Having to clean your house is a chore that some of us dislike more than others. If you REALLY HATE to clean your house, but you know you need to, procrastinate a little longer by reading this step by step guide, ha ha. You might even learn something from it, like which commercial cleaning supplies will help, the order you should clean in order to save time and energy, and how to make it a little easier and more fun to clean your house.
Credit: Amberdawn 2011Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Things You’ll Need:
• sponge/paper towel/duster
• wash bin
• commercial cleaning supplies/vinegar/water
• baking soda
• glass cleaner
• deodorizer spray/scented candles/potpourri
Yes, cleaning can be drudge work, but it doesn't have to be all bad. Put on some of your favorite music before you take out your commercial cleaning supplies and get to it. Although whatever you enjoy will be motivating for you, lively music is best of course, because it makes you want to move. It might even make you work a little quicker, which saves time AND is better exercise. Why join a gym when you can clean your house like mad?
It's harder to clean your house if you have to work around things that are laying around. So straighten things up, clearn things off the floors and tables that don't belong there, put things away, take out the trash, empty the sink and run the dishwasher. If you are doing a very thorough cleaning of your shelves and you have a lot of things on them, you might even want to remove everything from your shelves. You can dust items separately instead of just dusting around them.
I like to "wet dust" because of my allergies. A damp paper towel helps the dust keep from flying and I inhale less of it. Another trick for allergy sufferers is to wear a dust mask. In addition, there are commercial cleaning supplies on the market for dusting. These products can even repell dust from returning to nearby surfaces. It's important when you clean your house to do this before you vacuum, because gravity will pull some of the dust onto your floors.
Sweep or vaccum.
If you have carpet, vacuum. If you have wood, laminate, or tile floors, you can either sweep with a traditional broom or take advantage of a vacuums with a "bare floors" setting. I prefer this because I can do the floors as well as my area rugs at the same time with the flick of a switch instead of switching tools. For a more thorough cleaning when you clean your house, vacuum couch cushions too. Even underneath. For an even MORE thorough cleaning, you could use commercial cleaning supplies or you could sprinkle baking soda on your couch and rugs, let it stand for 15 minutes, and then vacuum. This will deodorize your home.
Wash your hard surfaces.
At this point, turn your attention to your kitchen and bathroom. Just like step 2, wipe down the counters, walls, appliances, sinks, and other surfaces that might collect dust, grime, or grease with commercial cleaning supplies.
Clean glass in every room.
Wash windows and glass. Use glass cleaner, spray, and wipe. Do windows, mirrors, TVs, and anything else you have that's glass. If you have artwork with Plexiglas shields do NOT use commercial glass cleaner on them because it will scratch, streak, and fog permanently. Use commercial cleaning supplies designed for Plexiglas to help repel dust, or use a damp cloth to remove it. Again, this is better to do when you clean your house before you wash the floors since dust can fall as you wipe.
Wash your floors.
If you have laminate or tile, wash your floors next. Read the labels of your commerical cleaning products to be sure to use the correct type of cleaner for your floor. If you have laminate floors, I’ve found that most cleaners left soapy streaks. There are commercial cleaning supplies designed specifically for laminate, but in a pinch I simply mop with a solution of about 1/3 cup of vinegar in a quart of water. Change the solution when it starts to look dirty instead of starting with a larger amount and spreading the dirty water around.
First, air out the house by opening up the windows. Then spray a deodorizer like Oust or Febreeze. Spray trash bins with Lysol or similar products. Now that the place looks good, it should smell good too. So if you don't like chemical sprays, light scented candles or put out fresh potpourri.. Making this extra effort to do so after you clean your house will help you enjoy the fruits of your labor. So relax and spend the rest of the day or the next day at home, or even better, invite a friend or family member over to entertain. It will make cleaning the next time more motivating. For more tips on household upkeep, I've included resources below. Good luck!