- Daily Chores
- Dishes Don’t let these stack up. Fill a sink with hot soapy water, and let pots and pans soak while you eat – then load the dishwasher right after the meal.
- Laundry Do small loads two or three times a day to stay on top of things. Small loads make it easier to put away as you go, and decrease wear and tear on your washer and dryer!
- Kitchen Wipe down counters daily and put away any items causing clutter.
- Bath Wipe down the sink and toilet with disposable cleaning cloths daily.
- Tidy Do a walk-through of the house before bed, picking up any items left out.
- Floors High traffic areas may need vacuuming or sweeping every day or every other day.
- Weekly Chores
- Refrigerator Check contents, discard any outdated items. Wipe shelves down with a damp cloth and attend to any spills.
- Sink Scour thoroughly and clean spray nozzle and faucet with de-liming solution if needed.
- Bath Scrub out bathtub, clean toilet thoroughly, and mop floor.
- Dusting Dust entire house, and wipe down windowsills.
- Floors. Vacuum the entire house after dusting; sweep and mop floors
- Laundry Catch up on extra laundry and do your ironing.
- Linens Change sheets and pillowcases on al beds in use.
- Monthly Chores
- Lights Dust light and ceiling fan fixtures and replace any burnt out bulbs.
- Rugs Shake or wash as needed.
- Windows Wash windows inside and out, clean curtains or blinds.
- Appliances Clean all appliances, including removing lint from washer/dryer, wiping down the stove and microwave, cleaning the oven and scrubbing out the refrigerator.
- HVAC Check and change air conditioning unit or furnace filters if necessary.
- Water filter Check and exchange if needed.
- Seasonal Chores
- Spring. Arrange to have carpets and drapes professionally cleaned
- Summer Employ a lawn service to keep your yard looking its best.
- Fall Organize garage and/or tool-shed.
- Winter Completely clean house – discard or donate unused items.
Housekeeping can be an enormous job, especially when both parents work and there are children in the home! However, even singles and couples without kids can benefit from a housekeeping plan that sets out tasks on a daily, weekly and monthly basis and ensures that clutter and dust doesn’t build up. Some people prefer to work from room to room, completing one before starting another, while others like to start with one task and go thru the whole house. It doesn’t really matter how you clean your house, as long as you work from bottom to top (dust first, vacuum last) and everything gets done.
Some tasks may be best relegated to a professional service – remember, time is money, and if you can spend your time more productively it’s worth spending a little cash to relive the worry and stress caused by a dirty house. Sometimes the easiest game plan is to set up a strict cleaning schedule that enables you to do a little every day, with a little extra on weekends. Once a month you can tackle bigger tasks, and as the seasons change you can take care of spring and fall cleaning.
Assign tasks to family members, too – delegation is what makes the world go ’round. Don’t get stuck in the idea that ‘kitchens are women’s work’ or that ‘men mow the yard’, however – if you have kids, they might have to both iron clothes and trim hedges themselves one day, regardless of gender, so share out duties evenhandedly! Clutter is your enemy when it comes to keeping your house tidy. Rule of thumb – if you haven’t used it in a year, you probably don’t need it. Taking the initiative to declutter your life can decrease stress and give you back your free time – without all that extra ‘stuff’, you’ll have more energy and hours to devote to the fun things in life!