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A Good Clean is the Secret Weapon Behind Your Property Business

Denver House Cleaning by Denver Concierge

The number of renters in the US has grown by over 7.6 million in the past decade, and an increase in renters brings a more competitive market, as landlords are fighting to fill their properties. However, one tactic that is often overlooked by property owners is getting a thorough end of tenancy clean, which forgoing can be a deal breaker. Getting a spotless home by using environmentally friendly products and leaving no corner unturned sounds tiring, but could be a great investment of time for your business.

Going green

Often the most overlooked part of the process is the tools themselves. Using environmentally friendly products reduces indoor pollution levels so that your tenants can breathe easily. These alternative products are able to remove every allergen and pollutant from the property, meaning that it’s far safer to live in and cleaner than other properties would be. Not only that, but outside your home, the environment will be better off. Check that your products don't use microbeads, which can be washed into the oceans and ingested by marine life, and look for ethically sourced, non-toxic products that use recyclable packaging. Alternatively, there are a number of chemical-free at home remedies: cornstarch for cleaning windows and rugs; white wine vinegar for removing wax building up and cutting grease; and baking soda for scouring.

Tackling the kitchen

Whilst most focus on the bathroom, the kitchen is the most noticeable place when dirty, and cannot be ignored. First, remove everything from the shelves to clean the dirt out before replacing the items. Wipe down all surfaces with a good disinfectant to kill lurking viruses, then clean the washing machine and dishwasher by putting each through a cycle. Clean the fridge by removing all the shelves, soak them in water with soap and replace them, but leave the fridge turned off with the door open to prevent mold growth. Finally, the oven’s trays must be removed and soaked in soapy water whilst the inside is wiped down repeatedly to get rid of every last piece of grease.

Don’t overlook the small things

Sometimes, the smallest contributions are the most important. Vacuuming down the rugs, staircases and even the bathroom floor are tasks often neglected, in addition to washing the curtains or cleaning dirt off the walls. Dusting blinds and the tiny corners of the rooms make the property seem brighter and more alive. All the little things really add up to create the bigger picture of a spotless, well cared for property.

 Getting a professional to lend a hand

Creating a property business is great financially, but can be time-consuming when taking care of the homes you’ve bought. Using a cleaning service lets you do the things you want to do with the money you’ve earned, rather than spending hours attempting to clean out rooms, and is even proven to be economical in some circumstances. Many tasks are quite difficult to do perfectly, like oven cleaning or laboring over every forgotten nook, and a good cleaning service will use top of the range products to give your property the best clean possible.

Letting out property is an excellent way to benefit you and earn money from the booming renting market, but the best way to get the pick of the tenants is to have a clean home. After the initial post tenancy clean, regular little-and-often cleaning such as weekly vacuuming or toilet cleaning really contributes towards having a nicer property available for rent, and proves that a little effort goes a very long way.

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How to Make your Rental a Vacation Destination

By Erin Reynolds, DIY Mama

Between the mountains, the parks, and the arts, there are so many reasons to visit Denver. It’s no wonder then that this metro area receives hundreds of thousands of tourists each year. If you’re not getting your fair share of these travelers and tourists at your rental, spend some time during the shoulder season making sure it’s summer-ready. Here are some things to keep in mind as you begin to revamp your rental property.

It’s About More Than Location

Renters choose their lodging on many different factors, and location is key among them — but it’s not everything. Many visitors will happily settle a few miles away from the main attractions to enjoy lower prices and more room to roam. With this in mind, make sure your rental has plenty of space and that is isn’t cluttered or full of personal belongings. Many rental owners choose to make the master bedroom inaccessible to guests, but this can backfire by reducing the number of people who can sleep in your home.

Instead of limiting the number of beds available, rent a small storage unit to stash your personal items. Denver has many great options, but one of the best priced and most accessible is StorQuest of Aurora/Peoria, which costs about per month. As such, you can rent a unit to accommodate your excess without burdening your budget.

Security Matters

More important than making your home attractive is ensuring that it is secure, especially when you’re away. Installing a home security system will give you peace of mind that your furniture and other items aren’t completely vulnerable when you’re away. You’ll feel better about putting nicer pieces in your rental, and will be better able to assist guest if a security issue arises during their stay. High SecurityHome.com explains that there are many factors that you should consider when choosing a security system. Hint: It’s not just price.

Decorate Denver-Style

Denver is known for many things, including access to the Rocky Mountains and a thriving art scene. Depending on where your rental is located, it pays to cater to what your visitors are there to see. Outfit your rental with either modern, artsy pieces or, if you own a mountain cabin, stick with a traditional, woodsy feel. A log cabin should have plenty of open space, lots of windows, and a fireplace. A quick look at Colorado.com’s list of area cabins will give you plenty of ideas. 

Fun and Functional

Vacationers rent a home, condo, or apartment to get away from reality. But they still have to cook and remain entertained in their downtime. Make sure your vacation home is both fun and functional. Stock the kitchen, for example, with plenty of appliances, dishes, and cutlery to ensure it’s fully equipped to cook a meal. A few board games and a small library of books and videos will keep your guests from getting bored. If you have the extra space, a pool table (,300), cabinet gaming system (,000), and/or foosball table () are features you can highlight that will grab the attention of those traveling with teens and tweens.

Above All

The most important things you can do to increase the return of your investment is to ensure that your rental stays clean and that you provide the best customer service experience possible. If you don’t live nearby, you can outsource both of these tasks. A property management agency can take care of all things small and large when you can’t be there to react.

With a few small changes and a commitment to customer service, your rental can easily be a retreat that stays booked year-round. However, don’t wait until summer — get it ready now, or you’ll have to wait until next season to increase your revenue.

Image via Pixabay

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February Newsletter 2019

Company Milestones 

Time flies when you are having fun! We wanted to share a couple of fun milestones with you. This newsletter marks the beginning of our sixth year of newsletters since we started writing. Five years of newsletters and you are still reading!!! Thank you for that. We promise to try and stay interesting and relevant. An even bigger milestone is upon us, however. We are turning 20 years old this year!!! Way back in 1999 Denver Concierge was founded as a full-service conciergebusiness. A short time later, the company decided to focus on what we do best, which is green certified housecleaning! Ownership changed in 2006 to our fearless leader, John Kitts. He (and the rest of us) want to sincerely thank you for your business and for being part of our wonderful, local company. We have so many loyal clients (some that have been with us almost 20 years) and there really aren't any words to express our gratitude. So, how about a giveaway? The first five people to email, text or call Angela today and wish us a happy 20-year birthday will receive a free refrigerator cleaning. If you haven't had this done, it's pretty special, so enjoy! Thanks again for making us successful. We hope in our own little way that we return the favor!

Keeping your Gym Germ Free

Since we clean your homes, we know some of you have amazing home gyms & workout spaces. We also know that many of you go to the gym to workout. We try to, but need to do better. One of the things that people don't realize is the number of germs and amount of bacteria that gets left on gym equipment, both at home and in public. One of our fabulous guest writers, Karoline Gore, published a piece last month on how to keep your home germ free. We have added that article to our blog, and the full text can be found here! Here's to keeping those New Year's resolutions and staying healthy at the same time!

DenverRestaurant Week

Speaking of anniversaries, did you know that Denver Restaurant Week is now in its 15th iteration? It starts on February 22nd and will run until March 3. Hundreds of Denver's best restaurants will be participating and multi-course dinners will be priced at , or each. The full list of participating restaurants and menus can be found here at Denver.Org, which is a fabulous resource for our fine city. Finally the nice folks at 5280 Magazine posted their take on restaurant week and all of the changes for 2019.  Happy dining and we hope to see you out there!  

Denver's Best Hospitals 

Colorado has some very good health care. In fact, for their ability to demonstrate “superior clinical outcomes,” seven Colorado hospitals have been named to the Healthgrades “America’s Best Hospitals” list for 2019, three of which also made the top 50 best hospitals in the country. Good Samaritan in Lafayette, North Colorado Medical in Greeley and Lutheran Medical Center (pictured) all received top 50 rankings by Healthgrades in their "America's Best Hospitals" annual rankings. We also had three hospitals in the top 100, including Centura Health-owned Porter Adventist Hospital, UCHealth-owned Poudre Valley Hospital and University of Colorado Hospital — Anschutz Inpatient Pavilion. Sky Ridge in Lone Tree rounded out the seven facilities that made the list. The full DBJ article can be found here.

The Future of Larimer Square

Did you know that Larimer Square was not only Denver's first commercial block but its first historic district? Did you know that Larimer Square  was added to one of the most endangered places in the U.S. in 2018? We didn't realize any of this, and as we dug into this issue we found a lot of useful information about the future of Larimer Square and this important part of Denver's history. Last year, the developer of the block proposed a massive redevelopment plan that received almost instant pushback and criticism. The plan included two tall buildings for condos, a hotel and businesses. The plan was to build them in the alleys behind the square so the new would hover above the old. Channel 7 of Denver did a nice article on this project and the future of the Square. Last month the project was discussed again, this time with the lead developer, Urban Villages. The Denver Business Journal article with the updates on this important project can  be found here. We certainly hope that this project maintains the wonderful history that is Larimer Square.  

Monthly Award Winners

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for January 2019. Our top Cleaning Associates for the month were Josefina Quinonez, Maria Zapata, Fernanda Gonzalez, Brenda Garcia and Aurora Dominguez. In the Team Leader ranks, our top Team Leaders were Socorro Ibarra and Juana Olivas. Thanks to all our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
A February Valentine to Denver. Year after year during the post-holiday season when nasty weather sets in and the street in front of my house is an ice slick I wonder if I should move to a kinder and gentler climate. Break if off.  Take flight. The thing is, I find it very difficult to contemplate leaving Denver.  It is by its very nature a kinder and gentler city. Museums, galleries, sports venues, testaurants and shops aside, Denver has stayed true to its core through all the changes.  It is a clean city, a safe city, and a tolerant city. We have been together for 20 years and I must say they have been 20 happy years.  Why ruin a beautiful relationship? Happy Valentine's Day Denver! Bee

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Tips for a Spotless Pet-Friendly Home

Adorable pets, Dever Concierge By Guest Writer Karoline Gore Around 84.6 million Americans households have a pet, with dogs and cats being our top two choices for a furry best friend. Pets are such an important part of our lives that they affect our home buying decisions, and often dictate where we stay when we go on holiday. For many pet owners, just about the one bad thing about pets is having to clean up after them. Pets can unwittingly bring home pests (including fleas) and dirt, so thorough cleaning is as important as grooming to ensure neatness in the home and optimal health for your pets and family. If you have dogs and/or cats and you’d like to ensure your home is tidy and hygienic, follow these tips and ensure you impress friends and family every time they visit. Denver Concierge’s Green Cleaning System Toxic home cleaning products may eliminate germs, but they also contribute to poor indoor air quality and can spur on allergies, respiratory problems, and more. Therefore, it is important to rely on pet-friendly cleaning products which are also environmentally friendly. If you are unsure about what green cleaning involves, give Denver Concierge a call. They are renowned green residential cleaners that can help you have a sparkling home in no time, while ensuring all surfaces are safe for children, pets, and adults in the household. Having your home professionally cleaned on a regular basis is key when it comes to really getting rid of fleas and other potential nasties on flooring, bedding, and soft furniture. Once your home is sparkling clean, it is easier to maintain in an optimal state afterwards. Vacuuming is Key Opt for a steam vacuum to reduce the need for cleaning products and to effectively kill germs. Some steam vacuum cleaners are specifically catered to pet-loving homes. That is, they have special handles capable of suctioning even the shortest of fur off difficult surfaces such as soft furnishings. These machines come with a host of other handles that can also be used to  make cleaning areas like the kitchen and bathroom a breeze. Finding the Right Place for Pet Items You need to really think where you place regular essentials for pets like cat litter, dog bowls, toys, etc. Homes can get pretty dirty if your dog plays with his chew toy on the sofa, or your cat’s litter bowl is in a spot in which people can trip over it or spill its contents. Ideally, the litterbox needs to be away from the living room and kitchen, and placed against a wall in the furthest area of the room it is located in. Ensure your cat always has access to rooms in which litter trays are placed, so it does end up doing its necessities in other areas of the home. You can use one side of a kitchen island for dog bowls, or have custom made kitchen storage furniture, with a space beneath the tabletop for dog bowls. Use non-slip mats beneath the bowls for easier cleaning after your dogs enjoy their meal. Good Grooming is a Must You might be surprised by the extent to which good grooming can affect the cleanliness of your home. By trimming your dog’s nails and fur and treating your pets regularly for fleas and ticks, you can ensure they don’t drag in dirt (or pests) or soil furniture and floors. Long fur in the paws can trap dirt, snow, and ice, but they are also favorite spots for pests to ‘hide’ in. In addition to applying a flea and tick treatment to your pets, you should also check their fur for ticks that may have attached after a long day out in the Great Outdoors. Remove any ticks you find with tweezers, ensuring your remove the entire tick in one go. Keeping your home sparkling clean when you have pets is a little more challenging, but definitely not impossible. Because dogs and cats shed so much and can unwittingly bring in pests that are sometimes hard to spot, a good, professional ‘green clean’ is important on a regular basis. Maintain the cleanliness of your home by steam vacuuming frequently, tidying up every day, and placing pet items in accessible areas of your home that are not conducive to spills.

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January Newsletter 2019

2018 Award Winners 

We know some of you may not read all the way to the bottom of our newsletter (you know who you are). However, if you do, each month you see our award winners. So for this month only, we are putting it first. Did you know that we rigorously measure every Cleaning Associate and Team Leader each month? They are rated on professionalism in attire, promptness, cleaning efficiency, client complaints and compliments too? Yes, you read that right, your feedback is largely what determines the awards you see each month. So, we thank you for your feedback and as always, if we can do anything better please let us know. Without further ado, please join me in congratulating our 2018 award winners. In the Cleaning Associate ranks, we had a tie for top performer in 2018. Aurora Dominguez and Maria Zapata are officially our top Cleaning Associates. Josefina Quinonez was a very close 3rd, only missing out by one point. For our Team Leaders, Natalia Olivas ran away with this award, nearly lapping the field. Rosa Chavez is our runner-up this year, nudging out Mayra Soto for 2nd place. Please join me in congratulating our winners and thank you again for your consistent feedback on our performance!!!

2019 DenverReal Estate Outlook

Has the housing market in Denver finally slowed a bit? It sure seems like it might have. The Denver Metro Association of Realtors just released their numbers for the end of the year and things seem to be slowing, especially in the suburbs. From the article:  “Currently, in the luxury market [anything priced above million], we’re seeing 7.22 months of inventory,” says Jill Schafer, DMAR Market Trends committee chair and an agent with Kentwood Cherry Creek. As a result, “especially in the suburbs, it’s becoming harder to sell a home over million.” The full article can be found here. Also, Zillow just released a report for 2019 that has our fine city ranked 3rd in the hottest housing markets. We trail only San Jose and Orlando nationwide. That report can be found here. We hope you find lots of prosperity if you are transacting in real estate in '19!

Goodbye Electric Scooters?

We wish.  Could we have Jetsons style hovercrafts instead? When the scooter phenomenon landed in Denver last spring, we weren't thrilled. Neither were our city administrators as companies like Lime and Bird dropped scooters all over town. This has created a public safety issue, as well as new sets of rules for where these can be parked and ridden. Initially these things were designated as "toy vehicles" which meant they were to be ridden on sidewalks. If you have ever been nearly taken out by one barreling down a sidewalk (yes we have), you would agree with us this is a bad idea. Last month the city council of Denvervoted 13-0 on a mandate that these contraptions be ridden in bike lanes and not on the sidewalks any more. Only in situations where there is no bike lane and the speed limit is over 30MPH is sidewalk riding allowed. They are also now illegal on the 16th Street Mall. The long-term future of the scooter business in Denver remains uncertain, as the original pilot program ends next summer, and could create further chaos. To learn more about this interesting dilemma, read the article in 5280 here. 

Crowded Skiing

We are pretty sure we are one of the few folks who don't ski that live in Colorado. In fact, we don't dance either (two left feet), but we digress. But, for the rest of you, this looks like a challenge. We learned that already this winter, some resorts have actually been turning people away, due to capacity issues. On January 11, the lots were full at Eldora, A Basin, and Keystone. As an important distinction, it isn't that the mountain is full....it's the parking lots! So the major issue is vehicular density. There are a number of resources that folks can use to gauge the parking situation, including Keystone's and Eldora's Twitter accounts. The complete article and detail on how to combat the 12 million skiers that hit the mountains can be found here.

DenverTeacher Strike

Uh oh. Denver teachers have voted to strike. Denver teachers haven't been on strike since 1994. The current impasse is largely about wages, with DPS offering a 10% increase across the board. This is disputed by the teacher's union, who claims that number includes an already promised cost of living increase. Denver Public Schools has promised an uninterrupted school year, and they are in full blown recruiting mode. With a pool of over 1200 substitute teachers, they are doing everything they can in the event of a strike. The first possible day that teachers in DPS can strike would be January 28th. Here is hoping both sides can work things out, for the sake of the students. Complete information on the potential strike can be found here, courtesy of the Denver Post.

Snow Driving Refresher

Since it looks like more snow might be coming at the end of this week, we felt like it was time for a snow driving refresher course. Colorado has been the new home for many folks from non-snowy states like California and Texas for a while now. The kind people at AAA published a list of winter driving tips that includes valuable information on not only regular winter driving, but longer distance trips as well. As an example, anyone that has ever had a fuel line freeze up will appreciate the tip to keep your tank at least 1/2 full on long trips! Our friends at the Denver Post also chimed in on Twitter with their winter drviing tips....be safe out there!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
Clients have asked how we handle lockouts and last-minute client cancelations. Our employees are paid by the hour fromthe time they leave the building in the morning until they return.  This means in the event of a last-minute lockout or cancelation we are paying for the team's time while we try to contact the client and/or find another house for them to clean instead. We don't charge for these occurrences because lockouts are unintentional and generally unavoidable. Of course, if it happens more frequently we may need to charge for the team's lost time. On the same subject, many clients are giving us their garage codes to use instead of keys.  If this is easier please let me know and I will add the code to the work order instead of signing out keys on the clean day. Bee

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Keeping Fit: Hidden Germs In Your Gym

Denver Concierge Home Gym Cleaning Typically people think of the bathroom as being the germiest, followed by the kitchen (surprise- it’s actually the other way around). When people think of an exercise space like a fitness center or gymnasium, the impression is “healthy”. After all, that’s what it’s used for. Yet research has found as many as 25 different types of bacteria in fitness centers. Setting up a home gym will cut that number back drastically, but not entirely; there are still some risky germs lurking around there. Working Up A Sweat Sure, having a home gym reduces the odds that you’ll get a cold, flu, or stomach bug- and that’s great, especially when combined with a healthy diet and supplementation. But all of the surfaces in your gym are a breeding ground for bacteria. Benches, the handle bars of stationary bikes or treadmills, the grips on free weights, and literally anything you sit or lay on while working up a sweat, can all harbor bacteria. The floor along with any exercise mats can also be a haven for bacteria, but that certainly doesn’t have to be the case - it’s easy to remedy. Easy To Wipe Down Surface areas like gym mats are easy to keep clean with a simple wipe-down. In fact, it’s recommended that you place mats down especially over carpeted areas especially for that reason. The bacteria that is likely building up in your gym is the contact-based variety (not airborne illness), the most common of which is staph or MRSA. While it’s the most common, it also poses the highest threat. Most of the time, you come into contact with this bacteria without even knowing, because it doesn’t often doesn’t cause any issue. In fact, many people have a form of staph bacteria present on the surface of their skin. Small cuts, scrapes, knicks, and any type of open wound allow the bacteria to get inside the skin, thus inside the body, and this is where things can become troublesome. Once it’s inside your body, it becomes an active infection. This usually presents with boils on the skin near the wound, but can also present with the usual symptoms of skin infections, like itchiness, redness, and swelling. Clean After Contact To eliminate contact bacteria in your home gym, wipe down any equipment, mats, and benches with sanitizing wipes (like Clorox wipes) or an all-purpose anti-bacterial spray and dry wash cloth. You should wipe down anything you’re about to use before you use it, and immediately after you’ve been in contact with it. Cleaning it right after use kills bacteria right away so it doesn’t have a chance to grow, and doing so right before use is an extra precaution - just in case you forgot, or some of the buggers got away the first time. Fungi is another little monster that might be hanging about. Fungi typically invade areas that are dark and wet, like gym bags, gym clothes left in a hamper, and inside sweaty shoes. This is what causes conditions like athlete’s foot. This is a pretty easy thing to avoid, though. Simply be sure to wash and dry your gym clothes, don’t re-wear dirty socks, and keep things dry. A home gym is a great way to save time, money, and stay in good shape. It’s convenient and economic, plus you’re in control of the environment so you can feel more comfortable and do as you please. Just because it’s your personal gym, though, doesn’t mean it doesn’t need a bit of maintenance. Keep your gym in good condition. After all, that’s what it does for you! By Karoline Gore, guest writer

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December Newsletter 2018

Year End & 2019 Outlook 

Wow, 2018 was an interesting year at Denver Concierge. We launched window washing, moved out of some markets and recommitted to others, in short, it went fast!! Of course, our year had its challenges with labor and scheduling, but thanks to your understanding and patience we were able to pull it off. We truly have the best clients in Denver. We have exciting plans for 2019, but most importantly we want to be the best service provider you know. Angela, Maria, Blanca, John (Maria, John, and Blanca pictured below, Angela photo credits!) and our wonderful ladies in the field wish you the best for an amazing holiday season, and we sincerely thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We look forward to doing an even better job for you in 2019, and if there is anything that we can ever do better, please reach out to Angela directly . As a reminder, we will be closed on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day, returning on January 2. Happy Holidays!!!

Warren Buffett's Keys to Success

Warren Buffett has a question for you. "Do you say no enough"? Surprisingly, that is the main premise of what separates successful people from those of us that maybe aren't so successful. Buffett says "The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything." Once we digested this, it made perfect sense. Beyond saying no more often in our lives, and focusing on what is truly important, he also shares some other great tips for success. To learn more about success by Buffett, click on the article here.

Denver New Year's Eve Celebrations

What are the best ways to spend New Year's Eve in and around Denver? Because we know you love to have fun, we came across some resources for you. Ever wonder how to include kids in the celebration? The Denver Children's Museum has a family-friendly celebration during the day called "Noon Year's Eve"! From the Avs being in town to Denver's Grandest New Year's Eve party, the folks at 5280 Magazine are here to help. They recently published "11 Festive Ways to Celebrate New Year's Eve in Denver"and we wanted to share with you. You could even ring in 2019 as the Mad Hatter, if the urge strikes you! Whatever you do, be safe and we wish you a wonderful New Year's Eve celebration.

2019 Carpet and Rug Trends 

Along with cleaning your home, we want to pass along anything we can to make is perfect for you. Our friend Marina Dagenais at Designer Premier always has great content in her newsletter, so we often steal her ideas!!! This month, Marina wrote about fresh trends in the world of flooring and we wanted to share that with you. While many of you have beautiful hardwood floors (which we love to see shine), 2019 is predicted to be the year of the carpet. Her article also taught us a new word, "Hygge" (don't ask us to pronounce it). Danish for happy living, this style is categorized by using natural materials such as linen and cotton. To see the full piece and learn what is happening with trends in flooring, click here. As always, if you need a designer to help, contact Marina directly here.

Winter Home To Do List

Winter officially starts on the 21st, the winter solstice. Also the shortest day of the year in terms of daylight. (We have a pretty cool winter trifecta here in Denver today and tomorrow, take a look here, but we digress.) Daylight aside, we have had a pretty mild start to the season. Also, it's not too late to get your home ready for winter and there are some great projects that you can tackle this time of year. The nice folks at Mr. Handyman published a wonderful list of things that we can all take a look at this winter. Home automation, how to protect your mailbox from the deadly snowplow and energy efficiency tips are just a few of the great ideas provided. We recently installed both a Nestthermostat and a Ring doorbell (great for package theft prevention) and we can vouch for both as great additions. Nothing like being able to control the temperature in our homes with our smartphone (which never seems to leave our side, but that's another discussion). To see the full December to-do list, visit Handyman Matters here.

Monthly Award Winners

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for November 2018. Our top Cleaning Associates for the month were Maria Zapata, Josefina Quinonez, Aurora Dominguez, Angeles Hernandez, and Maria Reyes. In the Team Leader ranks, our top Team Leaders were Natalia Olivas and Mayra Soto. Thanks to all our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our award winners! We look forward to announcing our top performers for the year in January! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
I want to close 2018's Queen Bee Corner by giving a one-woman standing ovation to all Denver Concierge clients.  You really are the best I could ask for.  And I'll tell you why. You are kind to our ladies.  Number 1 top of the list. You make me laugh.  In a good way, as in it brightens my day. You are forgiving. We do our best.  Mistakes happen.  You are quick to forgive. You are flexible.  Readily accepting of our crazy schedule changes. You are generous in your compliments, in whatever form you express them. So, I stand and applaud you as best a bee can. Happy 2019 to all! Bee

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Keep Your Kitchen Clean To Stave Off Disease

Denver Concierge, Keep Your Kitchen Clean To Stave Off DiseaseDid you know that cutting boards contain 200 times more coliform bacteria than a toilet seat, or that kitchen tap handles contain around a quarter million germs? Dirty kitchen islands, utensils, and crockery can also build up bacteria quickly, potentially resulting in illness for your family. When tackling the issue of cleaning your kitchen, it is important to be realistic. This is because in addition to cleaning surfaces and equipment every time you use them, you will also need to deep clean your kitchen with regularity, to ensure stored items are kept hygienically and to get rid of grease and food remains that can escape your daily cleaning. If you find that you don’t have time to clean as much as you like, rely on a trusted cleaning company to keep your home safe for your family; make sure the company is a certified green cleaner to value sustainability as much as you do cleanliness.

What diseases can kitchen bacteria cause?

Some of the many diseases that can be caused by viruses and bacteria in the kitchen include colds, flu, and foodborne illnesses. As noted by academics at the University of Rochester Medical Center, those who handle food can pass diseases such as Hepatitis A, noroviruses, or diseases caused by staphylococcus and streptococcus, to others. Bacteria in raw foods such as uncooked hamburger and other raw meat and seafood, meanwhile, can cause a deadly disease called uremic syndrome. Those who prep food can sometimes neglect to clean their kitchen as is required because "nothing has happened so far." But all it takes is one incident to drastically change your family’s health and wellbeing.

How often should you clean your kitchen space?

Those who are very busy may not like the answer to this question. Kitchens should be cleaned daily - that is, countertops and any other items that touch food should be cleaned immediately after use. Research shows that some of the dirtiest areas in the kitchen include the sink area because we tend to use contaminated sponges that contain food bacteria. Sponges should be kept for no longer than one week to reduce the chances of illness. Microwaves should be cleaned once weekly, while fridges should be disinfected once a week. Make sure to throw away old fruit and open packages and cans that can leak or drop onto your fridge trays. Ovens, meanwhile, should be cleaned every three to six months. If you clean your oven regularly, you can rely on steam or natural ingredients like vinegar and baking soda, rather than having to use grease removers with a high chemical content.

Keeping dishes and utensils clean

If you are worried about bacteria build-up on sponges, you might wish to opt for a dishwasher instead. You have two choices when it comes to dishwashers. You can either opt for a standard model (which doesn’t get so hot and sanitizes dishes using chemicals) or for a commercial dishwasher, which uses high temperatures to clean dishes and utensils. If you have a large family that goes through various dishes a day, a commercial type dishwasher may be more suitable. Look into certified green machines, which will enable you to save water and energy yet kill potentially harmful bacteria.

Kitchen floors count too

Be vigilant of floors; steam vacuum them frequently since food often spills onto the floor and those who walk into a kitchen can bring bacteria from the kitchen into other rooms. If you don’t use a steam vacuum machine, sweep the floor first to remove crumbs and potentially sharp pieces of food. Use warm water and a mop, adding a couple of drops of dish soap and a cup of vinegar into your mop bucket to remove stubborn stains. Use a microfiber mop to dry the areas you have cleaned. When cleaning your home, carpets, and floors may be most important for aesthetic purposes and to lend the home a tidy look when guests arrive. However, it is also important to pay special attention to the kitchen, since contaminated food can have serious health consequences for you and your family. Plan your cleaning routine, using your phone calendar to remind you when specific cleaning tasks are due. Clean countertops, crockery, and utensils immediately after using them, and pay as much attention to floors as you do cooking spaces. By Karoline Gore, guest writer

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November Newsletter 2018

Holiday Schedule/Snow

Winter seems like it is serious this year. We are still in the middle of fall and headed for our third snow already. You skiers out there could be poised for a big year! We wanted to remind you that we will always do our best to get to you in any sort of weather, but snow can be problematic as we have team members coming in from all over the Front Range and poor weather can make this difficult. We ask that you have patience with us when the weather changes and if you want real-time updates on service status, you can follow us on Twitter @bestmaidsdenver . Regarding the holiday schedule, we will be closed on the 22nd for Thanksgiving, and the following day, the 23rd as well. December we will be closed on Monday the 24th and Tuesday the 25th for Christmas Eve/Christmas. We wish you a very happy Thanksgiving and want to remind you that we are thankful for each and every one of you. Whether a client, vendor, partner or just friend of DenverConcierge, we wake up every day grateful for our relationship with you. We hope you get a chance to spend time with loved ones and recharge for the challenges of everyday life. Finally, we have a guest columnist in this month's newsletter! To learn about the potential harmful stuff in and around a dirty kitchen, please read Karoline Gore's column about this important topic!

Amazon HQ and Denver

Well the news is official, and you may have heard. Amazon did not select Denver for its second headquarters. After a long process narrowing down the field to 20 cities, Amazon decided to split the location between two metro areas. Northern Virginia and Long Island City in Queens ended up being the winners here. The decision comes with an investment north of billion and will create 50,000 jobs. Along with it, traffic, labor pressure and all that comes with a massive endeavor such as this. The Washington Post wrote an interesting "winners/losers" article following this very local decision and they offered a good perspective. As we have discussed here, Denver may have actually "won" by not being awarded this project. We already have labor and traffic problems here, and this may have made things dramatically worse. On a happy and much smaller note, Amazon has recently opened one of their "4 star" stores in Park Meadows. This location will provide only the highest rated items that are sold on Amazon and is one of their new brick and mortar locations around the country. Full details of that opening can be found here. Congratulations to the "winners" of the Amazon sweepstakes.....we will watch with interest from afar!

Denver's Labor Crisis 

Wow. Take a look at the chart above. Denver has no labor, as you may have noticed by all the "Help Wanted" signs around town. This has largely been driven by the very hot construction and cannabis industries and has impacted nearly every service business from restaurants to unfortunately, cleaning companies. Denver restaurants have been struggling with this for some time, and there is a fine article from 5280 Magazine on the wage issue that can be found here. Mayor Hancock also recently floated the idea of  per hour for all City of Denveremployees as well. The bottom line is all of us in the service industry are struggling to find quality employees. At Denver Concierge it becomes even more difficult as our standards for cleaning are super high and we won't just hire anyone to be in your homes. Rest assured we will continue to do whatever it takes to provide high levels of service to our clients and to make sure you are getting the best housecleaning in town.

DIA is Number One

It is every traveler's right to complain about airports. Back in the day when we used to travel, we had our list of the worst airports in the U.S. (yes, we are looking at you Newark). Some of you might even have flown in and out of Stapleton airport, which we always thought was ok. Enter DIA. Completed in 1995, it cost nearly billion in total, nearly billion over budget.  How far we have come, as DIA was recently rated as the best large airport in the U.S. by the Wall Street Journal. In its first ever rating of U.S. airports, the Journal surveyed 4,800 readers along with doing their own research and came up with the following list. The full article by the Denver Post can be found here. Congratulations to DIA and the city of Denver for an outstanding achievement!

Kitchen Facts and Health

By Guest Columnist Karoline Gore Keep Your Kitchen Clean to Stave Off Disease Did you know that cutting boards contain 200 times more coliform bacteria than a toilet seat, or that kitchen tap handles contain around a quarter million germs? Dirty kitchen islands, utensils, and crockery can also build up bacteria quickly, potentially resulting in illness for your family. When tackling the issue of cleaning your kitchen, it is important to be realistic. This is because in addition to cleaning surfaces and equipment every time you use them, you will also need to deep clean your kitchen with regularity, to ensure stored items are kept hygienically and to get rid of grease and food remains that can escape your daily cleaning. If you find that you don’t have time to clean as much as you like, rely on a trusted cleaning company to keep your home safe for your family; make sure the company is a certified green cleaner to value sustainability as much as you do cleanliness. What diseases can kitchen bacteria cause? Some of the many diseases that can be caused by viruses and bacteria in the kitchen include colds, flu, and food borne illnesses. As noted by academics at the University of Rochester Medical Center, those who handle food can pass diseases such as Hepatitis A, Noroviruses, or diseases caused by staphylococcus and streptococcus, to others. Bacteria in raw foods such as uncooked hamburger and other raw meat and seafood, meanwhile, can cause a deadly disease called uremic syndrome. Those who prep food can sometimes neglect to clean their kitchen as is required because "nothing has happened so far." But all it takes is one incident to drastically change your family’s health and well-being. How often should you clean your kitchen space? Those who are very busy may not like the answer to this question. Kitchens should be cleaned daily - that is, counter tops and any other items that touch food should be cleaned immediately after use. Research shows that some of the dirtiest areas in the kitchen include the sink area because we tend to use contaminated sponges that contain food bacteria. Sponges should be kept for no longer than one week to reduce the chances of illness. Microwaves should be cleaned once weekly, while fridges should be disinfected once a week. Make sure to throw away old fruit and open packages and cans that can leak or drop onto your fridge trays. Ovens, meanwhile, should be cleaned every three to six months. If you clean your oven regularly, you can rely on steam or natural ingredients like vinegar and baking soda, rather than having to use grease removers with a high chemical content. Keeping dishes and utensils clean If you are worried about bacteria build-up on sponges, you might wish to opt for a dishwasher instead. You have two choices when it comes to dishwashers. You can either opt for a standard model (which doesn’t get so hot and sanitizes dishes using chemicals) or for a commercial dishwasher, which uses high temperatures to clean dishes and utensils. If you have a large family that goes through various dishes a day, a commercial type dishwasher may be more suitable. Look into certified green machines, which will enable you to save water and energy yet kill potentially harmful bacteria. Kitchen floors count too Be vigilant of floors; steam vacuum them frequently since food often spills onto the floor and those who walk into a kitchen can bring bacteria from the kitchen into other rooms. If you don’t use a steam vacuum machine, sweep the floor first to remove crumbs and potentially sharp pieces of food. Use warm water and a mop, adding a couple of drops of dish soap and a cup of vinegar into your mop bucket to remove stubborn stains. Use a microfiber mop to dry the areas you have cleaned. When cleaning your home, carpets, and floors may be most important for aesthetic purposes and to lend the home a tidy look when guests arrive. However, it is also important to pay special attention to the kitchen, since contaminated food can have serious health consequences for you and your family. Plan your cleaning routine, using your phone calendar to remind you when specific cleaning tasks are due. Clean counter tops, crockery, and utensils immediately after using them, and pay as much attention to floors as you do cooking spaces.

Monthly Award Winners

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for October 2018. Our top Cleaning Associates for the month were Maria Zapata, Aurora Dominguez, Josefina Quinonez, Josefina Puga, and Jessika Leal. In the Team Leader ranks, our top Team Leaders were Natalia Olivas and Mayra Soto (two months in a row for these two!) Thanks to all our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
We are about to jump on the holiday roller coaster where we are bombarded by advice on gift giving, family, diet, cooking, style, parties, the works.  We live in frantic times. On the other hand, there is an ancient tradition which brings a balance to the season. For thousands of years societies around the globe have celebrated various festivals of light to ward off the dark months of winter.  We witness this in our winter streets, lighted windows and public displays even today.  It brings a feeling of quiet hope and inner calm that we sorely need. We just need to take the time... Bee

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October Newsletter 2018

Firefighters & Puppies?

Yes, it's a unique combination, but it definitely works! One of our Partners We Love, Misha Photography, donated their time to a very cool charity this summer. The photo below gives you a good look at this fun project, also known as the 2018 Fire Rescue Dogs Calendar.
This calendar project benefitted Lifeline Puppy Rescue, a no-kill organization established in 1993 that rescues puppies and each calendar sold gives one puppy a new home!! We were able to come up with a few of these calendars and we are offering them to the first five people that email or call Angela to request one, free of charge. Lastly, if you want to play with some of these puppies yourself and support a wonderful cause, Misha and Lifeline are hosting a "Puppies and Headshots" event on November 8thfrom 4-7PM at her studio in Broomfield. For 0 you can contribute to this great cause, along with getting your very own 2018 calendar and fully edited business headshot for LinkedIn or any other use you might have in mind. We will also be there and hope you can join us!!! For more information on this event, please see the details below, or you can learn more on Misha Photography's Facebook page here.  To reserve your spot please contact Misha directly via her email here.

Your Clone

Have you ever seen your clone? The kids today call it "finding your doppelganger", which means you encounter someone who looks just like you! Well that's impossible, you say? It's not. In fact, scientists have figured out that there are, on average, seven people who look just like you on the planet. We ran across a fun article on Quora that got us interested in this topic, so down the rabbit hole we went. The chances of you meeting your doppelganger are well....not very good, but not impossible. If you are curious about the actual odds of finding your "semi-identical twin" or learning more about just who this might have happened to, we found a couple of articles that might interest you. The folks at the BBC published this article last year, and the Daily Mail published this one, with some fun examples of people that have actually met their own!

Happy Birthday to Two Stars

We don't like to toot our own horn very much, but we owe much of our success to the "people behind the scenes". Since two of our best people celebrated birthdays in the past couple of weeks, we wanted to recognize them. Maria Herrera, our General Manager, and her trusty assistant, Blanca Garcia both celebrated birthdays in late September and October. These are the two people that make sure the ladies arrive at your home ready to go, on time, and efficient. Both Maria and Blanca have been with us since back in the late 90's and both started with the company cleaning houses. Let's just say they know what it takes to properly clean your home. Please join us in wishing both of our superstars a happy birthday! Our company wouldn't be the same without them.

Best Restaurant List 2017 

As our loyal readers know, we love to eat out in Denver and across the Front Range. So, we get pretty excited when the annual list of our best restaurants is released by 5280 Magazine. This year's list is out and there are some new faces (and places) to go visit. Old standbys like Frasca Food and Wine are there, and one of our favorites up north, Blackbelly Market in Boulder. The complete list can be found here, and happy dining!!!

0M Market Street Project

Larimer Square, Union Station and....Market Station? On September 29, construction on the 370,000 square foot Market Station got underway (photo above). Market Station will include 95,000 square feet of office space, 85,000 square feet of retail and around 225 apartments, including both luxury units and micro-apartments that are meant to provide a more affordable option. Two levels of below-grade parking will be built for a total of 320 parking spaces that can be used by tenants, as well as the general public. For the full story from the Denver Business Journal, click here. More exciting stuff in our city!

Monthly Award Winners

Please allow me to introduce our September 2017 award winners for quality and client service. Our best Cleaning Associates for the month were Sandra Vidales, Anita Solis, Salvadora Rosales, Maria Zapata and Juana Luna. Our best Team Leaders for September were Socorro Ibarra and Perla Hernandez. Thanks to all of our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our trend setting award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
I love talking to clients, in case you've missed the gazillion times I've mentioned it in these missives from my little corner. Once in a while though, a call is inconvenient and a text is the perfect conduit. The ladies in the field can text any questions directly to me and I can then text you directly so you can respond even if in a meeting, restaurant, or out shopping. The clients who have started texting me seem to like the idea. However, please know that texting does not replace phone conversations altogether because there are times when we have to discuss larger issues. For those clients who don't want to text, please continue to call me (see paragraph one above). The text number is different than our main number, so if you don't have it already let me know and I will gladly provide it! Happy October! Bee

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August Newsletter 2018

Labor Day & Back to School 

Summer is rapidly leaving us, and we are heading into fall, which means school is starting as well. As a reminder, we will be closed on Monday, September 3rd in celebration of the Labor Day holiday. We will be back open for business on Tuesday the 4th. Since it's time to get the kids ready for school as well, we wanted to provide a few handy tools to make sure you (and the kids) are ready. For those of you sending your young adults off to college this fall, congratulations. We have a number of clients that have mentioned this to us, so we thought it might be a good time to provide an "off to college" checklist, which can be found here. We also ran across a nice checklist from Good Housekeeping for normal back to school activity, and that can be found here. We hope you have all had a wonderful summer. Also, we would be remiss if we didn't remind you all that fall in Colorado is gorgeous and looks even better through clean windows. If you haven't tried our super green, really cool window washing yet, please give Angela a call and mention our fall special! Here's to a great fall and go Broncos!

The End of PowerPoint?

Long before we got into the housecleaning industry, some of us spent some time in corporate America. Not sure about you, but we saw our share of PowerPoint presentations. They weren't all great, and certainly were not all effective. Then we ran across an article where Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, has outlawed PowerPoint presentations in favor of a more creative (and effective it seems) approach. Early results of this new "narrative" methodology are promising, and the science behind how we learn and assimilate information best seems to back it up. Visit Inc. here to learn more about this revolutionary approach to presentations.

Colorado Etiquette

Those of you that have been in Colorado for a while (including the few natives that are left) can relate to all the new faces in our state. We have discussed the burgeoning population here quite a few times, and the effect it has on our city. But beyond traffic and overall congestion, we thought it might be a good time to remind everyone about Colorado "etiquette". The nice folks at 5280 Magazinepublished a fun list in this month's magazine about how to behave in our fine state. Everything from trail etiquette to little quirky Colorado things are covered, and the full article can be found here, and it's pretty entertaining. So, for newcomers and long-timers alike, let's all be kind to one another and enjoy this beautiful place we call home.

What M Will Buy you in Denver 

Short answer? Not as much as it used to. Some fun facts.....the median home price in the Denver metro area was 0k in July. Also, 2.65% of all homes in Denver are valued at million or more. That is good for 10th nationwide. Home inventory dropped again, pushing prices upward in what seems like a recurring theme here. So, if you are curious or have million burning a hole in your pocket, you came to the right place. The Denver Business Journal published a slide show with 46 examples of homes in the million range and it's impressive. To see those homes and what a million dollars can bring you, visit the DBJ for the full slide show.

Regrets, I've Had a Few

We hate regrets. In fact, most of us have likely spent most of our lives trying to not have too many. While we don't like to look backwards too often, there are some lessons in there for sure. One of the untapped resources in our civilization is the wisdom of our older citizens. They have seen more, done more and have much to share, if asked. The folks at Medium Daily Digest did an exhaustive set of interviews with folks in their 90's, posing the question, "what do you regret most". The answers might surprise you, but our favorite quote from the article:  “Do you wish you accomplished more?” He responded, “No, I wished I loved more.” The full article can be found here, interesting read for sure.

Monthly Award Winners

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for July 2018. Our top Cleaning Associates for the month were Ana Solis, Josefina Quinonez, Aurora Dominguez, Jessica Rios and Juana Luna. In the Team Leader ranks, our top Team Leaders were Rosa Chavez and Natalia Olivas. Thanks to all our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
I hate to see the old buildings torn down.  We should be so thankful for the hard work of the preservation societies that fight to guard our city's history. A recent example is the makeover of Union Station.  There really is nothing else like its ambiance in Denver, and the bustle is reminiscent of a much larger and more diverse city. It feels like a city within a city and the station itself is just stunning.   What an incredible salute to the glory days of our railroad town. Quite a few of our clients have historic homes, which I praise.  And much of the newer architecture is innovative and quite beautiful; a segue into the future of our city. Hopefully the changes will be gentle and not jarring.  Supporting whatever efforts are being made to balance past and future is a step toward the gentle, so let's get on the train! Bee

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July Newsletter 2018

Green Cleaning and You

Every now and then we feel compelled to remind you that we were the first Green Clean Institute certified cleaning company in Colorado, making us a charter member in our fine state. Since we started this movement across the Front Range, many have followed. Most companies just do it for marketing because it makes clients "feel good" about using them. That isn't why we do it. Since we just renewed our certification with the Institute, we thought it might be a good time to remind everyone why this is important and just why we do it. Here are five good reasons for cleaning your home with green, eco-friendly products. 1. Environment-This is the obvious one. Using green products ensures you won't be putting harmful, non-biodegradable substances into our environment. Many cleaning products found in stores have harmful ingredients that should be avoided. 2. Health-Feel better with green cleaning products – literally. Unlike conventional cleaning products, you’ll know that what you’re using won’t harm you, your family, or your pets. Considering many of the hazardous chemicals in conventional products are often carcinogens, neurotoxins, mutagens, teratogens, or endocrine disrupters, it is worth ditching them in favor of natural green cleaning products. 3. Air Quality-Did you know that the use of conventional cleaning products can contribute to higher pollution indoors than outdoors? Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), which have been associated with a host of health problems like damage to the liver, kidneys, and central nervous system, are released when products are used and stored and can also linger in the air long after use. 4. Safety- Flammable/Toxic! With labels like these on some conventional cleaning products, you get a pretty good idea that they aren’t really that safe. Many chemicals (e.g., chlorine and ammonia), when mixed together, can be downright dangerous. Small children and pets are especially vulnerable due to higher exposure levels because of their size. Plus, household cleaning supplies are one of the top five substance classes accounting for calls to the National Poison Control Center. 5. Know What's in Your Products-Shockingly, manufacturers of cleaning products aren’t required by the U.S. government to divulge ingredients; however, many green cleaning manufacturers make it their policy to be fully transparent, whereas some conventional manufacturers don't and may only list a portion of their ingredients. Rest assured that every product we bring into your home is fully vetted and green certified. We use lots of natural things as well, such as plain old vinegar and water to ensure that things are naturally clean. Thanks for your support of Denver Concierge and our efforts to make your homes clean and safe for your family and pets.

Just How Expensive is Colorado?

Last week, someone told us that Denverwas the 3rd most expensive city in the U.S. to live in. Being naturally skeptical, we decided to research that for ourselves. The folks at Expatistan did the work for us, with the most and least expensive places to live. They also provide a nifty calculator in case you want to compare two cities and what it costs to live there, anywhere in the world. Anyway, it turns out that it's expensive here, but not quite yet on the scale of many California cities or New York, for example. Boulder checks in at 15th most expensive, followed by Denver at number 24. Colorado Springs is 55th. So, it isn't as bad as we think (yet). But, when it specifically comes to housing, things are a little worse. We found this piece by the DBJ that shows just how many square feet 0,000 will buy you across the country. For example, in Cleveland that number gets you a 3,700 square foot home and in Denver that gets you 661 square feet, 10th most expensive in the U.S. Most expensive? Still Manhattan at 126 square feet, take solace folks. The full slideshow can be found here, fascinating stuff.

Summer Cleaning Tips

Summer brings with it another set of challenges for keeping your home clean. Kids are out of school and the warm weather opens our homes for lots of potential messes that we don't see in the colder months. Between visits from Denver Concierge, we know you all like to keep things tidy and we wanted to share some tips for making that easier for you. We found a few resources that might help! DIY network published a great list of quick summer cleaning tips that we thought we would share here. We also like this list by the Huffington Post, which contains some cool tricks like cleaning your microwave with a lemon! Finally, there is a list of cleaning tips by Clean and Organized Family Home that we thought was creative as well. That list can be found here. Meanwhile, you can rest assured that we are on the job and will do our best to keep dirt and grime out of your homes this summer! Don't forget that our ladies also do things like sweeping off your patio or deck for those outdoor parties. If you have special requests this summer, don't hesitate to let us know!

State Health Insurance Increases Dropping

No, health insurance costs aren't dropping, but the amount of increases in Colorado could be significantly smaller in 2019 than we have seen. In 2019, small group policies will go up by an average of 7%. The good news is that individual policies look like they will rise about 6% in 2019. This doesn't sound like good news until you realize that those increases were 34% in 2018 and 20% in 2017. Interestingly, for the first time, less than half of Coloradans will have a plan through their employers. In short, it seems like the health care market in Colorado is stabilizing a bit. The full article from the folks at the DBJ can be found here.

You Are who Your Friends Are?

Businessman and motivational speaker Jim Rohn said, "You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with". This caught our eye. We found a great piece by Medium that illuminates this idea. From the article, "According to research by social psychologist Dr. David McClelland of Harvard, the people you habitually associate with determine as much as 95 percent of your success or failure in life." Building a group of competent, smart people to surround yourself with seems to be a pretty good strategy for improvement in life. Lastly, we also found that common wisdom (and science, from the British Journal of Medicine) says smarter people have fewer friends. This caught our eye as well, and the details of why this is can be found in this article. Interesting stuff for sure!

Monthly Award Winners

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for June 2018. Our top Cleaning Associates for the month were Josefina Quinonez, Aurora Dominguez, Brenda Garcia, Maria Zapata and Josefina Puga. In the Team Leader ranks, our top Team Leaders were Maria Varela and Socorro Ibarra. Thanks to all our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
Clients have asked me how our ladies manage to get the shine on stainless steel appliances.  Stainless steel is beautiful but easily shows water spots, drips and streaks, ruining the effect in no time.  A quick fix between Denver Concierge visits would be helpful, and I happen to have one! Nothing is quicker or more effective than a simple clean microfiber cloth and a solution of water and green dish washing liquid.  Be sure to immediately dry with another clean microfiber cloth.  This works on brushed stainless steel, stainless steel sinks, and faucets too. It's amazing how the complete kitchen will look cleaner simply by taking care of the stainless steel!  And then we'll be there to take care of the rest! One product.  One solution. Bee

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March Newsletter

Cleaning Products and Your Health

Did you know that simply cleaning your own home with the wrong products could be as dangerous as smoking? It's true, and it's serious. Researchers from the University of Bergen in Norway analyzed data from more than 6,200 people who used cleaning products over two decades. The participants had an average age of 34 when they enrolled in the study. The researchers found that people who either cleaned at home or who had a job where they cleaned had a decline in their lung function that was equivalent to smoking 20 cigarettes a day. The speculation is that the lung impairment (once isolated for people that smoked before and other variables) was directly connected to the many harmful chemicals that are frequently used in cleaning products. While this is terrible news for people that clean their own homes (the offending products are not listed in the article, which can be found here), using Denver Concierge removes all of that risk. All our products are 100% green and we use only microfiber cloths to clean your homes. Often we use water, vinegar and good old elbow grease to get your home clean. Beyond that, all of our products are certified green and we have to pass certification each year to maintain our credentials. The safety of you and the people and pets in your home is the number one thing we focus on, as well as the safety of our Cleaning Associates. Giving you a clean home at the expense of health is not something we would ever do (Hence the reason we refuse to use bleach or any other toxic substances regardless of who asks us to or how nicely they ask). If you weren't aware, Denver Concierge was the first Green Clean Institute certified cleaning company in Colorado . If we are in your home, you can rest assured that everything we use will assure that the air you breathe will be clean and chemical free.

Colorado Car Insurance Premiums

Has your car insurance been going up? Ours sure has. Now we have the data behind why that his happening in our fine state. There are several things driving significant increases in car insurance, including more people in Colorado, more distracted driving and an overall increase in crashes. In fact, there were 77,000 more people on the roads year over year and deadly crashes increased to over 600, the most in Colorado in 10 years. Finally, we have more hail damage than all but one state and the May 2017 hailstorm caused .4 billion in damage. So, what can you do to reduce the cost of your insurance? The folks at Car and Driver published a good list of things we can all do to make sure we don't overpay. The full article can be found here. Happy shopping!

Is the Flu Near You?

It has been an intense and deadly flu season in the U.S., and in Colorado. We surpassed our record for hospitalizations in February and while the flu season is now winding down, there are also lots of other bugs out there that can affect us. That's where the tool we found (see below) comes in handy. Regarding the flu, good health practices include avoiding contact with people who are sick; staying at home when sick, instead of going to work; covering your nose and mouth when sneezing; washing your hands often; avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Beyond those tips, and getting flu shot there isn't much you can do. However, we found a website that will tell you exactly what is going on around you, depending on where you live. The folks at Doctors Report have created an "Illness Tracker". By entering your zip code, you can generate a report that will show you what severity of different illnesses are close to you. Any number of illnesses can be checked, including strep, flu, common cold, MRSA and many more. The information comes directly from doctors, and we found it to be very interesting. We hope you agree.

Spring Home Maintenance Tips

Now that the weather is breaking and we are venturing into a mellower weather season, it's time to tackle those things around our home. The folks at Mr. Handyman provided a great list that includes everything from downspouts to caulking. The complete list from them can be found here, and includes a handy checklist to make things easier. We also ran across a great and detailed piece from the folks at todayshomeowner.com  and that can be found here. Finally, and in the spirit of our Queen Bee, Angela (see Queen Bee Corner below), we found a great piece on decluttering and simplifying your life. To learn more about the freeing experience that is simplification, the entire article is here.      

Home Design Trends

Color is back!! Thanks to our friend Marina Dagenais at Designer Premier, we learned this and other cool design trends for your home! The days of all-white interiors are passing, and homeowners are shying away from mild colors and becoming bigger risk-takers by injecting vibrant colors, such as warm wood tones  and neutrals (cream, blue, and gray), into the space to give it a warm, fresh and unique feel. Marina published a great article on her site and the full content can be found here.   For a second opinion on what design trends are taking over in 2018, we also found a good article here, thanks to the folks at Vogue.

Monthly Award Winners

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for February 2018. Our top Cleaning Associates for the month were Anita Solis, Maria Zapata, Aurora Dominguez, Yuritza Caldera and Fidelia Bautista. In the Team Leader ranks, our top Team Leaders were Rosa Chavez and Natalia Olivas. Thanks to all our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
Every year when Spring approaches we start  to think about the requisite Spring activities like planting, window cleaning, and my favorite, Spring Cleaning (well of course). This year there seems to be a lot of talk about simplifying on a personal level, a kind of new Spring ritual falling somewhere between the typical Spring Clean (moving everything and then putting it back), and decluttering (getting rid of things to create a feeling of freedom). The goal here is to take the time each Spring to ponder the importance of our belongings, decor, and activities; a conscious reckoning of what is truly precious to us and worth holding on to at this juncture in our lives, and what no longer charms us, and should be abandoned. We are here to support all your cleaning needs and we wish you the best in simplifying your life. Happy Spring! Bee

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February Newsletter 2018

Living Longer and Happier

We love communicating with our clients and partners. Unfortunately, as a cleaning company, there is only so much to say about cleaning!! We will always try and promote what we do, but honestly, it's more important (and more fun) to connect with you on various interesting topics and we love to provide useful information. So, this month, it's life improvement time. For starters, we found some amazing information on how to extend our lives. Not only in terms of years but in terms of quality of life as well. Did you know there is a simple test you can do at home to determine longevity and health? It's called the SRT and you can learn all about it here . For the record, we can't do this and we don't know a ton of people who can, but we are all about trying!! The best article we found on aging healthy and gracefully was recently published in Time Magazine . Fascinating stuff on exercise, friendships, habits and the impact of family on happiness. The oldest recorded human lived to 122 years!! While we can't all hope to live that long, we found lots of useful information that might help us squeeze out a few more years. Finally, we ran across a fun site that will tell you what "biological age" you are, versus how many years you have been here. The test can be found here , and will tell you a lot about how your habits and lifestyle affect your "real age". Here's to a healthy and happy year for all of you!

Where do we Eat Out?

Every now and then we find stuff that we absolutely must share with you. The folks at medium.com did an exhaustive study of the most popular cuisines by city. For example, Denver ranks 7th in Mexican food, and 10th in steak houses! We also come in 10th in coffee shop visits, (if you guessed Seattle as the unofficial coffee capital of the US, you were right). You can enlarge maps down to the level of local Denver neighborhoods. The complete article can be found here, happy reading (and eating)!  

Car Thieves. In Denver?

If you are like us, we don't think of Denver as an unsafe city. Sure, we have our share of crime, some of it violent, but in the grand scheme of things we live in a very safe place. So, we were shocked to read that Denver has already had 633 motor vehicle thefts this year alone. We average 14 vehicles stolen PER DAY in Denver, or an average of over 425 a month. With winter here, car theft goes up. This is primarily due to "puffing" where an owner warms his car up, only to come outside and realize it's gone.  If you are curious there are laws that cover our state and what you can do legally and that info can be found here. Lastly, there are some things you can do to deter would-be thieves from targeting your vehicle. This article, written by a former car thief gives great insight into how to protect one of our most valuable assets.  

How's Your Snow Driving?

We all get a chuckle thinking about the folks that have moved here and don't know how to drive in the snow. It's less funny when you realize how many people have moved here from warm weather climates, and that we are all on the road together!! Blending those ideas, we were surprised to learn that Colorado is only the 34th safest place to drive in the snow! Crazy, right? We thought we might offer some winter driving tips (you natives might appreciate the refresher as well) so we can have a less stressful driving experience in the snow. The Post put out a great article on how to drive in the snow, for both us veterans and the newcomers to our fine city. Be safe out there.

Investing in Your Home

As we cruise into spring, we are focusing on prioritizing the things we might want to do to our homes. Obviously, there are lots of things that most of us have on our "list" when it comes to our home. Not all those items will ever "pay for themselves". Very few things you can do in your home will provide you 100% return on what you spend at the time you sell your home. So, what are the things that provide the best ROI (return on investment) that you can do in your home? Believe it or not, a garage door, comes in at number one at 98% ROI. We were very surprised by the roof replacement, which checks in at only 68% ROI. Kitchen and bath projects also rank very high on project ROI and can exceed 100% if done properly. The full article can be found here. We also found other info from the folks at HGTV, and their take on things in a bit more detail can be found here.

Monthly Award Winners

Please join me in congratulating our best performers for January 2018. Our top Cleaning Associates for the month were Maria Zapata, Salvadora Rosales, Martha Garcia, Aurora Dominguez and Josefina Quinonez. In the Team Leader ranks, our top Team Leaders were Perla Hernandez and Martha Anchondo. The race for top performers for 2018 has begun. Thanks to all our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela
Texting our clients has turned out to have a lot of unexpected benefits.  I won't bore you with a list, but I will share that my very favorite is receiving photos of your pets. Texting to confirm tomorrow's clean really warrants only a yes or thumbs up gesture from the client.  But one day I received a reply with a photo of the client's extremely large pet rabbit. How cute is that? Then I started receiving here and there photos of other pets until I have quite a menagerie on my phone. And for the clients who email, please feel free to email photos!  (I wouldn't mind a new photo of Kat and also one of Fred (Owners, you know who you are). Stay warm, hug your pets! Bee

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Home Design Color Trends for 2018– Moving Away from Neutrals

Home Design Color Trends for 2018– Moving Away from Neutrals Both fashion and home design color trends are largely driven by what is happening in the world. The year 2017 climate has been chaotic with environmental wraths and death and devastation. For this reason it is understandable that that Pantone, the world authority in color trends since the year 2000, has selected uplifting shades and feel-good tones for 2018. Untitled Pantone’s 2018 COLOR OF THE YEAR "breaks free from typical thinking." Pantone’s research has shown that consumers no longer want to feel limited by traditional color guidelines. They want to experiment with color, to blend, mic and create unexpected combinations. They also want a release from the fears of the world and want bright, fun and playful colors. Untitled1 Benjamin Moore’s 2018 COLOR OF THE YEAR " is total confidence." Benjamin Moore had already broken away from neutrals, shocking many, with their 2017 Color of the Year — Shadow. Now the firm has selected another surprising hue for its 2018 Color of the Year: Caliente AF-290. Untitled3 Caliente AF-290 is certain to add happiness into any room. "Strong, radiant and full of energy, Caliente AF-290 is total confidence. It is pleasing, passionate and makes people feel special, like 'red carpet treatment,'" said Ellen O'Neill, Benjamin Moore Director of Strategic Design Intelligence. "Whether used as one note or on four walls, the spirited personality of red turns heads signaling surprise and adventure. The eye can't help but follow its bold strokes." SHERWIN-WILLIAMS'S 2018 COLOR OF THE YEAR "evokes optimism." Untitled4 Sherwin-Williams  also moved away from neutrals with their color pick for 2018. The firm says they wanted to capture the society’s desire for color that's "both accessible and elusive." The outcome is a profound shade called Oceanside. "People today have a growing sense of adventure, and it is making its way into even the coziest corners of our homes. We are craving things that remind us of bright folklore, like mermaids and expeditions across continents," says Sue Wadden, director of color marketing at Sherwin-Williams. "Oceanside is the color of wanderlust right in our own homes."   Untitled5Interested in a professional color palette for your home? Using color to create a home that welcomes and embraces its owners is our specialty. We understand color and how it affects you emotionally and physically. Transitioning colors from room to room is hard for most people but is super easy for us. Learn More          
  Untitled6MEET Marina - The Design Matchmaker Designer Premier's complimentary matching service will connect you with the right design professionals to remodel or build and design your dream home. Video: Learn More about this Complimentary Service Arrange a no Obligation, Complimentary Consultation Call Marina 303.916.9515 /designerpremier.com

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July Newsletter

Make them Green with Envy 

Each year, we invest time and money into making sure that our products and our processes are 100% environmentally friendly. This requires a constant review of everything we do to make sure that we not only clean your home the way you want it, but also that we don't harm the planet as we do it. We also don't want to use anything in your homes that might be harmful to your family or your pets. We get a lot of requests to use things like bleach (because that stuff really works) that we just cannot accept. Our commitment to the environment extends beyond the traditional sense and things like bleach can harm our employees as well. Recently, our Green Clean certification was renewed for 2017 with the Green Clean Institute . We are very proud of this achievement as it requires a great deal of diligence to maintain. If you are curious about our certification, you can see all the details here . We are still one of a handful of companies to invest in official certification, and we were the first in Colorado. While most companies claim to be green, we think certification is important and that it provides you peace of mind when we are in your home. So please trust that we are using only the best products in your home for both cleaning and safety. Should you have the desire to use products of your own (we use Bona on hardwood floors when requested, for example), please check with Angela first to make sure we are in compliance. As always, thanks for your continued loyalty and your trust.

Partners We Love

That lovely lady in the photo is our friend Marina Dagenais, with Designer Premier. You may ask, what is Designer Premier? We are glad you did. We love Designer Premier as they take the stress out of finding the right design talent for you and your projects. They offer a complementary personalized matching service. Selecting from a pool of accomplished interior designers, builders, and architects, Marina will recommend several options based on your specific needs, personality and style requirements. Marina has also offered a couple of interesting design topics, including the top colors for summer and lighting design trends. If you are considering any type of interior design changes, Marina can match you with the designer that best fits your needs. To reach Marina, you can email her here, or call her at 303-916-9515. Mention Denver Concierge for a special offer, and happy designing!

Solar Eclipse Coming

OK we admit that we can be a bit geeky sometimes. We like the latest technology and to keep up with things that might interest our fellow geeks. In fact, our VCR always had the correct time displayed, for those of you that know what a VCR is.  It was impressive in the 80's at least! Our geekiness aside, on August 21st, themother of all solar eclipses is coming. Our view from Colorado won't be the best, but if you are an intrepid soul, you could journey a bit north and get an amazing view. Of course, we want you to do this safely and with all the information you need, so we leaned on the folks at B & H Photo to give us the low down on how this will all work. Everything you need to know about this amazing event can be found here.

Top of the Town 2017

One of our favorite issues of 5280 Magazine is the annual "Top of the Town" rankings of all things Denver. The 2017 list is out, and we didn't make it again!!! It might be because there is not a housekeeping company in the rankings. Hmm, maybe a petition is in order!! Anyway, we digress. The list of the best things in Denver, as voted by its denizens, can be found here.

Denver Crime Report

There are very few worse feelings than being the victim of theft. The official word for it is larceny. Recently, the Denver Post published a list of all the larceny that has occurred in Denver over the past year. As you might imagine in a large city such as ours, there is quite a bit of this sort of thing going on. The good news is that year over year, larceny in Denver is down. The bad news is that it is still taking place, and we want you to know where, or give you as much information as we can. The full report published by the Post includes locations, time of day and everything you want to know about theft in Denver. It can be found here.

Monthly Award Winners

Please allow me to introduce our June 2017 award winners for quality and client service. Our best Cleaning Associates for the month were Dalia Escorza, Maria Zapata, Sandra Vidales, Brenda Garcia and Gloria Gonzalez. Our best Team Leaders for June were Natalia Olivas and Socorro Ibarra. Thanks to all of our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our trend setting award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela I was hoping to have good news on the handyman front; i.e. a reliable guy to do good work in a timely and reasonably priced manner. I may have found someone but I will be the guinea pig. If all goes well I will pass the info on. I know a lot of clients have asked me for referrals for various around the house chores. Stay tuned! At the risk of being repetitive, please always feel free to bring any concerns to my attention. I sometimes have calls that come in several weeks after an issue, through reluctance on the part of the client to mention it, but then obviously it is still bothersome. I am here for you! Happy Bastille Day! Bee

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June Newsletter

Summer Vacations and Dad

Summer is finally arriving! Our favorite day, the Summer solstice, is on June 20th. That is the longest day of the year, which makes us happy. We also wanted to take this opportunity to remind you all to let us know if you are going on vacation or if you are planning to be gone for an extended period this summer. As we have mentioned in past newsletters, the labor market in Denver is incredibly tight and consequently, we are very booked and are running an extremely tight schedule these days. Therefore, lockouts and cancellations become more painful for us, so please let us know your plans as soon as possible. Meanwhile, enjoy summer and all that it has to offer. We have thrown some events your way (see below) to get things kicked off!!! Finally, Happy Father's Day to all of the dads out there. If you forgot it's Father's Day on Sunday the 18th, we have a last minute gift guide here .

4th of July Schedule

Independence Day falls on a Tuesday this year. Kind of a bummer as we all love a three-day weekend. Heck, maybe you can find a way to stretch it to four, so it's better than falling on a Wednesday! Here at Denver Concierge we want to work for you as much as we can, so we will be open and operating on Monday the 3rd. We will be closing on the 4th so our folks can enjoy a day off with their families. If your clean day is on a Tuesday, we will not be arriving at your home on that day. We hope you all enjoy the holiday and have included a list of the best fireworks watching spots around the Front Range here. We will be back to work on the 5th. Happy 4th of July!!!

Denver Start of Summer Events 

There is so much to do in Denver in the summer. One of our favorite events is the Cherry Creek Arts Festival, which takes place from July 1-3. There are also many other events taking place in our city, including the Cherry Blossom FestivalBuskerfest and how could we forget Comic Con? If you see superheroes walking the street don't be alarmed. There are also many things to do here that are completely free, and that full list can be found here.  We hope you have a great summer and take advantage of all our city has to offer!

Denver Convention Center Upgrades

Let us start by saying we love our city. We have lots to offer and we have a great convention center. It first opened in 1990, so we agree that it can be updated. However, the original budget for renovation of 4 million was slightly missed. The new number is 3 million!!! The city is proposing a new taxing districtthat would primarily affect hotels and rental cars, but will also involve issuing of bonds to cover the new number. If you are curious about the details of this project, the Denver Business Journal did a nice job, including a photo gallery. That article can be found here. Let's hope our personal and business budgeting goes slightly better than this one did. Although we will agree that the updates look amazing and should propel convention business in Denver by quite a bit!

Cell Phone Interruptions

Have you ever been working diligently on something that requires your full attention only to be interrupted by a text or phone call? Happens all the time. What we didn't realize is the true time cost of those interruptions. A study at the University of California, Irvine, found that “the typical office worker is interrupted or switches tasks, on average, every three minutes and five seconds.” 3 minutes and 5 seconds. That’s 185 seconds in total between one interruption and the next. What’s more“it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to get back to the task.” (click above for the full detail, great stuff) 23 minutes! That’s over 7 times as long as it takes for you to be interrupted again. After reading this study, we have gotten into the habit of leaving our phones in another room when we are facing important tasks that require our full attention, and it has helped tremendously!! We hope it helps you as well!

Monthly Award Winners

Please allow me to introduce our May 2017 award winners for quality and client service. Our best Cleaning Associates for the month were Josefina Quinonez, Juana Luna, Fernanda Gonzalez, Maria Zapata Yazmin Mendoza. Our best Team Leaders for May were Rosa Chavez and Socorro Gonzalez. Thanks to all of our team members for their hard work, and a special thanks to our trend setting award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela Our aim at Denver Concierge, apart from cleaning better than anyone on the planet, is to simplify the process for our clients. The operation of today's modern appliances, light controls, door closures and plumbing fixtures are not always self- evident to our ladies. If I receive detailed instructions via email from you then these instructions become a permanent part of your work order and whoever cleans your home will then know how things work. It alleviates the need to explain and re-explain and also insures that things are being operated safely and correctly. The complicated made simple helps us do a better job for you! If you have special situations please let me know and I will get it added to your work order. You can email me here, or as always call me at the office 303-975-2808. Queen Bee  

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May Newsletter

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is our unofficial gateway to summer. We have had a wonderfully mild winter, and our spring has been quite pleasant as well. Along with the coming of summer, Memorial Day is also a time for cookouts and hanging out with family. It's also the first real three-day weekend of the year! With all of that wonderful stuff in mind, it is also a time to say THANK YOU. To those of you that have lost someone serving our nation, we thank you. We here at Denver Concierge value the freedoms that we have across our great country and we realize that it could not be possible without the selfless giving that people in our military offer. We hope that you and your families get some time together and that you all stop to appreciate the sacrifices that have been made so we can enjoy our holidays freely and without restrictions. This respectful holiday has a long history, dating back to 1868, with Logan's General Order Number 11 . To learn more about the history of this remembrance, you can click here . Thanks again to all of you that have served and to the families of those that have been lost serving our wonderful nation.

Partners We Love

When we run across someone that matches our values in term of customer service and dedication, we like to feature them here. Our good friend Nancy Begley is just that person. She is a private banker at Fortis Private Banking in Denver. Nancy is wonderful at taking care of clients and has a full portfolio of mortgage offerings, including interest only, jumbo mortgages and custom construction lending. She is offering super competitive rates and encourages you to give her a call if you are in need of financing. For your Denver banking needs, we highly recommend Nancy. She can be reached at 720-284-9484 or at [email protected].

Pop Up Park in Denver 

One of the things we love about Denver is its creativity. Called "The Square on 21st", the city is developing an unused space near Coors Field for a "pop-up park" this Summer. From June 15 through August 15, the space in the photo above will be transformed into a very cool spot to enjoy Denver. The Square on 21st will be set up on 21st Street between Larimer and Lawrence streets, two blocks southeast of the baseball stadium. It will feature food trucks, a performance stage, bike ramps and street art. To learn more about this cool idea, click here.

Our Inclusive City

We hear a lot of chatter about the growth in Denver and we talk about it here quite often. It's easy to get excited about our growing city, but we were even more impressed to read about how we are doing it. Brookings Institute studied the top growing metro areas across the country and came back with some interesting data. It seems that Denver is one of only four metro areas that are engaged in what Brookings calls "inclusive growth". This is measured in a number of different ways, but we are super proud to be in a city that values diversity in our growth plans. The full article on can be found here. Way to go Denver!

Ever try a Low Carb Diet?

Yes, us too. We typically try to eliminate carbs when we go overboard and the scale comes up 5 pounds or so the wrong way! We are constantly on the lookout for health tips and we recently ran across this article that tells us going "cold turkey" from carbs may not be the best answer. The folks at Fitness Genes (featured here in March) published this article on how the body processes excess carbohydrates and whey they might not be the "bad guy" we thought they were. Unfortunately we couldn't find the section that allows unlimited doughnut consumption, so that was somewhat disappointing!! Happy reading!

Monthly Award Winners

Please allow me to introduce our April 2017 award winners for quality and client service. Our best Cleaning Associates for the month were Dalia Escorza, Laura Rojas, Aurora Dominguez,  Josefina Quinonez and Salvador Rosales. Our best Team Leaders for April were Natalia Olivas and Rosa Chavez. Thanks to all of our team members for their hard work in April and a special thanks to our monthly award winners! Congrats ladies!

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela Denver has become a city of rapid change. Not only noticeable by the new construction and cranes and demolition of old buildings (sadly), but we even notice it here in our little corner of the cleaning world. We have never had so many clients moving from one house to another and yet not leaving Denver!!  And many are not even moving out of their neighborhood; they simply call to have their next scheduled clean done at their new house around the corner from their old house. This of course generates many more move out and move in cleans as we call them, and our clients have been amazingly flexible and understanding in working with us to get these jobs done in a timely manner.  So thank you for inviting us along with you when you move! Queen Bee  

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April Newsletter

How May We Help You?

Did you know that Denver Concierge has been in business for nearly 20 years? The company started back in 1998 as a full-service concierge business. We were walking dogs, buying groceries and running errands. It was a lot of work! Back in the early 2000's we became exclusively a housecleaning company, and our current owner, John Kitts, bought the company in 2006. Since then, we have spent all of our time on being the best housecleaning company around and based on your feedback we feel like we are doing a good job, although we always strive for perfection. While we love making your homes shine, many of you have requested that we offer other services. Some examples include carpet cleaning, window washing, handyman services and the like. Our question for you today is simple. What other services could we offer inside your home that would make your life easier? We would love to hear from you. Just click on the services that make the most sense to you, then hit submit. It's super fast and easy, just one page! The button below shall set you free. Thanks for your feedback! Take me to the fast and easy survey!

Performing Arts Center Expansion Coming

Last month in a fairly quiet announcement, Mayor Hancock rolled out his vision for a new, revitalized performing arts complex We are fascinated by the modern look, and while the price tag has yet to be revealed, it looks magnificent!

The article on this project can be found here. If you just want to skip to the wonderful images of what this might look like, they can be found here. Certainly another exciting project in Denver!

If at First You Don't Succeed, Fail Again

Our perception of success is typically very skewed. We all have a tendency to look at successful people as examples of success and prosperity. What we rarely see are the failures behind that success.

We found a great article on failure. Odd topic for sure, but most folks that have achieved success have done so with lots of adversity behind the scenes that we have never seen.

If you are thinking about starting your own business, or currently have one, hopefully you will find the article interesting. It can be found here.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

We had an exciting start to Spring.  A water line broke in one of our houses while the team was there and a near flood ensued. When I called to alert the client to what was happening she luckily answered immediately.  I was worried I wouldn't be able to reach her and she would have an awful surprise on arriving home at the end of the day.

Which brings me to emergency numbers.  I have telephone numbers for all of our clients, and emails for most.  If you have recently changed your number or have an emergency number to add please send it off in an email to me.  Our team leaders always call the office when they notice anything unusual in a house which is very reassuring but we need a way to reach you!

Worst Pollen Season? Ever?

Spring is an amazing time of year in Denver. However, for those of you that suffer with allergies, we might be in for a challenge this year.

We have read a few articles on El Nino and the affect it may have on increased pollens in the air this Spring. We found a good piece on the Weather Channel which can be found here.

The folks at newswise.com also posted some great tips on how to cope with Spring pollens. That article can be found here.

Are you Good at Math?

Some days we are and some days we aren't! We always forget the "rule of 72" and how it works with investments, for example.

We found a great "cheat sheet" for not only investments, but measuring our habits, how to accurately tip, and our income.

Take a look here if you want to see some easy and helpful tips on remembering important calculations in our lives!

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Cleaning as a Workout - How to make the most of it!

Home cleaning is one of the most time-consuming chores that you have to take care of. It is undeniable that it requires a great deal of effort and hours just to finish the most urgent tasks. This is normal, because if you want to be effective at it, you need to devote time and effort. Often times it feels like cleaning is a task that does not have a finish line. Once you are done with one room, you immediately have to move on to the next one. This should not be a problem if you enjoy a good exercise, and there is no reason to hate it really. It is through physical activity that you can feel less stressed and energetic. The problem is that when you are too busy cleaning your home, you won’t have as much time for a workout. The alternative would be to transform your cleaning service in such a way that it will resemble a workout. It really is not that difficult as you may think, considering that cleaning is a physical activity which requires a lot of movement. Here is what you should consider to make the idea a reality:
  • Put on fast music in the background - music has the potential to make you feel way more energetic and alive. Consider the fact that all gyms have music in the background; this is no coincidence, because it can really help a person with their physical exercise. This is why you should definitely implement music in your household cleaning routine. You have to make sure you play not just any type of music though, but rather some dynamic tunes that will really make you want to move and clean around. You will notice that time passes faster and it is easier for you to concentrate on the task at hand. Additionally music will keep you entertained and energised throughout the work so that you feel less tired, even as you do more.
  • Pick up the pace - cleaning as a workout will obviously not be that effective if you are too calm, slow and steady about it. If you truly wish your cleaning service to matter and to burn some calories, you have to pick up your pace. Don’t just stroll around your home with a duster and a vacuum cleaner; instead move around like you are in a hurry and try to finish a task quicker than you normally would. At the same time you should try not to sacrifice the quality of the work, or else you will be stuck doing the very same home cleaning chores all over again very soon.
  • Work against a timer - set a time for your home cleaning chores and try to beat the time. Here is where you will need to challenge yourself in order to be truly effective about the work and for it to really matter. You can consider giving yourself a few minutes for window cleaning, or 10 minutes to perform proper carpet cleaning. That ought to make your home cleaning a lot more difficult but at the same more rewarding in terms of physical exercise and calories burned.
  • Include weights in your cleaning - it is true that cleaning is already a difficult task, but you can make it way more challenging by adding some wrist and ankle weights. This should be executed with caution, as it can be truly challenging. The extra weight will make movement more difficult, pretty much the same way you exercise with weights in the gym. The only difference is you will be busy with dusting and vacuum cleaning and not lifting weights alone. See to it that you are comfortable and stop for a rest if you feel too tired.
  • Take regular breaks - remember that any workout activity requires frequent breaks. When you finish a certain cleaning task, or part of it, you should take a break so that your body can rest and prepare for the next set of cleaning.
Follow these tips and you can truly transform your cleaning into a workout session. Be careful with it and you will be able to enjoy an activity that is both good for your home and for your body as well.

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March Newsletter

We're Number One!!!

Yes, we love our home city. Evidently lots of people agree, as Denver was named the NUMBER ONE place to live by U.S. News and World Report . We pulled a 7.8 out of 10 overall, but 9.9 on desirability! Colorado Springs sneaked in at number five, giving Colorado two spots in the top ten. They also did a wonderful job of creating a spot where cities can be viewed, evaluated and sorted. You can find out average commute sorted by zip code, the job market, housing market and pretty much anything else you wanted to know about our fine city (and others, but just so we can gloat)! Full details can be found here .

Spring Break

It is that time of year again and many of you will be taking a break either with your kids, or for your kids this spring.

Either way, we know that our kids will be off from school for some portion of time and often, that messes up your cleaning schedule.

If possible, please let us know immediately if you are going to change your scheduled clean in any way. We are doing everything we can to control our costs, and we still haven't figured out a way to solve our lockout problem (yes some people just aren't home when we arrive, or don't call to cancel...you would be amazed).

So if there are changes to your schedule this spring, please let us know so we can manage our schedule and keep that efficiency up.

In the meantime, enjoy the end of our winter and the beginning of a wonderful spring!

Denver's Changing Skyline

Man, things are changing fast in Denver. On top of being named the number one city to live we are growing and expanding downtown like crazy.

We see all of the construction and we wonder what it might look like in a few years.

An enterprising young man used Google Earth to project what our city will look like with existing and soon to be approved projects going forward. The bottom line? Our skyline will look radically different pretty soon.

The link takes a while to load, but is worth the view. Data was pulled from denverinfill.com, which is another good resource to find out what is happening with development in Denver. The skyline link can be found here.

American Express Users

It has come to our attention that our American Express billing label is incorrect. This is not an issue on our end, but one that we are attempting to resolve directly with them. Evidently AMEX charges for your cleaning services are sometimes labeled “Concert Concepts” rather than Denver Concierge.

We don’t know who “Concert Concepts” is, but we are receiving the money in our account. So, there is no action required on your part, but we wanted you to know that we are aware of the issue and hope to have it resolved in the next week or so. Thanks for your patience and thanks to those of you that pointed this issue out to us!

The Power of Words

Yes, we love words. We write lots of them each month, and we sure say a lot of them.

The folks at Buffer have written an exceptional piece on what words (and phrases) motivate us the most. They also list some of the ones that don’t. We found this to be a pretty impactful piece and gathered some ideas we are going to begin using immediately.

We hope you agree, the link to the article is here.

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela

I will be out of the office part of this week for a medical procedure. Jenny will be answering your calls in my absence (she is a sweetie).  If you have any schedule changes that you usually email to me, please call the office and run them by her. Any other non-urgent correspondence please go ahead and leave on my email.  I will be back on email within a couple of days.

Until this occurrence I have been self- sufficient and unaware of all the wonderful home help that is out there in Denver.  Our concierge partner at As You Wish, Allison Farrar, found a great dog sitter who will come three times a day and take care of the beasts.   King Soopers delivers groceries within a two-hour window and I even found a company that cleans up the yard after the dogs.  And of course I have a super house cleaning company!

Bee

Our Fleet

We wanted to share a photo of our fleet, getting ready to come make your homes shine!

Our ladies are sure happy to be in our new fleet of Kia Sorentos. We hope you like the new look when you see us roll up to your home.

Special thanks again to our friends at Erlich I-25 Kia and the best GM anyone could ask for in Ron Volk. If you are in the market for a new vehicle and have been considering a Kia, please reach out to Ron and he will take excellent care of you. Mention Denver Concierge for a special offer!

You can email Ron directly here.

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Happy New Year

Happy New Year

Another year has passed and this is our 3rd year sending out our sometimes informative newsletter! We want to say thanks for reading and want to wish you the best for a fabulous 2016. Lots of stuff going on at Denver Concierge, including our new vehicles, roll out of health care for our employees and other changes to try and become more efficient. In short we are doing everything we can to keep our costs down without raising prices. One of our big cost issues is lockouts and access, if you want to learn more see below. We sure appreciate your business and hope that 2016 is your best year ever!

Top Secret Referral Program

January is always a good time to mention referrals. One of the things that we have learned in our 16 years in business is that we clean very differently from most companies. We sometimes have a hard time communicating how deeply we clean (and why we cost more) to prospective clients. It usually hits them once they see our fabulous team at work in their homes, but sometimes we never get that far as it's hard to explain what we do without seeing it first hand. Of course we know that you realize and appreciate how we clean, and that is why your referrals are the best way for us to grow. We have a very lucrative referral program going on right now....too good to put in the newsletter. Please speak with Angela if you have someone that you think would appreciate what we do, and she will give you the lowdown. Thanks for all you do and for those wonderful clients many of you sent us in 2015!

Lockouts

One of our toughest dilemmas is what to do when we get locked out. Many of our competitors charge a fee for this, we do not. Not yet anyway. Most of you offer us access to your home without restriction, and we appreciate that. We carry lots of insurance and documentation so you should always feel comfortable with us in your home, even if you can't be there. The worst thing is when we arrive at your home and cannot get in for some reason. We pay our teams from the moment they leave our office and it's quite expensive to have them driving places with no home to clean. Worse, the next client often isn't ready for us, so it creates a bunch of problems. We would be incredibly grateful if you would alert early us when you need to cancel your clean or if there will be some problem with access. We understand emergencies and will always accommodate you when we can. We appreciate your help in improving our efficiency and keeping our costs down!

Snow Days

Ahh, winter.....we love you. Actually not so much. It's great for skiing and snowboarding, but it really cramps our style (and yours) when we get a big storm. We know how frustrating this is, as it is incredibly hard to reschedule. Think about it like an airline. We have days full of flights and when snow wipes some out, unless we have cancellations going forward there isn't any place to put folks. It frustrates us as much as you....so what can you do to help? Please be patient with us when it snows. If you want real time updates on whether or not we are working, you can follow us on Twitter at @bestmaidsdenver. We typically send out a tweet when we are going to be closed. We have been known to work Saturdays in special circumstances so that is sometimes a possibility as well. A good rule is that if schools are closed we are as well. The safety of our employees is the most important thing, and even though the main streets may be plowed, side streets in Denver don't get plowed until we get a foot of snow! Thanks, and here is to a snow free (in Denver) winter!

88 Truths about Life

Our first newsletter of 2016 wouldn't be complete without some tidbits of self-improvement that we found interesting. The new year usually brings about reflection and planning about how we have done things, and how we might do things better. We ran across a great piece from raptitude.com on "truths" in life. We felt better after reading them and we hope you do as well!  To learn more take a look here.

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Queen Bee Corner

by Angela For the past two weeks I've joined the ranks (albeit temporarily; nothing serious, pulled muscle) of those who work from home, as do many of our clients. It has certainly given me a good understanding of the pluses (no drive time) and the minuses (my dogs barking).  I didn't have a visit from Denver Concierge, but I imagine that three ladies cleaning can be fairly disruptive.  I will remind the teams in the next employee meeting to please keep the working client in mind as you move about the house. Be very very quiet every chance you get. So..I will be back in the office on Monday due in large part to the expert advice given me by a client.  Thank you Caylene!  It worked! Queen Bee

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The most important things to do when kitchen cleaning

The most important things to do when kitchen cleaning2The most important things to do when kitchen cleaning

Kitchen cleaning is quite an overwhelming task, especially if you do it more occasionally like once a month or even more rarely. Deep cleaning the most soiled objects and appliances is not enough, because the dirt often spreads everywhere, yet it comes to the kitchen - the most frequently used room in the house, which sees the heaviest dirt from kitchen grease and other persistent types of spots. Next is a short To-Do list or a set of tips and tricks to deep clean the most important things in the kitchen.

1) The counter top and the sink. The kitchen sink disposal should be first. Run a couple of ice cubes through the disposal to sharpen the blades, whiles if you worry about the elimination of bacteria - add the juice of one lemon to the water for the ice, and then put the mixture in the freezer to form ice cubes. The lemon juice acts as an antibacterial agent. Then, remove the objects from the counter-top and rinse thoroughly with clean hot water. Rub with a grooming brush to get rid of the dirt between the grout lines. The wooden counter-tops should be soaked a bit longer if you want to get rid of the dirt easily. Clean the sink with a commercial detergent for metal objects, while for the chrome parts is required a special detergent. It will prevent the chrome parts from scratching, while cleaning and polishing them in the meantime.

2) Defrost the fridge and the freezer, and remove all the inner compartments, shelves and doors. If you do it once a year, for example during the big spring cleaning - a great tip is to begin right from this step and to save time by doing other things while waiting for the fridge to defrost completely. Soak the detached parts in the sink and make a homemade detergent of hot water, dish detergent, baking soda and alcohol. It will sanitize and help dissolve the hardest stains from dry grease, which is a common issue on the grilled or on the glass shelves. Don't forget to clean the cooling coils on the back of the fridge. A brush with electrostatic charged fibers is perfect to wipe off dust, spider webs and other dirt.

3) Oven cleaning is the next challenge, which should begin with the removal of the shelves and the racks. Soak them in the solution in the sink and brush to get rid of the stains. Clean the interior of the oven with towels and pay more attention to the lights and to the ventilation system. Ensure a flawless transparency of the door of the oven by rubbing with a clean soft cloth and with a solution of hot water and white vinegar. Attach the already clean and dry shelves and run the oven at its highest temperature for a while to eliminate all the unwanted odors.

4) The flooring in the kitchen are especially important, especially if your kitchen is a part of the dining room and the dining table is in a close proximity. The area around the table and around the kitchen triangle is the area, which sees the heaviest foot traffic, as well as heaviest dirt from food, such as crumbs, spills, drops, etc. The tiled or the hardwood flooring are easier for deep cleaning, but if you have textile floor coverings like carpets or rugs - a better idea is to use the professional services for carpeting. The carpeting experts have the perfect machines and detergents to sanitize and deodorize even the most soiled carpet, without the risk for damaging the fibers or causing discoloration.

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Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays

We want to wish all of our clients, friends and partners the happiest of holiday seasons in 2015. We have had a wonderful year and want to thank all of you that helped make us successful. We hope you have a safe, warm and connected holiday, with lots of family, friends and good cheer. We look forward to serving you again in 2016, and to another wonderful year. Thanks again for being part of the Denver Concierge "family" and for supporting our local business.

Partners We Love

Recently we had a shower door "explode" on us. Evidently, over time tempered glass combined with pressure can come apart in a surprising fashion. Thankfully, no one was injured, but it gave us a chance to call our friends at Buonsante Glass to come out and take a look. Not only was the shower door repaired perfectly, but they were fast, efficient and reasonably priced. We know Andy Buonsante the owner, very well and wanted to give him a shout out in case any of you need any glass work done in your homes. You can learn more about Andy and his great locally owned business here. You can also call Andy at 303-886-2876 or email him here. Tell him you heard about him in our newsletter and receive a special offer!

Buying more Stuff

In our over commercialized holiday season, we sometimes feel overwhelmed. Between all the ads on TV, gifts to buy, etc., we find ourselves trying to sort out what really matters. We ran across a great piece on why we might want to buy less "stuff" and work more on creating memories that will last. We thought it made a lot of sense so we are posting it here. It seems that the payoff for buying more stuff is pretty short, and the article helps explain why that is.

The Skinny on New Year's Resolutions

Yes, we have fallen into the failed resolution trap well. We fully understand that gym memberships are the highest in January, as all of us want to get the new year off to a great start, and try to stick with our plans. Making significant changes in our lives is hard, especially when it comes to breaking bad habits. We found some great stuff on this whole idea and we thought we would share it. For a list of the most common resolutions and success rates, click here. For the reasons behind why we usually fail at our resolutions (and some tips on how not to), check out this article. We wish you all the best in making positive changes in 2016!

Successful Habits

Since we are kind of on the new year's resolution and self-improvement theme, we found a couple of articles that sort of got us going. First, what are 12 things that enormously successful people refuse to do? Well you can find out here. We also ran across this piece on 30 challenges for 30 days. Some of these really made us stop and think. We hope it does the same for you. The article, courtesy of Marc and Angel can be found here. team-angela-danessi.144305

Queen Bee Corner

by Angela What a hectic time!  With all the schedule changes, and special holiday requests, I have spoken to more clients in the past month than I have all year.  As always it is my pleasure and though work related (but not always), it's fun to touch base.  I have known many of you since the very beginning of the company! I would like to wish you and yours a continuing safe and enjoyable season and a Happy and Prosperous New Year. Cheers!

Vehicle Project Complete

Hopefully you have seen our new rides out on the road and in front of your homes. Our fleet has been completely replaced (we kept a couple of our old blue vans for nostalgia's sake) and we couldn't be happier. We hope you like the new look...our ladies are much safer and much happier traveling to your homes!

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The key for reducing the volatile chemical compounds when cleaning

The key for reducing the volatile chemical compounds when cleaning

The key for reducing the volatile chemical compounds when cleaning The best way to reduce the volatile chemical compounds when cleaning is to avoid cleaning with chemical compounds. This means no detergents that you can usually find in the store, nor detergents that are added to the water tank of the cleaning machine. The result may not be that satisfying as when cleaning with a powerful detergent during the big house cleaning, but let's face it - there will be no need to leave the windows open for a long time, neither to worry about your kids or pets. Some hand-knotted carpets, rugs and other natural upholstery are also very sensitive to chemical compounds. Not to mention the effect of the chemicals onto the wooden texture of the furnishings or onto chrome parts if you pick up the wrong detergent.

The key for reducing the volatile chemical compounds is to avoid or at least to reduce the periods for deep cleaning at home, which means a more frequent cleaning so you can't let the objects to get heavily soiled. For instance, let's take the textile floor coverings. A great idea is to rotate rugs and carpets on a monthly basis. This yet simple trick ensures an even wear of all the areas of the carpets, which is especially important for the carpets in the living room or in the bedroom. These are the most frequently used rooms and so the foot traffic is not an exception. By rotating carpets and rugs, you expose different areas to the foot traffic and so the need for deep cleaning with professional cleaning services reduces as well. Another great idea is to flip the carpets and the rugs if they have beautiful backings. By doing so, you basically expose a whole new side of the carpet to the foot traffic and everything else like dirt, dust, indentations from heavy objects, etc. One, the textile floor coverings become longer lasting and two - you reduce the period for deep cleaning with powerful chemical compounds.

The key for reducing the volatile chemical compounds when cleaning2Another common way to avoid breathing volatile chemical compounds is to leave the doors and the windows in the house open so there is always a constant airflow. This is simple, but it is applicable only for the warm seasons. That's why the end or the beginning of the summer are the best moments for deep cleaning at home even if you plan to call the professional cleaners who use big powerful machines with a myriad of cleaning solutions.

Use the vacuum cleaning machine everywhere! Whether it comes to just freshening the fluffiness of the carpets and the sofa or a weekly cleaning of all flooring - the vacuum cleaner is the fastest and yet easiest way for cleaning at home. It removes dust, food crumbs and other loose particles without the need for a treatment with chemical compounds.

Another common way is to beat gently the cushions and the carpets through the windows in order to get rid of the dust and the loose particles. Take a pick of a warm sunny and windy day for cleaning. The wind will help blow away the dirt and the dust, while the effect of wiping off dust should be the same even without using a vacuum cleaning machine.

Yet if you have to deep clean with some commercial detergents – make sure that they're pet-friendly detergents. A simple hygiene spray should play a great role for cleaning spills of margarine and other common spots from kitchen grease. Always read the labels on the compounds and try to avoid the powerful detergents that are recommended for cleaning machines.

Find more helpful cleaning tips on carpet cleaning please click here.

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