When you’re looking for a cleaning service for historic homes in SoCal, start your search with Nancie Brown & Associates. Southern California might not be the first place you consider when it comes to historic architecture, but there’s authentic historicity tucked away behind the general artificial veneer. You can’t use modern-day cleaning solutions on centuries-old wood floors, delicate glass, ceramics, or linens. When it comes to general cleaning for homes with valuable older fittings, it makes sense to hire a service that possesses the specialist knowledge necessary to preserve their integrity for years to come. Nancie Brown & Associates is a professional cleaning service with over 30 years of experience, including plenty of experience cleaning and preserving historic homes and other buildings in all their antique charm.
How Do You Keep an Old House Clean?
Preserving a historic living room, bedroom, or bathroom with its charm intact can be a complex task. If you use the wrong cleaning products or handle them incorrectly, you can cause significant damage. Even worse, some older properties contain potentially harmful materials such as asbestos or lead paint. If elements containing these substances are damaged or disturbed, they can have a hazardous effect on you or your cleaning team.
Dust is the main enemy. While it might seem ubiquitous, especially to older properties, it is more than the minor issue it may appear. The organic matter contained in dust (skin flakes, hair, spores, soil, pollen) is sustenance for creatures such as dust mites. The presence of dust mites precipitates an ecosystem of vermin or unwelcome elements, such as beetles, spiders, or even mice. Dust can also breed problems such as rust or mold. The more foot traffic through an old house, the more dust is generated. One of the most substantial issues for cleaners handling old houses is keeping intricate lighting fixtures such as chandeliers clean. Nancie Brown & Associates specialize in glass cleaning and can keep even complex, multi-piece chandeliers looking their best with cleaning products that maintain the integrity of the glasswork without leaving marks.
How to Spring Clean Your Historic Home
The origin of spring cleaning is itself a historic practice. Thought by some to be related to the Persian New Year, Nowruz, Iranians still ‘shake the house’ from the drapes to the furniture. There is also the Jewish tradition of cleansing the home prior to Passover— the day before Good Friday, in the Christian calendar, which falls in spring in the Northern Hemisphere. Jewish homes are supposed to be entirely devoid of leavened foodstuffs during the Passover holiday, so even crumbs must be cleaned out. In East Asian cultures as well, the Lunar New Year (also called Chinese New Year) is prefaced by a thorough cleaning in order to prepare family homes for the festivities. Sweeping the home during the festival is traditionally thought to be unlucky, as it may sweep away the new year’s fortune. This kind of deep cleaning in anticipation of the first day of spring permeates global culture.
Whenever you decide to deep clean your historic home, you’ll want to take care with any wooden floors you have. When sweeping, a soft-bristled broom is best. If you’re using a vacuum cleaner, be sure to use a soft floor nozzle. Microfiber mop heads are suitable for picking up the optimal amounts of dust and pet hair. However, it’s important not to use a mop that’s too damp, and to move with the grain. Avoid mixtures: water will suffice, and especially avoid linseed oil.
Pressure washing on your home’s exterior can spell doom for your historic home’s preserved frontage, potentially even affecting its structural integrity. Masonry should be gently cleaned with low-pressure water and detergent so that soiled surfaces can be cleansed but their detail preserved. When cleaning and opening windows, the safest method is to use distilled water only with a cotton cloth. If there is stubborn dirt or grime, use warm distilled water with a mild soap and a soft, natural cloth or sponge. Keep a towel at the bottom of the window sash. This will help prevent water damage to the window fitting. Similarly, ensure that your home’s drainage features are intact and not clogged. Any gutters, roof overhangs, and downspouts that are draining poorly can harm wood features in your home’s exterior such as porches, doors, and windows.
Historic House Cleaning with Nancie Brown & Associates
Nancie Brown & Associates offers gold-standard cleaning services for homeowners and managers of historic homes. Our professional uniformed staff has previously worked with a variety of fine homes and estates. Each of our cleaners is directly employed by our company, rather than subcontracted. That’s how we ensure accountability and maintain the highest standards of service. All our cleaners are personally trained by our founder, Nancie Brown, instructed in our techniques for:
- Spring detail cleaning and periodic maintenance
- Floor treatment: stripping, waxing, polishing, and conditioning
- Cleaning exterior fixtures: lights, gates, statues, etc.
- Detail cleaning windows, frames, screens, and tracks
- Sanitizing countertops, tiles, and grout
- Detail cleaning high-to-reach areas, including chandeliers
- Detail cleaning fireplace and chimneys
- Maintaining and polishing surfaces such as wood, concrete, stainless steel, silver, marble, wrought iron, etc.
- Detailing and organizing the kitchen and pantry
- Detailing interior glass: showers, glass walls, glass finishing
Nancie Brown & Associates is a professional cleaning contractor. We are fully credentialed and up to date on all required licenses, bonds, insurances and other paperwork, for your protection and ours. Our company is also a member of the American Society of Interior Design, so that we can keep pace with the latest in design trends and how to clean them most effectively. If you would prefer green products to be used in your historic home, either to protect the materials used or its inhabitants, we would be happy to oblige.
Call us on 310-837-7880 to arrange a cleaning service for your historic home at your convenience.