Choosing a Cleaning Service?

Posted on January 21, 2016. Filed under: Atlanta House Cleaning, Cleaning Industry | Tags: , , , |

Cleaning Concept

Cleaning services are a dime a dozen. There are more than 600 listed in the Atlanta online yellow pages. How do you pick one? Here’s a list of important considerations:

Choose a cleaning company that:

  • Has been in business a relatively long time.
  • Screens and trains every employee.
  • Has loyal and long-term employees who speak English.
  • Learns your preferences quickly.
  • Complies with federal, state and local labor and tax laws and carries sufficient insurance.
  • Brings its own cleaning equipment and supplies.
  • Charges reasonable, as opposed to cheap prices. Reasonable prices are necessary in order to attract and keep quality employees.
  • Uses non-toxic, safe, but effective eco-friendly cleaning products.
  • Makes customer satisfaction a priority.

Engaging a reliable, well-managed cleaning service will truly enhance your life.  Choose the right one and you’ll never regret it.

What our Customers Say

Awesome company

These people know their stuff. They perform their work well. timely, great job, live up to the standards and surpass.

Affordable and reliable service

We found Sponge & Sparkle on Kudzu.com while looking for a replacement for our previous and unreliable cleaners. I liked dealing with a privately owned company and found their service prompt, affordable and very satisfactory. Their web site provided a $10 coupon which was nice too. They were very thorough and I appreciated dealing directly with the owner and their detailed follow up on their visit. We will be using them again.

Best in town

Sponge and sparkle is the best cleaning service in Atlanta. i’ve tried others and none are as professional or clean.

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Please click here to get Sponge & Sparkle blog updates via email.

About the author:

Raina Raflo owns Sponge & Sparkle, Atlanta’s oldest and most reputable independent maid and house cleaning service. (404) 633-9652.

Read more Atlanta maid and house cleaning service customer reviews on our site.
Request a cleaning quote.

 

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6 Ways to Maximize the Value of Professional Cleaning

Posted on August 20, 2015. Filed under: Cleaning Industry | Tags: , |

people, housework and housekeeping concept - close up of woman in rubber gloves with cloth and detergent spray cleaning carpet at home

This article was written by our colleague, Yusuf Mehmetoglu,  of Maid Bright in the Reston, VA area. This article was published last year in Angie’s List Magazine, and is published with permission.

When you hire a professional company to clean your home, you not only save the time and hassle of cleaning your home, but will rest assured knowing that the professionals will take care of your home. In order to get the most out of your cleaning service, there is a small amount of preparation you can make before their arrival.

  1.  Most professional cleaning services recommend consumers try to be home if it is their initial cleaning visit with the service provider. This would enable them to check the cleaning job and provide any feedback for future cleanings. 
  2. You can always request to get the same cleaning crew at your convenience. Your cleaning service may be able to send the same crew if you are willing to switch days or rotation. You may need to be prepared to have a different cleaning crew if you have requested the cleaning on an odd schedule such as every three weeks etc. 
  3. Always remember to update your contact information with your service provider if you are using a cleaning service on a regular basis. They will keep you informed with the confirmations. You may also get a follow-up call or e-mail to ensure your expectations have been met. 
  4. Cleaning companies would like to focus on your cleaning, it will be very helpful if you put away your personal belongings and de-clutter any surfaces the day before the cleaning to get the best possible result from your service. They may not be able to clean partially or entire areas due to liability issues. 
  5. Your cleaning company will review any instructions given from you on the day of the service; therefore, you can always send an e-mail or call ahead of time if you have any last minute instructions. Remember to provide any feedback as needed to your service provider so that they can keep track of their crews’ performance. Some cleaning companies may give incentives to their employees to keep them motivated. 
  6. You can always ask your service provider to use your own cleaning equipment or supplies if you have any preferences to avoid any inconveniences. Some households prefers environmentally safe cleaning while other home owners prefer old fashioned cleaning supplies.

Author: Yusuf Mehmetoglu, Maid Bright

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Please click here to get Sponge & Sparkle blog updates via email.

About the author:

Raina Raflo owns Sponge & Sparkle, Atlanta’s oldest and most reputable independent maid and house cleaning service. (404) 633-9652.

Read more Atlanta maid and house cleaning service customer reviews on our site.
Request a cleaning quote.

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Thanksgiving Entertaining – Your Countdown Checklist

Posted on October 31, 2014. Filed under: Entertaining Tips, Time Management | Tags: , , , |

Will you host a Thanksgiving gathering this year?  The thought of all of the work that goes into it can be overwhelming, especially if you are a first-time host.

It is possible to host the big gathering and still have enough energy to enjoy your guests, however. The key to stress-free entertaining is preparation.

Happy Thanksgiving Fine Dining Table Place Setting In Purple, Wh

Our Thanksgiving entertaining checklist gives you a few things to do each week so that entertaining isn’t an overwhelming task. (We’ve also included a downloadable PDF version). Follow our checklist and get ready to enjoy yourself!

4 Weeks

  1. Make your menu (and shopping list).
    You might already have a traditional menu. Starting early this year, however, gives you the chance to be creative.
  2. Recruit volunteers.
    Volunteers can be your children, your spouse, or friends. Ask for help now so that everyone is ready to do their part. Here are a few tasks to assign to volunteers: preparing a side dish, watching your children while you grocery shop or polishing the silverware.
  3. Make your outsourcing decisions.
    Will you handle all of the cooking or enlist the help of a caterer? Do you plan on cleaning your home yourself, or hiring a house cleaning service? Decide what you will handle, and what you will outsource.
  4. Create your guest list and send your invitations.
  5. Take stock of your home.
    Walk through your home, and take a fresh look through the eyes of your guests. Do you need to refresh the decorations in the guest bathroom? Does your lawn need sprucing? Do you need the decks cleaned? Make your list, and decide who will take care of these tasks.
  6. Take stock of your decorations, fine china and silverware.
    Your fine china hasn’t been used in several months, and your decorations have been in boxes for almost a year. Inspect them to decide what you need to clean, repair, or purchase.

3 Weeks

  1. Place your order with the caterer.
  2. Schedule your house cleaning.
    The best time to have a professional cleaning service perform a detail cleaning is the week before a holiday.  It stands to reason that this week is also the busiest time for home cleaning services. Make your appointment now to reserve your space on the schedule.
    If you decide to do the cleaning yourself, set 6 or more hours aside the weekend before to get your home in tip-top shape.
  3. Finalize your shopping list.
    If you haven’t already, it is time to finalize the shopping list. Highlight the non-perishable items that can be purchased ahead of time.

2 Weeks

  1. Shop for your non-perishables.
    Buy everything that you do not need to purchase fresh. This can include canned goods, beverages, and spices. Shopping 2-3 weeks before Thanksgiving also has the added benefit of helping you avoid the crowds.  Tip – clear space in the your pantry and refrigerator before you go shopping so that you have somewhere to store your items.
  2. Buy your decorations.
    You’ll get the best selection of decorations by buying them now.

1 Week

  1. Get your home cleaned.
    A week before is the best time to clean your home from top to bottom. If you’ve scheduled an appointment with a house cleaning service, this is a task you can easily check off your list.  If you haven’t, get your supplies and block off at least 6 hours.
  2. Prepare your food.
    Are there any dishes (or portions of dishes) that you can prepare and freeze ahead of time? Go ahead and get those out of the way.
  3. Polish your silver and wash the fine china.
    While you are getting your home cleaned, go ahead and clean your silverware and  fine china. Better yet, have your teenagers handle this task.

1 to 3 Days

  1. Decorate.
    If you do not have small children, you can probably set up your decorations several days to a week in advance.
  2. Set up your dining room.
    Get your table and service areas as close to ready as you can. This provides another opportunity for you to make certain you have enough serving dishes and utensils.
  3. Shop for perishable items (flowers, vegetables, fruit, etc.).

Thanksgiving Eve

  1. Walk-through.
    The night before Thanksgiving, walk through the areas your guests will be visiting to see if there is anything that needs to be cleaned or repaired.
  2. Prepare the food.
    This is probably when you will be preparing most of your dinner. Our tips will help you keep your kitchen clean while you are cooking.

Before your guests arrive.

  1. Prepare your last minute dishes, making sure to keep your kitchen clean as you do.
  2. Do a last minute walk-through.
  3. Relax, and get ready to enjoy your guests!

I hope this checklist comes in handy as you prepare for your Thanksgiving feast. Feel free to comment and share your entertaining tips.

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Please click here to get Sponge & Sparkle blog updates via email.

About the author:

Raina Raflo owns Sponge & Sparkle, Atlanta’s oldest and most reputable independent maid and house cleaning service. (404) 633-9652.

Read more Atlanta maid and house cleaning service customer reviews on our site.
Request a cleaning quote.

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Holiday Countdown – Checklist for Stress-Free Entertaining

Posted on September 26, 2013. Filed under: Entertaining Tips, Household Tips, Kitchen Cleaning | Tags: , , , , |

Thanksgiving Table

Can you believe it is Fall already? The holiday season will be here before you know it.

When you are preparing for festive gatherings, the key to stress-free entertaining is preparation.

Our checklist gives you a few things to do each week, so that entertaining isn’t an overwhelming task. Follow our checklist and get ready to enjoy yourself along with your guests.

4 weeks before

  1. Make your menu (and shopping list).You probably already have a traditional menu. Starting early this year, however, gives you the chance to be creative.  Perhaps this is the year to try lamb instead of ham?
  2. Recruit volunteers.Volunteers can be your children, your spouse, or friends. Ask for help now so that everyone is ready to do their part. Here are a few tasks to assign to volunteers: preparing a side dish, watching your children while you grocery shop, preparing the Easter eggs, choosing games, or polishing the silverware.
  3. Make your outsourcing decisions.Will you handle all of the cooking or enlist the help of a caterer? Do you plan on cleaning your home yourself, or hiring a house cleaning service? Decide what you will handle, and what you will outsource.
  4. Create your guest list, and invite your guests.
  5. Take stock of your home.Walk through your home, and take a fresh look through the eyes of your guests. Do you need to refresh the towels in the guest bathroom? Does your lawn need sprucing? Do you need the decks cleaned? Make your list, and decide who will take care of these items.
  6. Take stock of your decorations, fine china and silverware.Your fine china hasn’t been used in several months, and your decorations have been in boxes for almost a year. Inspect them to decide what you need to clean, repair, or purchase.

3 weeks before

  1. Place your order with the caterer.
  2. Schedule your house cleaning.The best time to have your cleaning service perform a detail cleaning is the week before a holiday.  It stands to reason that this week is also the busiest time for home cleaning services. Make your appointment now to reserve your space on the schedule.If you decide to do the cleaning yourself, set 6 or more hours aside the weekend before to get your home in tip-top shape.
  3. Finalize your shopping list.If you haven’t already, it is time to finalize the shopping list. Highlight the non-perishable items that can be purchased ahead of time.

2 weeks before

  1. Shop for your non-perishables.Buy everything that you do not need to purchase fresh. This can include canned goods, beverages, spices, and decorations. Shopping 2-3 weeks before Easter also has the added benefit of helping you avoid the crowds.  Tip – clear space in the your pantry and refrigerator before you go shopping so that you have somewhere to store your items.
  2. Buy your decorations.You’ll get the best selection of decorations by buying them now.

1 week before

  1. Clean your home.A week before is the best time to clean the home from top to bottom. If you’ve scheduled an appointment with a house cleaning service, this is a task you can easily check off your list.  If you haven’t, get your supplies and block off at least 6 hours.
  2. Prepare your food.Are there any dishes (or portions of dishes) that you can prepare and freeze ahead of time? Go ahead and get those out of the way.
  3. Polish your silver, and wash the fine china.While you are getting your home cleaned, go ahead and clean your silverware and  fine china. Better yet, have your teenagers handle this task.

1 to 3 Days before.

  1. Decorate.If you do not have small children, you can probably set up your decorations several days to a week in advance.
  2. Set up your dining room.Get your table and service areas as close to ready as you can. This provides another opportunity for you to make certain you have enough serving dishes and utensils.
  3. Shop for fresh items.Buy flowers, vegetables or fruit.
  4. Walk-through.The night before Easter, walk through the areas your guests will be visiting to see if there is anything that needs to be cleaned or repaired.

The Night Before

  1. Prepare the food.This is probably when you will be preparing most of your dinner. Our tips will help you keep your kitchen clean while you are cooking.

Before your guests arrive.

  1. Prepare your last minute dishes, making sure to keep your kitchen clean as you do.
  2. Do a last minute walk-through.
  3. Relax, and get ready to enjoy your guests.

I hope this checklist comes in handy as you prepare for Easter entertaining. Feel free to comment and share your Easter entertaining tips.

What are your secrets for stress-free entertaining?

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Please click here to get Sponge & Sparkle blog updates via email.

About the author:

Raina Raflo owns Sponge & Sparkle, Atlanta’s oldest and most reputable independent maid and house cleaning service. (404) 633-9652.

Read more Atlanta maid and house cleaning service customer reviews on our site.
Request a cleaning quote.

Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )

Home Spring Cleaning Checklist – Atlanta, GA

Posted on April 16, 2012. Filed under: Cleaning Bedroom, Household Tips, Kitchen Cleaning | Tags: , |

It’s springtime, a time for renewal. Even though spring cleaning is hard work, the rewards are so worth it! Use our checklist to organize your spring cleaning tasks.

Atlanta spring cleaning checklistOf course, if you’d rather be outside enjoying the sunshine, consider hiring a professional house cleaning service. To read what we include in our Atlanta detail cleaning services, click here.

Spring Cleaning Checklist

Furniture

  • Polish furniture (fronts, sides, legs)
  • Vacuum sofas

Floors

  • Vacuum all of your carpets. Move the furniture out of the way when you vacuum.
  • Clean your rugs. Move your area rugs out of the way so that you can clean the floors underneath.
  • Clean all hard surface floors.
  • Wash down the baseboards.
  • Vacuum and wash down stairs, including spindles.
  • Clean the floors in your closets.

Dusting

  • Start from top to bottom, dust ceilings, corners, ceiling fans, etc. to remove dust and cobwebs.
  • Wipe down picture frames.Clean glass surfaces and TV screensDust/vacuum lamps and lampshadesHand-wipe knick knacks

Linens

  • Wash your winter bed linens and pack them away.
  • Place clean, lighter-weight linens on all beds; change the window coverings if necessary.

Bathrooms

  • Clean the mirrors.
  • Scrub the inside and outside of toilets. Remove decorative covering(s) while cleaning.
  • Clean the shower and tub, including the tile and grout.
  • Wash the bathroom floors.
  • Wash bath rugs.
  • Scrub all sinks, including drains.
  • Clean countertops, removing and wiping down all items.

Kitchen

  • Washing down all kitchen appliance exteriors and counter tops.
  • Clean the inside of your microwave.
  • Scour the sink, including drains.
  • Wipe down cabinet fronts.
  • Move appliances to clean the floor underneath.
  • Mop the floors.
  • Scrub stovetop and drip pans.
  • Clean the top and insides of refrigerator.
  • Remove items from drawers and cabinets.

Windows, Doors and Walls

  • Clean French doors.
  • Wipe down or vacuum blinds and shutters.
  • Dust and wipe vents.
  • Wash windows, windowsills, woodwork, molding and trim.
  • Disinfect/clean switch plates.
  • Clean all mirrors and class.
  • Wash down all doors.
  • Do you have any spring cleaning tasks you’d like to share?

Want More Spring Cleaning Tips?

The Spring Cleaning Checklist We Use for our Clients

Essential Tips for Organizing your Spring Cleaning

Pre-clean Before You Tackle Spring Cleaning

How to Spring Clean Like the Professionals

The History of Spring Cleaning

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Please click here to get Sponge & Sparkle blog updates via email.

About the author:

Raina Raflo owns Sponge & Sparkle, Atlanta’s oldest and most reputable independent maid and house cleaning service. (404) 633-9652.

Read more Atlanta maid and house cleaning service customer reviews on our site.
Request a cleaning quote.

 

Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )

Countdown to Easter – Checklist for Stress-Free Entertaining

Posted on March 11, 2012. Filed under: Clearing Clutter, Household Tips | Tags: , , |

Picture of Easter dinner table

When you are preparing for a festive gathering such as Easter dinner, the key to stress-free entertaining is preparation.

Our checklist gives you a few things to do each week, so that entertaining isn’t an overwhelming task. Follow our checklist and get ready to enjoy the Easter festivities along with your guests.

4 weeks before

  1. Make your menu (and shopping list).You probably already have a traditional Easter menu. Starting early this year, however, gives you the chance to be creative.  Perhaps this is the year to try lamb instead of ham?
  2. Recruit volunteers.Volunteers can be your children, your spouse, or friends. Ask for help now so that everyone is ready to do their part. Here are a few tasks to assign to volunteers: preparing a side dish, watching your children while you grocery shop, preparing the Easter eggs, choosing games, or polishing the silverware.
  3. Make your outsourcing decisions.Will you handle all of the cooking or enlist the help of a caterer? Do you plan on cleaning your home yourself, or hiring a house cleaning service? Decide what you will handle, and what you will outsource.
  4. Create your guest list, and invite your guests.
  5. Take stock of your home.Walk through your home, and take a fresh look through the eyes of your guests. Do you need to refresh the towels in the guest bathroom? Does your lawn need sprucing for the Easter Egg hunt? Do you need the decks cleaned? Make your list, and decide who will take care of these items.
  6. Take stock of your decorations, fine china and silverware.Your fine china hasn’t been used in several months, and your Easter decorations have been in boxes for almost a year. Inspect them to decide what you need to clean, repair, or purchase.

3 weeks before

  1. Place your order with the caterer.
  2. Schedule your house cleaning.The best time to have your cleaning service perform a detail cleaning is the week before Easter. It stands to reason that this week is also the busiest time for home cleaning services. Make your appointment now to reserve your space on the schedule.
    If you decide to do the cleaning yourself, set several hours aside time the weekend before to get your home in tip-top shape.
  3. Finalize your shopping list.If you haven’t already, it is time to finalize the shopping list. Highlight the non-perishable items that can be purchased ahead of time.

2 weeks before

  1. Shop for your non-perishables.Buy everything that you do not need to purchase fresh. This can include canned goods, beverages, spices, and decorations. Shopping 2-3 weeks before Easter also has the added benefit of helping you avoid the crowds.  Tip – clear space in the your pantry and refrigerator before you go shopping so that you have somewhere to store your items.
  2. Buy your decorations and Easter basket supplies.Get the best selection of decorations and Easter basket items by buying them now.

1 week before

  1. Clean your home.A week before is the best time to clean the home from top to bottom. If you’ve scheduled an appointment with a house cleaning service, this is a task you can easily check off your list.  If you haven’t, get your supplies and block off several hours.
  2. Prepare your food.Are there any dishes (or portions of dishes) that you can prepare and freeze ahead of time? Go ahead and get those out of the way.
  3. Polish your silver, and wash the fine china.While you are getting your home cleaned, go ahead and clean your silverware and  fine china. Better yet, have your teenagers handle this task.

1 to 3 Days before.

  1. Decorate.If you do not have small children, you can probably set up your decorations several days to a week in advance.
  2. Set up your dining room.Get your table and service areas as close to ready as you can. This provides another opportunity for you to make certain you have enough serving dishes and utensils.
  3. Shop for fresh items.Buy flowers, vegetables or fruit.
  4. Walk-through.The night before Easter, walk through the areas your guests will be visiting to see if there is anything that needs to be cleaned or repaired.

The Night Before

  1. Prepare the food.This is probably when you will be preparing most of your dinner. Our tips will help you keep your kitchen clean while you are cooking.
  2. Hide the eggs.If you are having an Easter egg hunt, hide the eggs the night before or early in the morning.  Hopefully, this is a task you assigned to a volunteer!

Before your guests arrive.

  1. Prepare your last minute dishes, making sure to keep your kitchen clean as you do.
  2. Do a last minute walk-through.
  3. Relax, and get ready to enjoy your guests.

I hope this checklist comes in handy as you prepare for Easter entertaining. Feel free to comment and share your Easter entertaining tips.

What are your secrets for a stress-free Easter dinner?

Atlanta Maid Service - Facebook Atlanta House Cleaning - Twitter Atlanta House Cleaning Service - Blog RSS


Please click here to get Sponge & Sparkle blog updates via email.

About the author:

Raina Raflo owns Sponge & Sparkle, Atlanta’s oldest and most reputable independent maid and house cleaning service. (404) 633-9652.

Read more Atlanta maid and house cleaning service customer reviews on our site.
Request a cleaning quote.

Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( 2 so far )

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