Sneaky Speed Cleaning
You look up from your email or end the call feeling a bit stunned. Your mother is coming over for a visit in about half an hour and the house is a real pigsty. You could just do nothing and hope for the best, or you could try our sneaky speed cleaning tips to make sure your place looks tolerable.
Help Is Essential
Enlist another member of the family to deal with the food, if necessary. All that you need is some sliced cold meat and a bagged salad, plus some nice easy comfort food like custard for pudding. That takes care of that worry, and you can focus on the cleaning.
First things first. This isn’t the time to dust the pot plants or declutter the wardrobe. You need to do the most important things first. So here’s The Plan for getting it all done:
- Scoop up all debris on the floor or on the sofa in the main living areas where your visitor is likely to go and dump it in a washing basket. Put this in your bedroom and put the things in it away before you go to bed/as soon as the visitor has gone.
- Vacuum the floor. If the floor is grotty, it makes the whole house look grotty. Again, if time is an issue, do the main living areas of the house and forget the bedrooms for now.
- Get rid of dirty dishes. While a few pots and pans out on the kitchen bench soaking are OK – especially if you have been preparing a meal for your visitor – stacks and stacks of dirty cups and plates are a no-no. Put these through the dishwasher if you have one. If not, wash one load of not-so-dirty things and leave them to drip-dry with a teatowel over them. The rest can be disguised by the pots and pans used for cooking.
- Clean the loo and make sure there’s plenty of loo paper. Squirt around a bit of something to remove any pongs (preferably home-made using essential oils) and don’t forget the floor.
- Check the bathroom sink and give it a quick wipe down to get rid of any soap and toothpaste splodges. Change the hand towels and put out nice fluffy ones, and remove any really noticeable hairs from the plughole.
If you have time after doing the above:
- Put flowers on the table – this instantly makes a home look cared for.
- Put a clean tablecloth on the table (under the vase of flowers, of course). This hides any crumbs, smears and unwiped spills. (Of course, spills should be cleaned up straight away – naughty you!)
- Wipe down the kitchen bench areas to get rid of any debris. Also clean down the top of the oven.
- Clear all shoes, junk mail, etc. away from the front door. This means that your visitor can get through the door without literally stumbling over your mess.
- Deal with any really thick and noticeable patches of dust and/or cobwebs.