The Truth About Hiring a Professional Organizer: Myths & Tips
So you’re thinking about hiring a professional organizer, but you don’t know where to start. Or maybe you’re concerned that it’s an investment that’s too out of reach for you. The truth is, there are so many reasons for hiring a professional organizer, and it might be more feasible than you think!
If you’re reading this, you probably already know why organizing is important, and you’d love a professional’s help in getting your home organized once and for all — but, you have questions. To help you answer them, I’m debunking some myths around hiring a professional organizer and giving you some pro-tips to help you hire the best organizer for your needs.
3 Common Myths About Hiring a Professional Organizer, Debunked
MYTH 1: Only the rich and famous can hire a professional organizer
Hiring a professional organizer can seem out of reach, luxurious, or even frivolous. But the truth is, you don’t have to be a Kardashian to benefit from professional organizing services!
Most modern professional organizers can work with all different budgets and can work in homes (or apartments) of all sizes. Depending on your budget, you might want to hire a professional organizer on an hourly or per-project basis, and some organizers will even offer one-off consultations at a lower fee.
The bottom line is, pretty much anyone can afford to hire a professional organizer — you just have to find someone who has the right packages and experience to suit your needs.
MYTH 2: My house is too messy to let you in! I need to clean and organize it first!
I hear this one all the time! It’s extremely common to feel embarrassed about the current state of your house, no matter how messy (or not) it really is. Because you don’t see anyone else’s mess on a regular basis, you’re probably worried that yours is the worst a professional organizer has ever seen. Trust me, it’s not.
Professional organizers (myself included) have seen rooms and homes in all levels of disarray, clutter, and accumulation of extra stuff. There is nothing to be ashamed of because you’re taking control of the issue by enlisting help from a professional — and that’s something to feel very proud of! Just like any expert you might hire to treat any kind of problem, a professional organizer won’t judge you or your living space.
The truth is, to do our job properly, we need to see the true state of affairs so that we can implement solutions that will stick. Before you take the next step toward a tidier space in hiring a professional organizer, just remind yourself that there is no shame in your messy game.
MYTH 3: All professional organizers offer the same services and pricing
The truth is, there are many different business models and pricing scales among professional organizers. Even the National Association of Productivity & Organizing Professionals explains, “fees will vary widely based on the professional’s experience, your geographic location, and the services you are requesting.”
As mentioned earlier, some professional organizers charge by the hour, while others charge on a per-project basis. Also, some professional organizers provide more of a ‘do-it-yourself model’, where they give you a roadmap for you to implement, while others take care of everything for you.
It’s important to understand these differences in services and pricing structures and keep them in mind when comparing options. After all, you want to compare apples to apples, not apples to oranges.
Here’s a basic breakdown of the two most common pricing structures among professional organizers:
- Itemized Services: Some organizers might have lower hourly rates, but charge for every service.
- All-Inclusive: Other professional organizers, like Grid + Glam, have higher hourly rates, but are “all-inclusive” — so you won't pay separately for a consultation, shopping services, or custom labels.
Tips for Hiring the Right Professional Organizer for Your Needs
Now that I’ve debunked some of the biggest myths in hiring a professional organizer, and you’ve decided that it is the right option for you, I wanted to share some of my top tips for finding the right person and package to fit your needs.
TIP 1: Think about product costs
No matter how your professional organizer prices their time and services, you are responsible for the cost of any products purchased.
Even though most organizing products aren’t expensive, the cost of products can add up quickly. For example, if you are organizing an entire kitchen, the necessary products for each drawer and cabinet can add a lot to the overall project cost.
Unless you plan to only work with products you already own, it’s important to set aside enough in your budget for products. I recommend asking your organizer for an estimate before starting your project so you can avoid any costly surprises.
Remember: while the products might seem unnecessary, hiring an organizer is an investment, and the products they choose for you will help your new organizing systems stick. It’s our job to not just get you organized, but also to set you up with what you need to keep yourself organized.
TIP 2: Do your research before hiring a professional organizer
If you’re considering hiring a professional to help get your home organized once and for all, it’s important to make sure your chosen organizer’s style matches your own. Otherwise, you could end up with systems that function perfectly but don’t quite match the look and feel you’re trying to create within your home.
Most professional organizers have photos of their work on Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest, so looking at those is a great place to start. As you’re exploring, consider whether or not their aesthetic matches what you’re imagining for your home. Every organizing professional has her own style and finding one whose portfolio inspires you is ideal.
TIP 3: Ask for referrals
As with many high-touch, one-on-one services, I highly recommend hiring a professional organizer who came to you via a referral.
Organizing is a very personal experience. This person and/or their team will be in your home and going through all of your personal belongings, after all! You want to make sure that you’re hiring someone who you feel you can trust to handle that responsibility with care.
Of course, our industry is made up of some of the most compassionate and supportive women I have ever met, so you will have plenty of trustworthy and talented options to choose from.
Here are a few easy ways to get a referral:
- Ask your group of friends
- Post in a Facebook group for local moms or families
- Reach out to someone you follow on Instagram whose home and systems you admire to ask if they hired a professional
- Contact me and ask if I have a referral in your area
So… What Are You Waiting For?!
It’s easy to put off the things we know we need, but when it comes to hiring a professional organizer, there’s no reason to delay. I can promise you, being able to wave goodbye to stress, mess, and disorganized old habits for good is an amazing feeling. You’ll wonder why you didn’t do this sooner!
Now that I’ve debunked the biggest myths about professional organizing and empowered you with some of my top tips, you have never been more ready to enlist the help of an organizing pro. If you’re in the Boston area or love the idea of a virtual consultation, I invite you to check out my professional organizing services.