Winter’s over and Spring is finally here! It’s time to dust off those jandals, dig out that bikini from the back of the wardrobe, and most importantly get started on the long-awaited big Spring Clean! There is something therapeutic about a Spring Clean - ridding your house of all that damp and cold, and waving goodbye to those winter blues. In saying that, it can be a BIG job, especially for those of you with little families!
We’ve got some hot tips to make it more achievable!
First off, make a plan
A plan will help keep you motivated, and hold you accountable. Set aside a couple of days, or perhaps a few hours each day over the course of a week. Start by watching an episode of Marie Kondo… motivated yet? Thought so! Identify a starting point and tackle it room by room, identifying problem areas and allocating time to each. Kitchen shelves cluttered? Pull everything out and start from scratch! Lounge floors dirty? Grab a Rug Doctor from your local supermarket to lift those stains right out! Be thorough and methodical; you only do this once every 365 days (if that - let’s be honest!), you may as well do it properly!
Next up, find your playlist
No one ever said cleaning has to be boring so get your dancing shoes on! Music is a proven mood booster, and if you’re having fun, you’re more likely to keep up the good work! Fancy a bit of ‘Dancing Queen’? Or perhaps ACDC is more your thing? Regardless of your taste, find your perfect 2019 Spring Clean playlist on Spotify and GET CLEANING!
Start big with the biggest room
Get started on your biggest rooms first, such as the kitchen or lounge. Getting these knocked out of the way early will leave you feeling positive and accomplished, not to mention the compliments you’ll get from the family will keep you motivated and ready to tackle the rest of the house.
Is it bringing you joy? If not - get rid of it
There are plenty of charities in New Zealand that can put your hand-me-downs to use, from kitchen appliances right through to clothing. If you’re the sentimental type, here’s an idea: In every room start by making three piles - a ‘keep’ pile’, a ‘maybe’ pile, and a ‘throw out’ pile. Pop the ‘maybe’ pile into a bag out of the way for a couple of weeks, if you don’t miss it - it’s time to let it go!
Use household materials
Cleaning on a budget? Many household items can be repurposed as cleaning agents. Lemon and baking soda are great on grease around the kitchen, while white vinegar is great at removing bathroom scum. Old (clean) socks make excellent dusting mitts or cleaning rags, whilst newspaper is perfect to clean windows with, and by wrapping a towel around your broom head you’ve got the perfect duster to get all those hard-to-reach spots!
Sweat the small stuff
The number one rule real estate agents go by in order to make a house more sell-able is to REDUCE CLUTTER. Less clutter gives the illusion of cleanliness and space. Sure, Spring Cleaning is about cleaning, but making a conscious effort to cut back on clutter not only makes the house look a lot tidier, it’s super easy to maintain! Not to mention - out with the old, in with the new, anyone? The perfect excuse to go on a shopping spree!
Involve the family
Giving the kids control over their own cleaning means avoiding that breakdown as you attempt to throw out the toy they haven’t touched in 3 years. Make it into a game! Or add some incentives (preferably food-related) and turn it into a competition - who can get rid of the most? The kids will be having fun in no time! PLUS you’ll have extra helpers - and we all know that age old saying about many hands and light work.
Use a step-counter
Cleaning is a GREAT workout! Studies have shown you can burn up to 150 calories by doing just 30 minutes of cleaning! Get hyped - you can skip the gym today!
Manage your expectations
It’s easy to get disheartened. Spring cleaning can feel like a BIG job, and mess-wise, it generally gets worse before it gets better. STAY POSITIVE - it’s all part of the process! Nothing good ever came easy, and think of how good you’ll feel once it’s done and dusted!
And most importantly, reward yourself! Spring cleaning is a big task - set aside some time for that glass of wine afterwards. Invite people around to admire your newly cleaned home! They may not notice the hours of hard work you’ve put into cleaning out that oven, but they WILL notice the fresh, clean feel of your home.
For more ideas on Spring Cleaning and how to keep your home looking its best, check out our Home Maintenance Guide - Seasonal Checklist.