Keeping your house clean without the drudgery

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In a perfect world, we could press a button and our house would be clean. Unfortunately, there is no magic tool or tactic that will keep our homes sparkling, so Apple News asked a few cleaning pros to offer an efficient approach to simplify this seemingly never-ending chore. Cleaning pros shared their methods.

Having a strategy is a way to begin. With some prep work, you can make cleaning tasks less challenging as well as less frequent. That might mean keeping two lists — one for your weekly cleaning to-dos, and one for rarer jobs (like dusting ceiling fans and shutter blades). “Each time you do your weekly chores, tackle one item from that second list,” says Memphis-based cleaning expert Jacqueline Janus. “A quick wipe of fan blades every couple of weeks means I’m not eventually scrubbing six months’ worth of dust from them.”

Next, go from large to small, top to bottom, and dry to wet. Creating an order for every task ensures you don’t retrace your steps or undo your hard work. Step one would be picking up clutter before you dust. The rest would follow: dusting the mantel before the floorboards, dusting before you vacuum, and vacuuming before you mop.

Take a hard look around your house and survey all your tchotchkes. Each object that sits on your shelf, mantel, or bureau is something that needs to be dusted. Then see if you can live with paring them back to make the cleaning go faster. This is especially true in the kitchen with items like cooking utensils, canisters, condiment shakers, and bottles of supplements.

Want to clean little by little instead of all at once? Assign a manageable task to each day of the week. Wash your clothes on Monday. Attack your bathrooms on Tuesday, etc. And if you miss a day, simply wait until the next week. “No one will care if you go two weeks without vacuuming the dining room,” says one cleaning expert.

Give up on the idea of a cabinet full of products for every possible cleaning task. Have an all-purpose cleaner along with a few ingredients to whip up your own cleaners, such as vinegar, baking soda, and Castile soap. Try to limit supplies to what can fit in one wire or wicker basket.

Consider adding a cordless vacuum to your cleaning arsenal. Instead of hauling out the big guns vacuum each time you clean, keep a smaller one elsewhere in your house — especially an upstairs and downstairs unit. Store the corded model upstairs and the portable version downstairs to use on the more frequent messes made in the kitchen and living areas.

You know how, when you realize someone is coming over you quickly head to the hall bath to give it a quick clean? Try to take advantage of these types of opportunities when they present themselves. “For instance, when your fridge is fairly empty right before you grocery shop, wipe down the shelves and drawers with a vinegar-based all-purpose cleaner that’s safe to use around food,” says another expert.

As for the timing of your tasks, let your products work for you. If you let a product penetrate gunk and grime, it’ll make things easier to clean. Then use that wait time to your advantage. When more than one bathroom, spray all the surfaces in one, then move on to do the same in the other bathrooms. By the time you return to the first room, the cleanser will have sunk in, and all that’s left is to wipe everything with microfiber cloth. As for the order you use, employ the same wipe to clean the faucet, then the counter and sink, and finally the toilet.

When moving your cleaning tasks from room to room, be sure to take a misplaced item with you each time. The book taken off the family room shelf no longer needs to be on your night table. Those shoes belong in the upstairs bedroom. Collect the used coffee cup from your office as you head to the kitchen. How many of us recall our moms piling things on the first few leading upstairs hoping against hope we might get the hint?

And lastly, keep your shower dry by running a squeegee along shower walls and doors to stave off soap scum. Got a shower curtain? Pull it shut to dry. Moisture trapped in the folds of a curtain can lead to mold.

AppleNews, TBWS


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J.C. Mier The Mortgage GOAT

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Branch Manager/ Loan Officer

NMLS: 258527

Cell: 469-628-4544


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