If you have been in the cleaning business as long as I have, you would know that cleaning a house (the right way) is much less expensive than, let’s say going out to eat. In fact, with a few helpful tips and tricks you can achieve excellent (professional-grade) results without spending so much as a rusty penny – and the best part is you can do this every single day, if you wanted to. Of course like with most things, there are two major schools of thought regarding the cleaning process involved. The first school of thought claims that it is better if you just did everything all at once! The second one being a methodical and rational organization of the cleaning priorities: like doing a little bit of dusting every now and again so you don’t have to do it all at once later; choosing a specific room and target only that particular area and nothing else. Of course there are some advantages and some disadvantages to both these options, but being a professional cleaner and all, I couldn’t escape doing all the work all at once. Needless to say it was a nightmare. That is why I am going to pay special attention to Method 2, rather than my own method – trust me, it is a lot easier.
Writing this subheading made me remember why I discarded my cleaning career and decided to become a writer. It is crazy how much stuff you can clean in under an hour. Honestly, before I start explaining, please consider using the second method for cleaning and not this one. Anyway I am sure you can make your own mind, so keep reading and when you are done, you would have an idea of what is easy and what is hard.
The most important thing to remember about the ‘no time wasted technique’, is that you really cannot afford to waste any time! At all!So this is how it goes…. Before we can start the actual cleaning process, we must first formulate our strategy. Rooms with high ‘risk of contamination’, those are usually: the bathroom, the kitchen and the living room. Then there is the guest room, the dining room, the bedrooms and closets, basements, attics etc. A quick inspection always clears everything up. Remember, if you are actually benefiting your endeavor, it is not wasting time. After the run, it is time to coordinate the various procedures in accordance to some very simple pyramid. At the bottom there are the floors, the carpets, tiles etc. Next is anything that actually raises above the ground. And so on and so forth until we reach the ceiling (the Top of the pyramid). When we clean we go in this order: ceiling>windows>cupboards/racks>surfaces>appliances>clutter>floors. This is very important, because if we were to start from the bottom, all the nasty contaminants that are elevated above the ground, will inevitably find their way back down – it is simply the law of gravity, so there nothing that can be done about it. Except of course playing it smart and starting from the very top, so everything that falls down, doesn’t fall on already cleaned ground.
Now here is where it gets interesting. Once the house has been inspected, the cleaning process can finally begin! And because everything must be done in a couple of hours, there isn’t really enough time to think everything through. That is why it is a good idea to use the same tools and detergents on multiple assignments; for example if I am using a broom/stick to clear cob webs off corners, I would make sure to use the same broom/stick on all the other rooms as well! This way you save time and effort cleaning the instrument. Also, if you can, try to do two things at once. For example, whenever I am dusting, and there isn’t really that much dust to go around, I pick up clutter, such as clothes, clothes hangers, magazines, pencils etc. Another good trick to remember, is to introduce detergents to troublesome areas as soon as you see that the contamination levels had reached the point of no return. That is why a careful scouting beforehand is crucial if not mandatory, so keep an eye out for anything that might need special treatment.
Now that we have discussed the first method for cleaning a house, let us move on to the more relaxed, more care-free alternative. Of course as the subheading above suggests we are looking at a whole week worth of work. But freight not, for this method will actually seem about 10 times easier than doing it in a day. What do we need to know:
First of all we still need to scout the area to see what we are dealing with, but this time we will be dedicating a lot more effort and precision in assessing our predicament. But if you miss something it is more than okay, for we still have a whole week a head of us. Now, as far as dividing up the work goes; try to focus on single rooms at a time, rather than the Pyramid model. Of course you should always follow the Pyramid model, but the idea here is to do one room, and when that is done move on to the next. Again, the toughest rooms to clean will be the kitchen, the bathroom and the living room. Don’t take more than a day to clean a single room, but don’t try to do two rooms either at the same time either! Remember, unlike a working professional you have no deadlines to meet, not customers to please and no other job to go to. It is just you and your home. The more effort you put into this, the more fatigued and unmotivated you will become as time progresses. Of course the opposite is true as well. The less effort you put at the beginning, the more motivation you will have at the end. It is best to start with the most contaminated areas before moving to something easier. I personally like to do the kitchen first (just so I know all the hard work is far behind me), then move on to the living room and finally the bathrooms. Of course if you will be using the kitchen a lot, it is best to save it for last. The last thing you want is to have 4 greasy burners, in an otherwise spotless house.
And one last tip before I leave you to your cleaning – always take care of contaminations as soon as they appear! Knocked over the coffee mug? Wipe it clean right away or face the consequences of having to scrub and wash it repeatedly later. Same goes for using the kitchen, the bathrooms and the living room. As soon as you spot that something is out of order, grab a paper towel and start cleaning like crazy. Only by achieving a relatively consistent cleaning habits, can you experience cleanliness without cleaning. Because either with the one day method, or the seven day method, it is still hard work. Keeping your home spotless at all times is what being a professional cleaning is all about.