Freshen up your surroundings with these mobile apps

Apr 13, 2012
Shine

Spring is in full swing, and the change of seasons is a great time to declutter your home and the space around you. From cleaning out closets, to dusting off shelves, to making a few extra bucks from unwanted items, spring cleaning does not have to be as much of a chore with the help […]

Spring is in full swing, and the change of seasons is a great time to declutter your home and the space around you. From cleaning out closets, to dusting off shelves, to making a few extra bucks from unwanted items, spring cleaning does not have to be as much of a chore with the help of a few smartphone apps.

Good Housekeeping @Home (iPhone, iPod Touch, Android: Free)

This app wins our seal of approval. Good Housekeeping may take you back to the forgotten days of Home Economics, but this long-standing publication delivers tons of smart solutions for the home. It includes cleaning tips such as how to best remove various stains from upholstery, or how to scrub a ceramic bathtub. In addition, the app also provides tips on how to reorganize furniture and redecorate. The app’s Stain Buster cleaning guide will keep you on the right track with instructions on how to work quickly and without breaking your back. There is also a news and tips section, which is helpful for maintaining a healthy home even after spring cleaning is complete.

EggDrop – The Smarter Neighborhood Marketplace (iPhone, iPod Touch, Android: Free)

Spring cleaning also affords the chance to make a few bucks unloading what you don’t need. The easiest way to get rid of things in the house is in the local marketplace, which is why EggDrop is so useful for spring cleaners. It enables real-time buying and selling at the local level, so you can skip the auctions, promotions and shipping that comes with other web-based marketplaces. List items for sale, including pictures, and share them on Facebook, Twitter and Craigslist. You can search for items by location, and message the buyer or seller immediately. EggDrop is known for its masterful interface, which is cleaner than Craigslist and also more niche. There’s a reputation system built-in to track the best users, and unlike eBay, there’s no listing or transaction fees.

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Home Inventory (iPhone, iPod Touch: $4.99)

As you go about your cleaning this spring, you may encounter items that you forgot you owned. But being able to remember and list your property is important as you never know when a fire or an earthquake might require you to fill out an insurance claim. Home Inventory, which also has a free lite version you can try out, will help you record important data for your belongings including make model, serial number, purchase date and purchase price.

52 Organizing Missions (iPad: $9.99)

For anyone who’s had the goal of getting organized no matter what time of the year it is, 52 Organizing Missions, even at close to ten bucks, is a must-buy app. Weekly 30-minute guided sessions available in the app include: “De-toxing Your Briefcase,” “Organizing Your Bill Payment,” “De-Cluttering,” “Cleaning Out Your Closet,” and “Organizing Specific Rooms in Your House.” Any of these sessions will help you finally conquer that massive undone “to-do” list that haunts you.

Clean Freak Cleaning Schedule (iPhone, iPod Touch: $0.99)

For those who are on a strict cleaning schedule, or who would like to be, there is the Clean Freak Cleaning Schedule app for $0.99. It helps users to organize a rotating priority list, so you don’t feel overwhelmed at the prospect of cleaning the entire house all at once. For example, you put the most attention-worthy items on a weekly to-do list. But areas of the house that don’t get as dirty can be placed on the two- or three-week cycle. Once you have completed a task, check it off your list. The app then keeps count of the number of days that have passed since you last completed that chore.

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Brad Spirrison

Brad Spirrison is the managing editor of appoLearning and Appolicious Inc. In this capacity, he has sampled and evaluated thousands of iOS and Android applications. He also holds an M.A. in Education and Media Ecology from New York University.

Spirrison worked in concert with appoLearning Expert and Instructional Technology Specialist Leslie Morris while curating and evaluating educational applications.

A longtime media and technology commentator and executive, Spirrison is also a regular contributor to ABC News, The Huffington Post, TechCrunch, Bloomberg West and The Christopher Gabriel Program.

Spirrison is married and lives with his wife and young son in Chicago. As his son was born just weeks before the debut of the iPad, Spirrison takes his work home with him and regularly samples and enjoys a variety of educational applications for young children.

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