After spending most of the winter trapped in the house with colds, icky weather, other inconveniences, we often want to spring clean to rid our home of the grime and germs that surround us. However, it can be nearly impossible to know where to start, especially if you have a bunch of little clutter creators running around your house. Luckily, we have put together a few pointers with the help of our friends at https://bettercleans.com/ that can help make your spring cleaning successful.
Start with the Junk
There is no reason to put junk away. Grab two bins or bags and your cleaning equipment ready and start cleaning. Put trash in one and donate or yard sale items in the other. If you want to donate some and sell some, add a third bin. For toys are goods with multiple parts, make sure that all parts are there. If it is still usable without them, consider marking down the price or donating it. However, if it is in disrepair, you might want to just toss it. Of course, some collectibles and antiques are fixable, and people will accept them in less than perfect condition. Either way, if it is not going to remain at your house, get rid of it first.
Look for Clothing that Doesn’t Fit or Is Out of Style
Unless you are actively losing weight, those tight jeans can probably just go. You don’t need to save them. Even if you want to lose weight, shouldn’t you just buy yourself a new outfit when you reach your goal weight? Reward yourself. Out-of-style clothes or clothes that do not fit can be eliminated. Toss them in the yard sale pile if you want to make money for a new outfit.
While you don’t have to decide if you love or hate everything in your home, it’s not a bad idea to consider rarely used items. Do you really need to keep it? If you use it once every three years, is there someone who has one you could borrow? Go through junk drawers and get rid of the tools and things you rarely use or need. If it is inexpensive enough, can you just replace it in three years if you need a new one?
Store Seasonal Items
Store things that are only used seasonally. Plastic bins are the best storage containers because they minimize water damage if there is a flood, and they often deter rodents and pests if stored in a garage, attic, or basement.
Once you have removed all the things from your home that need to go, you can start cleaning. One tip that might work best is to start from the top and work your way down. Let’s do a quick run-down of what that might be.
Finish One Room Before Beginning Another
If you have some rooms with items that belong in other places, consider having cardboard boxes for each room. Place those items in the corresponding bin and continue working. As you move to the next room, you can put away that room’s bin. Don’t return to the last room until the end. Once you have cleaned all rooms, you might have a few things to put away from other rooms, but it will keep you from stopping and starting.
- Dust the ceiling for cobwebs
- Clean any high molding for dust and cobwebs.
- Dust the ceiling fans. Special dusters can be purchased for high ceilings!
- Don’t worry when the above dust falls to the floor. You will be cleaning your way down. It will go!
- Dust light fixtures or clean them with warm soapy water.
- Wipe down door jambs and walls—Don’t forget the window sills too.
- Remove window treatments.
- Wash curtains
- Clean blinds. Many can be soaked in a tub of warm water, but if yours are made of wood or other materials, follow the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions.
- Wash window and door glass—Pictures and mirrors should be dusted and cleaned as well.
- Chair rails and decorative molding should be cleaned as you reach the center point.
- Bookshelves and shadowboxes should be dusted.
- Dust the tops of lampshades as well as the bases.
- Tables and knickknacks can also be cleaned now.
- Dust or vacuum furniture
- Wash baseboards, vents, and registers
- Replace filters
- Sweep, mop, vacuum, and shampoo floors, depending on coverings.
Checklist Kitchen Additions
- Remove expired or stale foods—no one is eating that 6-month-old cereal.
- Clean Appliances, especially the oven and fridge shelves
- Clean under furniture and appliances if possible
- Look for broken or chipped dishes and remove unusable ones
- Repair any frayed cords or wires if discovered
- Wipe down inside and outsides of cabinets
- Defrost freezers
Checklist Bedroom Additions
- Strip the bed and vacuum the mattress and box spring
- Wash Pillows, especially throws that might get missed on laundry day
- Flip mattress
- Reorganize closets and drawers in disarray
- Organize toys in children’s rooms
Checklist Bathroom Additions
- Scrub showers, walls, and windows
- Scrub toilets—behind the toilets too!
- Scrub sinks and countertops
- Sweep and mop floors
- Discard any expired medications—follow recommended guidelines
Checklist Office Additions
- Organize papers and forms
- Clean computer area/ dust computer with compressed air and screen-safe cleaners
- Sanitize mouse, phone, keyboard
Garage/ Other Rooms
- Reorganize anything that has fallen into disarray.
- Don’t forget to clean the entrance way as that is the first thing people see when they enter your home.
- Discard broken items
- Clean floors, walls, and furniture not previously mentioned
Spring cleaning is a personal task. Some of you will not have all of these items to do, and others will have more. The most important thing for you to do is to work from the top down while cleaning and discard unusable or unwanted items. Donate or sell items you will no longer need that are in good condition. Do not take your trash to the local thrift store. No one wants to buy unusable items.