Home & Lifestyle

6 Must-Know Spring Cleaning Tips

  1. De-clutter. You can’t clean or organize clutter. Get rid of it. Really. Don’t set it aside to sell it. Don’t hold onto it for another year. Both of those things mean that you will have it much longer, sitting in piles around your house. Donate it. Do it this week.
  2. Make Doormats Welcoming. They’re not just there for decoration. Shake them, wash them, whack them with a broom. Give them the toughest cleaning they can take. They’re your front line against tracked-in dirt—so keep them clean enough to function at peak efficiency.
  3. Let the light shine in. Open your windows and blinds. Clean your windows (outside as well as inside) and screens (to clean your screens, take them out and wash them in a large bathtub). Don’t forget the window seals! Clean the corners of a window-seal with an old toothbrush soaked with simple white vinegar to help remove dirt. It’s fiddly but oddly satisfying.
  4. Don’t forget the light fixtures and ceiling fans. A few minutes with a stepladder, all-purpose cleaner, a sponge, and a polish cloth will give new light to your life. If your home has skylights or tall ceilings, consider investing in a stepladder and extended-reach dust-and-dirt-removal tools, all of which are available at your local hardware store and at home supply stores. You’ll be shocked how much comes off these overhead spaces, and how extra-sparkly they seem afterwards.
  5. If walls could talk. The walls may not look as if they need a bath. Gravity means most dust and soot falls to the floor, right? Most of it does, but just enough clings to vertical surfaces to warrant a seasonal or pre-holiday bath. Use a sponge and diluted dishwashing detergent, washing the surface in sections. A sponge mop makes it easier to reach higher spots. Use two buckets: one for dishwashing detergent solution and another for wringing your sponge. Dry the walls and woodwork with a clean cloth. For getting off really stubborn marks, a white cotton cloth will always be a safer bet than those synthetic blue/green wipes (which may leave its fibres on the wall).
  6. Reward yourself. Tackle tasks room by room. For each task you complete, treat yourself to something you enjoy. It could be something simple, like a glass of wine or an episode of your favourite TV show, or something even more indulgent like a new pair of shoes or a trip to the spa. When you’re cleaning, knowing that there’s a reward at the end, you’re more likely to get the job done. Plus, rewarding yourself helps keep you motivated and have more incentive to get back to work.