This is a list of the 23 secrets to a clean house every homemaker should know. These aren’t just the basic tips we all know; these are the actual secrets that people who have a clean house don’t usually share.
If you find keeping your home clean and tidy every day a bit overwhelming, and frankly unrealistic, then read these tips for keeping a clean home from an obsessive clean freak!
Related: 63 Inspiring Homemaking Quotes
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23 Secrets to A Clean House
1. Have a schedule & be stubborn enough to stick to it
Stubborn, disciplined, anal… whatever you want to call it – the secret to a clean house is to make a cleaning schedule and stick to it!
I know that if I fall behind, the house becomes a mess faster than I can blink, and my longer to-do list overwhelms me. To prevent this, I do whatever I can to stick to my cleaning schedule.
Related: Modern Homemaking Schedules
2. Only keep as much as you’re willing to clean
This is where you have to get real honest with yourself and ask yourself if you’re willing to clean and manage all the things you have in your home. If not, it’s time to declutter.
The secret to keeping a clean home is to only keep as much as you’re willing to clean and declutter the rest. Remember that every new thing (big or small) that you bring into your home is something you’ll have to clean and manage.
Related: Decluttering Tips for Hoarders
3. Everything has a home
Another secret to keeping a clean home, always, is making sure that everything you own has a home, no matter how small the item.
Set yourself up for success by assigning a ‘spot’ for everything in your house – make sure the ‘spot’ doesn’t make your space look cluttered.
4. Put the house to sleep
People who keep a clean home get in the habit of putting their house to sleep before they put themselves to sleep. When you wake up in the morning, you’re going to feel so refreshed and proud to see your beautifully clean house.
The way you put your house to sleep is by making sure everything is in its ‘home’ (see tip 3), your chores for the day are done (see tip 1) and the basics are done like laundry, dishes, etc.
5. Utilize habit stacking
Habit stacking is when you create new habits by riding on the tail of current habits that are already a part of your routine. For example, you already have a habit of going to bed, so let that habit remind you to put the house to sleep (see tip 4) before you put yourself to bed.
The secret to keeping a clean house is to recognize when something isn’t working and to use habit stacking to correct the problem.
6. Outsource when possible
Whether it’s hiring your niece who wants to make some extra cash or hiring a cleaning service, outsource as much as you’re able.
People who keep clean homes have a little secret – they don’t do it all themselves! I’d say most people have some help whether it’s a super helpful spouse, their children, or a service they’ve hired.
7. Involve your children
Similar to tip 8 above, a secret to keeping a clean home is to involve your children. Not only are you teaching them valuable life skills, but you’re getting the help you need to keep your house in order.
Cleaning can be another fun activity for children as well as a great learning experience. Teamwork is important when it comes to keeping a clean home.
8. Make it fun
To make less enjoyable tasks more fun, reward yourself with something you like so you’re more motivated. For example, if you only listen to your favorite podcast while folding laundry, you’ll be more excited to fold the laundry.
The secret to keeping a clean house is to reward yourself when doing unenjoyable tasks. This is especially important when soliciting the help of your children (see tip 7 above).
9. Purchase attractive things
This might be one of the biggest secrets to a clean house that nobody will ever admit. If everything you have looks pretty, then when your house is a mess it won’t look so bad because the mess will be things that look gorgeous!
10. Know your prime movers
Prime movers are the 1 or 2 things that if only those things have been completed, then you feel like you have a clean house. For example, my prime movers are swept floors and clean countertops.
People who have clean homes prioritize certain things when the going gets tough.
11. Clean more often in less time
The secret to keeping a clean house is to clean more often so that you don’t have to do as much deep cleaning.
It’s much easier to commit to cleaning for 20 minutes per day than it is to have to shell out 2-hour blocks of time (especially with children).
12. Use good products
Using harsh chemicals is not only bad for your home and health, but they aren’t enjoyable to use. Be sure to use non-toxic cleaners in your home. In addition to the cleaning agents you use, make the cleaning appliances you use ones that are easy to handle.
For example, if you have an ancient vacuum cleaner that’s super bulky and heavy, you probably won’t use it as often as a nice lightweight vacuum (especially if you’re wrangling toddlers while vacuuming!).
Additionally, having quality products, like good microfiber towels, will get the job done much more efficiently than using cheap products.
Related: Sneaky toxic products in your home
13. Know that you have a finite amount of discipline
People who keep clean homes understand that they have a finite amount of discipline and they use this to their advantage. For example, if you’re super disciplined in your daily cleaning routine, you might need to loosen up the reigns on your deep cleaning routine (and vice versa).
Dr. Chloe Carmichael mentioned this in a recent podcast I listened to and I realized that this is what I do in terms of cleaning my house!
14. Shift your mindset
The secret to keeping a clean home is to think about your homemaking chores as a blessing rather than a burden. Rather than thinking of the dishes as a problem, be grateful you have people to cook and clean for.
Make the decision right now that laundry just won’t be a problem anymore and make a plan to make that reality. For example, decide that you’re going to joyfully do one load of laundry a day and be happy you have people to do laundry for.
15. What can you do now that will make future you happy?
If you can be in this mindset all day and you’ll actually have a restful evening rather than playing catch up. Think to yourself often, what can I do right now with my extra 3 minutes that will make future me happy?
Perhaps it’s meal planning, or maybe it’s cleaning the splatters in the microwave as soon as it happens versus waiting until they’re dried and crusted on.
Related: How to create a rotating meal plan
16. Have secret hiding places
Most people won’t tell you this, but the secret to a clean house is to have secret hiding places for your clutter.
Do you know the Monica from Friends closet? Have one of those! But maybe not as bad… In any case, have a space that’s out of the main living areas that can be the catch-all for those crazy days. Then put it on your cleaning schedule to tidy that space up at the end of each day or week.
17. Take the friction out of cleaning
Friction is resistance from one thing to another. When it comes to keeping a clean home, friction could be a matter of needing to clean the upstairs bathroom, but all your cleaning supplies are downstairs.
Practical tips for taking the friction out of cleaning:
- Keep a basket of all the cleaning supplies in each bathroom. Yes, you’ll have to buy more products, but it’ll take you longer to use them up!
- Store a vacuum or broom and dustpan on each level of your home. This takes the friction out of keeping the floors clean on every level of your home.
- Place shower cleaner and a scrubber in the showers. You shower at least several times a week, if the cleaner is already in there, it takes an extra 30 seconds to give the tub a scrub down.
- Make sure you have your gloves always ready. A trick I learned from my mother-in-law is to always keep gloves on hand! I keep a box of vinyl gloves handy, as they can be useful for various cleaning tasks, such as handling chemicals, cleaning bathrooms, or dealing with messier spills and stains.
Related: Berkey vs Brita Water Filters
18. Be hospitable
Most people won’t tell you this, but sometimes the only time people clean their homes is when they have people coming over. This is actually a great motivator if you’re this way too!
Motivate yourself to keep a clean home by hosting people in your home more often so it gives you that extra reason to clean.
19. One load of laundry every day
The best secret to staying caught up on laundry is to do one load of laundry every single day. One load per day is easy and adds up to 7 loads of laundry a week! Even on the days where it seems like you don’t have much laundry, gather up all the blankets, or rugs and wash those!
By doing one load of laundry every day, you’ll stay caught up on laundry and it’ll never be a problem.
20. One load of dishes every day
This is the same concept as the one load of laundry every day, but using dishes instead. If you get in the habit of doing one load of dishes every day, you’ll never have dishes piling up!
Tips for doing daily dishes:
- Set the delay-timer on your dishwasher to run when you go to bed. That way you can make sure all the dishes from the day get loaded into the dishwasher so you can start fresh each morning.
- Utilize “light-load” setting. Even if you don’t have many dishes in your dishwasher, still run it and just set the dishwasher to “light-load” or “top rack only.”
21. Cleaning challenge
If you’re competitive like me, you’ll love this secret for keeping a clean house! I like to pick a task (or a room, or closet, etc.), set a 15- 30 minute timer, and see how much I can tackle before the timer goes off.
This is a fun cleaning challenge that will really surprise you when you see how much you can get done in 15-30 minutes!
22. Understand and respect the season you’re in
One of the top secrets to a clean home is to understand the season you’re in and to rotate which balls you drop. You cant juggle all the balls forever, so you’ll need to rotate which balls you drop.
For example, if you’re in a difficult season of motherhood, maybe cleaning your home isn’t on the top of your list and you just need to focus on parenting and getting food on the table. This is totally OK for a season!
23. Take pride in your home
Regardless of where you’re at and if you’re currently living in the home of your dreams, or a pitstop along the way, the secret to a clean home is to take pride in what you have. If you take pride in your home, you’ll be more likely to clean it.
Whether it’s learning how to make homemade bread so your house is filled with a fresh-baked aroma, or learning how to decorate your home on a budget… do something that makes you proud of your home.
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- Berkey water filter (we use the Royal because we drink an insane amount of water!)