March 10, 2022
Ultimate House Cleaning Checklist: This Is How To Clean Your Home
Ah, our homes. These sacred spaces are our sanctuaries, our shelter from the world around us, but also a haven for dirt and dust.
Let’s be honest; when was the last time you cleaned your dishwasher or baseboards?
The average homeowner probably never took a home ec class on “How to Clean Your Home 101.” Most of us live by a simple rule: if it looks dirty, clean it. And, hopefully, the dust and specs of dirt you swipe off the table will end up in the trash.
But your home deserves more than a hurried glance for grime. More importantly, you deserve to know how to clean your home in a way that refreshes your spirit and encourages good health.
Now comes the time to share our secrets and lay out the basics. We are cleaning experts, after all.
Bookmark this page to reference again when you’re ready to pick up a broom and get to work.
Before we break down how to clean specific rooms and areas of your house, it seems only natural to start from floor to ceiling. Yes, your ceilings (and even walls and windows) need a good dusting every now and then.
Clean your ceilings before the floor, as dust may fall and settle. You may want to target ceiling fans, ceiling lights, ceiling trim, or cobweb-laden corners.
Add a duster with an extension pole to your cleaning toolbox. Dusters like this one on Amazon can reach tall ceilings and wrap over fan blades. A vacuum with a long extension rod may even do the trick if your roof is within reach.
Frequently cleaning your floors will make your life easier- and make a world of difference in the enjoyment you feel walking from room to room.
Always start by dry sweeping with a broom or vacuum to pick up loose particles before wet mopping. Go from one corner of the room to the next, making steady swoops in a consistent pattern. Mentally separate your floors into “blocks” and thoroughly sweep one block before moving to the next.
If you have regular tile floors, those should be easiest to clean, as they can handle wet mopping and most cleaning chemicals.
Window blinds are notorious for attracting dust. With the slats closed, take a duster or microfiber cloth and start at the top, moving left to the right down the blinds. Pull the string and flip the slats the opposite way and repeat.
A Swiffer duster is an effective and inexpensive cleaning tool that is great on windows and other spaces that don’t require a long reach.
For the windowpanes, use a small amount of streak-free glass cleaner to wipe both sides of the pane with a paper towel. Using less cleaner helps prevent streaking.
If you have drapery, it won’t hurt to give it a wash or send it to the dry cleaners. Drapery traps dust just as blinds do.
Use this house cleaning checklist to go room by room and reinvigorate your living space. We recommend starting from the front of your house and moving backward, or vice versa. The point is to prevent tracking dirt from one uncleaned area to a space you just scrubbed down.
Keep in mind your intent for cleaning each room: if you simply want to spruce up the room or do a deep clean. Deep cleans take longer but leave you with a more thoroughly refreshed space and a longer break before your next clean.
The kitchen is one of those rooms that get the most use and can accumulate the most grime from unwashed dishes and bacteria spread from food. Add these items to your kitchen cleaning list.
P.S. Learn how to get rid of gnats if you’ve seen a few flying around your kitchen.
Don’t forget to clean the face of your appliances as well. Wipe down the handles on your fridge, wipe down the stovetop, and wipe high-touch spots on your appliances.
Think about all of your appliances, such as a microwave or coffee maker, that get used daily. Over time, you’d be surprised at the buildup of grime an appliance can accumulate. Dump out your toaster, clean your oven’s interior, and wipe out the shelving in your fridge.
Cleaning kitchen cabinets is a must-do at least once or twice a year. Cabinets are often neglected because they are not high-touch, exposed spaces in the kitchen. But you should still clean the handles and the inside of the cabinets where food may have fallen.
Do not clean your dishwasher with bleach. You can purchase dishwasher cleaner pods to remove trapped particles and mineral buildup. Toss the pod in the dishwasher by itself (no dishes or detergent) and run a cycle.
If you don’t have dishwasher cleaner, grab a bowl, fill it with one cup of distilled white vinegar, and place it on the top rack. Run a normal hot cycle without any other dishes or detergent.
Don’t forget to clean the top of your fridge, especially if you set things up there. Grab a wipe or microfiber cloth and give it a good dusting, cleaning around any items.
Once you’ve dusted, cleaned your appliances, and scrubbed down the room from ceiling to counters, it’s time to clean the actual countertops. Countertops are high-touch spaces that harbor a swarm of bacteria in the kitchen. From food prep to spills, kitchen counters experience it all.
Move any clutter off your counters, making room to wipe the entire surface. Dislodge any crumbs caught between the oven and counter, brushing them into the trash or floor to sweep up at the end.
Rinse out your sink first. Then, use a scrubbing cleanser and put in some elbow grease with a sponge or brush. Get in the nooks and crannies around the drain to dislodge any built-up sludge or soap scum. Wipe down the faucet and knobs, and finish by cleaning any sponge or soap holders. Rinse it all down once done.
It might be a good idea to clean copper cookware or fixtures in your kitchen if that copper shine looks dull and dingy.
Like the kitchen, the living room is another central hub of the home. It’s where we spend countless hours of our time with friends and family, making it a constantly busy space. Keep it clean by targeting a few key areas during your weekly cleanup routine.
Add straightening up to your daily living room cleaning checklist. Put away toys, blankets, books, and anything that is not being used at the end of the day. Think of this as resetting your living room back to its natural state. This might go without saying but pick up trash and hide clutter too. You may want to invest in a storage ottoman or decorate crate that doubles as a way to quickly tuck away items.
Grab a clean microfiber cloth, dampen it, and get to dusting. You can also grab a feather duster too, whatever works. Lightly dust from top to bottom, starting with high shelving and working your way to lampshades, lamps, books, and decorative items. Dust those actual items- not just around them- to eliminate dust completely.
Polish all glass surfaces with a streak-free glass cleaner and a paper towel or microfiber cloth. Think beyond windows to glass tables, glass décor, and picture frames.
Just as you polish glass, polish any wooden furniture with wood polish. Using a wood polish will seal the wood, protecting it from damage and giving it a shine that looks new.
When all is said and done, end your living room cleaning session by vacuuming the floor. With the right vacuum cleaner attachment, you can also clean furniture upholstery to get crumbs or lost items out of the couch or between seat cushions.
Just thinking about cleaning the bathroom leaves some people filled with disgust and dread. No one loves tackling the toilet, and cleaning mold or soap scum poses a challenge. Bathrooms are much easier to keep clean when they are scrubbed down regularly. Whatever your bathroom situation at home, add these tasks to your cleaning checklist.
Take any dirty towels straight to the laundry, and remove any bathmats or rugs from the floor. Give them a wash (if you can) and only put them back in the bathroom at the end. Consider throwing a few dryer sheets in the dryer with your towels to remove any static cling.
Dust your vanity lighting. You may be surprised at how much dust has accumulated on your light fixtures and bulbs. It’s wise to move any items off of your vanity first to prevent dust from falling on them. Wipe down your vanity countertop with a wipe, and also wipe each item before you place it back on the counter.
Soap scum loves a bathtub and shower. Use a safe bathtub cleaner and apply it to the walls and bottom of your shower or tub. Let it sit, and then rinse it off with clean water. Don’t overlook soap dishes and shower organizers since they accumulate soap scum too. We go in-depth about how to clean a bathtub in this article.
Work your way from the least dirty to the dirtiest part of the toilet. Wipe down the tank, lever, top of the lid, and space between the tank and lid. Once the outside is finished, wipe the inside of the lid and the top and bottom of the seat. Don’t forget to lift the lid and wipe the toilet rim. Finally, use a toilet cleaner to clean the bowl, scrubbing it with a toilet brush.
Since your bedroom is a personal, intimate space used only by you, it will not require much cleaning. You may even find your bedroom in need of organization the most, so go ahead and put away that pile of laundry before you tackle this bedroom cleaning checklist.
Is your closet spilling out into the room? Consider adding an organizer to your wardrobe, bins, or creating organization where it lacks. Put away dirty and clean clothes, and organize any items that are hanging over the door or on the knobs.
Even if you shower every night and keep food out of the bed, your sheets need to be washed regularly since they accumulate sweat and skin cells. Strip your bed and wash the sheets, comforter, and pillowcases. You may have to look up how to wash pillows according to the type of pillow you have. If the pillow is non-washable, spray it with a disinfectant instead.
The majority of bedroom cleanup involves minimizing and organizing surface clutter. Dust any decorations, picture frames, lamps, etc. Put away any items that aren’t in their rightful spot. We love using jewelry trays and decorative boxes to keep small items and knick-knacks organized.
Thirsty for more house cleaning tips? Read our article on easy chores to keep a tidy home.
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