Keeping a clean home on a consistent basis is no small task. Whether you live in a small apartment or a sprawling house, the demands associated with cleanliness are never-ending. To make matters worse, no matter how clean you might manage to get your place, it doesn’t take long to dirty it up again.
We’ve put together a list of quick and easy hacks you can use to give you a leg up on having a clean home. All of the hacks we’ve listed are quick and easy, and will save you a lot time, while also helping you keep your home tidy.
Dishes are the single worst thing for kitchen clutter, and it doesn’t take long for dirty dishes to escalate into chaos. And, it is so tempting to let them slide. It’s been a long day, and you just cooked a meal for the entire family. Why not put off the dishes until the next day? You can combine them with another meal’s dishes, right?
The problem is that dirty dishes stack up quickly, and cause a whole host of other problems. First, dirty dishes take up valuable counter or sink space. I mean, they can’t be put where the clean dishes go – they have to be left somewhere that is “out” and in your space. This causes clutter, and means you can’t use your counter or sink.
Second, dirty dishes are dirty, and that causes other problems. The food bits fall off plates and onto your floor, and now you have to clean the floor. The food attracts ants and other bacteria, which you have to deal with. The list goes on.
Third, dishes only get harder to clean as time goes on. What is a quick wipe down right after a meal can turn into a several hour soak and scrub the next day.
You spend a lot of time in the kitchen throughout your week. Make your life easier every way you can. Pick up the best anti-fatigue mat to save your feet. Grab a stick vacuum for easy, quick cleaning. And, keep the dishes under control.
A clean home starts with a clean kitchen. Doing the dishes right away, or at least before you go to bed at night, will save you a lot of time in the long run.
Your house can feel like chaos, but walk into your bedroom and see your bed made and done up, and all can feel a lot better. It's actually proven to make you happier.
Making your bed when you make up will take you all of two minutes, but the value you get will far outweigh the minor time investment. It will start your day off focused on a cleaning mentality. When you walk in and out of your bedroom throughout the day, you’ll see the benefits. You’ll be less likely to haphazardly drop stuff onto your bed, like laundry and items from work. It also sets a wonderful precedent for your kids or other housemates to follow.
Bonus: spray a little bit of lavender on the pillows when you’re done making the bed. It’ll double the good feelings of a made bed every time you walk into the room, and it will give you a clean home smell throughout the house.
Oh, but it's so easy to place them on the chair or in the corner of the closet. It's so easy to even just drop them on the floor, and deal with them later. Don’t do it. Rehanging your clothes as soon as you’re done with them helps immensely in keeping your home tidy. And it takes all of 15 seconds.
If you don’t hang your clothes when you’re done wearing them, it’s not long before that piles grows high. The larger it grows, the more space it takes up, and the harder it is to put away. Sometimes, the pile will get so large that you have to vacuum around it, causing even more clutter, inefficiency, and uncleanliness. Additionally, the clothes will get wrinkled sitting in that pile, and so now you’ll have to iron them before you wear them next. They'll pick up dirt off your floor, and more likely to get stained.
Keep a bin for your hangers right next to where you hang your clothes. That way, its super simple to just reach down, grab a hanger, and put the clothes away in the moment. Out of sight, they'll keep your house and home clean and tidy.
Lets be honest, most of the mail you get these days is junk. But, you have to look at the mail, because there is the occasional important bill or notice from the IRS. And you can’t miss those, can you?
Yet the very knowledge that most of it is junk causes us to be lazy about how we deal with the mail. We still have to sort through it, and find the important pieces. And doing it right away prevents the junk from collecting.
Have a spot where mail goes when it arrives inside the house. That way, it doesn’t get dumped all over the dinning room table or kitchen counter. Next, create a quick routine every night to sort through the mail. Maybe its after dinner and dishes, or right when you get home from work.
Take note – you don’t have to open and answer all of your mail every day, you just need to sort through it. Once you’ve sorted the mail, take the bills and important pieces up to your office and put them in another area you’ll use to access.
Here is a great resource for how to sort through your mail.
The cook should never have to clean… so goes the saying. Well, that might be the most fair way to approach it, but it doesn’t necessarily lead to a clean and tidy home.
Cooking a meal is not always the simplest of processes, and often times a lot of used dishes and cooking utensils come with it. Heck, even the simplest of meals have a decent amount of dishes that accumulate.
No matter what, you’re going to have the dirty dishes from eating the meal, such as places, silverware, and glasses. Clean as you cook the meal. Chances are, you’ll have little breaks in between chopping and stirring. Use that to clean a pot or cutting board. Your dishes to clean after the meal will be a lot less, making that task far easier to get to.
We said it earlier... a clean home starts with a clean kitchen. Clean as you cook.
No matter what, the combination of condensation, soap residue, and dust built up on shower doors over time. You would think that a shower would be the last place to get dirty, since it’s where you go to clean up, but it’s far from being a moniker of cleanliness.
The soap scum is very difficult to break down and clean when you only do it sporadically. Buy an over-the-counter spray for your shower, and do a quick spray down after every use. Even better, wipe it down with a cloth or squeegee.
You still need to do a deeper clean every few weeks, but this will keep the shower doors relatively clean in the mean time. And, that deeper clean will fly by in comparison to how it used to be.
Technology has advanced to the point where it can help all of us do less work and, in turn, keep a tidier home.
Quick-cycle dishwashers with light and heavy settings will allow you to cater your dishwashing to the type of load you have, and potentially wash the dishes and get them put away in the same night. A corded stick vacuum kept in the downstairs closet can be pulled out each evening and used to vacuum the high traffic areas of house, grabbing most of the dirt and debris before it has time to spread.
Organize your to do lists and grocery lists using an app you can access from anywhere. Better yet, purchase an Amazon Echo or Echo Dot for your home, and you can add to your list through voice commands.
This is something you have to develop a habit of, but you’ll love the benefits once you start doing it. If you’re the busy type, then you know all too well what coming home can look like. An all-out, drop and go of everything you have in your hands and in your pockets. Where it lands, no one knows. Never in the same place twice, and typically all over the entryway area.
Find a spot for everything you typically shed, and commit to using it. Hang your keys by the door on a hook, and put your bag or purse in an out-of-the-way spot that you can count on being available. Don’t drop your coat or sweater on the stairway, but either hang it up on a coat rack or back in your closet.
There are a lot of great little hangers you can purchase to install by your door to help out. They will have a few hooks for keys and purses, and a shelf or two for mail, phone, and any other things that you might need to keep near the door.
Related: 8 Ways to Keep Your Purse Organized
Dirt enters your home from outside. Seems pretty basic, right? Well, 90% of the dirt enters your home on your shoes, and that dirt quickly ruins a clean home. And, taking off your shoes as you enter your home will save you loads of time down the road in vacuuming and sweeping. It's also keeps a lot of the bacteria out of your house.
There really isn’t much more to say about this one. This one task alone could singlehandedly keep your house much cleaner. You’ll still accumulate some dirt from other areas, but you’ll cut out the vast majority by simply removing your shoes every time you enter.
In the previous point, we stated that 90% of the dirt enters your home on your shoes. And this is true… unless you have pets. Pets not only attract a lot of dirt into your home, but they shed a lot of hair. And while it all depends on the specific pet you have, brushing them several times each week will significantly cut down on the amount of hair they drop all over your house.
A simple brushing will pull off quite a bit of hair – you’d be surprised. A good pet brush will take all of the lose hair and dander off your dog or cat. Every time you brush them and see the hair, you should have a slight smile – that hair would have ended up on your floor or carpet. And you would have had to vacuum it or sweep it to pick it up. And all the while, your home is all the cleaner because the hair never made it in.
Doing laundry is not just one task, but rather a collection of several tasks strung together over several hours. Sorting and preparing, washing, drying, folding, and hanging – and typically that has to be done across several loads! With all the steps, all it takes is one small hiccup to throw the laundry cycle out of whack.
Start your laundry early in the day, and you’ll be one step ahead. By starting right away you give yourself a chance to stay on track throughout the day. A quick trip to the store, an unexpected phone call… all of these things have the potential to make it so you can’t complete laundry. By starting first thing, you can reasonably plan on getting it done same day.
You can see how these hacks begin to have a cumulative effect, which is where you’ll really start to experience the benefits in your home. For example, if you immediately rehang your clothes after use (#3), you’ll naturally end up with less laundry. Less laundry will help you finish that task earlier in the day (#10), which will leave you more time to do the dishes after your evening meal (#1). As you start to incorporate each of these 11 hacks, you will see that they work together to bring a lot of help for not a lot of effort.
Keeping your house clean and tidy can feel like a full time job. And, just when you get it clean, it never takes long for it to get dirty again. Leveraging quick hacks to stay ahead of the dirt and clutter can help you stay on top of having a clean home. Are there any hacks you’ve found to help keep your house clean and tidy that take very little time and effort?
To learn more about efficiency hacks for cleaning your home, see our latest infographic. And, if you enjoy it, please share it with the embed code at the bottom!