Keeping your home clean and tidy can take up more of your time than it really should. Here are some favorite housekeeping tips for trimming minutes off of every task so that you can shed the cleaning gloves and move on to other things in a flash.
1. Faster bathroom cleaning. Start by keeping essential supplies tucked away in the cabinet of every bathroom in the house. A toilet brush, some all-purpose disinfectant and maybe a container of disinfectant wipes that can be quickly grabbed can enable you—or better yet, the kids—to give the key surfaces a quick clean-up without breaking out the heavy artillery of mop buckets and sponges. (Save those for deep-cleaning day.) Just squirt a little toilet bowl cleaner or disinfectant into the bowl and swish around. Don’t flush. Take a couple of disinfectant wipes and wipe down the sink, faucet, countertop, and finally, the outer surfaces of the toilet. Scrub the toilet once more for good measure, flush and go.
2. Distribute household supplies to where they will be used. Save some steps in the game of re-filling toilet paper and paper towel dispensers by keeping back-up supplies in the rooms where they are used. It saves trekking all the way back to the pantry or laundry room when freshening things up. Try keeping some garbage pail liners in each location so you can quickly grab the full liner and replace with a fresh one in one move
3. Soaking is your friend on deep cleaning tasks. With most of the big deep-cleaning jobs like scrubbing a shower or tub, or cleaning the sticky burners under your stove, soaking before scrubbing makes for much easier work. Spray down the shower with a solution that breaks down soap scum, then go complete another task while it soaks in and works its magic. When you return, you’ll be able to scrub it to a shine in half the time. Soak those kitchen burner pans in a sink of hot water for half an hour and the yucky stuff will turn loose with very little elbow grease!
4. Start with a clean slate. Online housekeeping guru the FlyLady starts all of her followers off with one simple, daily task: shine the sink. If you will take the time before you turn in each night to wash and put away all the things in the kitchen sink and scrub it to a shine, it’s a huge psychological lift when you get up in the morning! It makes the rest of your home keeping tasks seem more doable, and starts your day off right.
5. The Family 15-Minute Drill. When the clutter is getting out of hand, you can quickly regain the upper hand by enlisting the family for a 15-minute session of clearing up and putting away. Direct kids to corral all school papers, shoes, and toys into their proper places. Get dad to help put away folded laundry and take out the recycling or garbage. Meanwhile you can manage all those put-aways that the others don’t know what to do with! And suddenly, you can walk through your home without tripping!