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Spring cleaning: Some expert advice

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Here's a few tips and ideas from Laura Dellutri, nationally renowned home and lifestyle expert (Her many TV appearances have included "The View", "The Nate Berkus Show", and "CBS Early Morning". Dellutri is also the author of several books, including the classic "Speed Cleaning 101"):

1. For those on a budget, what's the most essential spring cleaning task?

CARPET CLEANING! If you are wearing shoes in your home, chances are your carpets are loaded with dust allergens and bacteria from the outdoors. In fact, 85 percent of the dirt found in your home comes in on the bottom of your shoes. It is important to extend the lifespan of your carpet by maintaining its appearance and keeping the carpet fibers clean. I use Valpak to find deals for items that often linger on my “to-do” list and are better suited for a professional, like carpet cleaning, so I can save money and time this spring.

2. What are some quick and inexpensive ways to spruce up the kitchen and bedroom?

For SANITIZING: My budget savvy go-to cleaner is Spic and Span Antibacterial Spray Cleaner because it’s a 3-in-1 cleaner. It is a degreaser, all-purpose antibacterial cleaner. You can spray counters, sinks, cabinets and appliances. I use it in the bathroom on my toilet, sink, shower and bathtub. Keeping high contact areas like faucets and handles germ-free is easy with this product!

FOR SOAPSCUM: Lemon oil on shower doors will help repel soap scum and also get rid of the white chalky look. If you have a thick layer of soap scum on your shower doors, use a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser to remove. Once clean, apply lemon oil 2x per month with a dry cloth. A thin layer of lemon oil will do the trick!

FOR GRANITE AND STONE SURFACES: My new favorite cleaner is 409…it saves me from buying two separate products in the kitchen. It works very well and I can clean two surfaces for 1/2 the price of buying specialized cleaners!

3. What are some of Spring 2014's new cleaning products that you would recommend?

FOR SANITIZING: The Shark Steam and Spray Mop deep cleans and sanitizes hard floor surfaces with its disposable and washable microfiber pads that use super-heated steam to offer 99.9% percent sanitization. The mop kills germs and bacteria with no residue left behind. It is also very lightweight for easy cleaning.

FOR GREASE INDOORS AND OUTDOORS: LA’s Totally Awesome Cleaner is budget-friendly at $1 a bottle at the dollar store and it works amazingly better than everything I have tried on dirty grease and even coffee stains.

4. What are some quick and inexpensive ways to make over and freshen up porches and patios?

RE-STAIN WITH MINWAX: For wood decks, I love to re-stain and reseal to give them a cosmetic face lift.

TILE/CEMENT: Sometimes they need a really good pressure washer cleaning to pop them back to life and get them looking spiffy!

CREATE NEW SITTING AREA: Use benches, gliders and bistro tables. If you are on a tight budget, shop at garage sales. Add flowers, fountains and colored pillows to create an outdoor living space on your patio or deck area.

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