The core of any cleaning plan are the lists of tasks that you carry out to maintain your home. I used to make a new list each and every day of the tasks I wanted to get done that day but one morning I sat and just glanced at the previous days' lists and realized something. They were all practically the same. And I'm sure it's that way with many of you too. So, let's talk about making lists that we don't have to write them up everyday, ones that we can put in our binders and just open up the page for the day and get to work, alright?
First and foremost, keep in mind that each of you has a different home and a specific level of clean that you like to maintain. You will also have varied amounts of time to do any cleaning so try to remember yourself in all these lists. It's fantastic to have a nice long list, but very frustrating if you can never accomplish it all in the time you have each day.
Step 1: Create a Master Task List
Before you can decide when to clean you must first know what to clean, and how often. Thus before you can create a cleaning schedule that works for your life and your schedule, you need to assess your own home and cleaning needs. A cleaning schedule for a childless couple living in a 1-bedroom apartment will look very different from a cleaning schedule for a homeschooling mom of five living in a 4-bedroom house!
So take some time and figure out what tasks you do or would like to have done on a very regular basis to keep your home clean. Whether they are everyday, every week or less frequent, just make the list now and you can spread them out and sort the lists out later.
Step 2: Pick the Best Plan for YOU
The next thing you need to do is figure out what sort of cleaning plan will work best for your life and your schedule. Are you the kind of person who wants to do a little every day, or would you rather tackle it all at once so that you don’t have to think about it for the rest of the week. Do you work full-time or are you home during the day? Do you have young children at home or are your kids old enough to help shoulder some of the responsibility?
There is no one “right way” to keep house, and there is no universal cleaning schedule that will fit every household’s needs. Ultimately you have to take the time to determine what sort of schedule will be both realistic and doable for your own needs. While you should take the time to consider all the following ideas, please don’t think that you need to DO all of them. Instead, pick the ONE plan that seems like it will be the best fit and try it out for a while. If you hate it, you can always try something else!
I have things I do everyday. I always do the dishes and pick up the living room. I always have "make the bed" on the list too, but I've been slacking lately on that one. The goal with your daily chores is to not overwhelm you. After all, you also will have chores based on what day of the week it is and perhaps some of the tasks from other lists as well. So, make your daily chores the everyday things - that to do list you make every morning usually has a few things that go on there each time. That's your daily list.
If you are making a Home Management Binder (and you should!) you can now make a more permanent list that you just have the page open to and check things off as you go. Dress it up or use a premade printable that you can find online. There are hundreds if not thousands to choose from.
Daily cleaning is also good for sprinters; people who like to do a quick run through of the house every single day. You may even set a timer and then do as much as you can in that time frame and then call it a day.
The Weekly list is in fact, another "daily" list, but the chores here are only done once a week on whatever day you select. You may also want to place things that are done a couple of times a week on this list too. For me, the tasks on this list are things like changing the sheets, going to the bank or grocery shopping.
Or if you are a person who prefers or only has time once a week to get the cleaning done, you're to do list for that one weekly session will be a lot more time-consuming than mine. Perhaps you like to pick just one day of the week to get the bulk of your cleaning done, on a day off from work perhaps, so doing a set list of chores on a daily basis doesn't make much sense.
Monthly items are going to be fewer but usually require some planning. Things like wiping out the inside of cabinets, vacuuming out the closets, removing foods from the fridge or freezer that are past their prime, dusting ceiling fans or sweeping the front porch are only every once in a while tasks that you can put on a monthly list. I commonly like to pick a time frame, say 15 minutes and add it to my weekly list. I'll choose to do 15 minutes of tasks from my monthly list once a week. That way I know they are still getting done infrequently and I don't feel like I'm constantly cleaning.
Finally seasonal cleaning, otherwise known as the big Spring Clean for most people. There are things that you could put on that list for what would be a once a year or once every season list. For example, how frequently does the lawnmower or snow blower need maintenance? Twice a year, right? Once before the season and once before you store it away. How often do you clean the garage? Sharpen the hedge trimmers? Change the furnace filter? These are the types of things for that list.
Seasonal Cleaning Printables for You!
More Free Downloads!
kallista has worked hard to make sets of cleaning lists that you can download and customize for your own home. Feel free to use them directly or to help you make your own!
Although it might seem overwhelming at first, creating a cleaning schedule that works for your own home and family life can be incredibly liberating. Suddenly instead of a big daunting mess in front of you, there is a workable plan to take care of it. What are you waiting for?