3 spring cleaning tricks (that keep your home clean all year!)

simple spring cleaning tricks

I recently guest-posted for my good friends at The Crafting Chicks. I've been completely neglecting y'all because I'm at a blog conference this week (yikes! sorry!) so I thought I'd share this post here too to help keep you going strong with Focus on Organization month. It's 3 simple things I do to get, and most importantly KEEP my house clean. No, I'm not perfect at it, but yes, when I do these tricks they really really help. Enjoy!

Hi all! Jordan from FunCheapOrFree here. Does anyone have the Spring Cleaning itch yet?? With 3 young kids my house can be a real disaster. Here are 3 simple techniques to help get you spring cleaning in no time, and KEEP your house clean all year long!

how to clean and organize your house

1. BLITZ CLEAN.

If you're anything like me, you tend to look at your messy house and have a hard time imagining when you'll find a full day to get it clean again. My solution for getting, and keeping your house clean? Blitz clean! We might not have all day to clean our house top to bottom, but everyone can find 10 minutes in their day. Here's how this works:

  • Find 5-10 minutes in your day, but no more than 10! (Why? It's too easy to get side-tracked, it's harder to stay fast and focused for longer, and it's easy to find 10 minutes vs 20 or more.)
  • Pick one area of your home that needs to be cleaned/organized. Keep it to a small area, no greater than one room, as small as one drawer or closet.
  • Set your timer and GO! I use the timer on my phone. Work as fast, hard, and focused as you can for those 10 minutes.
  • Clean generally first, then work down to fine details. Rather than picking up one item and running into the next room to put it away, be more general. Pick up all items first. If it doesn't belong in that room, put it in a laundry basket to empty and put away later. Once the room is picked up and tidied, you can work to fine details such as vacuuming, decluttering, organizing, and even deep cleaning such as dusting and scrubbing.
  • Stop cleaning when the timer goes off and move on with your day.
  • Repeat. Commit yourself to two 5-10 minute blitz-cleans per day. If you happen to find another 5 or 10 minutes later in the day, do it again!
  • Get your family involved! My kids know what Blitz Clean means. We “huddle” up, decide what each of us is going to “tackle” in that room (“I'll tackle picking up the floor. You tackle washing the windows. You tackle straightening the pillows on the couch. Ready, BREAK!”), and we make a game out of it! When the timer goes off the kids brag about how many things they “tackled”.

You can get a lot done in 10 focused minutes. After all, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time! “Bite” away at the mess in your house and it will keep you encouraged and able to stay on top of the overall mess.

 how to clean and organize your house

2. DEEP-CLEAN YOUR HOUSE WITH 1 CHORE PER DAY

One of my most viral posts is my “Keep your home clean with 1 chore per day“…because it really works! Again, it's hard to find hours to deep-clean your house. In addition to the day-to-day chores we all must do, stay on top of deep cleaning by tackling one chore per day. If all you can dedicate is 15-20 minutes, that is enough. You can make your own schedule, or you can use this free printable and try my schedule. Here is a condensed version (see lots more detail HERE):

  • Monday: Laundry day. Keep the machines running all day long. Yes, you will probably have to do laundry throughout the week…but this is your day to dedicate to towels, sheets, rugs, clothes, etc. I also have Monday as a vacuum and tidy day.
  • Tuesday: Bathrooms. All parts of all your bathrooms. This may take you longer than 15-30 minutes the first time you do it. But remember…Tuesday comes around every 7 days! So by staying on top of the schedule it will be quicker and quicker each time because it will be more “touch-up” cleaning than super-deep cleaning.
  • Wednesday: Surfaces. Anything that can be dusted, mopped, vacuumed, or wiped (counter tops, base-boards, windows, floors, microwave, mantels, shelves, etc.). Again, it will be lots of work the first or second time, but if you stay on top of it, it gets much easier.
  • Thursday: Organize/clean out something. Your car, a junk drawer, a closet, your garage, big or little just pick one thing and tackle it that day.
  • Friday: Tidy and vacuum. Tidy the whole house (never leave a room empty-handed!) and vacuum the whole house, including stairs.

Note: My house is large, so often times I will split up the levels with bathrooms and sometimes surfaces. So I'll focus mostly on the main floor the 1st week of the month, then upstairs the 2nd week, the main floor again the 3rd week (it's the most used floor), and basement the 4th week.

Use catch-all baskets to keep your home clean.

3. USE CATCH-ALL BASKETS.

A simple, yet effective tool. In each room, closet, or even on the stairs (like THIS ONE), have a “catch-all” basket. I recommend it to be cute, of course 🙂 I also have THIS KIND in my closet.

As you tidy up your house, toss things that don't belong in those baskets. In your closet, if you're in a hurry you can toss your clothes in the basket, and put away the clothes when you have more time. It keeps things off the floor, and is an easy way for kids to put things away…”no dessert unit your basket is empty!”.

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I hope these cleaning tips will help you Spring Clean your home in no time…and keep it clean all year long! For more great tips be sure to visit me at FunCheapOrFree.com!

XOXO

Jordan-signature1 

Comments

  1. Oh Jordan, you hit the nail on the head for me. I’m OCD and sometimes just looking around at the mess can be so overwhelming. I’m glad we have talented people like you posting ways to break it down.

    One of the best things I’ve done is to make a reward system for myself. When the hubster and I were freshly married I knew how to do all the homemaking stuff but hated it. So we agreed that on the weeks where I kept the sinks mostly dish free, we could get ice cream on Friday. Once that was a habit we moved the reward to something else. And on and on. Finding a way to encourage ourselves to create good habits, no just getting work done, has been really helpful in our family.

    Thanks for sharing!
    Rocky recently posted…Living on $13,000 or Less: CEO of Your LifeMy Profile

  2. What a great way to make keeping a house clean manageable! My hubby and I are both neat freaks with 2 boys, so I use a house cleaner every two weeks to deep clean because it seems like all I can manage is making beds, laundry and keeping things organized and tidy. I don’t know how I would keep the tubs scrubbed and toilets cleaned! I’m going to try your method and see if we can save money by having her come once a month. Who knows? Maybe from there I can let her go completely 😉 Woo Hoo! You really don’t get any outside reinforcements? What an inspiration!

  3. Spring cleaning is like a family meeting in my family. Even kids enjoy it. Just like mentioned in this article, we make it like a fun game. Each of us deals with each area for cleaning on each room. Kids enjoy it as I make their favorite food as reward for doing it quickly. We take breaks at regular intervals and thus no one gets too tired. My husband makes a good schedule and urges us to stay with the plan. Unlike many others who complain a lot, me and my family enjoys spring cleaning.

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