Cleaning your house may seem like a daunting task, but there are ways to cut down the time and make your life much easier. Planning ahead is an absolute must when it comes to cleaning, and knowing exactly what you’re going to do and when will help ensure you not only keep your house clean and tidy, but get through it in half the time!
First of all, let’s begin by looking at a few tips to help you organise before you begin cleaning –
Organising your house ready for cleaning
Do you have children that can help you with some of the basic chores? If so, then this is a great way to not only help keep your house tidy, but to also give you a few less jobs to do when it comes around to your routine clean.
Giving your children tasks and responsibilities will also help to teach them how to organise and be a part of a routine. It can be extremely difficult trying to get children to tidy their room, so this is a great place to start.
Always make sure you have enough toy boxes and plastic bins to store all of the clutter that builds up in your child’s bedroom. Getting your child to put away their toys each day and providing them with easy storage is a great way to keep their bedroom tidy, and saves you the task of having to pick everything up.
Before you begin to clean the house it’s important to have a quick tidy, going through each room and picking up any loose items off the floor. It’s also important to collect any dirty plates and take them to the kitchen.
Create your very own cleaning box which contains everything you need to clean your house from top to bottom. Store this box in an easy to reach place, like under the sink for example. Check your cleaning materials each time you clean the house, so you can replace anything that’s about to run out.
Do you constantly find items in your way when you’re trying to clean or dust? If this is the case, consider having a look around the house before you clean and see if there is anything that can be put away, and kept away at all times. Not only will your house look much tidier without all the clutter, but you could easily cut down your dusting time by half!
Dusting your home
Always dust before you vacuum! If you dust after you’ve vacuumed then you are causing yourself more work. You want all of the dust and dirt to be swept off your shelves and land on the floor for vacuuming after.
Buy a microfiber cloth to dust effectively. The cloth also needs to be a little damp before you dust, so spray a little water onto the cloth to help pick up the dust.
When dusting your wall units don’t forget to clean the top and sides as well as the underneath. It’s easy to forget about these places because you can’t see the dust, so make sure you don’t miss anything.
Some items are quite difficult to dust, like keyboards, telephones or louvered doors. For these types of doors consider using a new paintbrush to get into all the nuts and crannies. Again, consider wetting the brush ever so slightly so the dust will pick up much easier. For your keyboards or telephones consider buying a can of air with a nozzle, so you can blast out any dust from those hard to reach places.
For your blinds, all you need to do is close them and then give them a good dust with your cloth. Then close them the opposite way and dust again. You will save a lot of time by doing it this way, rather than trying to dust them quickly whilst they are open.
Always try and wipe your wooden surfaces with the grain rather than against it, to avoid any streaks.
How to remove pet hair
One way of removing pet hair is to use a damp cloth or damp rubber glove, as the moisture should pick up most of the hair. Vacuum the areas first and then have one final go over with your moist cloth or glove.
There are also other ways of removing that stubborn pet hair, and that’s by using something which is even stickier than your damp cloth, like velcro or even sticky tape.
How to clean your floors
Before you mop the floor, make sure you sweep and then vacuum the dirt and dust you’ve collected. When you begin to mop, try to start at the furthest point from the door and then work your way back. That way you won’t be trampling over your wet floor and having to start all over again.
Cleaning in between your appliances can be quite tricky, so our advice would be to place a wet cloth on the end of your mop or broom handle, so you can then reach through the small gaps. Look out for any electrical plugs and be careful!
Always remove any bins, mats or anything else that is on the floor before you mop. This will make it much easier and quicker to clean.
To help prevent your floors from getting dirty, place mats at the entrance of your doors to catch any dirt from shoes. Then all you need to do is take the mat outside and shake it.
Cleaning your kitchen
If your microwave is covered inside with food, then one of the best ways to loosen this is to place a cup of water inside and turn it on high for a few minutes. Food can be very difficult to remove from microwaves, so the steam from the cup of water should help to loosen the food and make it much easier for you to wipe away. And the best part about this is that you can continue to clean other areas of your kitchen whilst the water is cooking in the microwave.
If your burner rings from the cooker are extremely dirty and caked in burnt food, then you may find it difficult to clean these quickly. So instead, why not put them to soak in the sink full of hot water and soap. Leave them to soak for a while, and when you come back, you should find most of the dirt has been loosened and are now much easier to clean.
Your dish cloths and sponges retain bacteria very easily, so either throw them away or launder them. You could also consider popping them in the microwave for a few seconds to kill off the germs.
Always try to keep your kitchen relatively clean and tidy at the end of each day, and also set your dishwasher going before you go to bed. This should make it much easier when you come to give it a proper clean.
Spills happen mainly in the kitchen, so try to make sure these spills are wiped up immediately before they leave a lasting stain. If a spill is left to dry and go hard, it will be much harder to remove later.
How to effectively vacuum your home
Make sure you empty your vacuum as often as possible; otherwise you may lose a lot of the suction and make it twice as hard to pick up the dirt and dust around your home.
If your vacuum already has poor suction, then take the nozzle apart and have a good look to see if anything is blocking it. You’d be surprised what you might find in there, so take your time and remove any blockages before you continue vacuuming.
Vacuuming the stairs can be tricky, so consider getting a small hand held vacuum to make life easier. This would be much quicker, and much safer.
Look underneath your furniture and even move it away from the wall before you start to vacuum. All sorts of things can gather underneath your sofa, and it’s not a good idea to start vacuuming before you check to see what’s there.
Cleaning your bathroom
Using an old toothbrush is a great way of getting to all the hard to reach places, for example, around your sink and taps.
Rub a small amount of glycerine onto your mirrors to prevent them from fogging. This will also keep them cleaner for longer.
To prevent water spots on your bathroom tiles, use a small window squeegee after you’ve showered.
Shower heads can get blocked with dirt, and a great way to clean them is to place them in boiling water and a small amount of vinegar. You should see any dirt or hairs begin to loosen and drain out into the water.
Just like the kitchen, it’s important to keep your bathroom clean all the time to prevent the build up of hard dirt and mildew. By spending a few minutes each day you will make things much easier when it comes to cleaning your house.
Keep to a routine
Getting into a cleaning routine can be difficult, but if you don’t, then it just makes it even harder when you decide to get your mop out for a spring clean.
Set yourself a reasonable date that you can stick to. It may be once a month for example, depending on how quickly your house gets dirty. Get yourself a calendar or a diary and then write these dates down and stick to them. It’s much easier to keep on top of the cleaning if you set yourself a date.
Try also making a cleaning list so nothing gets missed. For example, cleaning the inside of your fridge or defrosting the freezer. Dusting the ceiling or vacuuming under the rug. Tick them off the list as you go along, and you should find that this will help you get through everything much quicker.
If you plan ahead and decide on exactly what you’re going to clean and when, you should find cleaning much easier and faster. Most people try to remember what needs cleaning as they go along, but find they spend quite a lot of time deciding as they go along, and could even end up cleaning the same things twice!