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Whirlwind Cleanup [Apr. 11th, 2009|01:29 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
[The river is |calm grateful]

At ten this morning my landlady called and said that a potential buyer for the house would be coming by around noon. This was not out of the blue. I knew the house is on the market, that's part of why ndozo came to help me clean. But I had hoped to have a couple more weeks to get things organized.

So G and I went into high gear. I got the trash off of the front porch, gave the bathroom a swipe and cleaned the sinkfull of disgusting dishes. G cleared the floor in his room. They came at 11:55 and I asked for a few more minutes. They came back at 12:10 and we were as ready as we could be.

The mess didn't seem to bother them, so I guess we did OK.

I couldn't have done it without ndozo . Thanks sis.

I also couldn't have done it without asmittenkitten's help. Long ago, in a similar situation, she showed me the minimum amount of cleaning necessary to make it so when a landlord or real estate agent comes over, they won't have a fit. As I was cleaning this morning, I remembered what asmittenkitten showed me and just did the minimum in each room. It made it much easier.

G also did an amazing job clearing the floor in his room.

So thank you Nancy, Lia and G. I couldn't have done it without you guys.


[User Picture]From: asmittenkitten
2009-04-11 08:08 pm (UTC)
Glad you were able to channel me this morning. I did feel a bit more distracted than usual :-) I too am cleaning today, although thank goodness, not for the landlord. Brad and I want to come out and look at the land and your new digs. Will you and G be out there tomorrow
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[User Picture]From: cdozo
2009-04-11 08:34 pm (UTC)
I would be happy to meet you out there tomorrow after the storms blow through. If the storms are really bad, I'll have to go and check for damage.

I'll also be out there in a couple of hours from now to pull the slides in so the mechanism is protected from hail damage. You could come out then if you want.

Either way, give me a call and we'll set it up.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2009-04-11 08:17 pm (UTC)
Wow...that's scary. I can barely move a mess a foot in two hours and you got the whole house spiffed up? Good for you!
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[User Picture]From: cdozo
2009-04-11 08:31 pm (UTC)
ndozo did most of the work last week. I just put the trash in bigger bags, cleaned around the bathroom and did a cleaned a sink full of disgusting dishes.

Even now my house is not much cleaner than yours has been when I've been out there. The thing is now you can open the front door all the way, you can tell that I have carpet on the floor and you can see the bottom of the kitchen sink.

It's a start.
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2009-04-11 08:45 pm (UTC)
I wonder why your landlady is selling...a rent house is continuing income and the house sale income will be taxed in a higher bracket...

None of my business. Glad you have the trailer.

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[User Picture]From: cdozo
2009-04-12 04:02 am (UTC)
She has a two-and-a-half year old boy and a business in Manor. Daycare is expensive. If she moves to Pflugerville, she'll be much closer to work and her folks will watch the kid for her.

She's built up equity by buying a duplex, fixing it up, then selling it and getting a better one in a better neighborhood. While she did that she worked at a local restaurant and saved up to start her own restaurant. I guess she's done building up equity with the duplexes.

She's been a great landlady. We've become friends and we plan to stay in touch.
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[User Picture]From: dinahprincedaly
2009-04-11 11:18 pm (UTC)
i want to hear the details of the minimum amount clean-up for the landlord trick... or is this top secret?
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[User Picture]From: cdozo
2009-04-16 04:57 pm (UTC)
I've been thinking about how to answer this. Here's what I came up with:

First you want to get rid of grime and gross stuff. Clean rotten veggies and such in the kitchen, clear out the kitchen sink and clean it with Comet. Clean the stove top including under the burners.

Go through the house and take down all the cobwebs. Then wipe down the bathrooms and dust all horizontal surfaces (I recommend Swiffers. If you can't find their dusting cloths, you can use the Swiffer sweeper refills.) Vacuum any cat litter and other dirt from out of the corners in all the rooms and give a quick vacuum and sweep in all the rooms. You should also make the beds look nice. At this point if they walk in, they won't be too horrified.

Then make the paths bigger. They want to be able to walk around and see the structure of the house. They are not judging you on neatness, but they want to know the walls are intact and the closets are not moldy. So stress less about clearing clutter than about making the structure visible.

If you're really messy, you can shove dirty laundry and such into bags and put it in your car 'til they've gone.

Once you've cleared and stacked stuff so they can see the walls, do the outside. Throw trash away and cut the grass so they can see the foundation all around the house.

After you've done all this (which will take maybe a day or two) go back and start cleaning. If they come in, you can say "please pardon the mess I'm in the middle of my Spring Cleaning." If there's no underlying grit, it will all be fine.
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[User Picture]From: dinahprincedaly
2009-04-16 05:08 pm (UTC)
Thanks! ...I recently had to do an instant clean up for a realestateagent in CT and wasn't really sure how to attack the place seeing as it never got picked up and put back together at the end of the summer and then had accumulated a winters worth of dust everywhere, not to mention mousetrap horrors... but, what was nice was when we went there last week the kid thought someone had broken in and instead of ransacking, neatened up---it scared her

the throw-the-stuff-in-the-car wouldn't work in bklyn... but its good to know

thanks again
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[User Picture]From: ndozo
2009-04-12 06:09 am (UTC)
I remember hearing about Lia's help that time, how you put out a distress call and she sprang into action. That is a good friend. And yayyyy G! But also you've been working hard for a while now and making changes that really have made it better, so yayyyyy you too! xoxo
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