Few things feel better than ditching that dusty two-bedroom and buying your own house. Suddenly, you have all that space to yourself, your own backyard, and a kitchen that doesn’t smell like your roommate’s hot pockets.
The only problem? All that space needs to be cleaned. A lot. All the time.
Read this guide for five ways to keep your house cleaner, minus the hassle.
#1 Make it a Game
If you’re living with a significant other or have some kids under your roof, make weekly cleaning a game. Whether it’s picking up clothes, toys, or scouring the couch cushions for that sneaky remote, set those tasks to music or make it a fun challenge!
For extra motivation, give your “team” an entertaining reward to look forward to at the end of cleanup time.
#2 Stick to the Basics
Sometimes, you just need to set a basic cleanup schedule and stick with it:
- Take out the trash
- Wipe down surfaces
Once you’ve got these tasks down, you can level-up to the trendier cleaning fads of the Internet (re: the Konmari method).
#3 Split Up the Work
Unless you’re living alone, there’s no reason you should be cleaning your house by yourself. Not only should you be splitting the work up between people, but also consider assigning different tasks to different days.
When you have small, incremental tasks to tackle each day, cleaning becomes far more sustainable.
Here’s a cleaning schedule you can use as an example:
- Monday: Take out the trash from the kitchen, bathroom, and bedrooms.
- Wednesday: Clean countertops and surfaces.
- Thursday: Clean the bathroom.
- Friday: Pick up stray items on the floor and tabletops.
- Sunday: Sweep and mop the floor.
#4 Clean as You Cook
In culinary theory, there is a concept called mise en place, which essentially means “everything in its place.” Traditional French cooking schools would teach their students to sort and portion every ingredient into separate containers before preparing a meal, thereby reducing unnecessary mess and making cleanup easier.
You don’t need to be a professional chef to apply this concept in your kitchen.
When preparing dinner, pre-prepare all your ingredients, deal with spills as they come, and wash all your containers and utensils as soon as you’re finished cooking. If you need to eat your meal while it’s hot, just make sure you’re at the sink and loading the dishwasher as soon as you finish the delicious dessert you’ve prepared.
#5 Keep Your Paper Trail Tidy
Use a document organizer to sort incoming and outgoing paper mail and bills, so you’re never stuck with a mess on the kitchen counter (and so you can never forget to pay the power bill).
As an example, you can sort them into the following categories:
- Mail In
- Mail Out
- Action Required
- Letters from Friends and Family
Come up with a household system to sustainably reuse or recycle your paper products once you don’t need them anymore. If you’re crafty, put them in a “scrap paper” drawer for future projects! Or, save them up for a fun paper mache project for a friend’s birthday pinata.
You can also go digital with apps like Centriq that keep all your user manuals and appliance instructions in one place.
Cleaning Isn’t a Chore; It’s a Privilege
Keeping a clean house is about much more than maintaining appearances. People who are truly clean are those that embrace and appreciate a neat, spotless space. Having the time, energy, and resources to keep a clean house is not only a relief but a privilege—embrace it!