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I live in Ballwin and I need help in de-cluttering our home. We have inherited two sets of home items due to our parents both dying recently. MY husband is a hoarder and I am needing to go through decide what to keep, box and store some, take some to donate and some to trash. Is that something you could help with? Anne

17. October 2018

On, we do have many listed businesses that provide hoarding cleaning services that can help you sort through your cluttered home and decide what to do with your accumulated objects.  These professionals always take a respectful approach to hoarding cleaning projects and they will involve you and your husband in the decision-making process when it comes to deciding what to do with each object.  If your husband does struggle with hoarding, it is important for you to talk to your husband before calling for professional help so that he agrees to this decision.  There are also professional counselors and other resources available to help those affected by hoarding.

Unfortunately, we do not currently have a business listed in the Ballwin, MO area that provides hoarding cleaning services.  Search for professional hoarding cleaning services in your area and reach out to at least a couple of different services before making your decision.  You should choose a service provider that not only has the equipment to help you clean and disinfect your home if necessary, but also takes a respectful approach.  Hoarding is a mental disorder and it is very important to approach those who struggle with hoarding with a sense of compassion and respect.  A true professional should understand this and take a respectful approach to the project.  They should also make sure to involve you and your husband in the decision-making process.  After all, the items being dealt with belong to you and your husband, not the cleaning professionals.

Hello! The granite countertops is damaged -chipped- at the edge of the sink: It’s not that small, but around thumb nail size. I’m wondering whether this can be repaired, and how much does it cost to repair? Or if I want to replace it with the new granite coutnertops, how much would it cost? It’s a small kitchen. I need this info asap as I need to respond to seller’s agent in 3 hours.Appreciate if you could reply soon. Contact me through email:

17. October 2018

Granite countertops are quite durable, but they are still vulnerable to chips and scratches on the surface.  If your granite countertop is chipped at the edge, this can be repaired, and there are two different ways you can go about repairing it; calling a professional or DIY repair.

One way to have the chip in your granite repaired is to call a natural stone professional that provides repair services for natural stone surfaces like granite.  They have access to epoxies, color toners, and other supplies from natural stone vendors that allow them to repair surface damage like chips and color match to your countertop so that the repaired area matches seamlessly.  The cost of these professional services depends on the extent of the damage.  If your granite countertop just has a thumbnail sized chip on its edge, the cost of the repair will likely be on the low end between $100 and $200.

There are two different DIY methods you can do to repair the chip in your granite countertop.  One method is to buy a DIY granite epoxy resin repair kit and follow the directions to repair the chip yourself.  It seems like the chip in your countertop is small enough to be repaired with one of these kits.  These kits can cost anywhere from $35 up to $100.

The most cost-effective DIY method is to fix the chip using thick super glue of medium viscosity.  This method will only cost you the price of the glue and fine grit sandpaper.  Follow these steps when using this method:

  • Clean the area around the chip with acetone or nail polish remover and make sure the area is dry.
  • If the granite is dark colored and the chip caused the surrounding area to lighten, you can darken the area with a dark permanent marker.
  • Tape off the area around the chip and fill the chip with glue so that the glue is either flush with the rest of the surface or slightly above it. Leave the glue to cure.
  • Once the glue has cured, remove the tape and use a razor blade to shave off the excess glue so that it takes the right shape. You can also use high grit sandpaper for a better sheen.

As far as replacement costs, this will depend on the type of granite you choose, the thickness of the granite, and the exact dimensions of your counter space.  New granite will generally cost you between $45 and $200 per square foot.

We have honed granite in our kitchen. The upkeep is getting to us and we’re looking at the benefits of polished. Is there a treatment or process for the honed granite which would make the upkeep easier?

18. September 2018

Honed granite is typically chosen for kitchens because the matte appearance is a nice, classy change from the high gloss appearance of polished granite.  This type of granite is produced by stopping the finishing process early which prevents the stone from becoming shiny.  The one major drawback of this is that it leaves the pores on the surface of the stone wide open which makes it vulnerable to stains.  This is why the upkeep for honed granite is much more involved than polished granite.

Honed granite surfaces can become discolored from dust, grease, handprints, and food and drink, especially acidic beverages like fruit juice and alcohol which can also etch the granite surface.  The best way to protect your honed granite surface from stains is to seal it with a natural stone sealer.  You should use a penetrating sealer that will get into the open pores to help fight against dirt buildup and stains.  While stone sealers can be effective in protecting honed granite, these surfaces still need to be cleaned regularly and the sealer needs to be reapplied every 3 months or so.

Regularly cleaning and sealing honed granite surfaces is the best you can do to keep them in good condition.  There is no real shortcut you can take to reduce the upkeep of honed granite, unless you apply a new finish to the surface which would give it a whole new appearance.

In this case, you should consider if the look of honed granite is worth the upkeep.  Polished granite is much easier to maintain because the surface is less porous, stain resistant, and it does not require sealing nearly as often.  If you are still deciding between keeping your honed granite counters or switching to polished granite, this blog can help:

Yesterday I put down a marble hearth – bianca venitino – today there are grayish blotches on either end. I spilled nothiing on the marble. Where did they come from, what can I do to remove them? thanks

20. July 2018

It sounds like the stains on your marble hearth are one of two types of stain; either a water stain or an etch mark.  Both types of stains look similar, but they are different and have different causes.  Even if you spilled nothing on the marble, it is possible for a water stain to have occurred from condensation or humidity, and for etching to have occurred from any contact with something acidic, such as cleaners.  If you placed an aerosol can of a cleaner on the marble surface and the can had any type of residue on the outside, this could cause etching.

Water spots are actually water deposits as they occur when water on the surface of the marble evaporates and leaves behind deposits such as calcium and magnesium.  These hard water stains appear as white or gray stains on the surface.  You can identify a water stain by touching it with your fingers and if the stain feels like it is raised off the surface, it is likely a water stain.

Etch marks are not stains on the surface, they are more like indentations that can have the same appearance as a water stain.  These occur when an acidic material makes contact with the surface and dissolves away some of the marble.  Etch marks are rough to the touch and the indentations go below the surface.  If the affected area feels like it has indentations that go below the surface, then you likely have etch marks.

If you believe you have a water stain, use one of these methods to remove the stain:

  • Marble Cleaner: There are marble cleaning products available that you can use to remove water stains. Make sure you get the right type of cleaner for your bianca venatino marble.  If you are unsure which cleaner will work best, you can contact the manufacturer to ask.  Follow the directions on the cleaner and use a clean towel to rub away the stain.
  • Fine Steel Wool: For this method, make sure you use fine steel wool grade #0000 to avoid scratching the surface. Rub the steel wool over the stain in a circular pattern until it is removed.

If the affected area is most likely covered in etch marks, treat them with these steps:

  • Clean the area surrounding the etch marks to remove moisture or dirt.
  • Add a polishing powder over the stain, make sure you get the right type of polishing powder for your marble.
  • Spray the powder with water 2-3 times until the powder is damp.
  • Spray a towel with water 2-3 times and use the towel to rub the powder over the etch marks. Rub quickly for between 30 and 60 seconds and be careful not to apply too much pressure to avoid scratching the marble.  This should rub the marks away.
  • After rubbing out the etch marks, clean the area with a marble cleaner and wipe the surface with a clean towel. Make sure you dry the area after the powder and other debris is removed.

If you are not sure which type of stain you are dealing with, you can try both of these cleaning methods and see which one works, or contact a professional for an opinion.

There is an acquaintance of mine who is having problems. He is not related to us, but he has no family and is not associated with any church. He had a plumbing problem, and the plumber would not go into his house to conduct the repair. His house is so dirty and filled with junk that he is unable by himself to handle the clean out. He is eighty-seven years old, and has only Social Security for income. I know that we will have to provide the financial support for this action to take place. The house is a 1960’s ranch style, 3 br, 2 ba. It is about 1600 sq ft. There is only a few personal valuables that will have to be stored. Most contents will be disposed of, and replaced from Goodwill (or similar source). We are looking for a ROM estimate to see what financing we will need to collect up. My email address is w******** The house is in Kennesaw; we live about two miles away.

9. July 2018

It is tough to give even a basic estimate for clutter cleaning in a home because there are so many factors that affect the cost.  These factors include the following:

  • Type and size of the home
  • Location of the home
  • Amount of materials that need to be disposed
  • Presence of biohazard materials
  • Functionality of systems including plumbing, heat, electricity etc.
  • Method of disposal
  • Supplies needed to clean and sanitize the home
  • Number of workers needed
  • Amount of time needed to finish the project

Providing an estimate for clutter cleaning just on size is tricky because two houses of the same size may have different levels and types of clutter.  You can at least expect the cleaning cost of a house to be in the thousands, an average sized home can cost as much as $10,000 to clean.  The most accurate way to get an estimate is to have someone assess the condition of the property in person.  Contact local professionals to inspect the property and provide you with an estimate so you know how much money you need to save.

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