Since I regularly write about decluttering, it’s possible that I’m supposed to have all of my alphabetized, color-coded ducks in a perfectly organized row. But the reality is that sometimes (okay, daily) my house gets messy.
And whether someone is stopping by or I just don’t want to stare at a mess, sometimes I want to make my house look really clean, really fast.
I’m guessing that sometimes you need to make your house look clean in a hurry as well, so I’m giving you a few tips on how to speed your way to a clean-looking home!
Here’s how to fake a clean house in less than 20 minutes:
1) Give your kids jobs they like (1 minute)
This is no time to deal with bad attitudes over who has to gather the dirty dishes again. If one kid likes using too many cleaning wipes in the bathroom and the other child enjoys seeing how fast she can vacuum the living room, by all means, let them do those jobs!
Or, if your kids are too young to help, this is a perfect time to turn on a TV show so you can work fast.
2) Focus your time on areas people will see (1 minute)
For example, if your kids’ bedroom will take more than a minute to quickly tidy up, simply close and lock the door! Only spend time focusing on the rooms that will be seen.
3) Pile dishes in the sink (3 minutes)
Maybe it’s just me, but I think my kitchen looks a whole lot cleaner when I take two minutes to move dirty dishes from the table and counters to the sink.
This is a great time to quickly gather dishes from other areas of the house and put them in the sink as well. You can even take a few seconds to run a little hot soapy water over the dishes so they can “soak” until you have time to wash them.
4) Gather dirty laundry (2 minutes)
If you have dirty laundry on the floor, quickly gather it and put it in one place (preferably next to your washing machine).
5) Throw trash away (2 minutes)
Take a trash-can around the house with you and stuff trash into it as you go.
6) Wipe counters and the toilet (3 minutes)
If you have multiple bathrooms, just focus on the one that’s most likely to be used. Wipe down the sink and toilet, then wipe the kitchen counters if needed. (I keep these these Clorox wipes on hand for when I need to clean fast.)
7) Tidy with the laundry basket “cheat cleaning” method (4 minutes)
I describe more about how to use the laundry basket cheat cleaning method here. Basically, gather stuff from around the rooms you’re tidying, put all of it in a laundry basket, then shove the basket into a closet or bedroom and close the door.
8 ) Vacuum the living room (2 minutes)
Nothing says “clean” like a few vacuum lines! Don’t even vacuum the whole living room if you don’t have time – just sweep the big stuff off the floor and consider the job done.
9) Spray air freshener or light a candle (1 minute)
Even if your home isn’t completely clean, it can smell clean which helps it to feel clean!
Total time = 19 minutes. Less if you move really, really fast or if you have helpers!
Bonus Tip: Spend a few minutes on yourself if possible (5 minutes to 15 minutes):
Take a fast shower, brush your teeth, and throw on clean clothes. Or change your shirt, brush your hair and teeth, then put on a little make-up. After-all, most people will spend more time looking at you than they will spend looking at your house.
What about you? How do you fake a clean house in a hurry?
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