Winter will soon be behind us in Baltimore, so now is the time to get busy with your spring cleanup. Whether you’re in Essex, Towson or Catonsville, now’s the time to get appointments with contractors you will need to make those changes to renew your home.

1. Tired of looking at the same old paneling?
Stop polishing the paneling to keep it looking good. It’s time to replace it with a surface that can be painted. Add color and vibrancy to your home.

2. Carpeting worn out?
Hardwood flooring provides easy care options. A dust mop will keep it shining without lugging out the vacuum cleaner.

3. Have a large wide open room without closet space?
Consider installing a room break. Build a nook or closet right next to your entry door. Installing hooks for jackets, keys and the dog’s leash will save loads of search time. Use shelving for boots and shoes. Keep slippers handy to pamper your feet upon arrival.

4.  Drawer and desk overflowing?
Spring cleaning is a perfect time to use the three box cleanup plan: keep, recycle, trash. If there are items you really feel you must keep, dividers for that junk drawer will do the trick. Routine paperwork falling off the desk? A virtual assistant could take that task in hand or create an appropriate file system for you.

5. Air conditioning ready for summer?
Have you turned on the air conditioning to insure that it’s working? “We provide the customer peace of mind by meeting all their heating and cooling needs 24/7,” says Don Albright of Albright’s Mechanical Services. “We also give tips they can do on their own to save energy and become more environmentally green.”

Formulate a serious spring cleanup plan. Are there things you can do yourself by visiting the local hardware store? Do you need a local contractor to provide a helping hand? Here are a few resources available to help you accomplish these jobs.

Albright’s Mechanical Services
11 S Marlyn Ave.
Baltimore, Md. 21221
(410) 391-4737

Hours: Mon to Fri – 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Albright’s will check that air conditioning unit and clean those ducts. Well-trained workmen provide full service for heating, cooling, plumbing and refrigeration services, giving the customers the comfort they want in their homes.

B&T Hardware   
601 Back River Neck Road
Essex, Md. 21221
(410) 686-5845

Hours: Mon to Sat – 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

You need it, B&T Hardware has it. Tons of items are on hand for the smallest job to a total remodel. The store has paints, coat hooks, drawer dividers and everything else you might need to help organize and spruce up the house and yard. Furnace filters and a host of cleaning supplies are also available.

Laun Brothers Lumber

605 S Caton Ave.
Baltimore, Md. 21229
(410) 233-0737

Hours: Mon to Fri – 6 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“As you are working on a home improvement project, you want to find supplies all in one location,” says Scott Parson of Laun Brothers Lumber. “Laun Brothers is the place. It has served Baltimoreans for 50 years.”

Stebbins Anderson Hardware
802 Kenilworth Drive
Towson, Md. 21204
(410) 823-6600

Hours: Mon to Sat – 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sun – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Stebbins Anderson has outdoor furniture, kitchen gadgets and decorative items for the home and garden. It also has paint and full hardware needs, and will cut screens, glass and keys.

The Organizer
Bonnie Blas
Baltimore, Md. 21208
(410) 358-9290

Hours: Mon to Thurs – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Evenings, Fridays and Sundays by appointment only

Organization and decluttering can be provided by a virtual assistant, handling the overflowing paperwork. If necessary, Bonnie will develop a filing system to get it done.

Related: How An Architect Can Fit Into Your Budget

Anna Renault is a life-long resident of Baltimore County. After a 31-year career, Renault has re-careered into the world of journalism. She writes a weekly column for The Avenue News, her local paper. Her work can be found at

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