I have come to accept over the years that I will never be a domestic goddess.
I’ll never be a member of the Hinch army and my home will never be pristine and spotless.
What I would like though is to feel just that bit more on top of things when it comes to keeping the house clean and tidy. If you’re like me and want some quick tips on having a cleaner home without worrying about keeping up with the Hinchers then this post is for you.
Here are some of the best cleaning tips I’ve found to make things easier for busy parents.
1) Work from top to bottom
This is such a logical thing to do, but something that we might not always think about.
The thing with cleaning is that you want to be as quick and efficient as possible, and you really don’t want to end up needing to do a job twice. So start at the top of the room and work your way down. Dust all the shelves and wipe down surfaces so that any dust falls on to the floor. Then hoover the room last to pick it all up.
Another tip like this is to start in one corner of the room and basically work your way out.
2) Clean as you go
This is something I’m really trying to get in the habit of doing.
Instead of leaving jobs to pile up I’m working on tackling them as they come up. For me this means taking 2 minutes to wash up the board and knife I’ve used to make a sandwich and wipe down the kitchen worktop before I sit down to eat lunch.
It can also be things like putting the junk mail in the recycling as soon as you pick it up from the letterbox. Putting the dishes straight into the dishwasher after a meal rather than putting them down on the counter. Hanging up clean clothes as soon as they’re dry instead of putting them on the bed to hang up later.
You see the idea here.
If the job will take just a few minutes to do, then do it there and then instead of leaving if for later.
3) Find a routine that works for you (and then stick to it)
If you go on Pinterest you can find so many different cleaning routines that you can try. As well as advice on how to create your own routine that fits perfectly with your life.
The beauty of a routine is that once you get into it it takes most of the thinking out of cleaning. You don’t look around the house wondering where to start or what task to tackle next. You just follow the routine.
I’ve recently discovered The Organised Mum Method and this is the routine I’m planning on following for a bit to see if it suits me and my family. It’s a really popular routine created by a busy mum and is designed to be nice and quick to complete each day.
4) Put on a playlist and set a timer
There’s a rule that says work expands to fit the time we allocate to it. So if we allow an hour to clean the kitchen then we’ll take that long to do it, but if we give ourselves just 30 minutes we can most likely do it in that time too.
So set yourself a timer, find an upbeat playlist of music to listen to it and get going.
5) Let the children help
If you have young children chances are they’ll be really keen to get involved and help you with the cleaning.
And yes, it’s not always all that helpful when they join in but there are things they can do so that you can tackle other jobs. They can put their toys away while you dust the shelves. They can help you load the washing machine. You can give them a damp cloth so they can wipe the kitchen cupboard doors while you do the washing up.
Going with the flow and letting them help is generally better than trying to do it all yourself with them under your feet.
And studies have shown that children who are allowed to help with these sorts of things when they’re really little are more likely to keep pitching in with household jobs as they get older.
6) Stash first, sort later
If you want the house tidied in a hurry, go round each room and stash anything that doesn’t belong in there in a laundry basket.
This clears up the space so you can actually see the floors to hoover them, and clears table tops so you can wipe them down.
Later on when you have another spare 10 minutes you can go and put all the items back where they belong.
7) Let your cleaning products work for you
First of all, find a good multipurpose cleaning spray that you can use on all the different surfaces around the house.
Then make sure you let it do as much of the hard work as possible for you.
So when you’re cleaning the bathroom, spray the cleaner all round the bath and sink, then leave it while you clear up the clutter, empty the bins and so on. Then when you go back to the bath and sink they’ll be much easier to clean down without needing to scrub too much.
8) Never leave a room empty handed
This is more of a tidying tip than a cleaning tip but it’s a useful one to keep in mind.
Each time you leave a room have a quick look round and see if there’s anything that needs to be taken where you’re going. For example, take your coffee cup with you when you go from the lounge to the kitchen.
It doesn’t take any extra effort to do it, but saves you having to return lots of things in one go later on in the day.
How many of these tips do you use on a regular basis? Do you have any other quick cleaning tips that I’ve not mentioned here?
I’d love to hear them if you do!