Let’s face it, life can be stressful - even more so if you are living through a remodeling project, a home renovation, relocating your office, considering moving to a new home or are still fumbling through boxes from your last move. For the average homeowner, living through these experiences without feeling frustrated, overwhelmed or exhausted can seem like an impossible task.
Franklin Lifestyle spoke with A Fresh Space (AFS) founder, Liz Jenkins, to learn how the AFS team of professional organizers makes the tough task of living through a remodel, renovation or a move easier.
FRANKLIN LIFESTYLE (FL): How did A Fresh Space get its start?
LIZ JENKINS (LJ): In early 2005 I read a book on organizing and thought ‘People do this for a living? And get paid for it?’ I have been organizing my whole life. I knew my talents and strengths would lend themselves beautifully to this industry so I jumped in. In addition to organizing, AFS provides full service move management and unpacking services.
FL: What is move management?
LJ: Our highly detail-oriented team of experts manages the process of a move-in an organized and efficient manner that encompasses move prep, the move itself, and the unpacking plus everything in between. Our team is different from movers. We help declutter before the move so you are only moving what you want or need. We manage the entire move process from start to finish with move oversight, coordinating the movers and other services, plus our amazing unpacking service which includes unpacking items quickly and efficiently. The A Fresh Space move management team prides itself on helping you get there without all the stress.
FL: Tell us about the AFS team.
LJ: Almost two decades since the start of AFS, we have grown to a professional team of 25. Five team members have been working alongside me for seven to 12 years. I am proud to say our team and culture can’t be beat. Everyone steps in and everyone steps up! The feedback from our clients always includes the words 'kind', 'hard working', 'amazing', and the like. My team is truly amazing and I am blessed to have them as part of the company and as my family.
FL: How can AFS help before a move or when moving out of a home?
LJ: Specializing in relocation clients as well as local moves, the AFS process has been thoroughly refined - coordinating everything from start to finish with step-by-step guidance and support. If you are moving out of your home, AFS will sort, edit, declutter, contain and label the contents of your home. We don’t just declutter to make something pretty, we are looking down the road for the next phase of the project. If needed, we add multi-functional products that are easily transferable to your new space. We also make arrangements for clients to donate or sell furniture, donate or consign clothing and baby gear and our team of handymen can make repairs if necessary. Specialty services are our thing and our vendors can crate and pack specialty items such as art, crystal, chandeliers, pianos, pool tables and more. We even have a wine shipper! With our move oversight, our team makes sure that the process is efficient, the movers have guidance and direction, your trash isn't packed, things are labeled properly, lamps and shades arrive together, the parts for your bed remain with your bed and they even complete a final check for things often forgotten in a move like the dishwasher, dryer, etc.
FL: How can AFS help with moving into a new home?
LJ: Unlike most unpacking services, our organizing professionals meet the movers, check that everything was delivered, unpack all boxes (including disposing of packaging materials), organize, and focus on creating zones, systems, and spaces for all of your items. We have babyproofers, professional installers to hang televisions and high-end art installers. In utilizing the perfect organizing materials for every space, we make sure your house is a home in three to four days instead of three to four years. Our services allow you to settle in and live in their homes immediately with an Instagram worthy space that functions perfectly for you and your family.
FL: What other move management services do you offer?
LJ: For people staying in their homes during remodeling or renovation projects, our team steps in at the beginning to declutter spaces, handle the logistics of packing, create temporary living spaces and find creative storage solutions. Once a remodel or renovation is complete, we coordinate the move back into the new space then get everything unpacked and organized into the new space - making sure every space functions perfectly.
FL: Why is move management important? Can’t I just do it myself?
LJ: Of course, you can do it yourself, however our services allow you to focus on the important stuff - from getting kids settled in school, meeting neighbors, to starting that new job. Moving entails a lot of moving pieces and AFS move management is such a time saver for homeowners. When using our move management services, moving won’t get in the way of living your daily life!
Tips To Make Your Move Go Smoothly:
+ Make a “homeowner to transport” area for items you will need during the transition or items that you prefer to transport yourself including all of your devices (and chargers!), personal, vital and financial documents, jewelry and medications.
+ Make things clear to everyone by creating a color-coded move ‘legend’ if you have items going to different end locations.
+ Spend down your food supply by eating from your pantry/freezer/fridge as much as you can before the move.
+ Determine where you and your pets will stay during the move.
+ Be present and available to answer questions during the packing/unpacking.
+ Have lunches, water and some snacks like protein bars on-site for the movers as it keeps them on site and fueled up.
+ And finally…do a walk-through after the pack and load out! Check everything including the dishwasher, inside the oven, under sinks, the yard, attic, basement and garage.
About Liz: After nearly two decades in business, Liz is a highly regarded industry expert and a nationally sought-after guest speaker. Head to afreshspace.com to sign up for the free AFS monthly newsletter: “Doses of Inspiration, Delivered” for expert advice, additional tips, and tools for organizing your life. @afreshspace