FAQs Frequently Asked Questions

Below are our Frequently Asked Questions but I'd be happy to talk to you about anything that's not covered or is specific to your circumstances. Please just get in touch.

What areas do you cover?
Predominantly London and surrounding areas but can travel farther afield. I’m based in SE16 (Bermondsey/Rotherhithe) and don’t charge travel fees for clients based upto 10 miles driving (eg if transporting storage solutions or charity shop donations) or upto 1hr on public transport. Please see Process & Prices page for more info on additional charges.

Beyond London we would need to discuss relevant accommodation costs.
Sounds amazing but how much will this cost me?
Please see Process & Prices page for more info on consultations, packages and additional charges.
How long do we need?
This can be akin to “how long is a piece of string” as there are a number of variables including the volume of clutter you have, the end result you desire, how attached you (or other family members) are to your belongings and the numbers of rooms you’d like to tackle.

However for most people a minimum of 3-4 hours is required to get into the swing of things and see any results. Decluttering can be physically as well as emotionally tiring so often a maximum of 8 hours of organising and decluttering in one session is enough for most client's energy levels. However I can be flexible if you’re on a roll (and our diaries permit!).

We can cap time and costs based on your budget in advance and then focus on what we can confidently achieve in a given timeframe.

Your life won’t change overnight in 1 session but it should give a spring in your step and inspire you to tackle other areas or perhaps be more decisive in other areas of your life too.
Do I need to do anything to prepare to get the most of our session(s)?
I would strongly recommend that before we commence any hands-on session you have started to programme your mind to being prepared to let go of some things and be ready to effect some changes in your home. As I’m sure you can appreciate, if I come to your house to declutter your wardrobe and you haven’t mentally prepared for me to (albeit gently) challenge you on some of your clothes or accessories then it will take more time to work through the stories and justifications behind each and every piece of clothing.

You don’t need to have physically started to do anything but do start thinking about what is important in your life right now and how you would like to feel after the decluttering and organising process.

This will help you recognise which items are serving you well, which belongings have served you in the past, but no longer add any value and which items are being kept for various what-if scenarios of the future. We can then make a bigger impact during my time with you.

Please don’t purchase any new storage containers in advance. If you have ones already in the home (including empty shoe boxes, amazon boxes, takeaway containers, ice-cream containers etc.) please gather them in one area in case we need them during the session.

There is no need to tidy up before I arrive either. In fact, it’s easier for me to see where I can best help if I see the true extent of what’s causing your clutter or stress.
Will you make me throw stuff out?
No, you are the decision-maker in what stays and what goes. I offer a different perspective to help you come to those decisions. For some people it may be that items need keeping but just not be within easy reach all year round and we can package and store things in another location (loft, garage etc). However, I will challenge you not to make that location the default verdict for too many of your belongings. Even items lurking out of sight can weigh on the subconscious mind.

I am not someone who defies a beautiful home as one that looks like a show home where there’s no sign of the inhabitants and their characteristics. We will not ‘scalp’ your home of all personal touches but we will consciously consider items for their practical and emotional worth.
Can I leave you to it while I go and do other errands or something that sounds more fun?
Not really! Sorry! Professional Organising is far more than a major spring cleaning exercise. You need to be responsible for deciding which items hold value to you and your household so you need to be onsite to do so. I am also here to establish organisational systems and storage that really work for you and we need to work together to do this. Obviously, if you need to pop out for the school run mid-session, we’ll work around that. However this is all about you taking control of your life to gain that freedom, extra time or peace of mind you feel is currently missing. That responsibility can’t be delegated if you expect to have longer term results.

As for the fun factor, I genuinely love creating usable and practical systems so hopefully I have enough infectious enthusiasm to make this as painless as possible! Some of my clients have said that without me there, they’d have given up in despair mid exercise, but that I kept us jogging along to the finish line and even laughing along the way.
Is your own home like a show home?
No - not at all! I’m not a naturally tidy person and living on my own, the brutal reality is I’m apparently the only one responsible for my mess! I often wonder who invited the “messy fairy” around (yet again!). I realised that the winning ticket in this ongoing battle was to create more order in my own home. Everything now has a rightful place and I’ve worked through various rooms in my home to make conscious decisions about what is bringing anything to my table and to remove anything that no longer serves a purpose. Now, when I realise the “messy fairy” has been in causing havoc again, it takes less than 20 minutes to resume a sense of calm and clarity again and whizz everything back to where it “lives”.
Will you judge me or tell others about my mess?
No. Professional Organisers are discreet, confidential and non-judgemental. I am also bound by the Code of Ethics being a member of APDO (the Association of Professional Declutters and Organisers, UK). We understand that in letting someone into your home you are likely to feel vulnerable and we respect that it’s a brave step you’ve made to start taking control of your chaos, however big or small it is.

Please be assured that the only context you will be referred to is anonymously; For example, in helping another client with a similar storage or organisation conundrum that we’ve already found you a great solution for. Any photos I take are with your permission and, if you agree to me including them as part of my portfolio, would be used anonymously.

I’m not claiming to be smarter, tidier or better than you in any way. You’re capable and talented in your own ways and I’m far from perfect myself! We’ll work together to ensure that your clutter and limiting beliefs no longer prevent you from seeing your own strengths. I can promise to inject that vital enthusiasm you need to get a daunting job done.
I know someone who’s a real mess! Can you declutter for them?
Good question! If the person is ready and willing to partake in a decluttering exercise then we could definitely work out a plan together. Ideally, please ask them to contact me directly to determine if we’d be a good match for working through their organisational concerns. As the process is dependent on cooperation from the client in question, it won’t work if you simply parachute me in as an intervention without any real forewarning or invitation from them. Whilst it might seem a nice gesture and you and all the surrounding family and friends might agree it’s very much needed, my presence could be offensive and upsetting to that individual. Just because you’ve judged them as in need, it doesn’t mean they would agree with your views. They could be perfectly content with their volume of stuff and how it exists around them.

If however someone has hinted heavily or asked outright for the assistance of a Professional Organiser, I do offer gift vouchers and would love to help.
Can I buy gift vouchers?
I do offer gift vouchers that can be purchased for charities, clubs and associations that may not have the funds to engage a Professional Organiser themselves. Please note: If you purchase gift vouchers for another individual or group the 100% satisfaction guarantee is not applicable. This is because they may not be as receptive to my presence as someone who’s approached me themselves. Please ensure you have thorough and honest discussions before purchasing a SortMySpace Ltd gift voucher or ask the recipient to contact me directly for a no-obligation chat. Alternatively, why not treat them to an initial Personal Consultation in the first instance to see how they feel about additional packages and the prospect of working with me?
What qualifications do you have?
I qualified from University of Kent at Canterbury with a Masters in European Management Science (German) in 2002 and have since achieved the following relevant qualifications or training courses;

  Level 1 in Creative Techniques in Designs for Interiors: Living rooms & kitchens from City & Guilds
  PTTLS: Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Sector from NCFE
  Professional Organizer Certificate from International Association of Professions Career College
  Introduction to Professional Organising from APDO Association of Professional Declutterers & Organisers
  Intermediate Professional Organising from APDO Association of Professional Declutterers & Organisers
  Fundamental Organizing & Productivity Principles & Skills and Ethics for Professional Organizers & Productivity Specialists from NAPO National Association of Professional Organizers
 
I am not a qualified therapist but the results can be very therapeutic! I genuinely believe that by consciously and mindfully clearing your physical environment, your mind gets more clarity and respite too and that makes this world a rather wonderful place to wake up to each morning!
What professional bodies do you belong to?
I am the President-Elect for APDO; the Association of Professional Declutterers and Organisers and will be stepping up to a two-year post as President from March 2018.

APDO is a not-for-profit Association, funded entirely by membership fees and income generated via their website (such as advertising for related industries), and much work is performed on a voluntary basis. Their aims are to:

  make it easy for people throughout the UK to find a professional organiser
  promote the benefits of a clutter-free, organised lifestyle
  provide a focal point for our members and offer them support to develop and grow their businesses

All APDO members subscribe to their Code of Ethics; implicitly by their active membership. As part of APDO membership, I am also registered under the Information Commissioner’s Office as a data controller (reg no A8100967) to ensure adherence to data protection laws.

I am also a member of NAPO (the National Association of Professional Organizers) in the USA whose 3500+ members provide extensive support and advice with one another.
What is your 100% satisfaction guarantee?
I am 100% committed to your personal fulfilment, development and success. If after the Personal Consultation or our first 3-hour session you feel that the Professional Organising has not moved you forward towards your goal, let me know within 24 hours and I will give you a full refund, no quibbles. I would appreciate your honest feedback to improve my service.

Please note this guarantee does not apply to recipients of gift vouchers (as detailed in the Gift Vouchers question above).

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