May is here and many of our local residents have left, or will be going back to their main homes all over the country and Canada. I actually get a little sad saying “good-bye until next season,” although I realize there are more year-rounder’s than ever here in the Coachella Valley. And many of us will be escaping the heat for extended vacations during hot summer months.

As a professional organizer, “the season” has always been the busiest time of the year for organizing people’s homes and small offices. Clients want to put their places in order before leaving for the summer, and it makes them feel good to think about returning to a sense of order in their home. They can jump right in and begin enjoying their time on the golf course, tennis courts, or just relaxing in their Desert home.

Whether you are leaving for the season or going on an extended vacation, I am sure you know the recommended routine you must go through when closing up your home. There is always a long list of items to accomplish to bring peace of mind, so be sure to remember these key items:

  1. Do not stop your pest control service in the summer months, please!
  2. Close or cover all drains, close all toilet seats and cover with plastic so rodents don’t creep into your home.
  3. Have your AC serviced. The condenser line needs to be clear (prevents home floods) and put in a clean filter before you leave for the summer.
  4. Make sure if you plan on turning off your water in your home that you are not also turning off the water in the yard or garden.
  5. Do not turn your thermostat off! Keep the temperature 84° or lower. Buckets of water are ineffective. You need humidity for the wood in your home and for your artwork.
  6. If possible, donate your all your food to a shelter or local friend.
  7. Bring your patio furniture into your garage for storage (no need to cover).
  8. Keep your blinds and shutters cracked for two reasons. First, it becomes so hot in the home that if you have wood blinds or shutters, they can crack if they are completely closed. Secondly, when window coverings are completely closed, everyone knows you are gone for the summer (set a light on a timer for evenings).

There are companies that will check your home once or twice a month, and it is worth looking into these services. It is important to keep an eye out for any potential problems that may arise in the hot summer months.

Happy summer to all!

Karen McElhatton is a professional organizer with Let’s Organize Now. She is a member of the National Association of Professional Organizers and can be reached at (760) 899.5444 or [email protected]

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