Tonawanda News — While winter may have been extended by a bit this year, Western New Yorkers are finally starting to see the sun peek out from behind the clouds as temperatures slowly make their way up above the frozen mark.
We're moments away from throwing open those windows — if not yet literally, then at least proverbially — and getting rid of all the dust and clutter that has accumulated over the frigid season.
When it comes to spring cleaning, Jamie Shaner, owner of Home Solutions of Western New York, said there are different aspects to consider.
"There's washing the windows and turning the couch cushions," she said. "Then there's the behind-the-scenes cleaning" that involves cleaning out all the excess filling your cupboards, drawers, closets, basement and garage.
Shaner's company provides help to customers who want to get their lives organized, whether financially or physically.
"Most of homes have basements and garages and for some reason we're just a culture that, because we have the space, we think we have to fill it," she said. "That's where we get into trouble."
Shaner offers a few rules of thumb to consider when deciding whether you should keep, donate or throw out that old sweater or pair of eyeglasses that have been sitting around for ages.
• Garage sales are beneficial only if you think you'll make enough money to make it worth your time. Consider how many hours you'll put into organizing, advertising, setting up and dismantling the sale. Is all of that worth the money you expect to earn?
• Be careful using Craigslist to sell or give away your items. Remember you are inviting strangers into your home or to have contact with you.
• Not all clothing follows the if-you-haven't-worn-it-in-a-year-throw-it-out rule.