Do you want a cleaner home? Today we’re sharing our favorite easy cleaning tips that will help you keep your home clean every day!
Do you feel like you’re always playing catch up, or that everyone you live with is sabotaging your desire for a clean home? Well, I’ve often felt the same way! So today I thought I’d share with you some of my favorite cleaning tips. The ones that help me keep everything looking “good enough” so that I don’t go crazy. Over on Instagram I get a lot of questions and comments on how clean my home is. Compliments telling me how clean it looks, and also questions like, “how do you keep it so clean?”
First let me say, it’s definitely not always clean! I’ve had many years (especially when the kids were all younger) where it was messy more often than not, and when I felt like I couldn’t keep up. But I have found some solutions and practices that have helped, so I thought I’d share what works for me!
These are the things I do daily or weekly to keep my home looking it’s best and to keep me from stressing out. Because I don’t know about you, but messes do make me feel stressed. I feel like I can’t work, think, cook, or relax when I’m sitting in a messy/dirty space. When things are clean and everything is put where it belongs, I feel so much better!
Daily Cleaning Tips
Okay, so first off I should probably tell you that this isn’t a post about deep cleaning by any means! These are just a few things that I do daily or almost daily to keep the clutter away and the house in pretty good shape. Deep cleaning is another post entirely! 😉
•Make the bed, everyday. This is something I didn’t do for years! But once I had kids I made it a rule that they had to make theirs, which meant we had to make ours, too, haha. 😉
Our rule is whoever is last up makes the bed, and it really works for us. But whether you share the chore or do it yourself, it’s essential. Not only does it make your room instantly feel neater, it feels so much better to get into a made bed at night rather than one with wrinkled sheets that sat un-made all day! (They also say people who make their bed are more productive, and who am I to argue with that?!)
Family Room/Living Room
•Straighten up the family room. While coffee is brewing in the morning, I fluff the cushions and pillows on the sofa, and rearrange the throw blankets that everyone has used (and usually left on the floor!)
•Empty the dishwasher so that it’s ready for our breakfast dishes. Another thing that helps keep the kitchen neat is always putting your dishes in the dishwasher as soon as you are done eating! No leaving dishes in the sink, or on the counter or table. And this applies to everyone!
We do a lot of hand washing here (some pots and pans and any plastic we have, as well as the “good knives”). We used to wash them and leave them in the drying rack but I finally got smart and took the drying rack away. It just looked messy. And you know what? Drying the knife you just washed takes all of like 12 seconds!
If you use it (and it’s a hand washable) then you wash and dry it, and put it away immediately. My counters have gone from having tons of dishes piled on the sides and in the drying rack to being relatively clean. So much better!
• Clean the kitchen every night following dinner. Do the dishes, wipe the counters, and wipe down the stove. I find it way easier to do it every day than to let things get so dirty that they are overwhelming. Again, if your kids are old enough, have them pitch in. They can dry, put away, or wipe off the counters at the very least!
• Vacuum Downstairs: Now for those of you who don’t have a Golden Retriever living with you, you may not have to do this everyday, haha, but for us, it’s essential! He sheds a ton, so I usually do a quick vacuum of the hardwood floors in the downstairs each day (just the family room, entry way, and kitchen – he’s not in the living or dining rooms much). There are days that I’m too busy and don’t get to vacuum, but at the very least, I’ll run a broom over the hairiest areas.
Pick up/De-clutter Downstairs
•Pick up anything that is lying around and not in it’s proper place, or as Marie Kondo would say – tidy up! I feel like this might be the most important key to keeping a neat house. Especially in a smaller house, which ours is, it can go from neat to a disaster pretty quickly!
Now I find that if I pick up anything that doesn’t belong on a daily basis, it goes a long way to keeping things from getting out of control! If it’s my husband’s or one of the kids, I either put it in their rooms or on the stairs so that they can take it up next time they go. And of course if it’s mine, I try to be mindful of putting it away. Even now, I sometimes slip and my things are the ones that are piled up! But that effort of doing it most of the time really pays off.
Semi-Daily/Twice Weekly Cleaning Tips
•Wipe down the stainless steel appliances. The refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave and range get pretty dirty with fingerprints and food as we cook almost every night, so I like to clean them with a stainless steel cleaner a couple of times a week. I also scrub the sink every couple of days as well.
•Wipe down the bathroom. I either use a rag and multi-surface cleaner, or more often, I simply wet the hand towel that is in the bathroom to do a quick wipe down of the counters and the faucets. Then I change out the hand towel to a fresh one. Quick and easy.
•Vacuum entire downstairs (including living and dining rooms) once a week. And mop the hardwoods with Bona. In between I feel like vacuuming is enough, but once a week I like to mop. Cause, you know, Golden Retriever! (You can see a complete post on how I keep my hardwood floors clean here).
Also, I don’t believe that I’m the only one who should be cleaning! I’m a huge believer in involving the kids and teaching them. So everyone contributes. My husband does his part, and the kids help, and everyone cleans up after themselves and makes their own beds, etc. Not only does it help me not feel overwhelmed, but it’s good for them to learn and to take responsibility. I always tell them a family is a team, and teams help each other. 😉
Now there are more things I do on a weekly or monthly basis, and bigger, deeper cleans that go with that. But these are the basics that I do daily or every couple of days to keep the house looking decent. It’s definitely not perfect all the time.
Sometimes I get too busy, or sick, or I’m just not in the mood! There are days I make my bed and not much else. But I do find if I consistently do these basics, the house looks good most of the time. And more importantly, I feel better. A clean house just feels better to me. If it’s clean and neat, I feel calmer, happier, and more productive.
And if you are interested, here are the products I love and use in my own home:
•Sink: Bon Ami and Soft Scrub (original, not with bleach) or Bar Keeper’s Friend Liquid
•Stainless: Method Steel for Real Stainless Cleaner (LOVE this product! I get it from Grove Collaborative. Great company that sells safer and healthier cleaning products – often for less than places like Target).
•Counters: Mrs. Meyer’s Multi-Surface Cleaner
•Vacuum: Dyson V8 cordless (I have a bigger canister vacuum for the carpets upstairs, but this is great for daily vacuuming downstairs because it’s so light weight!)
•Wood Floors: Bona Wood Floor Cleaner with Bona mop
•Baskets: for corralling extras you find when cleaning! I have these in each room, as well as on the stairs.
*affiliate links are included for your convenience*
If you have favorite cleaning tips, I’d love to hear about them! Be sure to share your ideas in the comments. And here’s to a cleaner house ~ for all of us!
If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out more decorating and organizing ideas below:
Decluttering: 30 Things to Get Rid of in the Next 30 Days
How to Make the Perfect Bed: My Favorite Bedding Formula
My 5 Favorite (Easy!) Organizing Tips
Linen Closet Organizing: Getting Ready for Guests
Linda Thompson says
I have travertine tile and because it is hard rock, I have to damp mop (Swiffer it) almost daily. I hope to replace it eventually with wood flooring; easier on my body and maybe not as hard to take care of. My only concern with wood flooring is scratches! I know you can purchase faux wood that does not scratch, but you do not get that look that a genuine wood floor gives you. Your home is so beautiful, all the furnishings, flooring, wall colors, etc., just stunning! I wish I had seen your blog earlier. I’m trying to replace a lot of my furnishings, décor in a more neutral vibe. I love the grays and did have the good sense when repainting to use Repose Gray in most of the house. Its neutral and from there I can select whites, grays, creams in my furnishings and accents in maybe pale blue and light sage.
Thank you Sheila
Hi Linda and thank you for your kind words – I’m so glad you’re here!
It sounds like you’re off to a great start with Repose Gray, that’s a lovely color and very neutral! As for real vs. faux wood floors, I hear you. Mine are real and they are scratched, but for me, it’s worth it. I love that they are real and also much healthier to live with day in and day out so scratches it is, haha!
Thanks so much for stopping by!
Tex Hooper says
I like what you said about how having everything cleaned makes you feel happier. I need to hire a crew to clean my kitchen. I just can’t keep up with all the work that is required.
Renee Fraker says
Love your tips – thanks for sharing!
Julie Adams says
I love your kitchen organizing ideas – simple but brilliant!
Sheila Bowen says
Yes! The drying rack is not in my life either! I love the idea of a clean counter in the kitchen. The Dyson is a great choice for downstairs when it comes to the canister that is very heavy. I love your ideas and enjoy reading all your posts.
Wendy Buchnell says
These cleaning tips are so helpful- I can’t wait to implement them and start a new (hopefully!) better program for keeping the house clean! Thanks for sharing!!
Candice Carmichael says
I just loved reading this blog! It is amazing how many of these habits I have but then it’s impossible to continue and conquer because the other person you live with is the antichrist of cleaning, haha!! Nonetheless, I find all these habits time efficient and helpful and loved the post!
Sandy Jones says
Dear Sheila, I so enjoy your posts! Having kept house since 1969, I’ve evolved to doing the things you do daily, plus cleaning the bathroom mirrors. Having survived boys growing up, two Old English Sheepdogs and, more recently, an adorable German Shepherd sized tan mixed-breed who put Old English shedding to shame, I gave up at one point and replaced carpet with Wylie dog colored carpet. Smartest decor change ever!!! Wylie passed away, the matching carpet has been replaced with the most hardwood-looking porcelain tile ever. Our current big Labradoodle doesn’t shed! But we live in the country, and…mud happens! Please keep posting. Forge on; adapt; support daily sanity; and smile when you can’t control it all!!
Thank you Sandy! And I love that you take it all in stride! The dogs shed and bring in dirt, but they also bring so much happiness and love don’t they? As much as I curse the hair (daily!!) I couldn’t live without mine!
Thanks so much for stopping by and for sharing!
I wish I could get rid of my drying rack. We also hand wash so many things- where do you pile them up as you hand wash? If you use a drying mat, then do you hang that somewhere or stick it in a cabinet wet??
There’s not much room underneath the cabinet for some sort of folding rack but I might try to reorganize as we are renovating our kitchen and I’d love to lose that rack!
Okay, so the drying rack drove me crazy!! I had one for years but now I just hand wash and dry as I go. NOTHING sits on the counter anymore and I’m so happy! It seriously takes minutes to dry everything and I prefer it and for me, it’s worth it not to have everything sitting out!
I love to cook so I do most all of our prepping and cooking but my husband helps clear the table, dries my hand washed dishes, and puts them away. I can’t believe how much time it saves on the nightly cleanup to have 2 people sharing the job.
Yes!! We definitely don’t both do it all – so much better when we work as a team! 🙂
Thanks. I needed this. I spent the night up with a new dog who managed to knock over a beautiful statue(smithereens). I’m just a little heart broken, but it’s ONLY STUFF!! I need a restart, beginning with vacuuming up the shards. I will feel better when I’ve gone through the house and picked up and cleaned a little, then a nap!!! Doggie is busy sleeping, the pill. Thanks for the post.
Oh no, that’s so awful! I’m so sorry Eileen! But yes, it is just stuff. However, I also understand loving our stuff and it meaning something. Hopefully you’ve cleaned up now and can laugh about it later.
Thanks so much for stopping by!
Nancy Manning says
I love your tips for keeping your house clean and I do some of them, but you’ve given me some good ones to add to my weekly routine! Thanks!
Barbara Bernstein says
Thanks so much for your wonderful post on cleaning tips. You have had some good points that I hadn’t thought of! Thanks for sharing!
Renee Fraker says
Thanks for the tips! And you’re so right about the importance of vacuuming the hardwood floors – when I do that it always makes everything feel so much cleaner!
Tanner Clegg says
Awesome tips! As a busy mother of seven kids, these will come in handy to keep our house clean. Thanks a bunch!!
Yay! So glad you found them helpful! 🙂
Catelyn King says
Thanks for the great tips! Got an early start on cleaning up for spring this year and I think if we start now it won’t be such a hassle come April! I found some more great tips from this post!
Your home is beautiful, warm and inviting! Thank you for sharing these wonderful tips! Getting rid of the drying rack is a great idea that I had not thought of.
Thank you so much Jeanne – so appreciate that! And yes!! Or should I say “no” to the drying rack! I’m so much happier without it!!
Thanks for stopping by!
Abby Fields says
This is great advice! I also like to get my carpets professionally cleaned once or twice a year, and it makes me feel so much better (especially with my dogs ha!). Yay for assigning cleaning tasks and not going crazy!
Lisa B says
Such great tips! Thank you, Sheila! We got rid of our dish rack too! So much better! I can think and feel better with a clean space too! :o)
So funny you got rid of the drying rack, too! Best decision ever!
Thanks for stopping by!
Love it – I do most of this but not vacuuming every day and I REALLY should as we have 3 dogs currently!
Sherry M says
Thank you, Sheila, for these tips. I, too, try to have a routine very similar to yours. When I am less motivated than the norm, I do like to use the swiffer dry cloth disposables on my hardwoods. You see, my little Pomeranian is a fluff ball too. I agree, it’s a mental boost to start the day with tidy surroundings. Thanks to my mom, I have always made my bed..feet on the floor, bed making chore! Your home is beautiful, and you have made it welcoming. Your fresh style is one to imitate. Thank you for sharing. I love your blog!
That is such a nice comment – thank you so much! And I’m so glad you enjoyed the post:)