For most people cleaning their homes is the most exhausting, time consuming and ungrateful thing they have to do in their household routine. Keeping a house clean is not a task for just one day, it’s a compilation of many small things we have to do every day. But many people don’t develop the needed habits to keep their homes well maintained and clutter free, so the dirt gathers and cleaning it becomes a nightmare at some point. Fortunately, there are many speed cleaning tricks you can implement that will cut your cleaning time and make the overall condition of your property better in the long run. Here are some of them:
Clean as you go
Some of the biggest messes in our homes don’t happen out of the blue, they usually pile up over time. For instance, when we gather dishes in the sink, but don’t wash them right away, they eventually pile up, mould grows on them, the food particles get stuck for good and it takes us ages to scrub it off. The same applies when you don’t clean the spills from inside the oven right away or when you let laundry pile for an entire week.
Other common mistakes people make is to avoid cleaning all kinds of small messes right away, like spills on the carpet or furniture, water stains and soap scum under the shower, throw the garbage before it gets the chance to spill all over the container, and so on. The best way to save some time on cleaning, is to clean all those little messes as you make them. If you spill it, wipe it, if you take something from a cupboard, put it back right away after you use it. “Leaving things for later” is not an option because, let’s face it, later never comes.
Avoid the clutter
Clutter is something inevitable in every home. When you live for a certain amount of years in one place, your home accumulates all kinds of junk in the form of old newspapers and magazines, small decorations, figurines and other useless items gathered from various gifts or trips, kitchen cutlery we collect, but rarely use, and other similar items. After some time, it gets difficult to find a place to store all those things, and our homes slowly turn into dusty storage areas.
Avoiding these types of clutter will save you lots of time in the long run and will make cleaning the house a lot faster and more efficient, because you won’t have to dust so many items and work around piles of unnecessary items. All you have to do is create a system for all such problematic areas in your home – throw away newspapers older than a month, if you buy new cutlery, throw away something you don’t use, and so on.
The ”3 boxes” method
Even if you keep the clutter away on a daily basis, it’s still good to organise and spring clean your home at least once a year. This will help you take a closer look at your possessions and get rid of the items you don’t need or use. The three boxes rule is a good practice, which will help you organise your closet or kitchen quickly. The rules are pretty simple, you have to get 3 boxes and label them “Keep”, “Donate” and “Throw away”. Place them in the room you’re about to organize, and start filling them with items, according to the labels. Once you get rid of the “Donate” and “Throw away” boxes, you will notice that a lot of space has opened, and that cleaning and dusting will be a lot easier.
Get everyone involved
One thing that makes cleaning around the house unbearable, is that every family usually has one person that does the cleaning opposed to at least two people who do the trashing and staining (and if you have kids, that number multiplies by a million). If everyone does their share of the chores, the cleaning would take much less time, and everyone would be happy or at least not that miserable. You can either divide the tasks equally between you and your partner, or you can divide them depending on what you’re good at or your work schedules, it’s your choice. The least everyone could do is wash their dishes right after they use them and wipe the shower with a mop once they’re done.
Turn cleaning into a game
Kids are usually very reluctant to the idea of them helping around the house. But the truth is that it’s all a matter of teaching them the right values from an early age and leading by example. If you consider cleaning a punishment, so will your children. By showing them a positive attitude, you have a better chance at making them help you.
Also, a good way to get the kids to help, is to turn cleaning into a fun game. Instead of making them clean their rooms, get them to play “Who can clean their room faster” and provide a small prize for the winner. You can also play “Can you put the toys away in under 2 minutes”, “Save the toys from the dust”, “Who can fold the laundry faster” and other similar games. Your imagination is the limit.
Green cleaners are often faster
Many people think that the fastest way to clean everything in the home, is to buy the strongest detergent on the market and scrub until doomsday. But it’s already proven that commercial detergents are not always the best option, because they often leave residue, streaks, unpleasant smells and dry very slowly, which gives dust an opportunity to settle. Green cleaning products, on the other side, are cheaper, smell better and clean efficiently and faster. For instance, hot water is perfect for removing grease from almost everything, you just have to pour it, wait for a second and wipe off with some dish soap and water. Other good natural cleaners are white vinegar, baking soda, lemon juice and salt.
Work from top to bottom
Another mistake which causes cleaning to take longer, is the fact that we don’t follow the basic rules of gravity. Dirt and dust follow these rules just as everything else. If you start cleaning the floor and then decide to dust, the dust from the furniture will fall to the floor and you will have to re-clean it. This is why if you want to speed clean, you need to start from the higher surfaces, like shelves and tall furniture, and then work your way down. The floor should be the last thing to clean.
Batching tasks for busy homeowners
Multitasking is not always a good speed cleaning method, because things often get overlooked or unfinished. But batching your tasks on the other side, is the perfect solution for busy parents and homeowners. It all comes to creating a cleaning schedule on the “must do’s” and breaking things down to a manageable level. The idea is to split tasks by type and do ALL of that task on one day. For instance, all of the dusting in the entire house should be done in one day. The next day you can clean all the bathrooms, the next one – do all the vacuuming, and so on.
Make technology work for you
Cleaning usually takes us so long, because we use generic rags, detergents and mops. But just like everything else in this modern century, cleaning supplies have also evolved, and today they can help us clean faster and better with less effort. For instance, nowadays you can buy quality microfibre cloths with embedded silver, which clean and disinfect surfaces with minimal efforts. There are also modern mops which absorb moisture better than the regular ones, there are cleaning detergents that provide a nanotechnology enabled coating that protects the surfaces after application.
Keeping things clean is important, but not as important as good health and happiness. Many people frustrate over the fact that they can’t clean their homes fast enough, and some even start cleaning many things at the same time, just to end up not finishing even one of them. This is why it’s so important to stay realistic, because speed cleaning is not about how many things you clean, it’s about time. So, choose a small area of the house, set your phone timer for 15 minutes and do your best to clean that area in the set time. Great things are achieved not by strength but by perseverance.