As Beka sits in the cookware-strewn floor and goes through the deepest reaches of the bottom kitchen cabinets for a client, she asks thoughtful questions:
“How often do you use this?”
“You have another one of these — do you need them both?’
“Are you attached to this?”
The answers to those questions determine where the object in question will go — within easy reach, out of sight on a higher shelf, or in one of the two big trash bags beside her: one for “give away” and the other for “throw way”.
As she makes her way through the kitchen, she is attentive the client’s lifestyle and everyday needs.
It’s all part of her process so that when the culling part is over, she knows exactly how to put the whole thing back together in the most efficient and functional way.
In fewer than two months, Beka McCormick has seen her professional organizing and home cleaning business, McCormick Maid, take off.
She’s always love organization, even as a teenager, she recalls.
“I’ve been doing this for myself and family about 5ish years but I just started doing it for people outside of family last month,” she explains. “I’ve had so many people asked me to come the more before and after pictures that I show.”
The pictures are admittedly gratifying. She posts photos of piled-high closets turned into perfect rows of clothes and bare floors.
“I would say people’s biggest problem areas are closets and cabinets, because that’s just a catch-all. It’s easy when you’re cleaning to just throw stuff in and not look at it.”
Beka, the mother of a 6-year old, a toddler, and a baby, is no stranger to just how quickly a house can become out of control. But she offers her main tips to keep things in check:
- Pick up as you go
- Clean things as you notice them. “If you open and a cabinet and you realize there are crumbs or dust, clean it right then instead of thinking you’ll come back later.” (“You won’t,” she advises.)
- If you haven’t used it in the past year, get rid of it.
- Eliminate duplicates. “Some things, I get it: you might need two large pots if you’re cooking a lot of food at once. But most things are unnecessary. You don’t need two sets of measuring cups. You don’t need two mixers.”
- Keep things off the floor, and off the counters. “It makes the house look so much cleaner just to have those bare.”
“Most people just want me to do a de-clutter of their whole house, and we just work room by room,” she says of her process, adding that she also offers house cleaning. “But I enjoy the de-cluttering and organizing part way more than the cleaning part. So I’m trying to promote that more. This is definitely my zone.”
She says either way, it’s satisfying work to look back on the difference.
“It makes people happy and it helps people,” she said.