Get your house organized with One Organized Expat

Get your house organized with One Organized Expat

by Stripes Europe Staff
Stripes Europe

One Organized Expat opened for business in April of this year. Owner, Amy Holt loves the peace and calm of being organized and wanted to share that feeling and her talent for it with the American community around Kaiserslautern. Ms. Holt has been organizing spaces her whole life - as a child around the house, at various jobs in her twenties, and for friends who felt stuck with their cluttered kitchens and bedrooms. 

"I truly believe that visual clutter contributes to mental clutter, making someone feel stressed and like there is never enough time to do everything," says Ms. Holt who is a wife and mom to three young boys. "Being organized isn't about having a perfect home. To me, it is about finding the most practical way of storing only the things you love and use. Being organized makes tidying and cleaning so much easier, too!"

One Organized Expat has helped members of the Kaiserslautern community with both pre- and post-PCS organizing, making the transition easier. Holt, whose husband worked for DoDEA, understands what it is like to move around a lot. "Our family moved five times within the United States and twice in South Korea before coming to Germany. I know the exasperation of boxes and chaos."

Fortunately for Ms. Holt, those feelings never lasted long because getting organized is one of her first priorities in a new house. She opened her business to help other Americans in the community who struggle with the same issues but don't know where to begin.  

Professional organizing has been a valued service in the US since the 1980s but is only recently becoming known in Germany. Now the popular American resource is available to those living overseas. The most common complaints Ms. Holt hears from Americans are about the small German kitchens and lack of closets. One of her techniques, she explains, is to look at the whole house, not just the space that's being organized. Is there something taking up space in the kitchen that should really be in the garage? Is there a way to repurpose a shelf from another room to create more storage in the room where it's needed? Ms. Holt says she has a knack for finding unique solutions to storage problems that the owner may not have seen because she's coming in with fresh eyes. "Sometimes a solution is as simple as moving a shelf up or down a level. Sometimes its swapping an entire shelving unit from one room to another if it works better. It's all about finding a solution that makes sense for how the client uses the space."

Ms. Holt and family are now residents of Germany, hence the 'Expat' in the business name. The way it works is simple. If an individual or family feels stressed or overwhelmed in their home they should pick the space that's bothering them the most to get started on. Ms. Holt either requests photos of the area or will come over to see it personally and ask questions about the client's ideas. Then, one or more appointments are scheduled to work side-by-side going through the items in the room and making decisions about how the new space will function. Ms. Holt says she helps guide her clients with the sometimes-difficult, decision-making process by asking questions and listening. Her services may also include joint-trips to trash/recycling centers or shopping trips for supplies if needed. 

"It takes a lot of courage and vulnerability from my clients to contact me in the first place. It's uncomfortable asking for help, especially when it's personal space," explains Ms. Holt who understands that sometimes people are afraid of being judged in some way. "We all need help sometimes. I'm just a person helping another person with something I'm good at. The best part is seeing the look of calm relief on my client's faces when their space is finally organized how they want it

Get organized now and contact One Organized Expat: and on Facebook @oneorganizedexpat

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