The Ultimate House Cleaning Checklist: How To Clean Your Home Throughout The Year

The Ultimate House Cleaning Checklist: How To Clean Your Home Throughout The Year

Contents

As with taxes, you can’t escape house cleaning, only plan effectively. A house cleaning checklist helps you maintain an inviting home and frees up your time to enjoy the people and activities you cherish most. Here is the ultimate checklist to help you tackle routine and deep cleaning for each area of your home. A schedule follows that organizes tasks by daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly priority. Let’s start with some general housekeeping tips.

Break Up Cleaning Tasks

Do you relish the accomplishment of a major cleaning day, or would you rather spread the load? Cleaning and tidying can gobble your time unless you structure them to put you back in control. By using a checklist, you know what to do for each room as well as how often. You eliminate the guesswork and can schedule things your way.

For example, split weekly tasks by room over two days: the kitchen one day and bathrooms and bedrooms the next. If you prefer to knock out all tasks at once, organizing them boosts efficiency.

Share the Load

Chores fly by when everyone pitches in. If family members can contribute to clutter and mess, they can probably help clean up. Make assignments part of your checklist, so each person knows what to do. Consider posting your daily list in a common area, such as the kitchen, as a friendly reminder.

Children can be given age-appropriate chores. One option is to link rewards, such as screen time or visiting friends, to completing their tasks. You can set cleaning sprints where every household member tidies up for five or 10 minutes, starting with their clutter. For example, children can pick up their items from the living room and clean up after making a sandwich.

Disinfect Regularly

A quick wipe-down isn’t enough these days. You want to frequently clean and sanitize high-touch surfaces, such as doorknobs and handles. Clean with soap and water or another appropriate cleaner. Once the surface is dry, disinfect it using an EPA-registered household product and follow instructions carefully. You can also make a diluted bleach solution as long as it contains 5-6 percent sodium hypochlorite and is not expired.

Disinfecting wipes are great for a quick cleanup and can be conveniently placed in various rooms. Children and the elderly can easily use them to tidy their bathrooms and other personal spaces.

Some common high-touch areas to disinfect:

  • Light switches
  • Doorknobs and handles 
  • Sinks and faucets 
  • Toilets 
  • Countertops 
  • Phones 
  • Keychains 
  • Keyboards, mice, and remote controls

Remember to clean your tools, too. Those germ-ridden sponges should be disinfected weekly, along with scrub brushes and cleaning cloths. Try microwaving wet sponges for two minutes, including them in a dishwasher load with the heated dry setting, or soaking them in a bleach or white vinegar solution for five minutes. Some sponges contain metal filaments, so be sure to check before microwaving.

Supplies You’ll Need

Cleaning is faster and more effective when you have all your tools on hand. You also preserve the beauty and longevity of your home’s finishes when you use the right products for each task. Use this list as a guide.

General Use

  • Large bucket: for floor cleaning solutions 
  • Small bucket: cleaning solutions for countertops and other smaller surface areas 
  • All-purpose cleaner: for hard surfaces other than stone 
  • Scrubbing sponges
  • Glass cleaner 
  • Mop
  • Broom
  • Mildew cleaner: for deep cleaning bathrooms and any rooms regularly exposed to moisture 
  • Hardwood floor cleaner 
  • Sealed stone cleaner
  • Disinfectant

Kitchen

  • Baking soda and white vinegar: to clean stainless steel sinks
  • Lemon juice: to freshen garbage disposal
  • Oven cleaner
  • Soft cloths 
  • Stainless steel cleaner

Bathroom

  • Toilet brush
  • Toilet bowl cleaner 
  • Grout cleaner and brush

Bedroom and Living Areas

  • Lint roller: for pillows and other delicate fabrics and to remove pet hair 
  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Extendable dust wand: for hard-to-reach places such as ceiling fans

House Cleaning Checklist for Each Area of Your Home

Do you wish your kitchen could stay as pristine as your spare room? The busiest areas challenge you daily, but less-used rooms often hoard clutter and dust. For the welcoming home you and your family deserve, you want to address them all. This checklist guides you on what to do for each living space.

Entryway

This area often gets overlooked, but it’s the first stop for outside dirt and germs. It’s also a high-traffic area, so be sure to disinfect surfaces such as doorknobs and handles regularly. Clean the floor and encourage people to remove their shoes upon entrance, if you practice this in your home.

The entryway can easily end up cluttered with shoes, outerwear, and items such as umbrellas and bicycles. The closet may serve as seasonal storage that resembles a black hole. Wouldn’t you prefer a more welcoming first impression of your home? Move out-of-season items to the attic, basement, or garage and donate what you no longer need. Buy a shoe rack or a storage chest to keep frequently used items organized and accessible. Hang a favorite painting or photo to connect the room to the rest of the house aesthetically. You’ll be more inclined to maintain the area if it looks and feels inviting.

  • Clean floor 
  • Disinfect doorknobs and latches
  • Wipe baseboards and doors
  • Launder mats and area rugs
  • Organize coat closet
  • Wipe light fixtures
  • Dust stairway banisters

Kitchen

Everyone loves the kitchen, and the daily mess proves it. You have meal preparation remains to contend with as well as the clutter of family life. You want the area to be clean and sanitized for all, especially children, to enjoy safely. This means daily tasks along with weekly and monthly deeper cleanings. Enlist the help of other household members to keep on top of it. If they like to eat, they can do their part to make cleanup fast and easy.

  • Clean out fridge
  • Wipe cabinets, drawers, and shelves
  • Degrease stove and backsplash
  • Scrub appliance interiors
  • Clean floor
  • Disinfect sponges and scrubbers 
  • Deep clean small appliances
  • Sanitize sink, drains, and garbage disposal
  • Wipe light fixtures
  • Wipe and sanitize walls, doors, and baseboards
  • Clean and dust furniture
  • Launder mats and area rugs
  • Clean windows and window coverings

Laundry Room

The laundry room may be the center of clean, but it still needs your TLC. Even though its job involves lots of soap and water, your washing machine deals with detergent residue, chemicals, and clothing debris. Mold and grit can build up under soft seals and in crevices. If you’ve ever smelled mustiness when removing clean clothes from the washer, this odor is your cue to deep clean.

The dryer accumulates lint, which can pose a fire hazard if not addressed. The most crucial step is to clean the lint screen after each load. As part of your monthly cleaning, wipe the inside drum to remove debris and fabric softener film. This is also a good time to use your vacuum crevice tool to clear out the screen compartment. You also want to maintain dryer vents regularly. Home brush kits are widely available if you’d rather not call a pro.

  • Clean and maintain washer, dryer, and vent hoses
  • Wipe cabinets and shelves 
  • Wipe and sanitize walls and baseboards 
  • Clean floor 
  • Wipe light fixtures

Bathroom

Bathrooms never get a break, and every surface is a magnet for germs. Bathrooms are also moist environments that foster mold and even attract bugs. You want to head off the grime with daily, weekly, and monthly cleaning and sanitizing. 

Enclosed showers and tubs build up scum and mildew and should be cleaned weekly. For a quick daily hack, try using a squeegee to remove excess water and soap from shower walls. Your deep cleanings will need less elbow grease.

Bathroom mildew is an issue even in dry climates, and it’s tenacious once it starts growing. Inspect ceilings, walls, doors, and corners for signs, and treat with an appropriate mildew-removal product. Sanitize rubber bathmats on both sides and let air dry, and wash accent rugs in hot water. 

  • Clean and sanitize floor 
  • Organize products and purge those expired or not needed 
  • Disinfect toothbrush holders
  • Clean and disinfect sinks and fixtures 
  • Clean and disinfect countertops
  • Disinfect door knobs, handles, and light switches 
  • Use glass cleaner on mirrors and windows
  • Clean and disinfect toilet, shower, and tub
  • Clean and sanitize grout and tile
  • Clean or launder shower curtains and rugs
  • Wipe cabinets and drawers
  • Wipe light fixtures
  • Wipe and sanitize walls, doors, and baseboards

Living Room

Your living room is likely a central gathering place for family, friends, and pets. From sofas to the TV, almost everything in the room gets heavy use. Dust, germs, and dander accumulate even when the room looks tidy. If you or your guests have young children, you know how reassuring it is to have clean floors and furniture. This means periodic deep cleaning of the room and disinfecting of some surfaces.

  • Dust wood furniture and books
  • Deep clean upholstery and pillows
  • Launder curtains and throw blankets
  • Clean windows and window screens
  • Wipe down electronics and sanitize remote controls 
  • Wipe light fixtures and fans
  • Dust lamps, pictures, and decorative objects
  • Disinfect knobs, handles, and light switches 
  • Wipe walls, doors, and baseboards

Office

Maybe your home office gets grimy from heavy use or dusty from being an occasional stop. Either way, you appreciate a clean, uncluttered environment for productivity. Your computer and other electronics attract debris and germy fingerprints, and you want to clean them and disinfect high-touch items such as keyboards. Wipe down your desk, especially if you’re in the habit of snacking while you work.

If paperwork and clutter have overtaken the room, you’ll want to set aside some time to organize and purge. Consider a shredder if you don’t have one and enough filing space for essential documents. Hang a whiteboard or erasable calendar to centralize and easily update task lists.

  • Dust furniture
  • Vacuum upholstery
  • Clean lights and fans
  • Wipe down electronics and sanitize peripherals
  • Dust shelves and books
  • Clean floor
  • Wash windows and window treatments
  • Wipe walls, doors, and baseboards
  • Sanitize knobs, handles, and light switches 

Bedroom

Bedrooms are havens where we spend over one-third of our lives. You want to keep these rooms hypoallergenic to support quality sleep, and this means cleaning beyond a made bed and dusted furniture. Bed linens should be washed in hot water at least weekly and comforters and pillows every month or two. Vacuum carpets weekly or more often if pets or allergies are a concern.

If you or family members have allergies, don’t overlook your mattress. Mattresses and pillows harbor dust mites, skin cells, sweat, and grime to create a literal hotbed of irritants. Mattress and pillow covers reduce dust mite numbers but won’t eliminate them in the absence of other cleaning measures. In addition to weekly laundry, you want to vacuum your mattress at least seasonally or even monthly. Clean blinds, drapes, and any upholstered furniture. In children’s rooms, keep stuffed toys washed and stored away from the bed.

  • Launder all bed linens
  • Vacuum mattress 
  • Clean pillows
  • Clean floor
  • Vacuum carpet and upholstery 
  • Clean windows and blinds 
  • Launder drapes
  • Dust furniture, pictures, and objects
  • Wipe drawer interiors and shelves

Your House Cleaning Schedule

Imagine having your daily and deep cleaning tasks organized and family members pitching in. A cleaning schedule helps you realize this for your daily, weekly, monthly, and annual chores. In addition to saving you headaches, a routine helps children build skills and habits that will serve them well. Your family has more time and energy to spend on what matters. 

Daily Cleaning Checklist

You love your home, but by the day’s end, the signs of family life are strewn everywhere. You may feel like tidiness is futile because all of your hard work seems to evaporate. The solution is to keep the clutter and grime from snowballing. Try setting aside a few minutes each evening to tidy up and put objects back in their places. 

Not the only household member? Remember to enlist your family’s help. Little hands who dropped toys in the living room can tuck them into their rightful spots. Make it a fun, quick exercise that may end in dessert or relaxing family time. In the morning, you will enjoy waking to a tidy home.

  • Load and run dishwasher 
  • Clean kitchen sink and countertops 
  • Sweep floors 
  • Place dirty laundry in hamper
  • Do one laundry load
  • Wipe bathroom counters 
  • Empty trash 

Weekly Cleaning Checklist

Are you daunted just thinking about a big weekly cleaning? Powering through it will keep your home inviting and your blood pressure down. You want to avoid that feeling of overwhelm where every day off seems destined to be a family cleaning day. Instead, use this checklist to reduce chore time and enjoy life together.

  • Disinfect door handles and other high-touch surfaces 
  • Clean appliance exteriors and microwave interior 
  • Clean out fridge 
  • Mop floors 
  • Vacuum carpets 
  • Clean and sanitize sinks, showers, tubs, and toilets 
  • Disinfect sponges and scrub brushes 
  • Wash sheets, pillowcases, and towels 
  • Dust furniture
  • Empty trash and take out recycling 
  • Use glass cleaner on mirrors and insides of windows 

Monthly Cleaning Checklist

You know those areas you skip when cleaning because they’re cumbersome or easily overlooked? It’s time to tackle them on your monthly checklist. When your windows sparkle and your refrigerator’s interior gleams, you’ll be glad you did. A bonus is a more hypoallergenic living space where you’ll literally feel better.

  • Clean small kitchen appliances such as coffeemakers 
  • Clean fridge interior and stove oven 
  • Sanitize brooms and mops 
  • Clean vacuums 
  • Clean outsides of windows
  • Launder blankets, bedspreads, and throw blankets 
  • Vacuum bedroom mattresses 
  • Damp wipe shelves and baseboards 
  • Wipe light fixtures and pictures 
  • Clean blinds and shades 
  • Launder curtains 
  • Dust and disinfect electronics 
  • Clean ceiling fans and air vents 

Yearly Cleaning Checklist

Luckily, you only have to deal with these major tasks once a year. You can also enlist professional help to accomplish the tougher ones. If you assign a dollar value to your time, you may find that paying professional cleaners is cheaper than tackling them yourself. This is also a great opportunity to donate, recycle, or haul away items you no longer need.

  • Professionally clean carpets and area rugs 
  • Professionally clean upholstered furniture
  • Wash throw pillows 
  • Wash interiors of cabinets and drawers 
  • Clean behind large appliances 
  • Professionally clean chimney and fireplace 
  • Clean drapes 
  • Disinfect walls 
  • Organize closets, cabinets, and drawers 

Hopefully, you’ve found this home cleaning checklist helpful and a little inspiring. Knowing how and when to clean each area of your home will make it the oasis you want and deserve. Best of all, you can accomplish this and still have time for what matters most.

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