TC Chassay describes herself as a “serial entrepreneur” and has owned several businesses over the years. But she feels like she has really found her calling with her latest venture. She is a professional organizer, helping people eliminate clutter from their lives, including both homes and work spaces.
She is a graduate of Jacksonville State University and her early career was in the finance arena with a couple of start-ups that were not hers.
She later started Swim Stand an organizing product for competitive swimmers. She owned a furniture consignment store in south Huntsville for 10 years. She also sold skin care products for a time.
The business she has owned for the last 3 years is called Happy Homeowner. And it started out to be something quite different from what it has become.
“I built my own home several years ago and I knew the frustration of finding a contractor for particular parts of the job and coordinating when they would be there,” TC said.
Originally, her business plan was to act as the go-between for homeowners and contractors to get jobs done.
But the organizing sort of became a spin-off of that and it is where she has thrived.
“Organizing has been my strong suite all my life,” she said. “It has been my passion.”
She said a person doesn’t necessarily have to be a hoarder to have a work space that is cluttered and could better suit their needs.
“A lot of people are embarrassed by the clutter,” she said. “They won’t have people over or they apologize for it.”
When it reaches a “tipping point” is often when TC gets the call to help.
“People either get extremely frustrated with themselves or they get angry at the world," she said. “A cluttered space can be emotionally draining. With a hoarder, they have to decide to make a change.”
She said family members think they’re helping and might throw out some of the stuff when the hoarder isn’t looking.
“That’s actually the worst thing they can do,” TC said. “They know where their stuff is.”
She said she feels like an “armchair counselor” as she guides some folks through the process of de-cluttering their space. She can be very hands-on in the process or she can coach the person and they do it themselves.
“The first step for me oftentimes is showing them I am trustworthy and I want to help them fix the issue,” she said.
With one of her hoarding clients, the journey started by taking Christmas ornaments off her dead tree at the end of July.
“She micromanaged how I took each one off,” TC said. “I had a furniture store. I know things can be sentimental and important to a person.”
The length of time it takes TC to do her work varies. It can depend on the person she is working for.
“It starts with us coming in and getting a visual and talking to the client about what the pain points are,” TC said.
TC proudly says she doesn’t judge.
“I have seen it all,” she said. “You cant scare me. I grew up with 4 brothers and a sister who was a tomboy.”
Most of her business has been word of mouth. She is a member of the Women’s Economic Development Council and it has been a good source for networking.
“I really don’t feel like I am working in this job,” TC said. “I feel like this is what I was meant to do. People tell me I missed my calling as a counselor, but I feel like I can do God’s work without a title. People are often not as guarded without me having a title.”
In the age of COVID, she has actually done some of her work via Zoom meeting. Virtual organizing is a brand new part of what she does.
TC’s home and business are in Huntsville, but she spends a great deal of time in Guntersville. Her brother and sister-in-law are Dr. Dean and Holly Chassay. Dean is an anesthesiologist in the local hospitals. Holly is involved in lots of activities at Guntersville High.
TC can also often be seen on the arm of Michael Kirkpatrick of Point of Pines, who is chairman of the Guntersville Airport Board among other things.
Her father Don owns property in the Grant area. He’s a story in his own right. He took up pole vaulting at the age of 56 using a chain link fence post and went on to win bronze in the sport in the national Senior Olympics in his 70s.
She has been doing some research into her industry and an up-and-coming part of that type work is organizing small spaces, boats, boathouses, planes and RVs.
She’s done a little work in the Guntersville area, but made one of her oldest “finds” here, a bottle of medication that was just shy by 6 days of having been expired 20 years.
When she is not working, TC enjoys cooking, working out (especially with free weights) and gardening.
Her phone number is 256-530-0075. Her website is www.myhappyhome.biz and she has a Facebook account.