Fewer allergens can hide in a clean home. A clean home is a healthier home. Cleaning does not need to take a lot of time.
There is no need to be obsessive about every tiny little detail in order to keep a home that looks and smells as though it has just been freshly cleaned. Having a schedule for housework and following it is half the battle. By following a good schedule you can keep your home clean in just minutes a day.
In order to keep your home looking fresh and clean there are some jobs that must be done daily, but others are jobs that can be done weekly, some done monthly. Some larger jobs only need to be done seasonally.
Start With a Clean Slate
It is not as difficult as you might think to have a home that is neat, tidy, well-organized and easy to maintain, but you must start with a clean slate. This means a good old fashioned spring cleaning. Not the kind of spring cleaning where all you do is take an afternoon to clean the windows and re-stack old magazines. Spring cleaning is a time to purge the home of all unnecessary clutter and debris that has been allowed to build up over the course of the year(s) and it can be done at any time of the year, not just in the spring.
In some homes, the process of purging can be rather overwhelming. If your home has a lot of clutter and you can afford it, hiring a professional organizer to help is a good option. If you are doing it yourself and the family schedule is a hectic one it might take two or even three week-ends to complete, but it is more than worth it in the end. Here are a few spring-cleaning tips.
- Before cleaning begins, always know what is to be done with unwanted items. Make piles of items to donate, keep and throw away.
- Make a list of everything that needs to be done. After a list of jobs has been made, make sure that you have everything you`ll need to do the job. For example: plastic bins or cardboard boxes and a permanent marker, plastic garbage bags, mops, buckets, cleaners, rubber gloves and cleaning rags.
- Always clean only one room at a time. Running back and forth from room to room is a waste of time and things tend to be overlooked. When a room is completely cleaned, remove all of your supplies and move on to the next room.
- If the weather is nice on cleaning day be sure to open as many doors and windows as you can. The fresh air will help to lift spirits as well as giving the house a good airing out.
- Multi-task whenever possible. Make sure that all of the bedding, curtains and throw rugs that need to be washed are in either the washer , dryer or laundry line while the rooms where they belong are being cleaned. When the rooms are finished, they can be replaced right away instead of having to wait.
Now that all of the unnecessary clutter has been removed and your home is nice and clean, it is time to start following a schedule that will allow you to keep it clean without slaving for hours each day.
Around the House: Do a general tidy-up. Sort and recycle your mail right away so that it doesn`t sit around and accumulate in piles.
Kitchens: Wipe down the fridge front, stove top, table and counters. Load dish washer or wash dishes. Sweep and wipe up any visible spots on flooring. Wipe off any visible spots on cabinet fronts.
Bathrooms: Remove all personal items from vanity tops after using them. Rinse any toothpaste from in sink. Tidy bath/shower items. Wipe any ring from bathtub and wipe down the outside of the toilet.
Bedrooms: Make beds, fluff pillows and straighten up dresser and bed-side table tops.
Living/family rooms: Tidy up newspapers, magazines or other clutter. Straighten throw pillows. Pick up any visible debris from floor/carpeting.
Around the House: Vacuum all stairs and wash entry-way throw rugs. Mop entry-way floors. Dust railings and banisters, light fixtures and nick-knacks. Windex any glass and mirrors.
Kitchens: Wipe down all surfaces including any small appliances that are kept on counters. Wash out garbage cans and recycling bins. Sweep/vacuum and mop floors.
Bathrooms: Empty garbage cans. Windex all glass and mirrors. Scrub the shower, tub, and toilet. Clean toilet bowl. Replace towels with clean ones. Sweep/vacuum and mop floor.
Bedrooms: Air out your duvet if you have one. If you use a comforter, put it in the dryer on the cool setting with a dryer sheet for 10 minutes to freshen it up. Change and wash sheets. Dust dresser tops, side tables and other visible surfaces. Wipe window sills and Windex any spots on window glass.
Living/family rooms: Fluff and straighten couch cushions. Dust surfaces at or below eye level. Vacuum. Dust all electronics.
Around the House: Dust ceiling fans. Vacuum draperies, and blinds. Wipe down window sills, door ways, light switches, and baseboard. Dust house plants.
Kitchens: Wash range hood over stove with a de-greasing agent. Clean out the fridge and toss out any foods that are questionable and wash the interior of the fridge including the crisper drawers, with water and mild detergent.
Bathrooms: Scrub all grout and wipe down all baseboard. Tidy cupboards and medicine chests. Get rid of expired prescriptions.
Bedrooms: Wash and replace duvet cover. Polish mirrors and glass. Flip mattresses. Dust shelves. Vacuum closets and vents. Tidy closets.
Living/family rooms: Vacuum all upholstery and carpet. Clean out fireplace and wipe down the screen.
Around the House: Wax all wood. Wash walls, windows and window screens. Shampoo or send out area rugs to be cleaned. Wipe tops of all doors where dust accumulates. Replace batteries in all smoke detectors. Re-seal grout in tiled areas if it is needed.
Kitchens: Pull out the fridge and stove and wash floor underneath. Wash the sides of fridge and stove. Clean the oven and the freezer compartment of the fridge.
Bathrooms: Clean ventilation fans. Take down the grill, vacuum inside fan and wash grill before replacing it. Wash and re-hang curtains/blinds. Wash cloth shower curtains or replace plastic ones. Clean out the toilet tank if it has any build up.
Bedrooms: Clean out closets and drawers and switch to clothing appropriate for the season. Get rid of anything you haven`t worn for a season or two. Change bedding for the new season. Wash, re-hang or replace curtains.
Living/family rooms: Steam clean carpet. Clean upholstery. Take down wash and re-hang curtains.