Utility Carts

Real Estate

Home Uses for Utility Carts

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We are no strangers to Utility Carts. We see them everywhere, especially used by businesses that handle a lot of deliveries. What most people do not realize is that they can also be used at home! There is not just one type of cart out there, which certainly opens up a completely new range of possibilities. You will be surprised at how much space you will save in your home with these handy tools. (more…)

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Real Estate

Mice gnawing on dried fish, an unapproved George Foreman grill close Philly restaurants

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It’s the holiday season and you have to expect everyone to indulge, including mice. There were reports of the little critters in snack bags, gnawing on dried fish and roaming the candy aisles. Couple those citations with expired bacon, dented cans, dirty deli slicers, an unapproved George Foreman grill and you have this week’s Clean Plates report.

Philadelphia Department of Public Health inspectors temporarily closed 23 restaurants, markets and stores between Nov. 16 and Nov. 30.

The inspectors visit nearly 1,000 eateries and food retailers every two weeks. Every inspection is generally regarded as a snapshot in time, and not necessarily a reflection of day-to-day conditions. Most violations were corrected immediately in the presence of an inspector.

To look up reports on a specific Philadelphia restaurant, or a Montgomery, Bucks or Gloucester County eatery, visit philly.com/cleanplates.

A list of eateries that were closed, or are facing court dates, follows:

Clean Plates, the location of Gary’s Market IGA, 7938 Dungan Road.

Gary’s Market IGA
7938 Dungan Rd.
24 violations, 9 serious
Mice feces seen on shelving throughout retail area; the market had a heavy mouse infestation in the rear storage and retail areas; visible evidence of insect or rodent contaminated foods in the candy aisle; dead flying insects were found in the refrigerated display case outside of bakery area and ice cream display freezer; swollen cartons of beverages were found in the refrigerated beverage case; medication was stored inside cabinet with utensils and equipment; employee did not wash hands prior to putting on gloves; employee in deli area was seen handling ready-to-eat food with bare hands; deli slicers are not properly washed, rinsed and sanitized; duck tape was used on floor tiles in the retail area; the facility did not have a garbage grinder.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Nov. 30.

Khan, Zakir (KSK)/ID# V00756/Roamer
Non-permanent location
6 violations, 5 serious
Employee did not follow proper hand washing procedures; soap was not available at the handwash sink in the cart; paper towel dispenser empty; no cold water available at handwash sink; raw chicken was stored above raw beef, pork, fish; food including falafel and chicken not held at required temperature.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 30.

Lee Fresh Mart
5206 Filbert St.
1 violation
No hot water.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 29.

Barone How Ya Doin’ Deli
1515 Porter St.
11 violations, 2 serious
Expired bacon was found in the cold holding unit; a domestic freezer found in the kitchen area; the cold-holding unit in the kitchen area was used for equipment storage; the food facility operator shall be the person-in-charge or shall designate a person-in-charge and shall ensure they present at the food facility during all hours of operation.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 29.

John’s Breakfast and Lunch
119 E Chelten Ave.
18 violations, 1 serious
Live roaches, mouse droppings and flies were found throughout the facility including a live roach inside the refrigerator where food was stored, under single-use styrofoam containers and on shelving; uncovered deli meat observed inside the reach-in freezer; heavy grease accumulation found on shelving under cooking equipment; the food establishment did not have a garbage grinder; there were several defective and non-operating equipment found including ice machines, rusted shelving, prep units, and a refrigerator; the establishment was storing, distributing, holding for service, using in preparation of menu items or serving food items containing artificial trans fat.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected on Nov. 29.

Mattei Family Pizza
1260 Point Breeze
8 violations, 3 serious
No hot water; potentially hazardous ready-to-eat food held for more than 48 hours, located in the basement refrigerator, was not date marked; prepackaged food was not labeled properly with the name of product, ingredient statement, net weight, distributed by statement and/or nutritional facts.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 28.

Clean Plates, the location of Mozz Pizza and Steaks, 1901 E Washington Lane

Mozz Pizza & Steaks
1901 E Washington Lane
14 violations, 2 serious
Dented cans observed on shelving in the rear storage area; mouse droppings found; grease residue/debris found on the exterior surfaces of cooking equipment; and on hood filters of the exhaust hood system; no garbage disposal for grindable food waste; employees observed not wearing or wearing ineffective hair restraints, such as nets, hats, or beard restraints.
The establishment was ordered closed by the Court of Common Pleas. As a result, this establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 28.

B & B International Foods
6510 Woodland Ave.
20 violations, 9 serious
Bugs found in repackaged grains; evidence of rodent gnawed packages of dried fish; dead roaches seen in the basement and front shelving; mouse feces found on shelving, floors, containers; the person in charge was not able to provide documentation that foods were from an approved source; a handwash sink was not found; the three-basin sink was clogged with standing water.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Nov. 28.

Kim’s Sunray Market
805 E Chelten Ave.
17 violations, 7 serious
Dead roaches, debris, and dust found on the interior surfaces of refrigerators and display case; mouse droppings seen on shelving and countertop in the retail, food prep, and storage areas and on the floors throughout the facility; heavy dust, dirt, and debris accumulation found on the floors throughout the facility; shoes and tools observed stored under the display case in the food prep area; no designated employee area for belongings.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 28

Koh Kong Market
2233 S 7th St.
3 violations, none serious
The facility was using small camping gas stoves for food preparation; food including sausages, lemon grass and chicken not held at proper temperatures; the facility was undergoing extensive renovations but plans have not been submitted to the Office of Food Protection; alteration or construction began prior to plan submission and approval.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 27.

Mosel International Market
6534 Woodland Ave.
18 violations, 7 serious
Mouse feces were found on retail shelving and floor perimeters; flies found throughout the market; sewage found pooled in the basement; dead and live cockroaches were found in the three-basin sink, the prep area and the floor; old food residue, dishes and utensils were found in the handwash sink; soap was not available at the handwash sink in the toilet room; the paper towel dispenser was empty at the handwash sink in the prep area; walls, floors, ceilings were not in good condition; orange juice was not held at a proper temperature.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 27.

Clean Plates, the location of John’s Diner 119 E Chelten Avenue.

John’s Diner
119 E Chelten Ave.
32 violaitions, 7 serious
A dead mouse, dirt, and debris were found under equipment in the food prep area; mouse droppings found on the cutting board under slicer; a cat and cat food were found in the rear storage areas; grease seen dripping from grease trap over grill with the potential to contaminate food on the flat top grill; stagnant water observed on the floors in the warewashing area; heavy grease accumulation and food debris was found on the floors, walls, and ceilings in the food prep area; food including milk, turkey bacon and eggs, held at improper temperatures; the establishment did not have a garbage grinder; the establishment was storing, distributing, holding for service, using in preparation of menu items or serving food items containing artificial trans fat; alteration or construction began prior to plan submission and approval.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Nov. 27.

Las Primas
5562 Chancellor St.
14 violations, 6 serious
Potentially hazardous food including sausages were held at improper temperatures, hot water not available for proper hand washing; rock salt and automotive fluids were stored above or on the same shelf with food, equipment, and/or single service articles in the retail area; front door was propped open; a coffee spoon was stored in standing water; a brown liquid was found at the bottom of a deli case; old mice droppings were found on shelves near the counter; a trash receptacle was needed to prevent the attraction of vermin.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 21.

Subway
9475 E Roosevelt Blvd.
5 violations, 1 serious
Toilet rooms were inoperable due to plumbing issues; food including beef and chicken held at improper temperatures; the handwash sink in the warewashing area was blocked by boxes and not accessible at all times for employee use; cleaning was needed in rear storage area, shelves in the front prep area, and floors inside of the walk-in boxes.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 21.

Senior Care of Northeast
9475 Roosevelt Blvd.
6 violations, 3 serious
Utensils were improperly wash, rinsed and sanitized; proper hand washing was not available for seniors attending daycare facility and was not available for staffing in food prep area; food service employees were not able to use facility restroom, portable toilet units were provided for food service workers and seniors attending facility; flooring was in need of cleaning in rear pantry area; the food facility operator shall be the person in charge or shall designate a person-in-charge and shall ensure that a person-in-charge is present at the food facility during all hours of operation at time of inspection.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 21.

Nrgize Juice Cafe LLC
701 E Cathedral Rd.
14 violations, 4 serious
There was no person with a Philadelphia Food Safety Certificate present; employees were eating in the food prep area as evidenced by observed partially consumed food on the counter; children were found in the front prep area and removed; there were no soap or paper towels available at the handwash sink in the warewash area; cut fruit, potentially hazardous ready-to-eat food, prepared in the food facility and held for more than 48 hours, were found in the refrigerator and prep refrigerator, without date marks; an unapproved George Foreman Grill, coffee maker, and toaster were found; a built-up yellow residue was seen in the basins of the warewash sink.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 20.
Under The ‘C’
1701 JFK Blvd.
6 violations, 2 serious
Food including fish, eggs, crabs and rice were not held at required temperatures; the hot water at the handsink did not reach proper temperatures; uncovered food was found in the refrigerators; utensils were stored in stagnant water; a general floor cleaning was needed.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the Department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 20.

The location of Lancaster Food And Gas and Krispy Krunchy Chicken at 4626 Lancaster Avenue.

Lancaster Food And Gas
4626 Lancaster Ave.
11 violations, 2 serious
A gnawed bag of snacks was found in the retail area; mouse feces were found in snack boxes in retail area; grinder/handsink drain was improperly plumbed to sewer, and the drain put in was without proper fittings; slow drain found in rear hand/grinder sink; drain at ice machine goes to floor and not to adjacent floor drain; the garbage grinder does not work; there was no exhaust fan or window in the employee toilet room; there were no paper towels found in the employee toilet.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Nov. 18.

Krispy Krunchy Chicken
4626 Lancaster Ave.
15 violations, 7 serious
Mouse droppings found on the food prep table and at the bottom of food prep table; visible insect activity; holes found in the walls; employees were not wearing or were wearing ineffective hair restraints, such as nets, hats, or beard restraints; a general cleaning was needed throughout the facility including the three-basin sink; single use utensils were dirty and not properly inverted; the handwashing sink in the rear food prep area was not functioning.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Nov. 16.

Personal Touch Early Learning Center, Inc.
40 E Chelten Ave.
10 violations, 2 serious
Loose rodent bait observed in basement and food prep areas; bug spray that was not labeled by the manufacturer for food facility usage was found in the food prep and classroom storage areas; visible physical evidence of flies were found throughout facility; packets and open pesticides were found on the basement floor; a classroom refrigerator lacked proper temperature measuring device; the facility lacks adequate lighting in the storage areas.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Nov. 17.

China House
6600 N 18th St.
24 violations, 5 serious
Mouse droppings found throughout establishment; noodles, rice, egg roll and potentially hazardous ready-to-eat foods, prepared in the food facility and held for more than 48 hours, were found in the walk-in refrigeration unit without proper date markings; open bait found in the food prep area; grease accumulation found on sides of cooking equipment; the handwash sink in the food prep area was blocked by dishes and not accessible at all times for employee use; food was not protected from contamination and found uncovered in the walk-in refrigeration unit and chest freezer; bulk food ingredient storage containers were not labeled with the common name of the food; dust and food debris observed on floor in the food prep area.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected Nov. 17.

The location of Pizzalissimo and Grill on 746 Snyder Avenue.

Pizzalissimo and Grill
746 Snyder Ave.
14 violations, 1 serious
Access to the basement was not provided; a live mouse was seen in the rear storage room and mouse feces were found on shelving and floor perimeters; fruit flies were seen in food preparation area; a dead and live roach were found on food prep refrigerator surfaces; food employees were not wearing or were wearing ineffective hair restraints, such as nets, hats, or beard restraints; there were no single use gloves found; shelves throughout the establishment were found with debris and mouse feces; the ventilation unit inside toilet room was not working.
Due to imminent health hazards observed during this inspection, the establishment was issued a Cease Operations Order and must discontinue food operations immediately. The establishment could not operate for a minimum of 48 hours. Inspected on Nov. 17.

Auntie Anne’s Kiosk
1568 Franklin Mills Circle
6 violations, 1 serious
Shelf, floor, and wall cleaning needed. Food debris was seen in the reach-in freezer; pipes and utility lines were not properly sealed; a food safety person was not present.
Due to conditions observed during the inspection, the establishment agreed to discontinue food operations and voluntarily close until it is approved by the department to resume operations. Inspected Nov. 16.

Eateries scheduled for hearing in the Court of Common Pleas on Dec. 5.
The Hut Bar, 6718 GREENWAY AVE; W & M Deli Grocery, 3300 N MUTTER ST.

Eateries scheduled for hearing in the Court of Common Pleas on Dec. 7.
Haverford Mini Market Inc, 5450 HAVERFORD AVE.; Los Vargas Mini Market, 4171 N FAIRHILL ST.; B.B.Q. Town, 7711 OGONTZ AVE.; Beijing Garden Li LLC, 5911 RIDGE AVE.

To look up reports on a specific Philadelphia restaurant, or a Montgomery, Bucks or Gloucester County eatery, visit philly.com/cleanplates.

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The Best Kitchen Carts on Amazon, According to Hyperenthusiastic Reviewers

Real Estate

The Best Kitchen Carts on Amazon, According to Hyperenthusiastic Reviewers

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Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed (that’s four-to-five-star reviews and lots of ‘em) products and single out the most convincing. While we’ve written about storage bins, trash cans, chefs’ favorite pots and pans, essential baking tools, and food-storage containers, we’ve gone deep here on the best kitchen carts you can find on Amazon. (Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.)

4.3 stars, 829 reviews

“This is a fantastic product and very rewarding to assemble. The cart is solid butcher-block wood everywhere and will last for many years without warping. Fits great in apartment-style, small kitchens. The doors open to provide a easy storage volume for large pans (e.g., woks). There is no front vertical center support between the doors, so large items fit easily. Because of the solid construction, a center support is not needed. The top shelf is also very solid and removable. This cart is nothing like the furniture in popular discounts stores that have plastic-laminate surfaces and use pressed composite woods that eventually warp.”

4.6 stars, 194 reviews

“Overall, we are still extremely happy with this cart, it really helps with the counter space in our small kitchen. For the price, it’s hard to find a cart of this size that’s better — these types of carts tend to get very expensive with the larger sizes or models with more drawers and shelves. The build quality is quite nice, it has supports in all the right places, so it feels very solid, I wouldn’t be afraid to stand on it (though I haven’t tried that!). After a year of abuse, the finish has held up nicely, and when cleaned looks as good as when I put it together. I like that the surfaces are all flat and right-angled, this makes it even easier to clean, though makes it a little less stylish to some, I suppose.”

4.6 stars, 446 reviews

“I love this cart. It added much-needed space and shelving to my little kitchen. It wasn’t incredibly difficult to assemble, and so far it’s proving sturdy. I’ve had it for over a year now, and it’s been through a move. It locks into place, so it won’t move out from under you. It’s a little wobbly, so I don’t suggest doing too much heavy-duty cutting, but all of the features are great. I love the pullout cutting board and the knife block. The railing on the one side is perfect for hanging a dish towel, too!”

4.6 stars, 344 reviews

“I wish I’d bought this years ago! Makes our small kitchen look jazzier and is a very convenient and nice-looking granite cutting board! Provides additional storage and counter space for those short on both. It did take me about an hour and a half to put together, but to be fair it might be much faster for someone else! The instructions could be a bit clearer, but overall I’m very happy.”

4.7 stars, 162 reviews

“Ah, rental life, where counter space is scarce. We needed more room for food prep and storage in our new condo. This cart is excellent! It took about ten minutes to assemble. Butcher block is good-quality wood and removes easily for washing. Storage shelves are heavy-duty and hold a juicer, toaster, blender, and coffeemaker all on one shelf! Easy to wheel around, very useful for ‘entertaining’ as another serving area. Overall, I love it, and it was worth the price hands down.”

4.5 stars, 2,373 reviews

“I love this baker’s rack! It is easy to assemble, lightweight enough to adjust its location when it’s empty, and the cutting board is removable for easy cleaning. When I used my mixer on it, there was only a light vibration to the entire rack, and I feel like it’s very sturdy. This has been the perfect solution for my baking needs.”

4.7 stars, 353 reviews

“I moved to an insanely small apartment. There is very little counter space, so if I left six items on it, the whole area looked messy. This fit my needs perfectly. It is very sturdy and attractive. I put out the things I use most frequently on the top shelf (coffee, spoons I use for cooking, spices, a stack of tea towels, etc.), then the bottom shelf I used for pots and pans. That really helped the messy look on the counter. Assembling things like this scares me, so I had a [friend’s] husband come over, and he had it put together in 30 minutes with no swearing. I’m thrilled with it. My kitchen looks nice and tidy.”

4.6 stars, 954 reviews

“New kitchen had no counter space directly next to stove, so I purchased this small cart to fit the open space and add an extra surface. This was a good budget-friendly cart, and I liked how the stainless steel would give it a nice, clean ‘utility’ look in my kitchen. The cart fit my space nicely and is a great extra surface (being stainless, we don’t really have to worry much about setting hot things down on it), and it even gave us some bonus storage space with the basket (which can slide in and out) and the shelf below. The cart was very easy to assemble and gave the option to add casters at the bottom or not.”

4.4 stars, 767 reviews

“I love this cart. It is great-looking, was easy to put together, and has plenty of storage. The drawer is perfect for trivets and other miscellaneous items that get lost in my kitchen drawers. The top is very sturdy and is easy to keep clean. The towel holder on the right side is a nice touch, too. It can easily be moved if necessary … but it also has locks to keep it in place. The dark-brown color looks great in my apartment, too. I am super happy with this cart and wish I hadn’t waited so long to buy it.”

4.4 stars, 274 reviews

“Key functional item in my kitchen. It is narrower than I imagined, but the dimensions are true. The drawers and doors work great. The magnet clasp keeps the doors shut. I did follow advice I found and placed two additional wheels in the middle of the island. The additional wheels increased the stability of the island. I cut up veggies on it all the time with no wobbling!”

4.2 stars, 126 reviews

“The family and I are loving this kitchen island! It’s super sturdy and very pretty!! My 20-something son put it together with only a few swear words, and it took him just a couple of hours. I got the silver S hooks (also on Amazon), and we hang our pots and pans underneath, which turned out very handy. Even with the pans hanging there, I can still fit a couple of appliances on the bottom shelf, such as my Crock-Pot and stand mixer. This turned out to be larger than many kitchen islands I have seen online, but for the quality and sheer gorgeous factor, I’m glad I got it! The large countertop space gives us lots of extra room to prepare and eat meals. Everyone has just had to learn to walk around it!”

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best dining room decor items, coffee makers, knife sets, Japanese coffee brewer, charcoal water filter, and drinking glasses for water and more. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

Every editorial product is independently selected. If you buy something through our links, New York may earn an affiliate commission.

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  • about 1 month ago

Real Estate

Utility Carts And Other Storage Solutions

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If you run an office building or a warehouse, you’ll want to make sure you keep things properly organized. Having the right kinds of storage solutions in place can save you a lot of headaches. Here are a few things you should know about utility carts and storage solutions.

Utility Carts Come In Many Sizes

Not all utility carts are identical. In fact, you can find carts in all kinds of sizes, from small to large. Whether you’re looking for storage solutions for a large space or something that will work in a cramped office, you should be able to find a cart that’s the right size for you.

Durable Storage Is Important

When you’re purchasing storage supplies, you shouldn’t buy something just because it is cheap. You should look for storage solutions that will hold up well. Focusing on durability will allow you to keep everything well protected for as long as you need to.

Find Storage Solutions That Are Designed To Work Together

A lot of storage equipment isn’t intended to be used on its own. Instead, a great deal of equipment is designed to be used with other pieces of equipment. Instead of buying a standalone piece of equipment, why not purchase some sort of equipment set? These kinds of storage solutions can be incredibly efficient.

Think About Security

If you are going to be storing valuables, you’ll need a storage solution that provides an ample amount of protection. Security should definitely be something that you should consider.

As people often like to say, you can stay organized if you have a place for everything. If your current storage methods aren’t meeting your needs, it’s time for you to start looking at new solutions. See if you can find some effective and efficient storage options.

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Real Estate

Homework: Decluttering Doesn’t Have to Mean Living with Less

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Your home will feel less cluttered if you can keep at least 80 percent of the surfaces clear. (Cindy Apple Photography for Model Remodel)

Q: How do I make my home look more like the spaces I see in magazines? What’s the trick?

A: Clear off those countertops! Decluttering is the No. 1 way to make any space look more beautiful.

The idea of living with less may be attractive to you, but that’s not necessarily what this article is about. Sure, a deep clean and trip to your local donation center with unused items is a good idea, but the overwhelming feeling in your home might not be from the amount of “stuff” inside. On the contrary, it might just be the way it’s organized and stored.

Here are some ways to declutter your home so it can be as beautiful as the photos you see in those magazines.

It is a consideration on almost every job we do: How do we add more storage and get things off the counter? Browse the before-and-after photos on contractors’ sites. The thing they all have in common? The latter photos will be significantly more organized and clutter-free. Lotion, makeup and perfumes on the countertops: limited to one or two. Bath toys: organized in a storage cabinet. Kitchen mixers, toasters and blenders: stored neatly away.

The 80/20 rule

A great goal is to keep at least 80 percent of the surfaces in your home clear. It’s not about hiding the items in your home, but prioritizing counter space for those items that are used the most or will add to the aesthetic of the room. Everything else? Find a practical and purposeful place to put it.

Great storage solutions abound. If you’re thinking about a remodel, make sure storage is one of your primary considerations. The worst thing you can do is consider this too late; or, if you’re simply looking to give your home a makeover, to purchase storage containers without knowing what you’ll use them for.

Be purposeful about storage. What are the things in your home that don’t need to be out in the open? Your list may include blankets, toiletries, clothing and kitchen utensils. Take a seat in your home and look around. The best way to organize is to make a list of the things you see lying around that aren’t visually pleasing or could be stored away.

Controlling the kitchen

Your most-used kitchen utensils, such as spatulas and spoons, can be hung on the wall or placed in a large, tall jar on the countertop. The rest can go in a drawer near your stovetop. It’s never too late to rearrange some drawer contents in your kitchen.

Cutting boards are high-use items, so it’s popular to create a special spot in the kitchen just for these when remodeling. A vertical, open shelf next to the oven in the lower cabinets is a natural place. Likewise, you can purchase a hanging or mounted in-cabinet cutting board holder to put in a lower cabinet.

Spice racks are the most versatile organization solution in your kitchen. They come in all shapes and sizes and really do make a difference. Find racks that fit in a drawer, pull out of a cabinet or spin on a countertop Lazy Susan.

There’s no easy way to store food on open shelving and have it look nice. Instead, put your pantry to good use or designate some cabinets just for food. Open shelving can display uniform plates, cups and other stackable items.

Consider buying an island that has extra cabinets below for concealed storage instead of an open shelving one. Buy an extra standalone pantry with doors instead of a wire utility cart.

In the bathroom, trays can be your best friend. Place items on a tray and designate that area as the space to put toiletries. It will prevent bottles and containers from migrating around and give you a finite space to use. Drawer trays work too, and can be found in just about any home store.

Free up space around the sink with wall-mounted holders or open shelving. If you choose open shelving, place a few loose items on the shelves and group the rest into canisters. The grouping of items and consolidation of space will keep your shelves looking clutter-free while allowing them to hold more items.

Our favorite bathroom upgrade? An in-drawer outlet for bathroom gadgets. You can keep your hair dryer plugged in and ready to use every day inside your vanity. Other plug-in items, such as electric toothbrush chargers and hairstyling tools, can be stored in the same drawer to keep messy cords out of sight.

Regardless of which storage solutions you choose, a clutter-free home can be yours. Follow the 80/20 rule and your countertops will thank you. If you’re remodeling, know that a little extra thought up front will help you make organization a habit in your home for years to come.

Jason Legat is the owner of Model Remodel and a member of the Master Builders Association (MBA) of King and Snohomish Counties, and HomeWork is the group’s weekly column. If you have a home improvement, remodeling or residential homebuilding question you’d like answered by one of the MBA’s more than 2,800 members, write to homework@mbaks.com.

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  • about 1 month ago

Real Estate

10 Ways to Create Storage in a Small Rental Kitchen

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If you’re a renter with a small kitchen, all those storage hacks you see on Pinterest probably drive you up a wall. (A small wall, but still, a wall.) So many of the so-called brilliant storage ideas out there involve ripping something out, putting something in, or both — not exactly making them renter-friendly.

All of these ideas? They’re all totally temporary and sure to help you get your security deposit back at the end of your lease.

1. Use shelf risers.

They can basically double your storage space! And they’re not super expensive, so you can load up your cabinets. Use them to store extra plates, bowls, glasses, and more.

2. Flip a wine crate.

Turned on its side, a wine crate or other sturdy wooden box creates instant shelving. Put it on the end of a counter against a wall and you have a new, stylish cabinet.

3. Steal space from an adjoining room.

This New York City kitchen is more of an alcove than a real kitchen. But it works, thanks to bonus storage in the form of a small shelf in the neighboring entryway.

4. Roll out a utility cart.

A little wheeled utility cart can work wonders to give you a little more space. You can tuck it under a countertop or hide it inside a lesser-used closet when you need the floor space more than the stuff.

5. Hang a pegboard.

A pegboard creates about as much damage to your wall as hanging a picture. But unlike a picture, you can use a pegboard to create a whole array of storage for anything from utensils to pots and pans. Just be be prepared to spackle the holes before you move.

6. Hang a curtain rod.

Even fewer holes! Use a curtain rod to hang your utensils (with S hooks or just hooked on) to keep them handy, and you’ll find yourself freeing up a drawer or two.

7. Use adhesive hooks.

Or go with this option, which creates even fewer (none!) holes. Use adhesive wall-mount hooks (like Command Hooks) to hang up potholders, scrubbers, and other tools that would otherwise take up space on the counter or in a drawer.

8. Screw hooks under shelves and cabinets.

Let’s be honest — your landlord is never going to notice that you put hooks under the cabinets! Use these to hang up mugs, utensils, and more. We won’t tell if you don’t!

9. Use the sides of your cabinets.

There are tons of smart storage ideas in this rental kitchen. (If you have the wall space, try pushing an island up against it, for example!) Our favorite idea here: Putting the sides of your cabinets to good use. It’s the perfect spot to put a magnetic knife block or hang some pots and tools.

10. Use the tippy tops of cabinets.

It’s true: You can store stuff on the tops of your cabinets without making them look cluttered or messy. This stylish rental kitchen (it got a makeover for just $300!) is proof.

How do you make extra storage space in your rental kitchen?

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  • about 1 month ago

Real Estate

Do You Really Need a Bar Cart?

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The short answer is: probably.

Does the average adult need a bar cart? Do I need a bar cart? This is a question I spent four months mulling over as I slowly decorated my now-very-handsome apartment. (Never mind asking whether I am an average adult.) On the one hand, there are other places you can keep your bottles of alcohol, such as the cupboard, or perhaps a side table. A bar cart can come off as a bit showy, like, look at me, someone who has definitely had sex, and definitely knows how to make at least one cocktail without spilling shit all over myself. (more…)

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  • 2 months ago

Real Estate

Pardon Our Interruption…

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As you were browsing http://www.utilityproducts.com something about your browser made us think you were a bot. There are a few reasons this might happen:

You’re a power user moving through this website with super-human speed. You’ve disabled JavaScript in your web browser. A third-party browser plugin, such as Ghostery or NoScript, is preventing JavaScript from running. Additional information is available in this support article. (more…)

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Real Estate

4-Tier Slim Storage Utility Cart

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This 4-Tier Slim Storage Utility Cart is perfect for that gap by the fridge. Or use it in the laundry room or anywhere you need extra storage. Good deal with FREE shipping.

4-Tier Gap Kitchen Storage Slim Slide Out Tower Rack Shelf with Wheels, Utility Trolley Organization Serving Cart on Casters (more…)

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  • 3 months ago

Real Estate

Donated Golf Carts Help Those Helping the Homeless Living Along the Santa Ana River

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Andrew Kosch of the nonprofit City Net drives a recently donated utility cart through the riverbed homeless encampment in Anaheim on Monday, August 28, 2017. (Photo by Drew A. Kelley, Contributing Photographer)

Brandy Barnett appreciated the lift. (more…)

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  • 3 months ago

Real Estate

Awesome Homes That Sold Around Miami

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CORAL GABLES, FL — There were no shortage of homes that sold around the Miami area for the week ending Aug. 19. We consulted our partner organization, Realtor.com, to find out what people bought. You can find even more great homes on Realtor.com.

Here are five homes that sold in the past week. Click on any of the photos to bring up more information. (more…)

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  • 4 months ago