How to clean your house in 15 minutes a day

February 19, 2012

At the beginning of the year, I saw a pin about cleaning your house in 30 minutes a day. I didn’t see any way it was possible to do all those things in half an hour, and I wasn’t sure that I could dedicate a half hour to cleaning every day of the work week. But I liked the idea of cleaning a little every day rather than cleaning for a couple of hours on the weekend — because those weekend cleanings don’t always happen, and because the house somehow feels cleaner when at least one thing is always super clean.

This year, I’ve been experimenting with a daily rhythm, dividing my day into quadrants — so I added a 15-minute window to the end of each day for cleaning. Since I don’t want to get the vacuum out of the closet every day, I organized my days by task rather than room — Monday is all kitchen surfaces, Tuesday is dusting, Wednesday is floors, Thursday is bathrooms, Friday is for whatever I didn’t get done on the other days. I set a timer for 15 minutes, and when it goes off, that’s it.

I didn’t even think I could vacuum our 1,400-square foot apartment in 15 minutes, but as it happens, I can not only vacuum all the rooms but sweep and Swiffer mop the kitchen and bathrooms as well. I can dust the whole house, including the baseboards, and do some extra cleaning, like a quick polish on the dining table. And unless we had a big get-together over the weekend, I can scrub down the whole kitchen, prep veggies for the week, and sort through the fridge, usually with time to spare.

Of course, this doesn’t account for the things I do every day — making the bed, doing the dishes, picking up — or spring cleaning-type tasks, like washing the blinds. But it feels so good to go into almost every weekend with my cleaning done so I can focus on family and friends, activities and projects.

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Sanctuary

3 comments add yours >

  1. I do this too!
    My husband and I have a 15 minute cleaning sprint when we get home from work. I have a list of things (always rattling around in my head), we each pick one, then just do it for 15 minutes. It doesn’t matter if the thing gets *done* (but it always does, with to spare), it just matters that we’re both doing it for a set time. (We include: dishes, vacuuming, folding/putting away laundry, bathroom cleaning)
    The results: wonderful.

  2. wow… looks like this is something I will have to give a try as well. I like the idea of setting the timer… the question is, do you really quit when it goes of….???

    • I do! But that’s partly because I have my daily cleaning scheduled between when I finish work and when I need to start dinner — so if I don’t stop, dinner is late. Food is good motivation!

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