What is Speed Cleaning?
Speed cleaning is that crazy last minute thing you do when people are coming over and you haven’t had a change to do real cleaning.
You know, cause you work 50 hours a week (including the commute), you have a family, and they want silly things like food and clean clothes.
So the house is a cluttered mess, the holidays are coming, and so are the people. Relatives, friends, maybe your neighbors. Sometimes they just stop in unannounced.
Did I ever tell you about the time my friend Wendy spontaneously invited me into her home? You can read about it here. I still don’t know how she does it.
How to Speed Clean
Speed cleaning is nothing like real cleaning. It’s designed to make your house look presentable for a little while.
Like a few hours.
You might be able to fool weekend guests if you’re really good. (Add fresh flowers on the nightstand. You can get a cheap bouquet at the grocery store.)
So ideally, this is a group effort. Get as much of the family as you can involved.
Trash bags to pick up trash, laundry baskets for anything else that doesn’t belong.
You’re concentrating on the public rooms: the living and family rooms, dining room, kitchen, and bathroom.
Trash goes in the trash can outside. Any basket or boxes with stuff that doesn’t belong gets put in a room that no one will see: the basement, garage, a bedroom or upstairs closet.
Ideally, dirty dishes go in the dishwasher (ALL of them, pots included) and it gets turned on. If not, put them in something and stash them somewhere. Anywhere that won’t be seen.
Next, dusting and floors.
Do a quick swipe with a microcloth to grab most of the dust, and run the vacuum, Swiffer the floors, whatever. Hit the dirtiest spots with a wet Swiffer.
Spray some cleaner in the bathroom, swish out the toilet, and use the hand towel to wipe the sink and mirror. Hang a fresh towel.
Wipe down the surfaces in the kitchen.
Set the Scene
Light some candles, turn on one of those essential oil diffusers if you have one or use a wax tart melter (my favorite – I think Yankee Candle makes them and you can get them at Walmart too) to add some fragrance. A nice fragrance in a home goes a long way.
Maybe turn on some soft music.
Make a pot of coffee or tea, add some cookies on a pretty plate if you have them, and above all, relax!
Ultimately, it’s you they came to see, so relax and enjoy the company.
Once they’re gone, you’ve got a head start on some real cleaning!
And to help you out, I’ve created a handy checklist just for you! Print it out anytime you need it.