Spring is in the air, which means it’s spring cleaning time! OK, so house cleaning may be the least fun part of the arrival of warmer temperatures, but it is a necessity. We have a few tips on how to efficiently clean your house and how to keep it that way. Which, in the long run, means you will actually get to enjoy more of your spring and summer without having to do another big clean.
How to Get Your House Clean and Have Fun at the Same Time
If you are part of the majority, house cleaning is not your favorite chore and is often just a thankless, albeit obligatory, task. But can it be enjoyable and more efficient? We think so (or at least hope so) and have put together some tips on how to have a little fun while getting your house sparkly clean, how to do so in a timely manner and, best yet, how to keep it tidy.
Prepare Yourself for House Cleaning
The best way to start cleaning your house is to prepare yourself, both physically and mentally. Start by making sure you have all of the necessary cleaning supplies (may want to organic cleaners), like dusters or dusting spray, window cleaner, mop, and bucket, etc. If you do, great. If not, get to the store. Try to do this a day or two before you’re planning to start your house cleaning.
Once you have all of your cleaning supplies ready, straighten up and throw away anything you can easily see out in the open that you don’t need and doesn’t belong. Now you are physically prepared to get down to the nitty-gritty of your house-cleaning duties. But are you mentally prepared? Make a list of everything you need to clean. Check out our spring cleaning checklist blog post on that topic. Additionally, set a goal for when it needs to be done. Are you planning to clean all in one day, then set time limits? If you plan to clean over a week, set daily limits.
And most importantly, create yourself a house-cleaning musical playlist that will pump you up and keep you motivated. If you’re more of a background noise person, put on the TV and run a series on Netflix or Hulu. Don’t choose anything that will capture your interest too much and keep you from cleaning though!
How to Clean Your House Quickly
You have your list and you’re ready to get started on your house cleaning. Anyone can figure out how to properly clean by mopping, dusting, scrubbing, tidying up, etc., but no one wants to waste their precious free time so let’s focus on how to clean your house quickly yet effectively.
Develop a System.
Speed-cleaning expert Debbie Sardone says creating a consistent system for cleaning eventually cuts your time in half because the house cleaning becomes your routine. Always clean in the same order, one room at a time and start and end in one spot in each room. Sardone swears by this method.
Work from Top to Bottom, Left to Right.
Think about it. This just makes good sense. If you were to dust your coffee table, then dust your ceiling fan, all of that gunk would fall down onto the surface you already cleaned, so start high and work your way down. By working left to right, you cover the whole room without running back and forth. Therefore, cutting extra time and chaos.
Learn Cleaning Shortcuts.
Use a squeegee for windows instead of a paper towel. It covers more ground and leaves a streak-free finish. Use a lint roller on lampshades and fabric furniture instead of the vacuum. Let oven and toilet bowl cleaner sit overnight or while you are cleaning the rest of the room. The time helps loosen the gunk so it easily wipes away.
Always soak or pre-rinse dishes before putting them in the dishwasher and don’t let clean dishes sit in the washer. Put away dishes as soon as possible to away dish pileup in the sink and mildewy smells on the clean items. If you hand wash dishes, always consider the sink as your last dish. This will make a huge difference in the need to deep clean your sink and faucet.
Prevent soap scum and hard water stains by using a shower cleaner you spray on after each use without the need to wipe away. Vacuum rooms in full-length strides. This helps avoid cord tangles and ensure you won’t miss a spot. Clean up any messes as they’re created. Keep house-cleaning materials on hand and together in the same spot so you know where they are and can easily grab them when needed.
Prepare to be amazed at how fast you can clean your home with these simple tips!
House Cleaning Made Fun
Some of you may read this and think it has to be an oxymoron. But believe it or not, you can enjoy yourself while cleaning. We already covered the importance of a good playlist. That is paramount. It never hurts to have a bit of a dance party while dusting, mopping and vacuuming. Whatever your jam, pump it up and get down while cleaning. (Brooms/mops happen to make good microphones or air guitars by the way!)
Treat yourself to something special after you complete your daily cleaning goal. Order your favorite takeout, make an appointment for a spa day, buy fresh flowers to put in your newly cleaned home. Whatever a special treat would be for you, do it! But only if you complete your house cleaning goal.
Make cleaning the house a game. If you’re involving other people, assign points to each task, and the winner gets a special prize, either an item or getting to pass off their least favorite chore to someone else. Now that’s a great incentive! If you’re cleaning solo, guess how long cleaning a room will take, set a timer and beat the clock. Anything you can come up with that will keep you motivated and entertained is worth a shot.
Do you enjoy working out? Cleaning actually burns calories, so if you do, make house cleaning a workout. Add in a few squats while dusting or lunges while mopping or vacuuming or even strap on some ankle or wrist weights and increase your muscle mass.
Any little ways you can add a reward or listen to your favorite song are sure to add to your enjoyment while doing one of life’s most mundane tasks.
How to Keep Your House Clean
Now that you had fun while cleaning, how do you keep it clean all year round? We have a few simple ideas that really add up to a clean, or at least tidy, house.
Make Your Bed Every Morning.
It not only makes your bedroom look neat but actually starts your day off on the right mental track. That bit of immediate cleaning/organization will surprisingly motivate you to continue throughout the day.
Take It Out; Put It Away.
As you take an item out to use it, put it away when you are done! Also, make sure to close cupboards and closet doors. Additionally, hang up coats and clothes or throw them in the hamper instead of the floor or over a chair. Put your shoes away too or put a shoe rack by the door for easy keeping. These are very simple steps but really help to keep your house tidy and put together.
Avoid Outside Dirt Inside.
Dirt and grime are often brought in from outside via shoes. Put door mats by all entrances so inhabitants are forced to wipe their feet. Additionally, a shoe rack will encourage shoe removal, avoiding dirt being traipsed through the home. This cuts down the need to vacuum, sweep or mop more often.
Another great tip for keeping floors looking cleaner is to wipe your baseboards with a dryer sheet. The coating from the dryer sheet helps repel dust and dog fur giving off the appearance of a less dirty house. Speaking of dog fur, if you are a pet owner and this is a continual problem for you. Brush your dogs outside daily or every other day. They will shed less and you won’t have tumbleweeds of fur scurrying through your home with each breeze.
Don’t Allow for Clutter.
Do you use your dining room table as a dumping ground for your purse, keys, wallet, book bags, hats, etc.? Keep it set! If your table appears to be ready and waiting for guests or dinner to be served, you’ll be more inclined to keep it free of clutter. Also, don’t stockpile mail. Deal with it immediately.
Wipe Up After Yourself.
No matter what it is, always wipe down the surface after use. Clean the kitchen counter after cooking, wipe up the bathroom sink after brushing your teeth and wipe down the kitchen table after your breakfast cereal.
Once these things become routine, your house will be noticeably cleaner for longer periods of time after each deep cleaning.
Are You Ready to Start Your House Cleaning?
This tips should have you in the mood to get started on your spring cleaning. But if you need some more specific examples, we have a great blog on organizing a closet and another one on cleaning your bedroom. If you have any other cleaning questions or tips that we missed, please let us know if the comments. Happy spring cleaning!