10 Must-Do Steps To Get Your Home Ready For Christmas!

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*Immediately starts twitching*

We know. You’ve already got enough to think about. Work is crazy. Smug people on Facebook are posting that they’ve finished their Christmas shopping, meanwhile, you forgot to pick up milk today. You promised to host the whole family for Christmas when you were in a good mood and now you’re regretting it. And to top it all off, the kids have just announced 7 things they are so excited for Santa to bring, even though they’ve never mentioned them before?!

*Twitching turns to rocking in a corner*

Christmas, although wonderful, can be total chaos and stress. As if you have time for 10 Must-Do Steps. We get it. But hear us out. These steps are there to make your Christmas easier, less stressful and more put together than Mr and Mrs Elf themselves on Facebook!

And as you’re rushed for time, we’ll get straight on with it…

Step 1 – Declutter

Like seriously. Your home is about to filled with even more things that probably won’t bring you joy, but you feel the need to keep. Before that happens, remove what you no longer need or want. Go one step further and donate those items to charity. Do your good deed for the holidays. Don’t know where to start? See our post ‘3 Decluttering Tips For A Beautiful Home This Christmas’

Step 2 – Brighten whites

This may not seem crucial, but it will make you feel so much better about your home. When we’re stressed, we need a relaxed space to unwind. We’re going to make your home that space. To brighten your white linens, towels, clothes etc, simply add ½ cup of baking soda, along with your laundry detergent, to your washing.

Step 3 – Smelling good

Picture the scene, it’s been a long day at work, your arms are giving way under the 8 bags of shopping you’re trying to fit through the front door, and it hits you. The most beautiful and calming Christmas scent, that takes you right back to childhood. Oh yes. We’ve got you covered. Click here for our Top 3 DIY Christmas Scents!

Step 4 – Prepare for guests

If you’re not the hosts this Christmas, feel free to smugly skip this step. If you are, don’t panic. You can make yourself the hostess with the mostess with these simple steps…

  • Go all hotel – Write a nice Christmas note and put it with some celebrations on their pillow for when they arrive.
  • Give them a spa experience – Whether it’s a robe, some Christmas pj’s or a fluffy pair of Christmas socks from Primark, getting your guests a little something to have waiting in their room will go a long way.
  • Clean your spare rooms thoroughly, windows and all – We know that is the last thing you have time for, so don’t worry, we’ll do it!

Step 5 – Decorate

Release your inner elf and go to town. If you have children, get them involved. It’s a great way to have quality family time. Here’s some DIY Christmas decoration ideas we really like.

Step 6 – Prep your kitchen for the big day

Let’s be honest, this room gets a lot of action over the Christmas period. It’s best to make sure it’s ready. Here’s some little hacks to make sure your kitchen is ready to feed the world…

  • Reduce any odors – You have lots of food going on, so its really important you don’t get those funky smells in your bin or fridge. The best way to do that, is put one cup of baking soda at the bottom of your bin, and leave an open bag of baking soda in your fridge. Doing this will neutralize odors, keeping your kitchen smelling fresh.
  • Remove stains from your pans – Let’s get real, no one wants to be able to taste that dinner you burnt 3 weeks ago. If your pans have stains on (which we all suffer with), there’s an easy way to fix it. Fill the pan in question with warm water, put in a tumble dryer sheet and leave overnight to soak.
  • Clean your oven – Again, this is way less scary than it sounds. All you need is water, white vinegar and a baking tray. See here!

Step 7 – Make sure you’re stocked up with products

The shops are open at all sorts of strange times over the Christmas period. Don’t get caught out with not having the right cleaning supplies. Here’s our favourite DIY ones you can make, so you don’t need to worry…

  • Multi-surface – Make up a spray bottle using around 2 ounces of water to every 15 drops of essential oil. You can use this solution to wipe down all surfaces. Lavender and cinnamon are both antibacterial and smell amazing.
  • Sink cleaner – Add a few drops of lemon juice to some baking soda. Leave to sit for 15 minutes then clean away. Your sink will be sparkling and smelling lovely.
  • Glass cleaner – Add 3 tablespoons of lemon juice to some water in a bottle. This works a treat and smells great.

Step 8 – Make everywhere sparkle

As well as fairy lights and tinsel, get your chrome work dazzling, by mixing half water, half white vinegar in a bottle and spraying onto your chrome work. Leave the solution to stand for 20-minutes, then, using a soft cloth, wipe away. For extra stubborn stains, rub with baking soda.

Step 9 – Clean

Clean Up GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

We’ve mentioned a lot of awesome cleaning tips on this post, but what if you don’t have time? Or you just don’t want to? That’s totally okay and you shouldn’t feel guilty. That’s why we’re here. We will make your home beautiful and sparkly this Christmas.

Step 10 – Get cosy

Relax and have a wonderful Christmas. Your home is now clean, it’s smelling great with your homemade scents, your linens are fresh, your kitchen is beautiful and your Moppettes have been. Now it’s time to sit back, put on your favourite Christmas movie, open up that tub of Roses and relax.

As our way of wishing you a very Merry Christmas, here is 15% off a clean with us.

15% discount for your Christmas clean with us. To accompany our 10 must-do steps to get your home ready for Christmas!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Love, The Moppettes x  

Fall Cleaning Round-Up – All The Home Hacks You Need!

Fall Cleaning Round-Up – All The Home Hacks You Need!

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We all want #fallvibes in our home. You know the vibes we’re talking about. Cosy, clean, smelling diving, covered in fairy lights and enough scatter cushions and fluffy blankets to compete with Dunelm!

But how do we achieve such levels of greatness within budget and without having to give up on sleep?

It just so happens we have the answer to that.

We have split our home hacks into 3 categories –Smelling Good, Looking Good and Feeling Good. I mean, what more do you need, right?

In each category, we will give you our top 4 home hacks to achieve a beautiful home in an affordable and natural way.

Let’s get started!

Celebrating fall and all of the home hacks you need!

Smelling Good

Picture the scene. You’ve got home from a long day, you’ve got into your pjs, Netflix is loading and then you get a waft of your favourite scent. Your home smells like a little slice of heaven. Annnd relax.

Keeping your home smelling good can be quite costly and bad for your health though, depending on the products you use. So, here are 4 affordable and natural hacks for making your home smell delicious this fall.

  • Bake your bin! – Add 1 cup of baking soda to the bottom of your bin. This helps neutralize odors and keeps your bin smelling fresh.
  • DIY wax melts! – This is one of our favourite hacks for making our homes smell good. Simply bring some water to boil in a pan. Then, add 1 cup of beeswax and 1/3 of a cup of coconut oil to a jar or glass. Place the jar into the hot water to melt the wax and oil. Once melted, carefully remove the jar, using heat proof gloves. Add around 40 drops of your favourite essential oil and stir. Pour into ice cube trays and allow to set. Voila!
How to make your home smell good this fall
  • Make your home smell like vanilla cheesecake! – Pre-heat your oven to 140 degrees Celsius. Put two caps of vanilla extract into an oven proof dish. Bake in the oven at 140 for 1 hour. Your whole house will smell incredible!
  • Improve your clothes! – Add a few drops of your favourite essential oil to a clean cloth and tumble dry it with your clothes. They’ll smell amazing!

For more tips on how to make your home smell good, see our post ‘5 Hacks To Make Your Home Smell Delicious This Autumn’.

Looking Good

Who doesn’t want a house that looks like Pinterest moved in and made itself at home? We know we do. How do we achieve our interior goals without having to sell vital organs though? Here’s how!

  • Brighten your whites! – Add half a cup of baking soda, along with your laundry detergent, to brighten white linens and clothes.
  • Turn it down! – Dim lighting is where it’s at. The right lighting can create such a warm and cosy atmosphere. Lamps, fairy lights and candles are your new best friend. See ProFlowers awesome and easy tutorial on how to make your own candles here.
Turn down the lighting in your home to create a warm and cosy effect
  • Remove stubborn pan stains! – We all know the stain well. You burn one thing once and your pan is condemned for all eternity! Well no longer! Take your stained pan and boil water and white vinegar in it. This will lift most of the stains. For the extra stubborn ones, scrub with baking soda.
  • Rust be gone! – Coat items that are likely to rust and mark your sides (ie shaving cream) with clear nail polish on the metal area. No more rusty rings on the sides.

Feeling Good

And we’re feeling gooooooooooood! Oh yes. We hope you sang that all out in your head then. This section is all about making your home feel cosy without having to re-decorate every season…

  1. Get the vodka out! – Vodka is a fantastic disinfectant for your mattress. Pour some vodka into a spray bottle and lightly spritz your mattress. The spirit will neutralize odors and disinfect. Allow to completely dry before covering.
  • Layers! – Get yourself the coziest, fluffiest blankets and cushions for your sofa and step up your snuggle game.
Layer up your home this fall to make it cosy and clean
  • Say cheese! – Add some photos or prints around your home to make you feel all warm and cosy from the inside.
  • Give yourself some hotel treatment! – Little things like folding your toilet paper into that cute triangle, or folding your towels nicely on the radiator, can really make your home feel like a sanctuary away from the world. If you can’t be bothered, but don’t see why you should miss out on the feeling, why don’t you hire a super awesome cleaning service that does that as standard? *cough, cough*

There you have it folks. 12 affordable, natural home hacks to make your home the cleanest, cosiest, falliest (definitely a word…) home on the block.

Which one was your favourite? Do you have any other gems for us?

Because we have another gem for you! Make your home clean and cosy without even lifting a finger! Click here to redeem a 15% off voucher for your first clean with us!

You’re most welcome. You deserve it!

Summer Holiday Chores for the Kids

Summer Holiday Chores for the Kids

Mrs Mopp Blog Spot

Well school holidays are upon most of us and whilst children will be looking forward to weeks of fun and very little work, it can be a bit of a nightmare for parents.

Here at Mopp Towers, my children were introduced to cleaning and tidying at an early age, they learnt we do not have a Bedroom or Washing Up Fairy that cleans and tidies everything up while they sleep.

You have to be realistic of course, if you are a bit of a cleaning control freak you may find it hard to let your standards slip. But on the other hand any help is worth something – right?  So here’s some advice I learnt along the way.

 Seven Top Tips for Cleaning with the Kids

  1. Start them Young

Young children love to please and help out so get them to watch and talk them through what you are doing at the beginning. Even a toddler can hold a (child friendly/chemical free) wipe and will imitate you – great for those low down jobs like skirting boars or chair legs! Very young children can put their toys away at the end of the day or help lay the table.

  1. The Right Chores for the Right Age

Little people don’t always have the dexterity or concentration for complex tasks so you need to think about what chores are right for your child.  You will set yourself and your child up to fail if you assign tasks beyond their capability.  Better to have your children do something simple but well as you train them up to take on more complex tasks.

  1. Lots of Praise and Encouragement

Children do take pride in what they do, so do thank them and praise them – and don’t expect perfection, especially at the beginning. Try not to associate cleaning with punishment as they will get discouraged and you will never get a willing participant.

  1. Simple Instructions with a Time Limit

To many children ‘Clean up your Room’ can be overwhelming – where to start?  Simple instructions like ‘Put all your toys away before teatime’, or ‘Put your dirty clothes in the Washing Basket’, will help younger children.  Teenagers may be a different matter –but once again one task a day to clear a messy room will get there in the end.

  1. Make it fun!

Well I love cleaning but for children you can introduce music and dancing or singing. You can even go so far as dressing up as characters from a favourite book or movie.  Ring the changes a bit so, once in a while get the kids to shampoo the dog, declutter the toy box so they can choose a new toy. On nice days outdoor chores can be good fun such as sweeping the leaves or washing the car.

  1. Reward

Verbal praise is essential but some families have a sticker chart, (one of Super Nannies great tips) this works well if you have more than one child who has completed their chores first and gets the most stickers! It is also good to have a schedule, making the time for cleaning and balancing out the week.

Other families find that they have to make activities more challenging. Trust your child to do some tasks a little quicker or unsupervised (after a bit of practice of course).

  1. Declutter

Just like clearing up for the cleaner (last week’s blog – link) you will get more from your children if they have a clear area to clean. Clutter is confusing – they can of course help you with putting things away in the playroom or kitchen before the task of cleaning can begin.

If you give your children confidence they will feel more motivated to complete the weekly chores and be more independent, they will probably start suggesting new tasks they can take responsibility for like feeding a pet. And don’t forget you are building life-skills, before you know it you are packing them off to university able to cook, clean and look after themselves!

Happy Cleaning… Mrs Mopp x

12 Things A Cleaner Needs To Do Their Job Well

12 Things A Cleaner Needs To Do Their Job Well

Ask Mrs Mopp... Cleaning tips Mrs Mopp Blog Spot

 

What Does A Cleaner Need To Clean?

When it comes to hiring a cleaner, some cleaning providers will supply all the cleaning products and cleaning materials, and some will require the to client provide everything themselves – there is normally a difference in costs associated with each option.

If you are going with a lower tariff, within . cleaning business, or if you are employing a sole trader or cleaning agency, it will be usual for the client to provide all the cleaning materials and products, in order for the business to keep their labour and charge rate lower.

So, if you supply the products, what will your cleaner need to do a professional job?

Here’s a handy guide you can print or pin:

12 Things A Cleaner Needs To Do Their Job Well | Mrs Mopp Cleaning Services

 

What do you think of our list? Is there anything you would like to add?

Happy Cleaning,

Mrs M x


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3 Things To Expect When Hiring A House Cleaning Service

3 Things To Expect When Hiring A House Cleaning Service

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What to look for when hiring a cleaner

Have you done your homework?

Your house is probably your biggest asset. I’m guessing that you worked hard to get a mortgage, to furnish and decorate each room and that you take great pride in the place you call home.

So, when thinking about hiring a house cleaning service, are you putting the same thought into it as you did into say, decorating your home or arranging your home security?

Have you dug into the background of the house cleaning service you are thinking of hiring? Did get quotes from more than one cleaning provider? Or are you only interested in who clean your home the cheapest?

You wouldn’t let just anyone into your home, would you? No of course you wouldn’t, that’s why your here

3 things a cleaning provider should have as standard

House Cleaning Services: 3 Things To Expect When Hiring One | Mrs Mopp | @MrsMoppUK

There are millions and squillions of house cleaning services out there. One for every budget and every home. How do you start to choose between them? What questions should  you be asking the potential house cleaning service to know they are the real deal? Would does a good house cleaning service look like?

1. A Good House Cleaning Service Is Insured

You would think this would go without saying, but I can’t tell you how many homes I’ve been to when the client will tell me a nightmare story about a previous uninsured cleaner and the damage done to their property (and how they are usually left out of pocket)

All house cleaning services, in the UK, should have public liability insurance as standard and they should be happy to show you their certificate of insurance whenever you ask to see it.

Side note: It is worth checking that the house cleaning service you use is covered for heat if you want them to use your steam mop or iron, for example, or that they are covered for heights if you want them to clean a high ledge.

If the house cleaning service employs people to do cleaning work, it should also hold employers liability insurance to protect their staff, your property and their business.

Questions to ask the house cleaning service about insurance

  1. What type of insurance do you have for your cleaning business? To what level of cover?
  2. What is your business covered to do? What can you not do within a home (restrictions such as heat, height, chemicals may apply)
  3. What would happen if a cleaner broke or damaged an item?
  4. What would happen if the cleaner lost my house key?
  5. How many insurance claims have you had in the time you have been trading?

House Cleaning Services: 3 Things To Expect When Hiring One | Mrs Mopp | @MrsMoppUK

If the house cleaning service cannot produce their insurance details, or always have an excuse when you ask for them, run. Run far away from them!

At Mrs Mopp, we have extra insurances than just the standard requirement, like “key-lock insurance” for example, meaning in the rare event of a key being lost or damaged, we would replace our clients locks and issue them with new keys for their peace of mind. Our business was built around how we would feel about someone being in our home, and what would make us feel safer when giving out our house keys – any house cleaning service worth their salt would be happy to share their certificate of insurance with you and to run through their policies on safety and security for your home to put your mind at ease.

Please take the time to ensure you are giving your house keys to a cleaning provider who is properly insured to clean private homes and double check that they are insured for all cleaning eventualities that are important to you!

House Cleaning Services: 3 Things To Expect When Hiring One | Mrs Mopp | @MrsMoppUK

2. A Good House Cleaning Service Will Have References and Testimonials

Unless you are the very first client of a new house cleaning service, chances are there will be someone out there that has used their  cleaning services before.

When speaking with the potential cleaning provider, on the telephone or via email, prior to a home quotation, ask the cleaning provider if they have any references they can bring to the quote to show you?

As well as written references, also ask the cleaning provider if they can provide telephone references where you can speak to an actual real-life client of theirs. (If you are new to having a cleaner and are quite nervous about it, this is a great idea!)

Another port of call when checking out a house cleaning service is to take a look on the ol’ interweb and see what the world says about the service.

One word of slight warning, be careful of Facebook ratings or quotes on websites that say “Mrs A” with no other details, as many people, especially when in buisness start-up mode and looking for clients, will have their friends and family go on to give them a 5* rating as a means to boost to their page.

House Cleaning Services: 3 Things To Expect When Hiring One | Mrs Mopp | @MrsMoppUK

Even if there is a compalint on the cleaning providers page take a look to see how they dealt with it – did they deal with it or ignore the bad review? How a person/business acts in times of stress or wrong doing in normally a better indicator of integrity than those who only present a positive and 100% perfect image by deleting or ignoring problems.

As in life, the sign of a solid service or indeed person, is how they handle events when the chips are down and something has gone wrong – did the cleaning service stick to their word and make good? Was there a happy resolution?

A House Cleaning Service Should Be A Legit Business

I am guessing you work very hard to pay for your home and for all the lovely things you have inside of it. I am guessing your home is probably your biggest outlay financially, and I am also guessing that you take the protection of it quite seriously?

The reason I ask you this is because often, so many people give so little thought to whom they hire to clean their homes.

People looking for the cheapest option when it comes to cleaning work, will 9/10 be disappointed.

When on quotes, we often hear from people who hired their friend Jenny’s sisters, best friends uncle, who knew someone who cleans ,in the pub he drinks in and they said they’ll do it cash-in-the-hand and they promised they could clean their whole 5-bed house in 2 hours?!

These people end up very frustrated with their ‘house cleaning service’ (meant in the loosest way).

Personally, I don’t understand that mentality of trying to find “cheap cleaners”. Why oh why, would you just have any random person in your home, that you worked so hard for, who 1. Won’t meet any of the above-mentioned requirements, and 2. IS NOT A RESPECTABLE BUSINESS?

As a homeowner you should know that the house cleaning service you are thinking of hiring is legit – you need to know that they are insured, you need to know how they vet their staff, you need to know how they train their staff, you need to know what their complaints policy is, you need to know how they store your keys, you need to know how they record your personal information, you need to know what they would do if they lost your house key. You need to know all these things.

House Cleaning services: 3 Things To Expect When Hiring One | Mrs Mopp | @MrsMoppUK

Homeowners should want a professional cleaning service, with procedures and structures in place, and be happy to pay the extra £2 or £3 an hour to know their home is in safe hands, with trained cleaning professionals

If you only have a certain budget for cleaning, shop around and find the right cleaning provider for you, as there will be cleaning business out there to suit your cleaning needs and your budget – yes insured, yes with references, and yes as a legit tax paying, HMRC abiding business!

For example, a house cleaning service operating from home, with all the good things we have spoken about here, should have a much lower charge rate than a cleaning business that has premises and employees for example

The point is this – don’t settle for any old cleaner just because it’s cheap, or it’s your best friends, monkeys uncles cousin will do it cash-in-the-hand. Shop around, get a few quotes, check out a few websites…

You spent months trying to find your perfect home, so it’s only right you should spend some time thinking about who you will trust to look after it.

Do you have anything to add to this post? Please comment below

Happy Cleaning!

Mrs M x


Find Mrs Mopp Cleaning Services (UK) Ltd Online

Find Mrs Mopp on Facebook – For Blogs, competitions and cleaning tips

Find Mrs Mopp On Instagram – For cleaning tips and cleaning funnies, along with behind the scenes from the Moppettes and the office teams

Find Mrs Mopp On Twitter – For blogs from Mrs Mopp and other trusted cleaning and household sources, day-to-day cleaning and general chatter and general local networking

Do you live In Telford, Shrewsbury, or the surrounding areas of Newport and Shifnal? Need help with your domestic cleaning? Please contact us today with your requirements.

Are you looking for commercial cleaning? Please see our sister company – MMCS (UK) Ltd