An attic, located in the uppermost part of the house and just below the roof, is often neglected for routine cleaning and organizing. Since this is not a common space where families gather, its purpose tends to be more of a stockroom.
Nonetheless, this should not stop you from organizing your attic. We asked Maid Sailors, a home cleaning services NYC company and here are their five tips for a spotless and dust-free attic.
1. Unload and Take Out All Items First
The first things first are to unload all the items from the attic. This may take a lot of effort, but emptying the attic is an excellent start to an effective organization. Emptying it will give you a clearer picture of your attic and more space to move around freely. You may realize how efficient and faster it is to organize things in the long run.
But this does not mean you’ll take everything away from the attic. You may want to categorize each item according to its usage and purpose. Are they still worth keeping? For donation already? Or perhaps saleable/for a garage sale? Or are these already considered trash? You may want to use these four categories when organizing.
For those items identified as junk/trash, you may want to involve a rubbish removal service to help you effectively dispose of these items. You may visit their websites and check their services offered or schedule a pick-up. Some of these rubbish removal services even offer to include picking up the recyclables, and they will recycle them themselves.
Getting rid of these items allows your attic to breathe and accommodate more things that are worth keeping.
2. Identify Moisture and Mold
Often, attics have no windows. They are closed spaces with less air circulating. This area results in a greater chance of moisture and mold build-up, especially during the rapid temperature change. We all know that molds harm our respiratory, especially when inhaled.
However, this does not discount the fact that molds thriving in an enclosed space for a more extended period can also hurt our respiratory system in the long term.
In identifying the primary source of moisture in the attic, check on possible clogged ventilation, leaky pipes, and roof, which are common reasons for a water build-up. If you’re having difficulty searching for the moisture source, professional help is available to assist you.
Similarly, some professional cleaning services can also help you remove mold in your attic. Removing molds can be a harmful and critical activity since fungus may still be there and even spread faster if not thoroughly removed, especially in poorly ventilated rooms.
Seeking professional help will even protect you from the harmful effects of inhaling mold while cleaning it yourself.
3. Inspect your attic’s insulation
A regular and thorough inspection of the attic’s insulation will save you from further costs and ensure that it continues to serve its purpose. Damaged insulations will result in insect or pest infestations, grime markings, and foul odors.
If the floor joists are still above the insulations and there are no visible gaps, your insulation is still for keeps. Otherwise, if damaged insulation indicators are present, you may consider replacing them with a new one.
4. Create zones for your items
After decluttering and categorizing items in the attic, it’s time to organize identified things that are still worth keeping. For easy navigation, consider zoned organization, where items of similar use/purpose are held together in one place for easy reference. You may want to categorize it further depending on your personal preference.
Suggested categories are as follows:
- Holiday/seasonal items
- Family heirlooms and memorabilia
- Clothing and blankets
- Stored furniture
- Glass and breakables
- Spare tools and DIY equipment
- Kids’ toys and items
Make sure that each category is collectively placed on one side of the attic or in one container/cabinet in the attic for easier access. Properly label them according to your preferred category and make sure labels are visible to avoid unnecessary disorganization in the attic.
5. Make Cleaning the Attic Part of Your Routine
After successfully organizing your attic using the steps above, return to step 1 regularly, say twice to four times a year. Cleaning the attic every few years should be a habit that needs change.
Attic cleaning and organizing should be done regularly. While it will cost you more time than what you usually spend on cleaning, it will benefit you in the long run. Regular checking of your attic will save you from expenses on repairs or damages caused by mold, pest infestations, and broken insulation, which might damage the items kept in the attic.
Every part of your home plays a vital role in your daily life. While attics are not the usual place for families to stay, there is still a purpose for why they exist. Give your attic the proper care and organization it needs, similar to what you usually pay for in the other areas of your home.