Spring is coming, which means spring cleaning.
Spring cleaning is one of those things, you either love it or hate it.
You only need one ray of sunshine for people to go crazy thinking it’s time to clean and declutter any hidden corner of the house. Places you’ve never been, corners you’ve never seen. Regardless, it’s time to clean them.
This might be linked to waking up after the winter lethargy, ready for a new season (literally and metaphorically). Or maybe people just enjoy it.
What is spring cleaning
Traditionally, spring cleaning is done over a weekend or two in (you guessed it) spring.
The idea is to tackle those jobs in the house that you never do: cleaning the top of your shelves or the tiny space in between your oven and the kitchen unit.
Or dismantling the shower to clean the shower head from limescales.
Or emptying every single drawer in the house and get rid of anything that doesn’t bring you joy*
*The Marie Kondo method is not specifically for spring cleaning but I bet she invented it with this in mind.
How to avoid spring cleaning
I don’t do spring cleaning.
Don’t get me wrong. I love coming home to a clean house, it makes me feel anything is possible.
Whilst I can definitely see the benefits of deep cleaning and most importantly decluttering, I hate spring cleaning.
The idea of spending a full weekend (or two!) in the house cleaning makes me sick.
Now, that may be something you’re into, and that’s ok, we are all different. However, for my mental health I need to diversify how I spend my weekend. Yes, some house chores are definitely on the list, but so is a visit to the gym for my favourite class, a walk in the park, a pizza and some episodes of Friends.
I need that to function as a normal human being, to avoid handing my notice at work the following Monday.
That doesn’t mean I live in dirt and clutter.
I just need to be strategic with my cleaning schedule.
What I do instead of spring cleaning
I tackle one activity at a time, at specific times of the year. Some things I’ll do once a year, some things twice and some others more often.
I try to be reasonable. Did I say I don’t like cleaning?
So that’s what I have done:
(feel free to steal so you don’t have to spend time on this!)
I looked at everything that needs doing and created monthly, quarterly, 6 monthly and yearly lists.
Let me explain.
There is little benefit in decluttering the bedroom in the middle of winter when I can’t go through my clothes. Better to do it when the season changes.
Or checking what’s stored in the attic in summer, as that room gets way too hot to spend any unnecessary time in it.
You may have a garage super cold in winter so you’d want to avoid that.
To be clear, these lists won’t include any cleaning I do as part of normal house management like cleaning the sink, working tops or the floor in the kitchen. Or changing the bedsheets in the bedroom. Or cleaning the toilet. You know what I mean.
Want to see how I organise my spring cleaning (or should I just call it cleaning?) Check out the list below.
By the way, I have put together a list with my favourite deep cleaning hacks, super easy to do and with inespensive products! Check this out
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- Empty each cupboard and clean (I use this as an opportunity to use what’s in there and avoid a grocery run)
- Empty the fridge and clean (as above)
- Clean the dishwasher and washing machine
- Wash the windows / window dressings
- Wipe the shower screen
- Clean the mirrors
- Clean all taps and shower head
Every 3 months
- Clean the microwave (really, I just try to keep it constantly clean a.k.a. clean when I make a mess, but a good clean is good every now and then). Head here to see how I clean it with natural products
- Clean drains
- Wash the walls behind the work surfaces
- Remove everything that’s on the work surfaces, including coffee machine, kettle and various jars and give it a good clean
- Whilst you’re at it and you moved kettle and coffee machine, just clean them too!
One word on the kettle cleaning situation, if you like us have hard water, you might have to clean it more often to remove limescale. Instead of buying expensive and branded descaler, you could get some citric acid and put one teaspoon in the kettle, add water (half full) and boil. Rinse and repeat if necessary.
Citric acid is also great for bath bombs but that’s way above my league in terms fo DIY so I can’t advise on that I’m afraid.
- Wash down all wall tiles
- Clean the windows
Every 6 months
- Wipe down cupboard doors and handles
- Clean doors
- Wash all mats
- Clean inside all cupboards
- Throw away empty bottles / containers
- Wash pillows, mattress protectors
- Turn or flip mattress if required and hoover it (you could also sprinkle some bicarbonate of soda on the mattress, let it sit for 1 hour and vacuum)
- Declutter clothes, sell or donate unwanted items.
Rest of the house
- Clean windows / Clean window dressings (my mum’s secret on cleaning windows is here if you need it)
- Take everything out of cupboards and drawers and clean inside
- Declutter – donate or sell what’s not needed
- Deep clean carpets and rugs ( I use this and whilst it is clearly not made with natural ingredients, it does the job so well and saves me from renting a carpet cleaner)
- Vacuum under sofa
Once a year
- Dust tops of all cabinets (head here to see how to clean it in no time)
- Clean the oven, hood and filter
- Clean the fan
Rest of the house
- Clean any display cupboards / art on walls / decorations
- Wash throws, blankets, cushion covers and any other soft furnishings
- Clean lighting
- Clean the door and their handles
- Move all furniture and hoover behind it
Outside the main house
- Weep all floors in garage or shed
- Declutter items in the garage and/or shed
- Wash any outside patio, furniture, etc…
- Clean all guttering and drains
As you can see, spring cleaning doesn’t need to be done over a long and painful weekend or two, but can be split in smaller and more manageable tasks. I dedicate a couple of hours each weekend to do some cleaning (as part of normal routine) and make sure to tackle the items on the list too!
Struggling with keeping up with everything that needs doing around the house and in your life? Check out my productivity hacks for busy people.