Evelyn Doane - William Raveis Real Estate - Cape Cod



Posted by Evelyn Doane on 6/24/2018

When you stop and think about all the details you have to take care of as a homeowner, it sometimes feels like you're running a business! That's especially true if have to coordinate everything from family doctor appointments to home remodeling projects.

Many people get so caught up in their daily routines and responsibilities that they lose sight of all the things they actually can handle, do overcome, and can accomplish!

No matter how organized and motivated you are, though, problems, oversights, and blunders do occasionally happen. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to minimize the chances of making mistakes or forgetting something important.

Don't depend on your memory. Writing and revising lists of daily priorities, appointments, and reminders can be a valuable strategy for organizing your day. Mobile devices also have scheduling capabilities, note taking apps, and calendar features that can help you stay on track. When you commit a priority to writing or set up a reminder on your cell phone or tablet, you're increasing the probability that you'll remember appointments, fulfill obligations, and keep household projects moving forward.

Start with small steps: One challenge many people struggle with is motivating themselves to tackle an important project around the house. For example, let's say you desperately need to paint a room, straighten out a closet, or organize your filing system. Whether you're "too busy to turn around" or just plain unmotivated, it can be difficult to get started on a home improvement or organization project!

While you may have a few pet theories on why you can't seem to get started on a project, it might boil down to Newton's Laws of Motion. Back in the 17th century, physicist Isaac Newton stated that a stationary object (one that's not moving) tends to stay out of motion -- unless it's acted on by an outside force! Granted, he may not have been talking specifically about human beings, but the same principle seems to apply. Whether you're trying to get out of a warm, comfortable bed in the morning or take advantage of your new gym membership, it's often difficult to nudge yourself into action when you're in a state of rest. It's a problem we all have at one time or another.

The solution is to start small and build momentum as you go. Taking small steps at first, such as buying the supplies you need for a home improvement project, can often provide the extra push you need to get started. Telling a friend or family member that you're going to accomplish something this weekend can also help propel you forward.

If you need help in remembering things, consider buying a couple notebooks for writing daily lists. If you view yourself as a "technophobe," make it your mission to learn how to use the calendar app on your phone or tablet.

In addition to old-fashioned schedule reminders like wall calendars, appointment books, and desk calendars, you can even send yourself reminders via email or enlist the help of friends, family, or colleagues to remember appointments and priorities.

However, regardless of how many memory devices you use to organize your schedule or tackle household projects, keep in mind the motto of U.S. President Harry S. Truman: "The buck stops here!"





Posted by Evelyn Doane on 3/26/2017

Whether youíre an empty nester, or just feel that you have too much ďstuffĒ in your house, many people can stand to downsize. If you are planning on moving to a smaller home or if you want to get your familyís amount of ďtreasuresĒ reduced, itís not an easy task. We can promise that it will be a worthwhile one! 


Just how can you downsize when you have a houseful of stuff? Thereís a few rules of thumb that you should follow in order to keep your downsizing process streamlined and stress-free.


Donít Try To Do Everything At Once


The more stuff that you have, the more overwhelming your project will be. You may want to be very efficient and try to get everything cleaned out as soon as possible. Itís probably not feasible to get it all done at once. Youíll stress yourself out both physically and emotionally. Think of a realistic time table for you based on how much time you hope to clean over a certain period and how much stuff you actually have. Itís best if you plan to tackle one room and one area at a time.   


If Youíre Helping Someone Else, Ask Yes Or No Questions


When youíre in the process of moving or even just getting rid of stuff, the people youíre helping will thank you if youíre direct. Ask yes or no questions about things as the whether itís being donated, tossed, or saved. This will be especially helpful when working with children and older people.  



Presort Items


You can also expedite the process of cleaning things just by sorting them out. Keep piles of clothing, kitchen items, tools and toys separate. This process works best with items that are numerous like clothing. Once the items are separated, they may be much easier to tackle.               


Know How Much Space You Have


If your goal is to empty out one closet in your home, then you know that space will be unavailable for storage. If youíre moving from an 8 room house to 5 room condo, you may have a bit more purging to do! Just remember that thereís no point in hanging onto things that wonít be used or that have no place to be stored.


Donít Have An Undecided Pile


Donít start an undecided pile of stuff. It will just end up back in your pool of things that will need to be cleaned out at a later time. Make sure that you make a clear decision on what youíre doing with each item in the process of sorting. One exception to this rule is paperwork. If you need to sort through a lot of it, place it in a box to go through at another time, preferably once the rest of the house is settled. 


If you focus on sorting and seeing what your most used items are, downsizing should be a less overwhelming task. Once you clean, you can focus on more important things like moving!





Posted by Evelyn Doane on 2/5/2017

Is your garage overflowing with odds and ends leaving no room for its intended purpose - storing your car? Then you are in the same boat as many other homeowners. Garages can be such a tempting to place to hide stuff that doesnít have a place, after all out of sight out of mind. If you are ready to clean up your garage to make things easier to find and maybe even finally fit your car inside of it again keep reading. Start by clearing out your garage. Go through everything and sort items into giveaway/sell, toss and keep piles. Get rid of anything that your children have outgrown, you havenít used in years or household chemicals that have since expired (be sure to responsibly dispose of these). This step can be a weekend project in itself so donít worry if you donít have the organized garage you envisioned before Monday. When you have settled on what will be staying in your garage sort the remaining items into categories. Typical garage storage usually contains categories like seasonal items, tools, and sports equipment. When reorganizing you will want to make sure everything stays organized. You can do this by giving everything an assigned place and preferably a clearly labeled one. When possible assign items their places in a way where they will be off the floor. This prevents clutter from building up and forces you to give everything a home throughout the process and in the future. When you have emptied out your garage and organized your remaining items into categories you will have given yourself a clean slate to work with. Set yourself up for future success by investing in shelving units, large plastics bins, small glass jars and maybe even a label maker. Slat board, peg board, and track based organizational systems are other great ways to keep items off the floor, organize smaller items and hang up tools. Garages are also a great place to utilize ceiling space by installing overhead storage. Since you have already decided on categories and what is staying you should have a good idea of what kind of storage solution will work best for your garage. Once youíve created a storage system in your garage with assigned places for each item you should have that coveted room to park your vehicles inside again! Take the time to choose where you will be parking your vehicle and hang a tennis ball from a string to signal when you are parked in the correct place. The ball should gently bump the windshield when you are in the right spot. When choosing your new parking spot allow for space to walk between the vehicle and the back wall as well as the side walls. If you have a two car garage ensure that there is plenty of room between the two cars so that when doors are opened it doesnít risk bumping the other car. Depending on how cluttered your garage is organizing it may be longer than a weekend project. However, by investing the time into creating a smart storage system you will be able to use your garage not only easily but also stress-free. Happy cleaning!





Posted by Evelyn Doane on 5/10/2015

Ever feel like things pile up in your home? Maybe on the kitchen table or counter, your dresser, or nightstand? Well a little organization can turn your home from full of clutter to nice and neat without having to throw everything away. Here are a few things to keep in mind when improving the organization of your home.

  1. Everything needs a place - if every item in your home has a place to be stored, you are less likely to just drop it anywhere. If an item shouldn't be sitting on your counter top, then it should have a home.
  2. Maximize your storage space - If you feel like you are lacking storage space, think again. A closet with no shelves can't store as much, and those spaces you aren't using, like under your bed, can be transformed into storage places too. Setting up the places that you have to store items so they can be fully used is key to making sure everything can be stored.
  3. Label - If you can find where something goes, you are more likely to put it there. Having boxes stacked into a closet, and not knowing what's in there, doesn't help you organize. But having storage containers, shelves, drawers, etc that are labeled for easy finding does.
  4. Shelves and containers - Having the right assortment of storage is key. Not everything is stored well on a shelf and the same goes for in a container. Make sure you have a variety of what you need; everything from small to large containers, baskets, drawers, shelves and hooks. You want to make sure that where you are putting something can be easily found and accessed.
  5. Get into the routine - Old habits die hard so when you first organize you might find you still leave things hanging around. Getting into the new habit of putting things away can take time but an easy way to start is to set aside 10-15 minutes at the end of each day to put everything where it belongs. Before you know it, you will be doing it throughout the day!
Regardless of whether you go all out on organization, or just do a little, you will find that with a couple of changes you can enjoy your space much more. And without all the clutter that has been left behind!