It’s coming round to that dreaded time of year again – the spring clean. But what if, in the meantime, you want to get the house tidy without taking up a month of weekends? Are there ways to cut corners with your cleaning until you’re ready to get stuck in and do it properly? You bet there are! Here are some of our favourite cleaning cheats.
We’ve all been there: someone’s decided to cook a bowl of tomato soup in the microwave without covering it. The result is a horrible orange mess spattered up the insides, which is stubborn as anything to get rid of. Except that it doesn’t have to be. All you need to do is pour two cups of water into a microwave-safe bowl, then heat it on high for about five minutes. The resulting steam will soften up the stains, which are then easy to wipe off with a damp cloth. Simples!
Got friends coming round, and a house full of clutter? Rather than sort stuff individually, chuck clutter-causing magazines, toys, and other odds and ends into a bin bag, and then dump it in the garage. Yes, we know, you’re going to have to sift through and sort it at some point. But when you’re making dinner for 10 or so people, now is not the time!
Yes, you want your kids to grow up to be upstanding pillars of the community. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be susceptible to a little bribery. Many hands make light work (even little hands), so promise rewards of sweets, toys, or trips out in exchange for the little ones doing small (and safe) chores around the house. They great thing about this ploy is that the kids will begin to equate cleaning with treats (a la Pavlov and his salivating dog), therefore they may even grow to love cleaning. Maybe.
Constantly swapping your various cleaning products can be time consuming. Certainly, each has its own purpose, but if you’re simply looking to pull off a super-quick clean, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t use an (eco-friendly) multi-purpose cleaner. That way, you can race around the house, without making pit stops. Although of course if you’re doing the bathroom and the kitchen, be sure to swap cleaning cloths!
If you really don’t want to spend hours scrubbing every inch of the house, set yourself a time limit. If you like, you can even set a time limit for each room (say 20 minutes in the bathroom, 30 minutes in the kitchen, etc). When each time limit is up, force yourself to stop. That way, you can plan exactly how much time you’re spending on your cleaning. And because you’re up against the watch, you’ll find that your cleaning technique becomes much niftier than usual!