I hate cleaning! I try to avoid it at all costs, but the problem is that I like living in a house that is clean all the time.
So I did what anyone else would do: I put a lot of effort into not cleaning. Ironically, this involved studying a lot of highly detailed OCD-like housekeeping books, like this and this, so I could figure out how to actually clean optimally and efficiently with the least amount of effort. Perhaps even more ironically, in my quest to avoid cleaning, I clean a little bit each day.
Below are my top 7 tips to efficiently keep your house clean all the time.
1. Start a Weekly Cleaning Routine
It isn't as bad as it sounds. From my experience, cleaning a little bit each day is MUCH better than cleaning after a month of no cleaning. For one, there is much less grime, dirt, and general-ick-factor around (The worst part of cleaning and the highest barrier to it, in my opinion).
Basically, my weekly cleaning schedule involves cleaning 15 minutes each day and 1 day of cleaning 1 hour.
My weekly routine:
Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri, and Sat (15 min each day): Run 1 load of laundry, put away clean clothes, run dishwasher, make bed, put away any stray items.
Sunday (1 hour): Clean 2 bathrooms, wipe down counters, dust, and run Magical Robotic Vacuum Cleaner (also known as a "Roomba", but I like to call her baby).
2. Involve Your Partner in Your Weekly Cleaning Routine
My partner very kindly takes the trash and recycling out 2 to 3 times per week.
3. Buy a Magical Self-Operating Vacuum Cleaner
Let's face it - vacuuming sucks. It can easily take up 30 minutes to an hour of time, which could be spent watching TV. Do yourself a favor and get a robotic vacuum cleaner. All I have to do is press the start button and empty the vacuum tray when it gets full (though honestly, even that feels like too much sometimes).
The robotic vacuum cleaner that I have is the iRobot Roomba 650 Robot Vacuum . I love it. It can be programmed to run when I'm not home, but I haven't used that feature since I'm a little scared what it would get up to. You kind of have to monitor it, like around sliding door closets (it gets stuck on the track, so just close the closet) and blinds which extend to the floor (pull them up). It's kind of like a pet.
There is also a self-operating mopping robot which I have. II don't use it as much, but it's an option!
4. Invest in Lots of Baskets, Drawers, and Ottomans
This way, you can put all your junk into the drawers and ottomans and no one will ever be the wiser. Case in point, my office below. I have 5 drawers, 1 basket, and 1 ottoman here!
5. Figure Out a Place for Everything
Knowing where items belong helps make it easier to put things away. There will be a place to put them to! For instance, socks placed into a sock drawer, books onto a bookcase, etc.
6. Use a Wand Duster
I used to use a rag to dust but found that it took way too much effort and just wipes the dust around.
But then I discovered this OXO dusting wand based on Amazon reviews and LOVE IT. What I like about it is that it minimizes how much hand motion is involved in dusting. With a rag, you have to use a wiping motion. With this wand, you barely have to move your wrist.
Also, it's like waving a fairy wand around the house!! This wand is a total game changer and has helped me take my cleaning laziness to a whole new level.
7. Create a Natural, Homemade, Disinfectant using Rubbing Alcohol and Water
I don't like using bleach or household cleaners with potentially cancer causing agents in them, but I like my house to be clean. Like actually clean, not just wipe-around-dirt-and-make-it-look-visually-clean.
So I combine 1 part rubbing alcohol to 1 part water into this spray bottle and wipe down kitchen and bathroom counters, keyboard, doorknobs, etc. Hydrogen Peroxide can be used instead of rubbing alcohol as well.
There are some tasks that are done quarterly, but I'll save those for another post. Basically, by making cleaning part of a daily routine, it feels like much less of a chore!