Nicole Longo of NEAT Method Los Angeles South Bay offers luxury home organizing services
By Kamala Kirk / Photo by Chris Mortenson
Growing up in a military family, Nicole Longo developed a passion for organizing at a young age. Due to her father’s career in the Air Force, they moved frequently so she became experienced with the process of packing and getting organized in new spaces.
“Organizing is something I was naturally drawn to,” Longo says. “I learned how to effectively purge items, pack up a house, move into a new space and figure out how to fit things into different configurations.”
Last year, Longo transitioned from her career as a successful executive in entertainment marketing and turned her passion for organizing into a full-time job. In 2021, she joined NEAT Method, a female-founded and owned company that provides a variety of luxury home organizing services to more than 95 markets across the United States and Canada. Now Longo runs NEAT Method Los Angeles South Bay and serves clients across the South Bay and Silicon Beach.
“NEAT Method was founded 11 years ago by Ashley Murphy and Molly Graves, two women who were passionate about organizing, made a business out of it and taught other women how to run their own businesses,” Longo says. “During COVID-19, I started diving into my passion more and that’s how I discovered NEAT Method. It’s really great to be part of that network and tribe of women who support and empower each other.”
Longo says that kitchens and pantries are two of the most popular areas in a home that clients want organized.
“Organizing your pantry can be life-changing,” Longo says. “Just by knowing everything that you have will prevent you from overbuying products. It makes putting away groceries so much easier, and if you have kids they can find their snacks on their own. Lately, clients have wanted to organize their garages because as we get into the summer months, they’re spending more time outdoors and are using their sports equipment.”
In addition to home organizing services, Longo also helps clients move into new homes, which includes getting them unpacked and set up.
“When they come home that first day, everything is put away and they’re ready to go with all the right systems,” Longo says. “Another service that NEAT Method offers is sprucing up everyday spaces in people’s homes. We help organize the places you touch the most like bathrooms, kids’ rooms, closets and garages, and we make all of those spaces neat and functional. It’s not just about making a space look pretty and clean, we’re thinking about how each household uses that space and what is the best system to set up so they can maintain it.”
Prior to starting an organization project, Longo meets with clients for an in-person consultation where she asks them questions to figure out their goals and needs. Then she’ll bring in a team of organizers to help her complete the project, followed by a grand reveal at the end.
“We walk through spaces that bother or overwhelm them and I ask what their vision is for the space, how they would like to use it, and what their goals and priorities are,” Longo says. “I ask all of those questions upfront so that once I come in and start organizing, the client can be hands off and go about their day while I handle everything. I’ll check in with them to get their thoughts on things along the way, but my goal is to take the stress off their hands. I also shop for the storage products that will contain their items and bring those with me to their home.”
NEAT Method also has its own line of high-quality storage and organization products that are sustainable and designed with elevated-looking materials to complement the interior design of clients’ homes. The products are available on their website and at Bloomingdale’s.
“Our products are intended to be multipurpose,” Longo says. “For instance, we have baskets that can be used in the pantry, laundry room or closet. As you move to different spaces or your lifestyle changes, you can keep the products and just change where they’re used in your home. We also have a patented magnetic label system that you can adhere to just about any surface. A lot of thought has been put into every item, and in addition to being functional, it adds style to make your home look nicer.”
During the pandemic, Longo saw a huge growth in her business because more clients were working from home.
“When you’re spending more time at home and you’re surrounded by clutter and disorganization, that can really affect your mental health,” Longo says. “I started getting a lot of calls from people who were ready to get organized. It’s life-changing because it creates a sense of calm and peace. You’re eliminating that extra layer of stress when you don’t have to look at clutter in your house.”
Getting organized offers numerous benefits, from increasing productivity to reducing stress.
“When you know where everything is in your home, it makes it much easier to find things and to keep your house clean so you’re less stressed,” Longo says. “Having a clean and organized home that functions exactly how you need it to improves your well-being, and people are happier when they are in a clean environment.”
One of the things that Longo loves most about her job is the ability to change others’ lives in a positive way.
“It gives me a sense of purpose because I’m improving someone’s life for the better,” Longo says. “I love the instant gratification I get when I hear directly from my clients how happy they are and how I’ve made their life so much easier. That really fulfills my sense of purpose.”
Longo and her husband moved to Playa Vista 11 years ago and always knew it was where they wanted to live.
“Playa Vista was our dream,” Longo says. “We were living in Santa Monica at the time and would always drive here on weekends to go to the farmers market and be part of the community. We moved here the year we got married and have lived in different parts of Playa Vista over the years. We have two kids now and we just love it here. Our older son is in the first grade at Playa Vista Elementary School and it’s nice to be able to walk him to school in the morning. I’m also part of the Playa Vista Moms Group and we’ve made so many friends here. I know we’ll never leave Playa Vista, it’s such a great community to be part of.”
NEAT Method South Bay
Tips for tackling clutter in your home
• Start small. Don’t try to attack an entire space in one day, it can be overwhelming with everything else that you have going on. For example, pick one drawer in your house. Pull everything out, sort by category, and figure out what you need and don’t need. Put the items you’re keeping into containers to keep them separate, then put them back into the drawer.
• Pick a category. For example, if you’re overrun with appliances in different parts of your home, bring them all out and put them together so you can see what you have. What are you using and what are you not using? Donate the items you’re not using and then find one area where the items you’re keeping can be stored together so that you’re not running around looking for them.
• Let things go. If your goal is to minimize and create more space in your home, it’s OK to let go of certain things. If you were gifted an item and you feel a personal obligation to keep it but you don’t like it or use it, let it go. If you own multiple versions of the same item, ask yourself if you really need all of them and then only keep two or three items.
•Use felt hangers. One of the easiest things to do is switch out your hangers for slim felt hangers because they create much more space in your closet. They do a great job at making items like bulky sweaters and jackets fit onto a hanging rack and prevent them from slipping off the hanger.