FAQs

We’ll try to address questions here, but if you’d like more information please get in touch via our contact page, by email, phone or social media.

  • What changes are in place because of Covid 19?
  • I’m now visiting clients in their homes (though not those who are shielding or are classed as clinically ‘vulnerable’).
    I’ll wear mask and gloves as appropriate, and you may need to wear one too, as 2 masks are better than 1. We’ll keep 2m distance wherever possible, work side by side, keep windows and doors open, tie back hair, and avoid direct contact. If either of us is symptomatic/Covid positive or has been in contact with someone who is, we’ll cancel or postpone. I’ll take full payment in advance. Please get in touch to discuss your requirements or with further questions.
  • I also offer virtual decluttering and organising sessions, which are shorter than usual and aim to give you the tools to work with your possessions more effectively. We’ll discuss new ways of thinking about your space and possessions, so you can put organising systems into place and start to make your home a place you can truly enjoy.
  • Are you Insured or part of a Professional Organisation?
  • Yes, I’m a member of APDO, the UK Association of Professional Declutterers & Organisers. I continue to add to my skills through their training sessions, annual conference and book club. I’m DBS checked and fully insured for professional indemnity and personal liability.
  • Are your services Confidential?
  • Yes. I’m registered with the ICO. The only exceptions relate to my personal safety. I don’t wear business – branded clothing and will be discreet. Everything that’s said or happens during the session won’t be shared, unless it’s anonymously, eg. ‘H said sorting into categories first really helped’.
  • Do I need to be there during a session?
  • If decluttering and organising, Yes. We’re sorting your possessions, and you choose what to keep. I don’t dispose of anything without permission. By asking how you use items I can determine how to organise the space best to suit your needs. If you’re in the flow of decluttering, I may for example sort books into categories while you carry on. For unpacking we can have a chat, then I can take care of it or we can work together.
  • Will you make me throw things away?
  • Absolutely not. This is your stuff, and what you choose to do with it is your decision. I provide help and guidance, but have no set idea of how much you ‘should’ let go. I may prompt you to examine choices, remind you of your goals, ask how you feel or point out the number of similar items you’ve chosen to keep, but the final say lies with you.
  • I’m anxious about the idea of going through and discarding things
  • It’s easy to hesitate when making a change, and it’s normal to feel anxious when starting a new project. It’s surprising how quickly clients focus and get into it though, especially when there’s a plan or goal in mind. We’ll work at your pace, one decision at a time, and adapt depending on progress. Each decision helps us move forward. It often helps to think about what’s making you nervous, visualise it and break it down into small pieces, then hopefully it’ll seem less scary and more achievable. We can work through things as they come up.
  • What if I do become upset or emotional?
  • Going through personal belongings can be hard. It’s normal to be hesitant about opening up, but I have experience working with people in emotional states. If unexpected feelings surface or you’re upset while I’m there, you decide what to do. If you need a breather and a cuppa, some time by yourself, or even to end the session there, that’s what we’ll do. A break or a chat about what you’ve found might be enough to clear the way to carry on. If you have particular worries or trigger points please let me know and we’ll plan an approach together that will suit you.
  • Can others be there to help?
  • Yes, family and friends who are on board can give support and motivation, go to the charity shop or tip, and provide child or pet care. It’s best not to have others in the room while we go through your things though, as the decisions are yours to make (and it reduces Covid risks).
  • Can children be present?
  • Ideally I’d like to have your full attention, particularly for a first session. Children (particularly young ones) can be very distracting, so it’s best to arrange childcare. If this isn’t possible that’s fine, but please be aware we’ll likely work at a slower pace and achieve less in the time.
  • What about pets?
  • If pets are around it’s best they’re kept in a room we won’t be using, or are contained. This is for their safety and ours; animals can be unpredictable, particularly when a stranger picks things up and moves around the space. Animals can knock things over when they’re not in their usual places too, and we’ll make a temporary, ordered mess while we work! Support animals are welcome as long as it’s safe.
  • Can I arrange a session for someone else?
  • Yes, but only with their permission. I need to speak with them to discuss their wishes and make sure I’m the right person to help. If you’d like to give sessions as a gift, please get in touch and I’ll send you a leaflet that you can pass on. Once they’ve agreed to a consultation and session I’ll take your payment, then arrange suitable times with them.
  • When arranging sessions for children it’s good to explain why I’ll be there, and involve them. It can be traumatic if toys are removed without their permission, so it’s best to be open about changes. It shows they’re being included and valued in the process, even if they can’t keep everything they want!
  • Can you declutter and organise with older children and teenagers?
  • Yes, the time to start good tidying habits is now. Involving children in decision making about belongings is generally a good idea; they learn for the future and can enjoy it too. A parent/guardian should be there, to keep track of where items are stored, and provide support.
  • Do you clean?
  • I’m not a cleaner, but as we remove belongings, we can quickly dust, wipe down surfaces or vacuum. We’ll use materials you have to hand. If you prefer to use the time to declutter and organise and clean things yourself later, this is fine. Sometimes I’ll wear a mask/gloves/other equipment to protect from dust etc. Please feel free to do the same.
  • Do you move furniture?
  • Yes and no. If we need to move small items, eg. an empty chest of drawers I can help you provided there’s enough space to move them safely and it’s within a room or on the same floor. If you think we’ll need to move larger furniture, why not ask friends and family to help.
  • What about Breaks?
  • Advice at the moment is to take regular breaks outside where possible if working with another person indoors, to reduce Covid transmission risks. Also, giving your brain a rest from decision-making helps speed things up and makes the experience more pleasant. We can have a cup of tea before continuing on. How often we break is up to you, but if the pace slows or we’ve had a difficult session I may suggest a quick breather.
    For full days, a lunch break isn’t chargeable but is important, and we usually take 30 minutes. I bring my own food and drinks anyway, and due to Covid advice I should eat alone and take this longer break outdoors wherever possible.
  • Before and After Photos
  • Even if you aren’t happy with the space as it is, photos provide a useful comparison and help us see what we’ve achieved. It’s surprisingly easy to forget how things were before! Often people see the end results and wish they had taken photos to document the process. This will only happen with your permission, but I advise that you allow photos to be taken. If you consent, we’ll discuss how they’re shared; only with you, or if we can post them (anonymised) online.
  • How long will I need to wait for a session?
  • It depends on your needs and my schedule, please get in touch to find a suitable time for a consultation.