6 Steps to Get Organized in 2016

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Mary Aviles

Subject: Keep the clutter out

I have a policy to keep the clutter out, I don't take the "free-bees" unless I actually have a use for it. I have limited clothes storage space so anytime I acquire a new item I donate an old item that the new can replace. This worked also when my kids were young to keep the toys from taking over, the kids knew that any new toy coming into the house meant an old one needed to be donated. The kids learned to think about what was important to them, not just who could collect the most stuff.

Jill

Subject: Drowning in Clutter

I have no problem with keeping things sorted out and out of the house, but what can you do with a serious hoarder who has an emotional meltdown every time you try to get him to deal with his clutter (which really is worthless stuff)?

Sue Anderson

Subject: Drowning in Clutter

It would benefit you to bring in a professional organizer to work with the person you're speaking of. The reason I say that is because professional organizers serve as a neutral third party and can say the very same things you say but they are received differently because there is not that history together.

MaryAlice Stein

Subject: Reducing wardrobe excesses and helping others

It always seems like my closet is busting at the seams because I have such difficulty letting things go when I do a "big closet clean-out." I wind up putting most of my clothes back in it, and the only thing I've dispensed of is my time! So, this is my newest strategy and, for me, IT WORKS! At least once/week, I make it a game to go to my closet and in under 15-30 minutes, I pull out 15 separate things to get rid of. To make sure I don't change my mind, I take them off the hangers and box them "to go." After that, I never miss them. How impt. to me could they have been? And better yet, how beneficial can they now be to someone who really needs them? Its win-win. And since my closet is still rather full, I plan to continue!

Zitta Zohar

Subject: Help in getting rid of clutter

Every day go through the whole house, or apartment , and pick up THREE OBJECTS you do not need, love or use and either throw or put in one large bag, and at the end of the week decide to whom to give or donate or throw out. Bringing anything back is not an option. In a relatively short time, one gets used to free spaces.

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I second the original question (still unanswered). Speaking as someone who logged in today to try to find an attorney, I see this category as one that's exactly what I have my Angie's List membership for:

1. It's important that I find a good one
2. I'm not an expert enough to know myself who is a good one
3. The industry is full of advertisements and misinformation
4. I wish I knew what experiences other people have had


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I don't care about lawns--I planted mine in clover and don't have to mow it. When I do need to mow I use a rotary Fiskars mower, which is great--or a scythe. That's right--a scythe (the European type, which is smaller, and it's very good exercise). Gas-powered mowers, chemical fertilizers and weed killers--all nasty stuff that gets into everyone's air, soil, and water. I'm sure my neighbor doesn't like my wildflowers, semi-wild pockets of fruit bushes, and unmown areas and yes, dandelions (I have 10 acres) but that's too bad. It's better habitat for wildlife, especially the pollinators on which our food supply depends. I think this obsession with the Great American Lawn is a waste of time and resources. Plant some food instead.


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I'm not sure Angie et. al. want you to have a complete answer to this question. By re-subscribing at the Indiana State Fair in 2012, I think I paid $20.00 per year for a multi- year subscription. Maybe even less. At the other extreme--and I hope my memory isn't faulty about this--I think the price, for my area, for ONE year was an outrageous $70.00. And they debited me automatically without warning. I had to opt out of that automatic charge. I like Angie's List, but if some of the companies they monitor behaved the way they do in this respect, they'd be on some sort of Pages of Unhappiness. I'll be interested to see if this comment gets published or censored out of existence.
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That's very difficult to answer without seeing the house. As one poster said, the prep is the most important part. On newer homes that don't have a lot of peeling paint, the prep can be very minimal even as low as a couple or a few hundred dollars for the prep labor.

On a 100 year old home with 12 coats of peeling paint on it, then the prep costs can be very high and can easily exceed 50% of the job's labor cost.

A 2100 sq ft two story home could easily cost $1000 just for the labor to prep for the paint job. That number could climb too. Throw in lots of caullking  or window glazing, and you could be talking a couple or a few hundred dollars more for labor.

Painting that home with one coat of paint and a different color on the trim could run roughly $1000 or more just for labor. Add a second coat  and that could cost close to another $1000 for labor.

For paint, you may need 20 gallons of paint. You can pay from $30-$70 for a gallon of good quality exterior paint. The manufacturer of the paint should be specified in any painting contract. Otherwise, the contractor could bid at a Sherwin-Williams $60 per gallon paint and then paint the house with $35 Valspar and pocket the difference. $25 dollars per gallon times 20 gallons? That's a pretty penny too.

That was the long answer to your question. The short answer is $2000 to $4000 and up, depending upon the amount of prep, the number of coats, the amount of trim, and the paint used.