Have you heard the saying, ‘More the hurry, more the obstacles’? Well, forget it! Sometimes you just have to speed up things a bit. Whether it is an after-party clean-up or your aunt from abroad just called to say she’s in town and she’ll be coming over for dinner, you have little time and many chores to do if you want to represent an ordered life and tidy dwelling at least.
To make your life easier, I’ve gathered some actionable tips, which will help you rapidly clean your home and make it guest-ready in a matter of minutes. Here they are:
Some Basic Rules for Smart Speed Cleaning
If you don’t have a plan or at least an outline of what you have to clean and what goes first, chances are you’ll find yourself lost between the bathroom and the kitchen sink, with a shag waved by the wild motions of your body while trying to clean three areas at once. It is very likely to go over an already-cleaned spot again just because you’ve forgotten that you’ve been there and done that already.
Here are a few tips to make the cleaning much more organised and easier to complete:
Always clean in a top-to-bottom direction
When you are cleaning an entire room or property, you better leave the floors last. If you clean the floors first and wipe off the dust afterward, many of the dust particles will fall onto the floor, and you’ll spread them in the air again when you walk by these areas. This will lead to an endless cycle of cleaning and never getting the results you want.
Wipe up spills and treat spots immediately
Don’t wait even for a minute to pass. Treat spills and stains as soon as they happen. The longer it stays, the smaller the chance to remove it successfully. Of course, it depends on what type of liquid has been spilled and where. If it’s on a textured surface, remember to dab and never scrub because this only works the spill deeper into the fabric.
Get rid of the mess
Cluttered areas are hard to be cleaned. Toys, newspapers, and t-shirts scattered all over couches and shelves will double your efforts, making you move items from one side to another. Declutter the area thoroughly beforehand to ease up and smooth the cleaning process.
Minimise your movements
Cleaning will take a lot more time if you wander from room to room and just wipe things without any organisation. Make sure every movement you make counts for something and helps you do things faster. For instance, before you start washing dishes, go around the house and gather everything you might need to clean. This way you won’t have to do dishes a few times that day.
It is imperative to focus on your tasks, and you already know that. Turn off the TV, put your mobile to a silent mode and get to work. You have no time to distract yourself with Jamie Oliver’s show or tittle-tattle with your best friend over the phone. Instead, do what has to be done quickly and enjoy your favourite TV show in the comfort of your sofa and with a great sense of fulfillment.
Find a motivator
While things like your TV or phone can distract you from the cleaning and make the process slower, other things can help you focus and work faster. Playing your favourite upbeat music or an inspiring audiobook can help you concentrate more and prevent boredom while cleaning. And you’ll have an even more incredible feeling of achievement because you’ll be doing two tasks at the same time!
Work as a team
You need to get your whole family involved, especially if the house is big and time-limited. After all, taking care of the home is everyone’s responsibility, and if family and friends are coming over, everyone should pitch in to help out with the situation.
Since the living room and the kitchen are the most critical areas when hosting guests, start from there and make sure everything is vacuumed, dust and clutter-free, and inviting. You need to pay attention to some potentially repulsive things, like dishes in the sink and spills on the table. These need to be cleaned for sure. Another equally important element is the bathroom your guests are going to use. All the other areas can be treated with a lower priority.
Common Cleaning Mistakes to Avoid
When time is not on your side, there is no room for mistakes. Making a mistake doesn’t take much time. It is dealing with the consequences which will slow you down. So, do nоt sabotage yourself, but be careful and avoid:
Cleaning the windows on a hot, sunny day
It is a practical solution to wash windows when it’s sunny outside because you can see what you are doing and if there is some dirt left behind, you will notice and remove it on time. However, the sun rays will make the cleaning solution dry faster and cause streaks on the glass. For best results, wash your windows on a cloudy day. Look at it from the bright side. You’ll be far less sweaty at the end (we know how exhausting this chore can be).
Scrubbing stains out of the carpet
When a spillage occurs, stand up to the urge to scrub the spilled liquid out of the carpet/upholstery. This will not only ruin the threads but will also rub the dirt even deeper in the fabric. The right thing to do is blot as much liquid as possible with a clean rag or paper towels. Only then you are allowed to treat with a stain remover or other type of detergent.
Unplugging the vacuum when moving onto the next room
If the cable of your vacuum is too short, you can extend your reach by purchasing an extension cord. This way, you will vacuum every room in the house without having to plug and unplug the appliance again and again. A wise investment that will save you much time and unnecessary movements you can protect yourself.
Author bio: Jane Wilson is a mum, a blogger, and a marketing executive from Melbourne. She represents the local branch of Fantastic Cleaners, a licensed cleaning company that provides a wide range of services. She also runs a small blog called Modern Housewives, where she shares all kinds of home improvement and parenting tips.