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How to Clean Your Home More Effectively

I have a weekly cleaning system down. I wash and fold laundry. I throw away expired food from the fridge. I wipe down counters, vacuum and mop the floors, and put things away. However, I never really go above and beyond my normal routine. I don't dust corners. I rarely wip down bookshelves. I skip window washing, and I kind of pretend to ignore the dust bunnies under our bed. However, with spring just around the corner, it’s pretty much the perfect time to do a house detox. It's time to clean all of those nooks and crannies that we usually assume don't exist. Here are a few ideas to get you started on your path to a cleaner house:

Shoes don't pass the front door

One of the most frustrating parts of cleaning for me is the floors. I sweep, mop, an vacuum and yet, within a couple of hours, there are inevitably muddy shoe and paw prints all over the place. In order to avoid this ongoing peskiness, have people leave their shoes at the door, either outside or in a basket in the entryway (the paw prints are kind of another story). It will prevent things like dirt, mold, pollen, etc.,  from entering your house on the bottoms of people's feet.

Let your house breathe

When the weather is mild, leaving your windows open lets fresh air to circulate through your house on a regular basis, keeping the home comfortable and sans stuffiness. Furthermore, research indicates that indoor air can be up to five times as polluted as outdoor air. It's important to keep your sills clean, though, or else a gust of wind can blow all of that dust and grime throughout your home.

Make your own cleaner

Many all-purpose cleaners on the market today contain all sorts of harsh chemicals that could irritate the skin, eyes, and throats of you and your family. For a safe and effective all-purpose cleaner to use around the house, try this recipe: mix a half of a teaspoon of washing soda (found in many grocery stores) with a teaspoon of natural, non-toxic dish soap and two cups of hot water. Pour into a spray bottle, and then get cleaning!

Know how to dust

Because sprays and cleaners only serve to scatter dust instead of actually cleaning it, try using a dry, microfiber cloth to dust surfaces around the house. It's cost effective, as well, since you can throw it into the washing machine and then re-use it next time! 



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Used under Creative Commons Licensing courtesy of Andrew Seaman

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