just the next-door neighbors, chances are you’ll need to step up your household cleaning and organizing routine. Fear not though, here at Budget Maids we have four helpful holiday cleaning tips to keep you on track over the holiday period, such as:

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  • Get rid of the garbage 
  • It’s the one thing that can really turn a household upside down. And with friends and family spending time at your home eating and drinking,  your average garbage pile is set to grow. Be strict though – have a removal rule and stick to it. Perhaps even place extra bins throughout your home.  Depending on how many guests you’re expecting, try and remove the garbage every day or at least every other. After all, no-one wants nasty smells permeating their home over the holidays.
  • No food fussing
  • Let’s face it: food at the best of times can be downright messy but at Christmas it can be chaos. Leave plenty of wipes lying around and never procrastinate when it comes to cleaning up any spills. Cleaning up dropped and spilled food is easier to do on hard surfaces, of course, such as tiles. Just pray the carpets don’t fall victim, otherwise you’ll have to put in some elbow grease. Do yourself a favor and try to organise meals around hard surfaced floors such as the kitchen or dining room rather than the sitting room, if possible.
  • Stock up on supplies
  • Holiday grocery shopping is a big deal; but you still have to remember to stock up on the basic items too. It will be plain disheartening to gear up into cleaning mode just to realize there’s nothing to clean up with in the cabinets. And you don’t really need us to point out to you how there’s never a spare moment to pop to the shops over the holidays…
  • 10-minute bathroom beautifier
  • You don’t like a dirty bathroom, so why should your guests? You can keep on top of this room though by doing a quick 10 minutes every day. Through away any trash or empty shampoo and soap dispensers, get rid of any dirty laundry lying around and put out fresh towels.  Wipe down the mirror, basin, bath, toilet boil and sweep the floor.  Then you’ll feel better about being the hostess at home.

Few of us have home cleaning on our priority list this holiday, quite rightly we’d rather spend time with our nearest and dearest.  And that’s where here at Budget Maids we can really help out. In the run up to the holiday season and throughout, we’ll be offering maid services in Arlington, cleaning services in Church Falls and house cleaning in Rockville and surrounds – making sure you can rightly relax and really enjoy the festivities this year.

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