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Keeping small spaces clean is easy if you don’t let the mess accumulate over time. A little every day decluttering and the occasional deep cleaning can do a lot. But your worries aren’t limited to things you can see.
6 Tips to Keep a Small Space Clean and Tidy
There are problems that you have to deal with, like mold building up and bad indoor air quality, so make sure your small space is perfectly clean and healthy to live in. That said, here’s a list of tips you can follow to create a tidy, livable small space.
1. Clean a Little Every Day
Housecleaning is one of the most dreaded tasks on every homeowner’s to-do list. It takes a lot of work and time that you can spend watching your favorite series or hanging out with your friends. You can keep delaying it, but sooner or later, your messy home will remind you what you need to do.
If you don’t want to spend your weekend making up for the cleaning you didn’t do, make a habit of doing some cleaning every day. Make your bed as soon as you get up in the morning.
Got some time before leaving work? Do a little wiping on your tables and countertop. Throw out the trash on your way out too. A little goes a long way.
Don’t wait until everything accumulates and creates a bigger mess in your home. Any space, especially a small one, can be easy to clean as long as you make it a habit to clean a little every day and don’t leave your mess to pile up. Here’s a list of things you can do to clean even for just a few minutes every day.
2. Declutter as You Go
In a small space, just a little clutter can look like a big mess. If you wait for the elusive “right time” to clean your home, you will soon forget what the floor looks like.
Most people don’t have the time to organize and clean every day, but leaving the mess to accumulate can be very overwhelming once it’s time to clean up everything. The best that you can do daily is to declutter as you go.
While you’re moving from one room to another, pick any trash or things you can find lying on your path. Throw them in the trash, or put them back where they belong.
If you’re constantly changing outfits, don’t leave your clothes on the floor; lay them on the bed neatly before you go. This way, you don’t have any choice but to put your clothes back into the closet before you can lie down.
Putting containers and organizers around the house will also help you declutter. For example, leave key small dishes in strategic areas, like near the front door, on the kitchen island, and beside your bed, so you have somewhere you can place your keys, phone, and little knickknacks and avoid misplacing them.
With organizers around the house, the clutter will be only concentrated in certain places, so it won’t be too daunting to clean them when the time comes. Moreover, it will likely lessen the instances of losing your things. You can also try these organization ideas for small spaces.
3. Organize with Vertical Storage
You can’t make room for bulky organizers and cabinets in a small space. And having them around won’t help with making the room look clean and feel breathable. As such, it’s best to use vertical storage to organize a small space and prevent it from getting stuffy.
What can you use as vertical storage? Floating shelves and cabinets, hanging baskets and racks, hooks, hangers, tension rods, and clotheslines are some examples of vertical organizers. Aside from maximizing space, most of these organizers have the advantage of being easy to DIY and inexpensive to buy.
You can install hooks behind doors and on your walls to organize anything, from clothing to foodstuff, to cables. In the kitchen, DIY your own floating shelves to store pans, cooking pots, and baking tools. Hanging baskets can be installed in the bathroom to arrange toiletries, like bath towels, paper towels, and hygiene products.
There are many things you can use as vertical storage. Your only limits are your creativity and resourcefulness. You can hone your DIY skills one project at a time.
4. Address the Mold Problem
If your family is experiencing sudden bouts of minor illnesses (e.g., throat irritation, nasal stuffiness, cold, or cough) you may want to check the mold condition of your house.
Exposure to moldy environments has been linked to the development of upper respiratory tract symptoms and minor lung conditions in otherwise healthy people, as reported by the Institute of Medicine in 2004.
Mold can be very harmful to people’s health, especially to those who have mold allergies, asthma, and preexisting lung conditions. The danger can be even more serious for people with a compromised immune system.
Fortunately, mold problems can be easily dealt with as long as you address them early on.
Molds can be killed using common household items, including bleach, vinegar, baking soda, and borax. Some mold-removing products can present more danger than the mold itself, so be careful about choosing which product to use.
One natural method of removing mold is spraying distilled white vinegar on moldy areas and leaving it to work for a few minutes before brushing the area clean.
Removing mold doesn’t need a complicated process or expensive cleaners, and the health benefits of keeping your space mold-free are undeniable.
5. Change Your Air Filters
The dust and small particles in your house don’t all go away after you vacuum the floor and wipe surfaces. Some of them remain floating in the air and are sucked into your air vents and filters.
When a lot of dust and small particles gather in your air filters, it can disrupt the function of your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system and damage the mechanisms in them.
Mold isn’t the only thing you need to worry about if want to have good air quality indoors. Dust and small particles can worsen the air quality in your home and cause illnesses and allergic reactions too, especially when they get into your HVAC system.
That being the case, add changing your HVAC air filters as part of your regular home-maintenance tasks. Depending on the filters you’re using, you can change them as frequently as once every month or every six months.
If you’re using the cheap fiberglass kind, you need to change it every 30 days while the high-end filters can last for a half year before they need changing.
Homes with children, the elderly, and patients with allergies, asthma, and other similar illnesses need to have the filters changed every six weeks or more often to avoid health problems or exacerbating preexisting conditions.
6. Keep Your Toilet Unclogged
Clogged toilets are a headache to deal with, especially for homeowners with no plumbing knowledge or experience whatsoever. Ignoring the problem isn’t possible, and hiring a plumber can cost $40 to $150 an hour. Fortunately, there’s the internet to help you learn how to unclog your toilet without professional help.
You can learn how to use a plunger or use different methods to unclog your toilet. There are six common ways to unclog a toilet without using a plunger. One way involves using baking soda and vinegar. Another way use boiling water, dish soap, and shampoo.
Then there’s also a method using a vacuum cleaner. Whichever way you use, make sure to turn off your toilet’s water supply first and cover the floor with newspapers to avoid making more mess you need to clean up later.
If you want a long-term solution, consider adding a motor macerating pump in your toilet to break down the solid waste and avoid clogging in the future. Or you can simply avoid flushing tissues, sanitary pads, and goldfish down your toilet drain.
Balancing work and your personal life can take up much of your time and energy. By the time you have a day off, your last thought would be doing your chores and cleaning the house. Unfortunately, the dust on your furniture won’t clean itself.
You don’t need to waste a full weekend when cleaning your house. Make it a habit to clean a little every day and declutter as you go.
Create an organization system that maximizes what little space you have, and deal with minor problems before they snowball. Doing all these will help keep your small space clean and fit to be lived in.