A SHiFT® in perspective is what we strive for when we're working with anyone who is organizationally challenged. We love what we do and it shows in the "Before & After" pictures below, and from client testimonials. Our area of concentration is working with individuals who suffer from chronic disorganization because of beliefs about self and possessions, brain-based challenges, and situational factors.
Take a look at some of our amazing work below!
Our calling is to improve the health, safety, comfort, and quality of life of those who suffer and/or struggle from a variety of organizing issues.
This client is my poster child for transforming from a hoarded home to a LIVABLE SPACE! I am so proud of her and the tremendous time we have spent in her home of 50 years.
It all started when I answered her daughter’s cry for help: “Need cleanup for very cluttered house--near hoarder status. Many items have not been moved for many years. Lots of dust, potential mold, three not completely house-trained dogs. Several house repairs needed, but have been put off because of the clutter.”
After the phone interview, I was called back for an in-person interview. The next call, “We’d like you to work with us!”
I walked into this hoarded house I had no idea how much I couldn’t see, and how much was in dire need of being repaired.
It was dark and dingy. No hot water (the hot water heater needed to be replaced), broken garbage disposal, the garage door was broken, the carpets were saturated with urine and dog feces, the home was overtaken with rats and mice, flying moths, moldy walls, terminate infestation, water damaged ceiling, and walls, etc.
Over time, I gained my client’s trust and we talked and talked. Soon, it became obvious that we needed more than basic handyman services, we needed a total remodel!
After one year, I asked my client if she’d be open to moving out while the house undergoes a complete renovation---that’s the only way a total renovation can be done, and this was a very tall order, I knew!
But....she agreed and we found a rental that was nearby that was agreeable to taking her dogs!
I moved her out of her home of 50 years, then back in once construction was completed. In addition to my organizing hat, I put on my construction hat.
I rolled up my sleeves to start managing my client’s remodel project from scheduling, ordering supplies, interfacing with the general contractor, to sourcing supplies and getting invoices paid on time.
To my surprise and amazement, I learned from Matt Paxton and Dorothy Breininger, of the popular TV series, “Hoarders”, that they do not know of one person who has hoarding disorder who has agreed and who has had their home remodeled---ever!
Our passion for organizing is rooted in our love to help people. It’s an amazing feeling to start organizing with someone who is feeling anxious, and watch as they transform throughout the process.
Besides the original goal to make space in his home from his bedroom to the kitchen and bathroom (also known as ‘harm reduction’), this client needed to empty the biggest and most expensive of six storage units.
His cry for help looked like this: “Need organizer to help sort and coach me on elimination of excess in storage lockers and home. Hoarder is the most basic term, but I prefer to think of myself as an “obsessive collector.” Also need resource to arrange pick-up for donation and can assist with connecting with outlets for items to be financially liquidated. Life coaching expertise would also be helpful as a part of de-cluttering process."
We were a match made in heaven!
I had every quality he was looking for and more! When I first met my East Bay client, two years ago, this storage unit was filled from floor to ceiling. We’ve been working on this unit and the other units for months. Now the final steps in getting ready to sell a large portion of the items—-we categorized and priced his baking supplies for sale.
I contacted my friend and owner of a baking supply store and we arranged for the sale of his products. Once the sale is over he will be able to close down this storage unit for good!
Livable Spaces is by far the finest professional organizer I know. I’ve worked with three different organizers over the years. In spite of advertising and special certification, Jen is the only one competent to work with the chronically disorganized, elders, and those with ADHD or brain injury. Jen is empathic and compassionate. She knows how to listen to her clients’ needs and fears. Jen meets her clients wherever they are in terms of emotional readiness for tackling anxiety-provoking tasks. She knows how to deescalate panic. Jen uses her great sense of humor to get clients through the rough spots. She also has a particular gift for working with clients by Zoom which has been really helpful during the pandemic. I highly recommend Jen to anyone who is looking to hire a certified and specialized professional organizer with a heart and a collaborative work style.
"Jen and her team spent a week with my wife and myself to organize our entire home. We went room by room to review contents, determine what to keep and what could be donated/pitched and how to thoughtfully organize each space to minimize clutter and maximize efficiency and flow. While this may sound like an easy and straightforward project, it took a significant amount of upfront planning, time, patience, collaboration, determination, and focus. Jen is very effective and results-oriented in her approach to working with people who may have very different philosophies and perspectives on the organization to achieve a balanced, mutually satisfactory solution. The end result was that our entire house (garage included) is now reasonably clutter-free and nicely organized. We could not be happier with or more grateful for Jen’s help and support. Many thanks for everything, Jen!"
"Jennifer Cazares has worked for me for a year. She is someone I can always count on. She is most reliable and can resolve every new issue that arrives at my desk or at home with ease, whether it is light bulbs or an excel spreadsheet. She accomplishes everything with ease and skill. She even gives me advice, with wisdom.
Her skills are wide and varied and I am certain I have only scratched the surface of her many talents. She is so helpful that I have become dependent on her advice and help. Her positive attitude is very much appreciated along with her honesty and integrity. I can recommend her, without hesitation. She is a valuable asset."