The holidays were just us this year - me and Charles. No relatives, no neighbors, no guests, no one. So then how did the house turn into a world-class mess?

Here's how: when folks come over, I'm forced to clean. No visitors, no cleaning. Over the past months and months and months with the two of us stuck inside, I've done my best to keep things tidy. But as this dusty and disorganized year drew to a close, I was getting by with a lick and a promise - tossing clutter in closets just to clear the rooms. Dust bunnies romped through the hallways. The top of the stove looked like an explosion in a spaghetti house. I was absolutely overwhelmed.

So, I made a decision - we're getting a cleaning plan. We're scrubbing this house from top to bottom and keeping our house sparkling clean from here on out.

So I googled "most reliable name in housecleaning" and up popped Handy, an app you can use to book a professional cleaner. They connect you to cleaning professionals in your area. You can sign up for monthly, bi-weekly, or weekly plans, and scheduling is super flexible with booking availability 7 days a week from 7am-11pm. Plus, the app even lets you track a cleaning while it's in progress.

With the Handy app, you can leave special instructions and even add on extra services such as laundry, cleaning interior windows, inside fridges and stoves, and even deep cleanings!

This all sounded amazing but then I thought, who's doing the laundry and the cleaning? Are Handy's cleaners reliable?

Then I learned Handy does a background check and vets each of the Cleaning Pros booked through their app. You can also read reviews and see a Pro's rating before you book. And with a Handy plan, you can even request the same Pro if there's someone you really like. A pro booked through Handy can become a steady and welcome part of the household routine.

And this being the era we live in, I was pleased and relieved to learn that Handy prioritizes the health and safety of the professionals and customers who use their platform by implementing the Handy Safety Standard. Not only are Pros required to wear face coverings during bookings, but they must also complete daily in-app checkups to confirm they are in good health before they claim a booking.

Handy also shares the CDC's health and safety guidelines and best practices to all customers and professionals and even provides guidance on the use of EPA-approved cleaning products.

This all made me feel more confident about trying Handy, but I was still a tad sticker-shy - how much would all this cost?

I was thrilled to see that Handy's cleaning prices are truly affordable for us. And I especially appreciate how transparent they are. They give you a fixed, upfront price before you book so there's no negotiating and you don't have to deal with cash. They make the whole process as clear, open, and worry-free as possible. And it looks super easy to set up an appointment and you can even reschedule if things change.

So, to start the New Year off right, I'm signing up for a cleaning plan with Handy. Since none of us is going anywhere anytime soon, I'm thinking a deep-deep-deep cleaning and a weekly plan would be a good start. Toys and books and laundry and papers and pizza boxes pile up mighty quickly these days.

I'm just glad we don't have any pets - dust bunnies don't count! But I bet Handy could handle that if we needed them to.

With Handy to rescue, I'm looking forward to a clean start for 2021.

Update: Handy is offering a limited time discount for our readers! Follow this link today to get a special offer on your first time cleaning plan.

So, you tell me - is 4pm too early to break out the wine? This place is a zoo. My kids are pretty much homeschooling themselves. I set up my WFH office on the kitchen table so I don't have to listen to them no-schooling in their bedrooms. And on top of that I'm supposed to cook dinner, keep the place clean and organized, and be the best mom ever?

Every weekend, I vow that the kids and I'll get motivated enough to clean the kitchen, bathrooms, and common areas. Kiara's bedroom is a sea of clothes. Don't talk to me about Carl's room - absolute nightmare.

This was running through my mind when one of my mom-friends called and asked what was going on. So I just blurted it out - my house is a wreck, can I come live with you guys?

We laughed and she suggested I look into Handy, which she uses to book home cleaning services and highly recommends. So I pulled up their page on my phone. Handy's website is simple to navigate, informative, with a 24/7 customer service team if I have any questions. They'll connect me with a local, 1st rate cleaning Professional who can clean my house weekly, bi-weekly or monthly depending how often I need a cleaner to come.

Try Handy Today!
Limited Time Offer, For Our Readers:
Get Your First Home Cleaning For Just $19

I felt confident booking through Handy knowing the Pros on the platform are vetted and I could read reviews to request the Pro I wanted to work with. They put each Pro through background check screenings that use credential verification technology to ensure Handy's the most reliable way to book a cleaning in the biz.

Plus, if I ever need to move a scheduled appointment, Handy's app makes it super-easy to tweak my calendar, or specify particular cleaning directions.

I wanted to see how much this would cost, so I used Handy's app to view Pros in my area. I entered the number of rooms, bathrooms, and asked for a deep clean. I tossed in extras like inside the fridge, inside the oven, even laundry and their upfront rates and pricing seem really affordable.

Besides, if I'm ever dissatisfied with the quality of a service, Handy's Happiness Guarantee ensures that they'll work to make it right.

But what really calmed my fears about scheduling a cleaning during the outbreak, is that I can cancel or reschedule bookings if I feel sick, or if I'm concerned about my kids or the Handy Pro's wellbeing. Wow. This is such good news. I'm going to book a cleaning for early next week.

Then I immediately started strategizing about how my family could stay at a safe distance while our Cleaning Pro puts my house in order. We could garden. Or the kids could garden, while I sip a well-deserved glass of wine on our gazebo and thoroughly unwind.

We'll see how it goes, but I'm thinking with Handy, it'll be a slam dunk.

Update: Handy's Black Friday sale is happening now! For a limited time follow this link to get a special offer on a cleaning plan!

Get Your First Home Cleaning For Just $19

Valid only for new customers who book and pay through the Handy platform. Offer expires 12/1/2020. Customer must sign up for a minimum term cleaning plan that will be charged on a recurring basis. Early plan cancellation will result in a $99 fee. Bookings can be cancelled up to 24 hours in advance. Price excludes Handy's Trust & Support fee and is only valid for the first 3 hours booked; additional services and time are extra. Offer cannot be applied retroactively or combined with other offer(s). Visit handy.com/terms for full terms.

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Handy Is The Queen Of Organization

As one of the most popular ways to book a cleaning service nationwide, I thought I'd take a look at some reviews

The one thing I still have to figure out over and over again as an adult is that life can be pretty overwhelming. Sometimes you need to find help!

So when my two kids and my husband and I were all quarantined and working under one roof, all heck broke loose. The laundry pile and the dishes pile were in a race to the ceiling.

I really could've used a cleaning service, but obviously that wasn't happening at the time.1

Just when I was getting desperate, a friend told me she loved Handy for its ease of booking and the quality cleaners on the platform. I doubted a service could check every cleaner - turns out they take extensive measures to ensure both Pros and their customers are safe.

Handy background-checks every single Pro booked through their platform, so you have the peace of mind that they've vetted the Pros who come to your home. There's also the Handy Safety Standard, which includes a number of steps to help foster a safe environment for the customers and cleaning professionals who use Handy. As part of these measures, Handy has provided face coverings to all professionals to wear during bookings and require professionals to complete a daily in-app checkup confirming that they are not experiencing symptoms before they can claim jobs.

As one of the most popular ways to book a cleaning service nationwide, I thought I'd take a look at some reviews, and was surprised by what I read.

"The Queen of Organization"

"Seriously amazing help! My house is utter chaos so she was super patient and did what she could with what I gave her. She is the queen of organization! She's coming back next Wednesday and my husband is so thrilled as well and we plan on having her back often!" - Nicole R.

"I was so impressed"

"Catalina is the best cleaner. She is very professional, friendly...very thorough. The things on the handy list, she does. I was so impressed. Keep up the good work, you're the best!!!!🤓🤓🤓🤓🤓💕" - Kaytrine H.

"I would have [my cleaner] again in a heartbeat!"

"Priscilla was not only flexible, but she was personable and extremely helpful! My house was super clean when she left, and I was speechless. She was easy to work with and was a delight to talk to. I would have her again in a heartbeat!" - Janey C. L.

"Made my messy apartment sparkle"

"Brian O. somehow managed to make my very messy apartment sparkle. I highly recommend him!" - Jennifer

"Totally made my week"

"Jessica was wonderful! On time, thorough, kind and just generally amazing. Totally made my week...working with Jessica S. was fantastic and I highly recommend her if you're in the Dayton/Cincinnati area!" - Stacy H.

"A Miracle Worker"

"Paige is a miracle worker. She took my filthy house and turned it into a clean, tidy, beautiful home fit for a magazine cover. Paige has a true gift. She is also sweet as can be and a very, very hard worker. I highly recommend her." - Angela D.

"A wonderful surprise"

"Works surprisingly well! What a wonderful surprise to discover a gig service broker for house cleaning, etc. The website is very easy, the choices are clear, and the cleaner Handy sent, Patti, was on time and efficient. I like the app---I can cancel, postpone, etc." - Louise L.

"A hit!"

"Cleaning gift was a hit!! My son and daughter in law were very pleased with Marlon. He was so polite and worked so hard. He did an excellent job! I had booked the appointment as a gift and they were happy with and want to have another booking and they want Marlon to be their professional cleaner." - Shelly P.

I knew it could be hit or miss, but I decided to take a leap. You'll just have to stay tuned for my review! I'm signing up for a 6-month 1x a month service, but you can also do weekly or biweekly and 3-month or 12-month packages. You can also cut back or expand on your plan at any time, and sometimes you can even schedule a cleaning for as soon as the next day.

Handy can be a savior, so if you're on the fence, you need to give it a try.

Update: The folks at Handy are extending a Special offer to our readers. For a limited time follow this link to get a special offer on a cleaning plan!

Everytime I visit my sister, I feel terrible about my apartment because her house is always spotless. The last time I was there, I went to grab a beer and couldn't believe how clean the inside of her fridge was. It was absolutely sparkling! I know she's a busy woman, so I had to ask her - how do you manage to keep everything so clean? Like, even the fridge? How can she keep a whole house so clean when I struggle to keep my apartment in line?

She laughed and told me she uses an app called Handy. Handy is the leading platform for booking a house cleaning - and other household services - that connects you with local cleaning professionals. My sister's cleaning "Pro" is scheduled to come every 2 weeks to clean the bathroom, and wipe down the fridge, oven, and stove. My sister does most of the housework, but gets help with a few extra chores she can never find time to do herself.

My apartment is a mess. I can't keep up with the basics, even easy tasks like dusting and sweeping. Some weeks, I forget to take out the garbage on time! I thought maybe Handy could help me out, but I was a bit apprehensive about whether it was safe to let a stranger into my home. I decided to check out their site anyway.

I read that before a professional can be matched with jobs through Handy, the company uses ID verification technology and a background screeningthat dates back several years. Handy is providing Pros with safety guidance and masks and gloves that they may wear during bookings.

Handy also, of course, asks any pros who feel sick to stay home and rest, and has an in-app daily check up to validate they are feeling well in order to book jobs. I love that they have really gone the extra mile during such a challenging time for everyone.

For any issues that arise during a booking, Handy has a 24/7 Customer Service Team that will answer questions or concerns at any hour of the day. This made me feel a lot better.

Turns out, you can use Handy to book all types of cleaning services - you just have to give your Pro instructions ahead of time. You can have your home dusted, garbage and recycling disposed of, sinks and toilets sanitized, dishwasher loaded, and everything in between. For an additional fee, you can book upgraded services such as window cleanings, pet hair removal, refrigerator cleanings, and ovens.

After some consideration, I decided I'm going to try it and start with a few basics each month - garbage disposal, bathroom cleaning, and dusting the bedroom. Handy makes it super convenient. You can view ratings and read reviews from previous Handy customers, and then choose the cleaner who's best for you. Or, if you don't want to choose, Handy will match you with an available Pro who is ready to take on your job.

Plus, they have the Handy Happiness Guarantee which means if you aren't happy with the service you received they will set out another cleaner to make it right. And their customer service is open 24/7 to answer all your questions.

Handy is following all guidelines right now to keep both customers and cleaners safe and healthy. They have introduced the Handy Safety Standard, which includes a number of steps to help foster a safe environment for the customers and cleaning professionals who use Handy.

As part of this effort, Handy is providing face coverings to all professionals, professionals are carrying out daily self-certifications confirming that they are not experiencing symptoms, and all pros are receiving guidance on using EPA-approved cleaning products and following the CDC's health and safety guidelines. On top of that, for every set of masks and gloves that Handy sends to pros, they also donate one to a local hospital and they have provided financial assistance to pros who have tested positive for COVID-19.

Knowing I don't have to clean the bathroom is honestly the best news ever. I like how easy it is to organize and how flexible Handy is. No matter what type of cleaning you're looking for, there are services for anyone. I can't wait to start using Handy! If my cleanings go well, I'll probably upgrade like my sister did.

I've never been able to stay on top of my house cleaning. But with a little bit of help from Handy, I hope to keep my apartment tidy and live in a more tranquil space.

For a limited time follow this link to get a special offer on a cleaning plan!

Offer Expires In

Spring cleaning this and Spring cleaning that - I don't need a reset! My house looks just fine.

I wasn't even swayed to pick up a broom when I noticed people online posting before and after pictures of their deep cleans.

It was only when I saw my best friend thank "Handy" for her Spring Clean, that I got curious. I called her up and she told me that she'd just signed up with Handy, a site that connects you with background-checked cleaning professionals in your area.

She wanted to do a deep clean to stave off the inevitable Spring allergy season, and honestly, I could relate. I never used to get them growing up, but now I'm super sniffly come April.

She gave me the name of her Cleaning Pro that she books through Handy, but told me they all had great reviews. I said no.

It all really came down to price - it's 2020, who can afford a cleaner these days?! I just wanted to see, so I plugged in my zip code, and my plans were surprisingly affordable. I wouldn't have to rearrange anything in my budget...

I still didn't think I needed it, but my friend at least pushed me to clean out my closet. She knew I hadn't been able to close one of the doors for a long time.

Fine. I went upstairs and did a purge - the jacket with the broken zipper had to go, the robe I got from a relative that was 2 sizes too big, the ratty towel that never smelled right even after a wash, boots that were so '90's it hurt, the jeans with holes in the inner thighs - they all had to go.

Tying up the trash bag for Goodwill, I vowed that I needed to do this every year. In my closet, I could now see my favorite jeans that'd gotten balled up in the corner, my fancy white blouse I don't wear enough, and so much more.

I still thought it was silly to get a cleaner - but I couldn't get it off my mind. What else was I missing that was right in front of my face?

I started to realize there was a huge value in doing a deep clean and throwing out the stuff I don't use anymore, and you know what? I wanted to see what my home looked like dust-free. I never identified with my super clean-freak friends or television characters, but maybe they were onto something.

I don't know if I liked the idea of someone I didn't know coming into my home, but I could be there and at least introduce myself. Plus, I read Handy does background checks on all their cleaning pros, so I felt comfortable letting them into my home.

I also wouldn't get locked in to too many cleanings - I could choose weekly, biweekly, or monthly frequencies - whatever worked best for me.

That sounded nice - also, if I needed to reschedule a cleaning, I could just go to the website or app and move the day or time of the cleaning super easily.

I decided Handy was for me. I don't clean enough and no amount of shaming myself would make me clean more. I'd become too comfortable living in dirt for too long.

I never knew a professional cleaning service could be so accessible to me and my budget, but I found Handy at the right time in my life to help me do it. Spring Cleaning, here I come.

Update: The folks at Handy are extending a Special offer to our readers. For a limited time follow this link to get a special offer on a cleaning plan!