How to Clean an Entire House Quickly
On Your Mark, Get Set, Go!
The clock is ticking and you haven't much time. You need cleanliness and order fast. You throw on your stretch pants, tank top and tennis shoes, and you are ready to go! What do you do now? Where do you start? There is so much to be done! If you take time to come up with a plan, you've lost precious moments.
A person can easily spend hours each day cleaning, and never see an end to what has to be done. Is it possible to clean an entire house quickly? The answer is YES! In order to do so, you have to think outside the box, I mean room! Divide your house into tasks. Put those things together that require similar equipment and procedures. Use the following steps:
- Get rid of clutter
- Surface clean
- Tackle the floors
- Dust and get rid of garbage
Get Rid of Clutter
Start with a large box or laundry hamper. Pick up anything that does not belong in the room and put in the box or hamper. Move to the next room. Put away items from the container that belong there, then add those that do not belong. Continue through each room until all are free of clutter and the container is empty.
Start with a soft cloth or sponge, multipurpose spray cleaner, hand towel. Spray smudges and spots on counters, cupboards, appliances, furniture, sinks, fixtures, windows, mirrors, and other hard surfaces with multipurpose spray cleaner and wipe with soft cloth or sponge. Use paper towel or newspaper to wipe mirrors and windows in a circular motion to avoid streaking.
Start with a bucket of hot soapy disinfectant water, sponge, and soft cloth. Scrub sinks, tubs and showers, finishing in the bathroom with toilets, dumping the soiled water into the bowl and scrubbing with sponge or toilet brush. Get clean water as needed for the insides of refrigerators, stoves, and other kitchen appliances.
Tackle Those Floors
Start with a broom and dustpan. Sweep the surface of the floor, starting at the edges, and working toward the center of the room, gathering dirt and debris into a pile. Sweep pile into dustpan and discard in a garbage container. Get a spray bottle with multipurpose cleaner and soft cloth. Spot clean sticky spots from the floor, then wipe with a damp mop. Vacuum carpeted floors, plugging the cord in a central location with an extension cord. Then you don't have to keep moving the cord to a different outlet.
Dust and Empty Garbages
Start with a large garbage bag or trash can liner, disinfecting wet wipes, small trash can liners or bags, soft cloth, and dusting spray. Empty the small garbage cans into the larger bag or trash can liner. Wipe the container with the disinfecting wipe, then put in a fresh liner. Spray the soft cloth and wipe wood furniture, counters, window sills, and picture frames. Change the fold of the cloth as it becomes dusty and spray as needed.
Tips for Cleaning with Young Children
When it comes to cleaning with young children, there is a time and a place for everything. The best and worst times are listed in the chart below:
Sweeping the Floor
Right after a meal when everyone has left the table.
While young children are still at the table.
Mopping the Floor
After dishes or other wet activity. Let children put on swimming suites and help you scrub.
While children are playing outside. When they come in, they will get the floor dirty again!
Right before allowing infants or toddlers to be on the floor playing. They will be safe from putting things in their mouths.
While children are playing on the floor. They may be frightened by the sound and air movement.
When children are willing to help. Give them dusting mits and spritz them with a bit of water or dusting spray.
When windows are open for fresh air. Dust comes in as fast as you remove it.
While supervising children in the bathroom. Teach them to spray and wipe with disinfectant.
Right before everyone uses it to get ready for bed or is leaving for the day. It will seem like you never did anything.
When the sun is shining on them and you see the fingerprints.
When it is dark. You won't be able to see the streaks.
Picking up Clutter
When you make a mess, clean it up. Teach your children to do the same.
When guests are already present.
Right after the meal. Teach family members to bring their dishes to the sink and wash them.
After they have sat on the counter for over a day.
While children are sleeping.
While small children are in the room.
Do a couple of batches each day. Have children help gather, sort, and fold.
All by yourself.
How do you feel about having your family help with housecleaning chores?
Getting Pre-Teens and Teens to Clean
Pre-teens and Teens are not usually anxious to help with house-cleaning tasks. They would much rather be with their friends and doing their own thing. The trick is to get them to see the benefit of the task, and to do it when they are most ready and willing to help. Try the following:
- Use housecleaning tasks as money-earning projects, or for earning technology minutes
- Take advantage of commercial breaks during television viewing to have cleaning contests
- Give them options such as music to listen to, which tools to use, and whether they prefer to work alone or with someone else
- Keep cleaning supplies handy for spot jobs to prep for company visits
- Let them inspect each other's work, and give rewards for jobs well done
Remember that jobs will not be done to the level of an adult. Be careful not to go back over what they have done and re-do it, they will be royally offended, and not very willing to help in the future. Rather have them inspect the job before you come to inspect. Give them the criteria to judge their work by. Let them know what you will look for during the inspection. Have them do a practice inspection while you watch, or even better, have them inspect your work!
As you teach your family what you expect in a clean home, you will find them much more willing to do it. Housecleaning does not have to be drudgery. It can be done easily, quickly, and efficiently when you prepare in advance with the right attitude, tools, and procedures. As family members see you enjoying your housecleaning responsibilities, they will find that the benefits are worth the effort!