Who loves housework? I’m sure not many of us. But, if you’ve got a house and there’s at least one person living in it, let alone a family, then you’ll need to do housework at some point. How much, when and how you do it, is different for everyone. Some people even enjoy it! But, for the rest of us who try to put it off until tomorrow, here are 5 ways to make housework quicker and easier.
5 WAYS TO MAKE HOUSEWORK QUICKER AND EASIER
#1 Get a routine in place
This first one is a biggie!
Most things are easier once you’ve got a routine in place.
Make a list or some kind of chart that lists all the rooms in your house. Go through each room working out exactly what needs to be cleaned and how often. Make sure you include everything from skirting boards to ceiling lights and the cobwebs you don’t really see unless you look up. Don’t forget behind and under sofas – the places where everything from food to Lego pieces collect.
Come up with a rota for tackling each room. Work out whether it’s easier to group similar jobs together, for example, dusting all the skirting boards downstairs, rather than as you do each individual room. Or maybe doing all the toilets in the house in one go, or one at a time when you come to do that particular room.
Work out how often you need to do each job. Is it weekly, monthly or every six months?
Write it all down so you have a note of it somewhere, on your phone or stuck on the front of the fridge.
Stick to the routine as much as possible but if you miss a task, don’t worry. Just catch up when you can and keep on track.
#2 Little and often
If you’ve not done any housework for a month and you have a family, the chances are that it will be quite a big job to get your home sparkling again.
The thought of this daunting task is likely to put you off for yet another day and you’ll be having to spend the next 24 hours with your head down the toilet and a bottle of bathroom cleaner in your hand to make any impact.
There are plenty of other (much more fun) ways to be spending your time!
Instead, what about doing a little bit of housework but more often?
You could set your timer for 15 or 30 minutes per day. Pick a room or a particular task (for example, the windows) and set to it. Keep going until your timer goes off and then stop. Short periods of time seem much more manageable and can be squeezed into our day with little impact so we can spend our time and energy on other things.
By doing a little bit often, the dirt and mess never really gets a chance to build up so the house is always presentable in case an unexpected guest drops by!
#3 Cut out the clutter and have less stuff
It’s pretty obvious that if you’ve got less stuff then you’ve got less to clean, tidy up, move around and get in the way. Table tops, worktops, floors, beds, cupboards and stairs are all just a few of the places where clutter builds up.
They’re so much easier to clean when they’re not cluttered and you don’t have to move loads of stuff out of the way to run a duster or hoover over it.
In the words of Annie Dillard,
‘Whatever takes up your space, takes up your time’.
Do you really love all those ornaments on your shelf or are they there because they’ve just built up over the years? Did you really notice how many you’ve got until you came to dust the shelf but thought better of it because you’d have to move everything?
Think carefully about what you have in your home and whether you love these things enough to want to spend time looking after and cleaning them.
#4 Share it out
If you’re not the only one in the house then why should you be the only one to clean it? Make a list of all the jobs that need doing around the house. Include things like housework, putting away the clean laundry, putting the dirty laundry in the wash, putting the bins out, feeding the dog.
Come up with a rota so that everyone who lives in the house can help to keep it clean.
The kids can get involved if you look at age-appropriate household chores. It teaches them a valuable life skill and helps you out in the process.
#5 Know when enough is enough
Let’s face it, your home is never going to be show-home material. You’ve got a family and a home is for living in.
It will never be perfectly clean but get it to a state where you’re happy with it and it does the job.
Don’t be a perfectionist and walk around 24/7 with a duster and anti-bacterial spray and don’t panic if your child spills their drink or you find crumbs in the sofa. Kids will be kids. Clear it up, explain why they need to be more careful, make some rules if you need to (for example, no drink or food in the living room), and then move on…
Hopefully doing all of this will help make housework easier and quicker so your home runs like a well-oiled machine even when you have loads going on and not much time.
YOUR NEXT STEPS…
Check out some of these posts which build on what we’ve talked about in this post…
- How to declutter your home in 30 days
- Kids and chores – how and why to encourage your kids to help at home
- 10 easy routines to keep the home clean and tidy