Frequently Asked Questions

was last modified: January 31st, 2018 by Leah Stanton

How much time will my organizing project take?

The length of the project is largely determined by you – how quickly you are able to make decisions about what to keep and what to let go of, how often you can meet with me, and so on. I understand that everyone has certain parameters on time, finances and energy. Even though I cannot give you a specific time estimate, there are many steps we can take to ensure that your project is accomplished as quickly and economically as possible.

One way to minimize your expense is to meet for a consultation and then implement many of the suggested changes on your own. Within 2-3 hours, we can assess your space, needs, goals, and obstacles, and begin to give you a plan of action. You are then free to work on your own, using my guidance.

Many clients choose to work with me in a combination of ways. They may benefit from hands-on assistance, but also want to work on their own on set assignments between sessions. That gives them the ongoing guidance and support that they want, while helping move the process along quickly.

Finally, I know that decluttering and organizing can require a lot of energy. If that is daunting to you, we can help you work in a way that helps keep your energy and motivation high. During our assessment, I will identify key problem areas — those spaces that are most impacting your functioning, finances, or feeling of peace in your home. Tackling those areas will provide energy and allow you to move with greater ease to the next step of your organizing project.

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Why will getting organized work this time?

Lasting change requires support, nurturing, and guidance. This is the foundation of our work together. I will break down the overwhelming tasks into manageable pieces, then guide you through each work session with compassion, expertise, and humor. My attention to helping you build new ways of relating to your space and “stuff” leads to long-term change and success.

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How much does a professional organizer cost?

This is a great question, but a difficult one to answer broadly. I charge by the hour, and make every effort to help us work together efficiently. I balance this with a sensitivity to the emotional nature of going through belongings and making challenging decisions.

I am very flexible in working with clients, so there are various models that might work for your unique needs. Some clients want me there throughout the entire process for support and guidance. Others prefer a combination of hands-on help coupled with independent assignments between meetings. Still others want a few hours of my time to create a plan and answer some specific questions. Any of these can work well, and offer access to organizing services while respecting different budget needs.

I encourage you to contact me so we can talk about your needs, goals, and budget. There is no cost or obligation for a phone call, so I hope you will reach out!

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Is working with Serene Spaces similar to what I see on organizing shows on TV?

Behind-the-scenes crew, great editing, and consistently good weather lay the foundation for these organizing shows. Designed to hold your attention, inspire you, and show you some of the newest organizing gadgets, the shows are very successful at what they do. They offer a quick fix – a brand new space is only one or two days. For some clients, this is possible. Maybe one room of your house has been overrun with clutter and you are looking for one long session to tackle it and get back on track. For most clients, this is not the case. They have years of clutter filling up multiple spaces in their home. In these situations, a long-term solution is needed.

Serene Spaces takes this long-term approach. I see this work as a process, not an event. Throughout our time together, you are more important than your “stuff.” I always respect and value your needs and what is important to you. If you are comfortable with a gentle, personalized, and effective approach to change, then I am the right fit for you.

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What do I need to do to get ready for the first visit?

People often feel a little trepidation before our first visit. This is normal and understandable. You are letting me into your personal space, and it can be difficult to let someone else see “all the stuff.”

Please be assured that I see beyond the clutter and disorganization, and look to what is most important – you. So, leave the things the way they are. Instead, imagine how wonderful your space is about to become.

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I live with other people who also contribute to the lack of organization and clutter in my life.  How do I get them to change and cooperate?

Quite simply, you don’t! I work with many families of all sizes and styles and find that changes in behavior and attitude ultimately must come from within. I can, however, provide guidance, support and specific techniques to help you minimize any resistance to change, and get the entire family on board.

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Do you haul all the clutter and stuff away?

I do not. There are businesses that specialize in the removal of clutter of all kinds. If you will not be doing the removal yourself, I highly recommend that you utilize their services.

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Do you install shelving or special storage components for closets?

Decluttering and organizing your closets, along with space and storage planning are areas I specialize in. I do not, however, handle the installation of new closet systems. I am happy to recommend resources for systems and installation.

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