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Time commitments, work, family obligations, social and volunteer activities – juggling these types of things can make it difficult to find the time you need to keep everything clean and orderly around the house.
Throw in children, pets, meal preparation, and clean-up and it’s no wonder people sometimes can’t find enough energy or motivation needed for fully cleaning and organizing their homes.
It can seem impossible to get your home feeling like it’s under control. If you want an organized and tidy home, you could turn to a house cleaning service for help.
But where do you start? We’ve gathered five practical hacks literally everyone needs to know to get a messy home back on track and create a more livable, welcoming space for you to fully relax and enjoy.
1. Use Microfiber Cloths
You simply don’t need expensive or fancy products to keep your home neat. Long a favorite go-to hack for cleaning pros, microfiber cloths are better than sponges, feather dusters, or even paper towels for cleaning. Use these cloths for a variety of cleaning jobs like dusting, window cleaning, and furniture polishing for terrific results.
Microfiber cloths deliver streak-free cleaning of all surfaces, including windows, television or computer screens, stainless steel, cell phones, and mirrors. These super-soft cloths leave very little to no lint behind and are particularly good at picking up fine dust and pet hair. They’re especially good at cleaning cracks and crevices too.
Microfiber is non-abrasive so surfaces like quartz, granite, and painted cabinets won’t get scratched or damaged. Microfiber is sometimes used on mops too, making them perfect for cleaning hardwood and luxury vinyl floors without scratching.
Available in a multitude of colors, you can color-code your cleaning job to distinguish which color cloth is for which task. For instance, you might assign different colors for different tasks. Perhaps choose unique colored cloths for painted surfaces, food prep areas, bathrooms, and yet another color for window glass maybe even dedicate one color for use in cleaning your car.
An added benefit to microfiber cloths is that they’re machine washable and reusable, so they’re less likely to hold germs. Be sure to line dry microfiber cloths, and do not use bleach, fabric softener, or iron them.
All these features make microfiber a household cleaning favorite, not to mention an environmentally friendly option. Sure, feather dusters may look retro cute, but they simply don’t clean as well as microfiber. Microfiber is the perfect partner for cleaning.
2. Prune Your Clutter
Sure, everyone has some junk lying around the home, right? And some people have “more than a little bit.” A clean, organized home environment helps you relax and live your best life. Curb your clutter and organize your home as you trim the unneeded excess.
To start, tackle just one room, one closet, or one drawer at a time. Starting small is smart since working in little bites makes a daunting job so much easier. If you come across an item you like but you never use it because it’s “too nice,” start using it.
Or, maybe it’s an indicator you don’t need to keep the thing at all. Items that fall into the “maybe I’ll need it someday” category but are rarely used might be especially prime decluttering candidates, like that popcorn machine or electric wok. Decide whether it might be time to say goodbye to seldom-used belongings.
Items in good or gently used condition could be donated for someone else to love, so go ahead and recycle and keep things moving – and out of landfills. A seldom-worn T-shirt might “tell a story” to you, maybe it brings back nostalgic memories of a really great vacation, or maybe it was a gift from a good friend. While it’s nice to look back fondly, it’s time to look ahead.
Repeat this mantra: Cherish memories, not objects. Decide whether to keep each item or let it go, decluttering things that are unnecessarily taking up space in your home. Ask yourself: Do I love it? Does it fit? Do I use it?
Decluttering is a journey and it’s a continual process on the way to getting your home in tip-top shape. Every time you buy something new, prepare to let go of something you already own, embracing a “No more than you have room for” philosophy. Get rid of guilt getting rid of things that were once gifted to you. Decide what to keep, donate, or get rid of.
3. Donate the Unwanted Stuff
After your items are sorted through and everything has a place don’t fall victim to simply putting the bags you plan to donate in your car, attic or basement. Unless you are actively planning an upcoming garage sale, make the effort to quickly rid yourself of your excess needs and bring them to a donation location.
While the places that accept donations may vary by area, you certainly will find an organization willing to accept nearly any cast-offs you may have provided they are in reasonably good condition. Donate extra household goods and schedule donation pickups if you have a local thrift store that picks up.
Look through gently used paperbacks you’ll never re-read and donate them to a thrift shop or a little library.
Another idea: elementary school teachers often have in-classroom libraries and would be grateful to receive a donation of gently used children’s books.
You’ll feel so much better when you’re through shedding your excess stuff and once everything has a specific place in your home you will see how getting rid of the clutter can truly help you destress.
4. Bust Baseboard Dust
Usually running through all the rooms in your home, baseboards tend to get mighty dusty mighty fast. Baseboards collect lots of dust, dirt, and are at the just-right level to attract loads of pet hair in a short amount of time and may need some extra attention. If your baseboards are really dusty, fret no more.
A hack for getting baseboards clean is one you’ll wish you’d known sooner: dryer sheets. Yes, you can use the very same sheets you use when drying your laundry.
Simply take an unused dryer sheet and wipe down your baseboards over the top ledge and along the sides to remove accumulated dust. Plus using scented dryer sheets adds a nice fragrance to your space.
Dryer sheets not only easily remove accumulated dust, but also coat the baseboard with antistatic properties, helping to repel new dirt particles and hair from accumulating. So, your baseboards will stay dust-free a bit longer than “regular” dusting, simplifying a cleaning task many tend to avoid.
Remember: Baseboards eventually get the settled dust house general cleaning stirs up, so it pays to save baseboard dusting for last and avoid double dusting duty. Don’t work harder when you can work smarter!
5. Use Castile Soap
Have you heard about Castile Soap? This oil-based soap is a game-changer since a little goes a long way and it can be used to clean just about anything! Mix a few drops with water to create a solution that can make even an old cookie sheet shiny again.
Castile soap can be used to clean floors, walls, bathrooms, carpets, laundry… if you can wash it, castile soap can help you clean it. Mix with vinegar and water to create an oven cleaner that works like magic and doesn’t overheat your home or smell of toxic fumes!
This miracle soap can take fingerprints off of walls and make your bathroom sparkle, it’s available in lots of scents or even unscented so you can truly personalize the cleaning experience. And the best part is that each task takes less than a teaspoon worth of soap.
Get stubborn stains out of your laundry by mixing a drop into the stain or add a ⅛ of a cup to your load of laundry in a high-efficiency washer (More if you have an older model washer.) for all-around clean clothes.
It seems strange that you can wash your dishes with the same soap you wash your floors, oven, and clothes with, but castile soap is just that good. Try it and you will be amazed at what it can do for your home getting cleaned!
When you’re working to keep your home decluttered and dust-free, remember to take a relaxation break every once in a while. Making these small changes will make a big difference in how you feel about your home sweet home.