Company can drop by unexpectedly. Instead of having to say “Excuse the Mess”, get into the habit of doing these 5 daily cleaning tips and your house will always be clean and company ready.
Keep in mind…. These aren’t 5 cleaning tips to make your house look perfect, like the model home you saw the other week. And these aren’t 5 cleaning tips to finally please your over-critical Mother-in-Law.
These are simple, easy to follow tips to make sure your house is clean enough for the occasional visitor you weren’t expecting.
Clean the Kitchen Sink
The kitchen sink is like a gateway drug to a clean (or dirty) kitchen. It’s far too easy to rest dirty dinner dishes in the kitchen sink after dinner. And then the coffee mug the next morning. And then another dish. And then another.
Before you know it, the kitchen sink is overflowing and there are dishes piled on the kitchen counters as well. Every time you look at it, you judge yourself for being a failure at keeping a clean house. Nobody wants that.
However, if you tackle the kitchen sink on a daily basis, you’ll find yourself – almost like some kind of crazy house-cleaning magic – wiping down the kitchen counters when you’re done. You might even sweep the kitchen floor without planning on doing so.
In the end, before you even realize what’s happening, the entire kitchen is clean and company ready.
And it all started with the simple chore of cleaning the kitchen sink.
Clear the Coffee Table
You’re typical visitor will spend time in up to 4 places in your home. The front entrance, the kitchen, the living room, and the bathroom.
Anything beyond that and they’re being too snoopy and you probably shouldn’t be friends anyway.
To keep your living room looking presentable and company ready, clear dishes, magazines, leftovers, pizza boxes, etc. off the top of the coffee table and put them where they belong (but don’t just put the dishes in the kitchen sink if you’ve already completed To Do #1).
If you have mail that you need to go through later, just pile it neatly in one corner.
Nobody expects you to be perfect (or at least, one would hope nobody would expect that).
It’s ok to have a few things on the coffee table, just don’t let it get out of hand.
Organize the Shoes & Coats
The front entrance makes the critical first impression to unexpected guests. Keep the shoes in and orderly manner and hang coats where they belong.
Nobody expects you to have the shoes arranged by color, season, size, or style… but it’s good if people can walk into your home without needing to avoid the tripping minefield of 17 random pairs of shoes.
And you don’t want for or five coats piled in the corner of the foyer, especially if one of those coats actually belongs to the friend who just unexpectedly dropped by.
Once the shoes and coats are put away, stand by the front door and look around you. The rooms (and the mess) you see is the same as the rooms and the mess your unexpected visitor will see.
Use that scope of vision to remove any particularly unsightly items that may be in view.
As a one-time project, a closet organizer would be a handy tool to help you tackle this daily cleaning ritual more easily.
Wipe Down the Bathroom
One area that I can be particular – and judgmental – about is bathroom hygiene. I like a bathroom that is clean, fresh, and lot littered with discarded socks and underwear. But maybe that’s just me.
To keep your bathroom looking presentable, keep a bottle of spray cleaner and some cloths or paper towels handy and give everything a quick wipe-down, including the mirror, the sink, and the toilet.
And keep a toilet brush beside the toilet (you can find some attractive looking ones on Amazon) to keep the toilet bowl clean and clear. Few things are less unsightly than a darkly stained toilet bowl. And any time I see blue toilet water, I just KNOW they are hiding some kind of yucky beneath the deep blue.
Put 3 Things Away
And when stuff happens, stuff usually ends up being left scattered around the house.
Get into the habit of picking up and putting away 3 things every day. Sometimes this will be easy, because you know exactly where it should go. Sometimes, this will require finding a place to store something that has been chilling in the corner of the living room for 3 1/2 years.
Over time, you’ll find that there’s less and less random crap hanging around your house. And I’m not talking about your teenager’s friends.
If you are already overwhelmed with clutter, you might want to start with our Decluttering Tips & Advice post. You need to learn to walk before you can run.
Some Extra Credit Homework
If you – totally unlike me – are a home cleanliness overachiever, here are a few other daily tasks you can add to your to-do list.
- Make The Beds: It only takes a minute or two (per bed) but it can set a tone of cleanliness for the entire day. And there is something nice about crawling into a made bed at the end of a long day.
- Give it a Sweep: A quick once over with a broom can remove unsightly crumbs or other items that may have fallen to the floor. You could also get a dog to clean up after your spills, but that just means you need to clean up dog hair.
- Clear the Appliances: Take a damp cloth and give the outside of the appliances a quick wipe down to remove fingerprints and food spills. You can leave the inside of the appliances to another day when you have more time and MUCH more energy. But as long as your guests don’t actually open the fridge, they’ll look pretty clean.
And that extra homework (pun intended) can get the overachiever even further down the cleanliness path.
But, let’s be honest. If you – totally unlike me – were a home cleanliness overachiever, you probably wouldn’t be reading this post.
And remember, it doesn’t have to be perfect!
Although we all like to avoid that embarrassing “Excuse the mess” moment, you don’t need to stress out about making everything perfect for the occasional surprise visitor.
After all, a house needs to be lived in for it to become a home.
Some wise words, to help put your mind at ease….