FAQs

Who do you work with?

I work with busy professionals, overwhelmed parents, people who are moving/downsizing/combining homes, empty nesters, seniors, people who work from home and anyone experiencing a life transition or generally feeling overwhelmed.

How much do you charge?

As a veteran organizer, my hourly rates are fairly priced within the range of other equally experienced Professional Organizers in the Washington, DC area. The unique nature of each client’s circumstances makes it difficult to quote a total cost for an organizing job in advance. Please contact me to discuss your particular needs and budget.  

Do you offer free consultations?

I offer a FREE 15-minute phone call or virtual Zoom chat where we can discuss your needs.  You may wish to send pictures or video of the spaces for us to go over during the chat. I am also pleased to offer FREE, 30-minute in-home consultations (when possible) with no further obligation. Both of these opportunities allow us to decide whether you and I are a good match.  

How do I know which organizer I should hire?

I suggest that when you interview Professional Organizers you seriously consider the number of years of experience the organizer has, as well as how you feel you will get along with the organizer (not just who has the cheapest rate). You can usually determine your compatibility via a short phone or Zoom conversation or during the in-home consultation. Always make sure that your organizer holds liability insurance and is a member of the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO).  NAPO members are always receiving new education and training and operate under a strong Code of Ethics.

What about working during COVID-19?  Do you offer Virtual Organizing?

Yes, I am pleased to offer virtual organizing via Zoom for those who would prefer to work that way.  However, please note that this method is not well-suited for all situations. Let's discuss this further during our initial phone call. I work with clients in person when guidance from the CDC and local authorities deems it acceptable.

Do I need to be there while you do the organizing?

You will receive the greatest benefit from my hands-on help with sorting, purging and organizing because I can transfer these skills to you rather than just magically transforming your space in your absence.

How long will it take me to get my space organized?

No two spaces, projects or circumstances are the same so it is almost impossible to quote you an exact number of hours in advance. Any estimates I give are based upon my experience with similar projects, the information that is available and evident at the time of the initial consultation and the client’s ability to participate with me during the project. Disruptions by children, pets, visitors and your phone will slow us down.

What hours are you available?

I generally work between 9:00am-6:00pm Monday-Friday.  Weekend hours and availability varies.

I tire easily…will we have to work all day?

Definitely not! I prefer to work in 3 hour blocks of time (or just 1 hour when working virtually). Any less time does not accomplish much and any longer will burn out many clients (especially if it involves a lot of paperwork). We can set a schedule that is good for your energy level. I can also leave "homework" for you if you are motivated to work on your own between our sessions.

Should I go out and buy containers and supplies before you arrive?

No, please don’t! Let's sort through your items first and purge what you don’t need. Only then will we know what’s left to containerize. I try to use things you already have around the house before asking you to invest in new containers. But I'm very familiar with available products for any job and am happy to suggest and purchase the best containers for your needs, should they be necessary...with no up-charge for this service!

Should I clean up my space before you come for the initial consultation?

No need to! I'm not a guest. Seeing your space “as is” helps me make an accurate needs assessment.

Are you going to make me get rid of all of my treasures?

No, I don't "make" you get rid of anything. We will work together to establish priorities and goals and it's my job to help you stay true to those as you make decisions.

Are you licensed and insured?

I hold a business license in Washington, DC.  I take great care in the handling of my Client’s belongings and hold liability insurance to protect us both in the case of accidental damage to your property.  You should hold homeowners or renters insurance for your items as well.

Are you going to make me feel ashamed of my mess?

Absolutely not! Most clients already feel embarrassed about their predicament and judgment is not going to help contribute to their success in getting organized. I consider the emotional style of my work as gentle, but firm.

What are the health benefits of getting organized?

Clutter overstimulates the brain and makes you less productive. Left untreated, clutter can cause long-term stress and perhaps even other health problems. I can help you regain control, allowing you to create physical and emotional balance in your home and life.

How is working with you better than working with a friend or family member?

Sometimes well-meaning friends or family can make us feel ashamed, judge us, convince us not to part with something that we really should ("You can't donate that vase you never use - our late Aunt Jane would be mad!"), distract us from our work or suddenly become unavailable to help us in the middle of the project, leaving us feeling stranded.  Experienced Professional Organizers have the skills to help you get the job done quickly, efficiently and without shame, while maintaining confidentiality.

I'm sure my situation will be the very worst case you've ever seen!

Probably not!  But if for any reason I do not feel qualified to assist you with your project, I will do my best to help you find another Professional Organizer who can.

 

What if I decide to cancel our appointment last-minute?

While I understand that emergencies do happen, I will require a cancellation fee in the event that you must cancel our appointment with less than 24-hours notice.

What forms of payment do you accept?

Personal checks and credit cards via Paypal are accepted.  Payment is due at the end of each session.

Can I purchase a gift certificate for someone?

Look at it this way: would you give your overweight family member a gift card for a personal trainer if they hadn't already expressed an interest in working with one? I suggest that you only go this route if your intended recipient has already indicated a desire for the services of a Professional Organizer. If not, giving them a link to our site and making sure s/he is open to the idea is a highly encouraged first step. Once they have made the decision to move forward, you and I can discuss payment options.

Do you work with Hoarders?

I do not personally work with hoarders, but I am happy to put you in contact with qualified and well-trained Professional Organizers who do.

Experienced Professional Organizer serving the Washington DC, Northern Virginia and Maryland region 

including Arlington, Alexandria, Capitol Hill, Fairfax, Falls Church, McLean, Navy Yard,

Oxon Hill, Fort Washington and Clinton

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Clutter Doctor does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age,

national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status.

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