Dust ceiling fans and surfaces: During the year, your ceiling fans collect lots of dust. After a while, this dust starts to circulate throughout your home, accumulating on tables, chairs, and pretty much everywhere. Cleaning your fan blades regularly will slow down dust build up and may actually improve the quality of the air you breath.
Time Estimate: 5 minutes per fan.
Wipe your windows: Clean off those fingerprints, smudges, and splatters that make your windows look sloppy. When you’re done, you might be surprised at how much more natural light comes into your home, which could boost your vitamin D levels and improve your mood. For streak-free windows, invest in an inexpensive squeegee and wipe off the cleaning solution in one continuous motion from top to bottom.
Time Estimate: 1-3 minutes per window.
Deep-clean the carpet: Regular vacuuming is great, but every once in a while you need to bring out the big guns. Your local hardware store should be able to rent you a heavy-duty steam cleaner that you can use to get out those stubborn stains. This is more affordable than hiring professional carpet cleaners.
Time Estimate: 30-45 minutes depending on the size of your living room. Don’t forget to allow time for drying.
Trash old newspapers and mags: Do you really need last summer’s issue of Taxidermy Digest or the local newspaper from six months ago? Of course not. Gather up those out of date periodicals and put them in your recycling bin.
Time Estimate: 5-10 minutes.
Donate old clothes: We all have clothing we don’t wear. Whether it doesn’t fit or it’s simply not your style, these garments are taking up valuable closet space that you could probably put to much better use. Go through your closet and pull out anything you haven’t worn in the last year. Now, take this stuff to your local donation center and help those in need.
Time Estimate: 15-30 minutes.
Launder sheets, blankets, and pillow cases: Regularly washing your bedroom linens isn’t just good for hygiene, it can also be good for your allergies. Sheets and pillows collect allergens and can irritate your sinuses.
Time Estimate: 60-90 minutes depending on your washer/dryer.
Declutter your dresser: Here’s an easy one. Go through the items on your dresser and determine what needs stay and what needs to go. Old receipts, ticket stubs, loose change… Letting clutter overwhelm your bedroom can increase your anxiety and reduce the quality of your sleep.
Time Estimate: 5-10 minutes tops.
Sweep or vacuum under the bed: If your bed sits up off the floor, get under there and sweep out the dust and debris. If you don’t have enough room for your vacuum, tip the mattress and box springs on their side so you have more space to work.
Time Estimate: 5-10 minutes.
Scrub floors and counters: Your kitchen is where you prepare your meals, so it’s important to keep all surfaces clean and sanitary. That caked-on pasta sauce? It has to go. Since some of this crud can be difficult to remove once it hardens, give your cleaning solution time to set after you spray it on.
Time Estimate: 30-45 minutes.
Clear out your fridge: If you have any scary science experiments lurking in the recesses of your refrigerator, now is a great time to dispose of them. It’s also a good time to check your expiration labels and get rid of anything past its prime. Be brave!
Time Estimate: 10-15 minutes.
Organize cupboards and cabinets: Overflowing pots and pans, mis-matched Tupperware and lids, seldom-used kitchen gadgets… if finding the cookware you need is frustrating or downright impossible, it’s time for an intervention! And, we promise it will be well worth your time. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, try this. Focus on one cabinet at a time, and spread this task out over several days.
Time Estimate: 5-10 minutes per cupboard.
Restore your oven and microwave: We’re all guilty of exploding something in the microwave, boiling over a pot of pasta, or dripping melted cheese onto the oven floor. Now is the time to make up for those mistakes! To loosen up that hardened crud in your microwave, try zapping a bowl of water first. The steam should make clean-up easier. And, when wiping your stove top, be very careful not to spray your burners with cleaning solution.
Time Estimate: 30 minutes.