When I first learned to clean my own place, I thought Saturday had to be an all day clean-a-thon. I didn't really have a concept of how to balance the work load during the week so weekends could be reserved for larger projects or even you know…fun! Now I clean in 20 minutes a day — every day — and things just seem to take care of themselves. Here's a glimpse at the schedule I use!
1. Surface clean living room and kitchen (pick up stray items, dust, sweep, vacuum)
5. Surface clean living room and kitchen
6. Clean bathrooms
7. Clean all interior windows (white vinegar and newspaper works great and is cheap!)
8. Sweep and vacuum all floors in the house (don't forget stairs)
9. Surface clean bedrooms
10. Deep clean living room (mirrors, baseboards, dust artwork)
11. Clean bathrooms
12. Clean out closets (hang up clothes, mittens, jackets, hats)
13. Surface clean "extra" rooms
14. Deep clean bedrooms (organize drawers, check under bed, tidy closet, dust artwork, fans, lights, mop)
15. Surface clean living room and kitchen
16. Deep clean bathrooms (clean inside drawers, inside of trash cans, tops of mirrors, tile, mop)
17. Clean all door knobs, phones, entertainment equipment (remote controls), switch plates, banisters and other things that are repeatedly touched.
18. Clean out the refrigerator, take stock of food, organize pantry
19. Clean entryway, sweep porch (if you have one), clean out car (because they're often our home away from home)
20. Surface clean living
room and kitchen
21. Surface clean bathrooms
22. Surface clean bedrooms
23. Sweep and vacuum all floors in the house
24. Clean linen closet, straighten towels, sheets or regular closet if not applicable
25. Surface clean living room and kitchen
26. Deep clean kitchen (scrub appliances, wash trash cans, base boards, wipe down and straighten cabinets)
27. Surface clean bathrooms
28. Surfaces clean bedrooms
29. Clean one item you've been meaning to get to and haven't (deep clean your stove, wipe down all light fixtures, tackle a particularly unruly area)
30. Sweep and vacuum all floors in the house
To this list you can also add chores that are to be done monthly or quarterly. It's easier to plan for larger tasks like steam cleaning a sofa or heavy traffic hallway, then it feels like part of the routine instead of that thing you keep putting off and dreading.
Habits are formed by doing and one of the best ways to change a bad habit is to replace it with another action. So if the time spent right when you come home from work is usually filled with email reading and a small nap, try switching it out with your cleaning instead. Making the 20 minute time slot routine will build good habits and help you stay on top of the game without feeling like it's a real chore.
Do you have anything to add to the list above? What cleaning tasks would you add to the list? Let us know in the comments below!