At Classmaids, we are committed to using only the best quality cleaning products that are healthy for both people and the environment.  Although this is a wonderful intention, we know first-hand how extremely difficult it can be to determine which cleaning products are truly safe.  Unlike manufacturers of cosmetics and personal care products, companies that produce cleaning products are not required to include a list of ingredients on the package, bottle or box, making it nearly impossible for consumers to know what is inside these formulas.  U.S. law allows cleaning product manufacturers to use almost any ingredient they wish, including known carcinogens and substances that can harm fetal and infant development; moreover, the government doesn’t review the safety of cleaning products before they’re sold.  As a result, highly toxic chemicals, masked by catchy brand names and enticing promises, make their way into homes, offices, and the environment, harming people and the planet. 

 

Environmental Working Group

Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the health of people and the environment.  In response to the lack of restrictions and disclosure in the cleaning product industry, EWG has created an online healthy cleaning guide, providing easy-to-navigate hazard ratings for over 2,000 cleaning products. 

 

EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning

EWG’s hazard ratings include the following categories: Asthma/Respiratory, Skin Allergies and Irritation, Developmental and Reproductive Toxicity, Cancer, and Environment.  EWG uses scientific research to rate each product in every one of these categories, with ratings ranging from Low Concern to High Concern.  Additionally, EWG includes other information about the product, such as its green certification status and level of ingredient disclosure.  Based on this information, EWG gives the product an overall grade, ranging from A (lowest concern) to F (highest concern).  EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning is a well-organized, user-friendly database that makes it easy to determine the safety of almost any cleaning product and compare it with similar cleaning products, empowering consumers to make the right decisions for themselves and the environment. 

 

Classmaids’ Commitment to Healthy Cleaning

In order to ensure that we fulfill our commitment to the health of our clients and the environment, Classmaids uses only cleaning products that receive top ratings on EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning.  In this way, we ensure that your home or office is as safe as it is sparkling clean.  By hiring Classmaids, you no longer have to worry about finding cleaning products that are both healthy and effective -- we’ll do that for you!  Book your cleaning by going to our website at www.classmaids.com or by calling us at (561) 470-9200.

Thursday, 05 July 2018

How to Keep Clean with Pets

No matter how much we love our four-legged family members, we all know they can be pretty messy.  Shedding fur, dirty paws, unpleasant odors -- you name it!  Whether you’re a first-time puppy owner or the neighborhood cat lady, the following simple tips will help you keep your space in tip-top shape.

Manage Pet Hair

One of the most persistent issues pet owners face is animal hair on floors, furniture and clothing.  Use the following tips to effectively clean out your pet’s shedding fur.  Additionally, grooming your pet regularly will keep it from shedding as much.

  1. Pet Hair on Furniture: Place an old towel or sheet over your pet’s favorite resting places, and periodically shake it outside before washing it.
  2. Pet Hair on Rugs: Vacuum in multiple directions. Then, use a rubber rake or a squeegee (for low-pile carpeting) to clean out every last hair.
  3. Pet Hair on Clothing and Upholstery: Tape rollers do a great job at removing pet hair from clothes. Loop a ribbon through the handle and hang one from the doorknob inside each closet throughout the house so they’re always available to use.  For upholstery, use your vacuum’s upholstery tool or a hand vacuum with a motorized beater-bar attachment.  Lint brushes designed for clothing and dry sponges (sold at pet supply stores) are also effective tools.

 

Keeping Paws Clean

If you take your pet on walks, keep a shallow container filled one-third of the way with room-temperature water by your front door.  When you return from the walk, dip each of your pet’s paws in the water and dry them off with the towel.  Voila -- no dirt inside the house!

Work Quickly on Stains

Pet stains that are left unattended to can permanently damage furniture and carpets.  If your pet has an accident in your house, it’s important to clean it as soon as possible.  Remove any solid residue with a dull knife, then blot the stain with a clean cloth.  Mix ¼ teaspoon clear dishwashing liquid with one cup tepid water, and use this solution to blot the stain with a clean towel.  Rinse by blotting the stain with a towel dampened with tepid water.  Alternate between the soapy towel and the clean, damp towel until the stain is no longer visible.

Use Common Household Items

Unpleasant pet odors can be easily addressed with everyday household items.  Sprinkle baking soda on your carpet and let it sit for a couple of hours before vacuuming.  You’ll immediately notice that the room will smell much better!  Vinegar is another effective odor-eliminator.  Just spray some vinegar in the air; as the vinegar smell dissipates, so will the pet odor!

Hire a Professional Cleaning Service

A professional cleaning service like Classmaids can help you keep your home sparkling clean -- even if you have the messiest pet in the world!  Save yourself the hassle of cleaning by handing the task over to one of our experienced, meticulous cleaning specialists.  You can enjoy your pet’s company, and we’ll do the rest!  We use only non-toxic biodegradable cleaning products, which are safe for your pet (and you too!).  Book your cleaning by going to our website at www.classmaids.com or by calling us at (561) 470-9200.

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Clean Floors, Anyone?

We all know we need to clean our homes and offices, but we often underestimate the power of one particular feature: the floor.  The cleanliness of your floor plays a role not only in the appearance of your home or office, but also in the safety, health, and happiness of your family and employees.  Although people tend to ignore what’s beneath their feet, the condition of the floor has significant effects on a business or home environment.  Let’s take a look at some of these effects and steps you can take towards maintaining clean floors.

Health

Dirt from shoes, crumbs, and anything not discarded correctly ends up on the floor.  As a result, the floor is a breeding ground for disease-causing germs and bacteria, which can cause people to get sick.  In an office, this is especially problematic because the health of employees is directly tied to a business’s productivity; unhealthy employees take sick leaves and don’t have the energy or vigor to perform well at the workplace.  As a business owner, you will spend most of your time and resources treating your employees instead of utilizing your funds for the growth of your company.  Maintaining clean and sanitized floors can solve all of these issues quickly and efficiently.

Impression

The cleanliness of any location has a significant effect on its environment.  Dirty floors communicate a sense of negligence and lack of care.  This makes a home feel less cozy, affecting familial interactions and the moods of family members.  In an office, dirty floors create an unpleasant environment that leads to low morale among employees, causing a decrease in productivity.  Anybody who enters a facility will be repelled by a dirty environment, damaging the brand image of the business.  On the other hand, clean floors contribute to a well-kept, healthy environment that feels inviting and pleasant.

Safety

Most slip accidents happen when floors are contaminated.  However, incorrect cleaning can exacerbate this problem, creating a build-up of contamination and making floors even more slippery.  There are particular methods of cleaning floors correctly to remove contamination and reduce the risk of slips, creating a safe, hazard-free environment.

Classmaids Floor Cleaning

Classmaids understands the crucial value of correctly-cleaned floors, which is why we have an effective, rigorous floor cleaning system.  After vacuuming thoroughly, we mop all non-carpeted floors with biodegradable specialty floor cleaning products, which we select depending on the type of floor.  Then, we carefully check to make sure there are no remaining spots, watermarks or dirt.  Classmaids’ cleaning specialists follow a detailed cleaning checklist to ensure that all parts of your home or office are sparkling clean.  Book your cleaning by going to our website at www.classmaids.com or by calling us at (561) 470-9200.

Thursday, 21 June 2018

5 Steps to Declutter

Do you look around your home and ask yourself how it got so full of useless knick-knacks, or is your office buried under neglected piles of paper?  All of this clutter can have negative effects on your mental and emotional well-being.  Disorganization caused by clutter causes stress hormones to spike, leaving you anxious and irritated on a daily basis.  This can lead to feelings of sadness, anger, and depression, making it difficult to maintain positive emotions.  Moreover, there is a direct correlation between living in a cluttered space and reduced mental focus, which causes difficulties in problem solving, memory retention and concentration.  This results in decreased work performance as well as impaired judgement in parenting and managing a household. 

Clutter has a negative effect on physical health as well.  A cluttered space makes you feel chronically tired and lethargic, and the frustration caused by the mess can raise blood pressure and negatively impact heart health. 

Not only is clutter unhealthy, it can be dangerous as well.  Staircases filled with obstacles, shelves supporting too much weight, and debris on the floor that can be tripped over -- these all create physically unsafe conditions.  Moreover, clutter can be a fire hazard if it blocks entrance ways. 

Evidently, reducing clutter is important for maintaining a state of mental and emotional well-being as well as physical health and safety.  Although the process of decluttering may be difficult at times, it will pay off in the long run.  Follow these steps to simplify the decluttering process.

Step 1: Sometimes, all it takes to reduce clutter is to put things away.  Place books back on shelves, tuck clothes into drawers, and store shoes in closets.  You’ll already feel the difference!

Step 2: Determine what you consider to be clutter.  One person’s clutter is another person’s treasure.  Create an inventory of your belongings, and make a note of things you are no longer using, such as clothes you haven’t worn in over a year, dishes with scratches or chips, books you’ll never read again, and stacks of old magazines. 

Step 3: Pick a “declutter day” to clear out all unnecessary items.  Throw out, recycle or donate everything you marked as clutter in step 2.  Step 3 is important because it doesn’t allow you to procrastinate your decluttering process.

Step 4: Create storage.  Often, clutter exists simply because it has nowhere to go.  Utilize unused spaces such as areas underneath couches and beds.  Look into purchasing storage cubes that function as stools and benches with storage compartments under the seats.

Step 5: Reassess.  Although you’ve done most of the work in decluttering your home, there still might be some clutter lurking about.  Look through your home once more to make sure you have gotten rid of all the clutter.

Although these steps simplify the process, decluttering takes time and patience.  In the meantime, difficult-to-clean dust, mold, and animal dander accumulate around clutter, increasing allergy symptoms and respiratory problems.  This is especially harmful to people with asthma.  A professional cleaning service like Classmaids can clean out the dirt caused by your clutter, benefitting your health and well-being.  Book your cleaning by going to our website at www.classmaids.com or by calling us at (561) 470-9200.

Thursday, 14 June 2018

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.

The average American family produces over 17 pounds of trash in a single day.  A large portion of this trash comes from single-use items, such as plastic water bottles and plastic bags.  Plastic waste has become a critical global issue: 8 million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean every year, damaging marine ecosystems and, subsequently, human health.  Landfills are detrimental to the environment because decomposing garbage releases methane, a powerful greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change.  The bottom line is that we need to reduce the amount of waste we produce.  The “three R’s” -- reduce, reuse, recycle -- are the key methods of minimizing waste, creating a healthier planet for us to live on.  Here are the basics and benefits of each of the “three R’s.”

Reduce and Reuse

The most effective way to reduce waste is to not produce it in the first place.  The production of new products requires lots of materials and energy -- raw materials must be extracted from the earth, and the product must be fabricated and then transported to wherever it will be sold.  By reducing and reusing, you are not only preventing waste from entering landfills and the ocean, but you are also saving energy, environmental resources, and your own money! 

Here are some ideas on how to reduce waste:

  • Buy used. You can find everything from clothes to building materials, and used items are less expensive and often just as good as new!
  • Look for products that use less packaging. Buying in bulk, for example, can reduce packaging and save money.
  • Maintain and repair products, like clothing, tires and appliances, so that they won’t have to be thrown out and replaced frequently.

Here are some ideas on how to reuse:

  • Bring your own shopping bags to stores instead of using disposable plastic or paper bags.
  • Buy a reusable water bottle to use instead of disposable plastic bottles.
  • Find creative ways to give “waste” a second life. For example, that empty tub of yogurt would make a great container for art supplies!
  • Donate unwanted items. Not only will you be reducing waste, you’ll also be helping others!

 

Recycle

Recycling prevents waste from entering landfills and the ocean by processing used materials to produce new ones.  Although recycling is often promoted as the best solution for waste reduction, unfortunately only a small percentage of waste is currently recycled -- of the 300 million tons of new plastic produced annually, less than 10% is recycled.  This is why reducing and reusing are the most effective methods of waste reduction; however, recycling can also be beneficial if done correctly.   If you happen to have a plastic bottle, and you can’t find any recycling bins around, hold onto it until you can dispose of it properly.  Remember, every little step counts!

If you do not currently have a recycling program for your home, contact your local city or country government to request recycling bins.  Some municipalities even offer free recycling bins in select communities. If your area has a recycling program set in place, it is likely that there are free recycling bins available, one for each household.

If you rent your home or office and don’t have recycling, talk to your property management company.  Often these companies do not want to coordinate building recycling either due to additional costs of service or because they don’t want to deal with an addition vendor.  Classmaids always recommends to their clients to reach out directly to their management companies and request access to recycling, which will allow them to get more value out of their property management services.

 

Classmaids’ Commitment to the Three R’s

Classmaids is committed to reducing waste in various ways.  We use products made from recycled packaging, buy cleaning products in bulk and reuse containers such as spray bottles.  Our cleaning professionals are trained in cleaning techniques that minimize waste.  Classmaids partners with TerraCycle, a company that specializes in recycling hard-to-recycle materials such as disposable gloves, sponges, and other cleaning supplies.  Classmaids’ clients can benefit by receiving a special discount code for purchasing TerraCycle’s Zero-Waste Boxes and other products. 

Classmaids is dedicated to cleaning not just your home, but also the environment.  Book your cleaning by going to our website at www.classmaids.com or by calling us at (561) 470-9200.

The purpose of cleaning products is to get rid of dirt, not to contaminate your home with dangerous toxic substances.  There is a myriad of cleaning products on the market containing harsh chemicals that get the job done at the expense of your health and the environment; however, cleaning products do not have to be toxic in order to be effective.  In fact, some of the best cleaning products are natural and biodegradable.  Here are some of the benefits of using these types of products.

 

Health

Do you struggle with allergies?  Try switching to natural non-toxic cleaning products!  The chemicals used in conventional cleaning products can irritate your body, causing allergic reactions.  Moreover, chemical-based cleaning products may contribute to cancer, respiratory problems, reproductive abnormalities, and behavioral problems, especially when used in small, unventilated spaces such as windowless bathrooms or showers.  According to the National Cancer Association, women who work in the home have a 54% higher risk of developing cancer than women who work outside the home due to the effects of indoor pollutants.  Children and pets are especially vulnerable to the dangerous effects of toxic cleaning products.

 

Cost

Contrary to popular belief, switching to natural cleaning products does not have to be expensive; some of the most effective cleaning solutions can be found right in your home!  These include vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, tea tree oil and baking soda, which will clean any part of your home for a fraction of the price. 

 

Environment

Conventional cleaning products can be extremely detrimental to the natural environment.  For example, nitrogen, phosphorus and ammonia, which are commonly found in conventional cleaning products, are dangerous water contaminants.  Volatile organic compounds, also found in conventional cleaning products, contribute to air pollution.  By using non-toxic, natural cleaning products, you not only support the health and safety of your own home, but also the environment around you.

 

Classmaids’ Commitment to Non-Toxic Cleaning Products

By hiring Classmaids, you are ensuring that your home will be cleaned with safe, eco-friendly products.  Classmaids invests in non-toxic, biodegradable cleaning products from leading natural cleaning companies such as Seventh Generation and Mrs. Meyers.  Our cleaning staff will make your home sparkling clean, while preserving your health and the environment.  Book your cleaning by going to our website at www.classmaids.com or by calling us at (561) 470-9200.

Washing clothes is a demanding (and seemingly endless) chore. If you’re working in a clean and organized space, it can take some of the stress out of the task of doing your laundry. Here are some tips to handle organizing your laundry room like a pro.

Pre-sort

Having hampers set up to sort delicates, whites, colors and permanent press items can save you time. You can choose to use three or four separate hampers or one that has dividers. Be sure to have these labeled and/or color-coded. Teach your children to put their clothes in the correct section so when it’s time to throw it in the wash, it’s pre-sorted. This will save you a great deal of time.

Storage solutions

Having your cleaning and laundry supplies handy is a great idea. This can be done in a variety of ways. Many choose to have cabinets or shelving above the washer and dryer to keep detergent and bleach out of reach of small children. You may choose to use storage bins or pretty baskets if your space is visible.

Hang it up

Some clothes are not meant for the dryer and you need a space to hang them up. A rod, clothesline or wire rack can all do the job. You can also install a laundry room drying-bar using a basic bath towel holder. Another method is a fold-up drying rack if you’re lacking space for a permanent fixture. You may decide that hooks are the way to go – and in this case, you could use the hooks to hang and store away additional hangers and even your ironing board.

Look up

Unused wall space is just begging for usage in the form of a cabinet, shelf or some other storage solution. You may also use wall space for pegboards, calendars, white boards for scheduling, or a blackboard to leave cute notes.

Keep the change

A piggy bank or just a simple jar kept on a nearby shelf would be useful for all the coins, buttons and other tiny items that are left in the pockets of pants.

Let Classmaids Handle Your Laundry

Need more than laundry room organization tips? Let our experienced residential and commercial cleaning crew help. Classmaids is licensed, bonded and insured, and we will exceed your standards with our detailed cleaning checklist, our non-toxic biodegradable cleaning products, our top-notch laundry services and more.  Simply let us know how you would like your laundry done (i.e., detergent, washer and dryer settings, etc.), and we will wash, dry and fold it exactly as you want.  You can book your services online by going to our website at www.classmaids.com or by calling us at (561) 470-9200.

If you've ever hired an independent contractor to work at your home, have you considered what happens if there is an accident, for example, a fall? It will most likely be a case for the courts, as your homeowners' insurance will not cover this fall. Always ask any independent constructor for proof of their workers’ compensation insurance when allowing them to work in your home!

But what if you have an independent maid coming to your home to clean and do some household chores?  Who is responsible for this maid’s workers’ compensation?

The rule is about control. If the homeowner controls the independent maid’s work by setting the working hours and responsibilities, as well as providing the tools and cleaning products s/he uses to clean the home, that independent maid is really an employee of that household, even if s/he only works a couple of hours a week.  You do need to provide your domestic employees with workers’ compensation because your homeowners’ insurance will not cover you in the case of their accident. 

On the other hand, when you hire a professional cleaning company like Classmaids, your risks are covered.  Classmaids is fully licensed, bonded and insured. We invest in workers’ compensation, general liability, and bonding to offer 100% protection to our clients.

Does thinking about house cleaning cause you stress? It does for a lot of people, especially people with kids at home. There are many areas to clean, and kids have a tendency to play with (or at least take out) a lot of toys during the day, all of which should be cleaned and wiped down periodically.

The importance of using non-toxic cleaners in the home is often understated. Whether you use a home cleaning service like Classmaids, have a helping hand or clean your house yourself, it is important to think about what types of cleaning products are being used in your home, especially on the toys that your children play with (and sometimes put in their mouths) frequently.

Fortunately, there are plenty of non-toxic ways to clean your children's toys. The first step to keeping your home free of toxins is to wipe your items down with hot water.  Using very hot water is a natural way to help kill any germs and toxins that may be lurking on your children's toys.

After this step, it can be tempting to grab a sanitizing cleaning wipe to quickly wipe down the toys. However, if the cleaning wipes you have on hand have chemicals in them, they could be causing more harm than good. These types of commercial cleaning products often have great claims, but when you read the ingredients, they contain chemicals that you do not want your kids to be exposed to.

In order to avoid harsh chemicals, reach for a non-toxic wipe. When picking out cleaning supplies, look for items that are biodegradable and "green" products that are friendly for the environment. At Classmaids, we use all natural non-toxic & biodegradable cleaning products powered by brands like Mrs. Meyer’s, Seventh Generation and Method. Remember to avoid the tempting "commercial cleaning products" that may contain harmful chemicals – these non-toxic brands can be just as powerful cleaning agents without all the “bad stuff” around your children.

If you use a home cleaning service or maid service, remember to ask in advance which types of products they use --- and if they’re using brands you’re not comfortable with, ask them to use the products you prefer in your home. Some services offer green options in different cleaning packages.

For toys that aren’t used often and are nonporous, you can try using a vinegar solution and set them out in the sun for a short time period. You may also try boiling hard toys or throwing them in the dishwasher for a quick cleaning.

Using the right cleaning methods can help you keep your children’s toys clean, in a non-toxic and safe way.  To make your life a little easier, Classmaids can help get your home sparkly clean! For more information and to book your Classmaids cleaning, visit www.classmaids.com.

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Happy Earth Day!

All around the world Earth Day is celebrated on April 22nd to raise awareness to the importance of protecting our environment. This year, the main goal is to end plastic pollution.

A few disturbing facts about plastic pollution:

  • We send 8 million tons of plastic into the ocean every year. That’s the equivalent of dumping a garbage truck full of plastic every single minute.
  • The trash and waste dumped into the ocean washes up on beaches and coastal areas and affects everything in between. Every marine animal is affected by man-made chemicals released in the water.
  • There is an island of garbage twice the size of Texas inside the Pacific Ocean: the North Pacific Gyre off the coast of California is the largest oceanic garbage site in the entire world. There, the number of floating plastic pieces outnumbers total marine life six to one in the immediate vicinity.

Environmental sustainability and waste reduction are among Classmaids core business values, which we implement in our everyday work:

  • We use only non-toxic biodegradable cleaning products, which are safe for our customers, their pets and the Earth.
  • Most of our supplies are recyclable and biodegradable.
  • We implement sustainable cleaning techniques, which help save cleaning products, energy and water.
  • We recycle all plastic and other containers.
  • We use a Zero Waste Box from Terra Cycle for recycling disposable gloves.
  • We advise our customers on recycling options available in their buildings and the area.

Our long-term goal is to benefit society by driving sustainability innovation across the cleaning industry.

In an effort to be eco-friendly, Classmaids has established collaboration with TerraCycle, an innovative company, which can recycle virtually anything.  Their website is www.terracycle.com/en-US/

TerraCycle provides access to free national recycling programs for some hard-to-recycle items.  They also sell unique Zero Waste Boxes, in which one can dispose of materials that are considered nonrecyclable like chip bags, coffee capsules, water filters, etc. 

Classmaids offers to our customers a unique 15% discount code for all TerraCycle products, which can be used on TerraCycle's e-commerce website.