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I had to figure out how to clean my house faster. The dishes were piling up, bathrooms neglected, and the baby was lost in a sea of laundry spread along the living room carpet. And no matter how hard I worked, I was on a messy hamster wheel of home chaos.
You see, I never really learned to be neat and tidy growing up. Neither did my husband. Once we got married and had our first baby, we both realized something had to change.
Then came baby #2, then #3… and #4. The messes increased with each child. I was left in frustration wondering how I could keep up with so many kids and so much chaos.
I knew I needed to find a way to clean fast, with less effort, and maximize the results in our home. Finally, I found a system that works, and I’m here to share the nitty gritty details of it with you today.
A Note On Helpful House Cleaning Systems
You can clean your house fast in one day following my simple 7 steps below. But, you can also decrease your overall cleaning load by placing strategic systems in your home and being thoughtful about your home inventory.
Here are a few methods to reduce your overall cleaning workload:
-Use a pretty planner and outline your housecleaning tasks. Break them down over the month so that cleaning is more manageable.
-Declutter! Embracing minimalism will allow you to clean faster. You’ll have less to organize and a clearer direction when cleaning. (I recommend reading Marie Kondo’s book, then adjusting it to your own style and preferences). Schedule times in your planner that are focused on de cluttering only. Determine to only own what you use and love (to the extent that’s reasonable with kids, of course!).
–Establish daily tasks that keep your house under control, such as washing dishes after meals and making beds in the morning. (Read this blogpost for a more organized home!).
-Teach your kids to be responsible for their own messes. Delegate chores throughout the week to mitigate messes + the workload that falls on mom.
Cleaning Supplies To Help You Clean Your House Fast
Less is more when it comes to cleaning quickly. When you want to clean your whole house fast, you need to keep your supplies to a minimum so you can move around your house like the energizer bunny. (I’m aging myself here).
What you will need:
An all purpose, natural cleaning solution.
I use Thieve’s concentrate (by Young Living) essential oil cleaning spray. Using a glass spray bottle, I make a dilution of 95% water to 5% cleaning solution. This solution is versatile and can be used on all surfaces and is also non toxic! Brittany from the homestead challenge has a quality homemade thieves recipe if you want to make your own!
A Swiffer Mop (Check Out My Swiffer Essential Oil Hack Here)
Cleaning Caddie To Carry Sprays + Wipes
Rags and/or Paper Towels
Toilet Bowl Cleaner (I use a homemade natural solution)
Lost and found” box- use this to collect misplaced items and put them back in their rightful rooms
Caution: A Word Of Warning
I want to throw in a word of caution here. If you want to clean your home quickly, you can’t confuse cleaning and organizing. I’ve made the mistake of organizing while trying to clean, and I end up exhausted and frustrated.
These two separate tasks should not be done simultaneously. Typically, you cannot clean the whole house quickly when organizing everything at the same time!
If you are going to organize and de-clutter an area, set aside a focused amount of time just for that task. You can clean while you de-clutter a specified area.
However, don’t pressure yourself to clean the entire house on the day you are de cluttering downstairs closet. Unless, of course, you are wonder woman!
The Difference Between Surface Cleaning and Deep Cleaning
When cleaning your house fast, you will not be able to do a deep clean.
Deep cleaning differs from normal cleaning in that you hyper focus on one area that needs attention and clean it to like new condition. (Or as close as possible).
For example, if you are deep cleaning your bathroom, you would take time to soak and scrub the shower. You might also go through each bathroom cabinet, clean and organized it, or give your bathroom fan your full attention.
When cleaning your house fast, you want to surface clean everything well, but not hyper focus on any one area.
So does this mean your house is really clean? You may be asking.
Great question! A good surface clean is a wonderful place to start when you want to clean house fast.
I would recommend that any good housekeeping system start with a fast surface clean of the whole house, then take time to focus in on areas that need a deep clean.
A fast surface clean will give you a fresh palate to start a cleaning routine. From here you can dive into scheduled deep cleaning projects.
In a well loved house, it is impossible to keep the entire house deep cleaned at all times, unless you have a full time maid (perfectionism is not your job mama, so don’t stress it!).
The Seven Step Process to Cleaning Your House From Top to Bottom
This seven step system is designed to help you clean your whole house in one day. We start with a load of laundry and work our way through cleaning each room of the home. You may need to adjust these steps and break the process into two days if your home is larger.
Step 1: Collect Laundry and Start Washing
Here’s what you do first: Run around the house collecting all laundry in baskets. Start a load in the washing machine. Always let your machines do the heavy lifting (and your kids, when they’re old enough! 😉
In between the steps in this house cleaning tutorial, be sure to check on your laundry, switch it to the dryer, and put the laundry away. See step 7 for more on putting laundry away quickly!
Step 2: Clean the Kitchen from Top to Bottom
Next, move to the kitchen. This well loved room needs your attention first. Let’s work smart here, by always working from top to bottom. You won’t want to sweep and then wipe crumbs from the counters onto the floor (like I used to do!).
Clear your counters and table first, and spray them to soak. All dishes should be in the sink, you’ll wash those next and load the dish washer. Once you’ve done the dishes, wipe the countertops clean.
Remember, we are doing a surface cleaning, so if your oven has stuffing baked into it from two Thanksgivings ago, you’ll have to move that to a time you have designated for deep cleaning.
Vacuum or sweep well and do a quick mop with the Swiffer. (I love a floor scrubbed well Cinderella style, but you just don’t have time for a sudsy bucket right now.) Save a super deep clean of the floor for another day!
During this time, if you have paper and clutter that you need to sort through, toss them in your “to sort” box. But if you see something that is trash, throw it in that trash can like a hot potato!
Step 3: Clean Living Areas
Next migrate to the living or family rooms. These rooms can be challenging because they can become a “catch all” for family debris. Anything from nail clippers to chapter books can be lurking under the couch. Kids toys may be roaming wild and need to be brought back to captivity.
Your lost and found box will come in extra handy in this room. First go through the room collecting anything that is not in its home to be put away as you go. Remember, you’ll carry this box to the next room and put items away as you go.
Bring your box with you and a trash bag, so that as you clean you can toss anything that’s obvious trash, and put papers to sort in your box.
If you have small windows in your living room, you can clean them with your all purpose spray. If your windows are large and expansive (with ocean views, of course), you’ll need to move window washing to your deep cleaning list.
Use your all purpose spray and a dust rag to wipe down any wood surfaces. Clear all clutter off the floor, and vaccuum.
If there are deeper cleaning or organizational tasks that need to be done in the family/living rooms (like cleaning out and organizing a toy bin), put this on your “deep cleaning” list. Remember you don’t want to get caught up in on one project that will take your time and energy away from cleaning your home faster.
Step 4: Clean Bathrooms
From your living room, head to the bathrooms. If you do a quick clean on your bathroom regularly, then cleaning your bathrooms will be a breeze. But even if your bathroom is neglected, you can still clean quickly with a few tips:
–Have a separate set of towels/cleaning rags for your toilet and countertops. This ensures no cross contamination and you can work quickly with no confusion.
-Always spray and soak your toilet first, including the bowl. You’ll clean the toilet later, but start by giving it a good soak.
-Save the shower/tub for a time where you can deep clean it alone.
Spray and wipe down your mirror and countertops. You can be thorough, but you don’t want to dilly dally in the crevices or that will push you into a deep clean. From there, wipe down cabinets/vanities that are used often and the door/door handle.
Go back to the toilet and scrub the bowl and wipe down the sides. After that you can do the floors: vacuum or sweep, and mop using your Swiffer or similar method.
Step 5: Clean Bedrooms Fast
To get through this undertaking of cleaning your whole house fast, you have to make sure to clean bedrooms quickly. Bedrooms are challenging because so many personal items are in them: toys, clothes, books, memorabilia.
Today, you are not going to deep clean or organize. You are going to surface clean the bedroom quickly:
-If it is a kids room, put all toys away in bins/storage areas. If you don’t have storage set up, make a note to do so on an organizing day. Remove any trash/junk and put in your trash bags!
-Move bed and clean under quickly, picking up any trash and making room to vacuum
-If windows are small easy to clean, do so now with your multipurpose spray.
Step 6: Clean Hallways
You are in the home stretch of whole house cleaning now! By this time, your house should be looking really good and you may be getting weary of cleaning, but hang in there. You’re almost done now, and halls should be easy.
Empty/remove clutter from halls. Vacuum or sweep, and mop if needed. Dust light fixtures with your feather duster. Voila!
Step 7: Clean Laundry Room and Put Away Laundry
At this point your home is looking spic and span! To finish up, you are going to clean your laundry room and put away any clothes.
Here are a few time saving laundry tips:
-Have each person in the family put away their own clothes
-Don’t fold kids clothes, just stack them neatly in piles and set them in drawers. I have found that cotton tees and jeans won’t wrinkle when placed flat in drawers. Kids clothes only stay folded for a few minutes before they get dug through anyway! So we don’t fold kids clothes!
Set up some pretty hangers in your bathrooms. Invest in some pretty towels and use them in your decor. I have these hooks from Amazon and love them! Hanging up towels is faster and more efficient than folding.
To clean your laundry room, remove clutter/trash. Spray and wipe off your washer and dryer. Sweep, then mop.
Don’t Forget to Celebrate!
You did it! You cleaned your whole house fast from top to bottom! Pour yourself a glass of wine, or a cup of tea. Curl up with your favorite book and enjoy your clean home!
Tell me, what are your favorite housecleaning hacks? What do you do to sustain a clean home or to clean your house faster?
Thank you for reading… Don’t stress and God Bless!