We all have that one friend: Whether you stop by their home unannounced or make plans to spend an evening together, their house is always perfectly tidy. Suspiciously tidy, even: Their floors are clean, their shelves are dusted, and there’s not a single trace of unfolded laundry anywhere in the home. Sure, they may use a cleaning service, or maybe you caught them right as they finished tidying up. But more often than not, they might just be a Clean Person (TM). But the path to becoming a Clean Person (TM) isn’t as mysterious as you’d think.
|SHOP CLEAN PERSON ESSENTIALS|
The seven things that people with clean homes always do is a great place to start.
1. They Always Delegate
Unless you live alone, there’s no way one person can bear the brunt of the housework. Taking schedules and availability into account, delegate certain age-appropriate tasks to your partner or children—even if it just means they’re only responsible for cleaning up their own messes. Keep each other accountable with a chore list on the fridge, and practice positive reinforcement.
2. They Always Open Their Mail
Paper clutter is what we like to call “entry-level” clutter: It’s such a small thing, but it opens the door for the rest of the space to fall out of line. Clean people always make sure to tend to the mail every single day. If you need to leave something out because it has an action item on it—maybe it’s a bill to pay or something your partner needs to deal with—make sure it has a 24-hour time limit before it’s filed or discarded.
3. They Always Have Cleaning Tools Nearby
No, we’re not saying you have to have a cabinet full of All-Purpose Cleaner and sponges at the ready in each room, but try keeping a microfiber cloth in one of your living room hutch drawers, or keep a duster hidden away in a cabinet in the dining room. You’ll find it’s much easier to find the impetus to clean up if the one thing you need to complete the task is always within arm’s reach.
4. They Always Take Their Shoes Off
Nobody cleans their floors every day, right? But if you take your shoes off before you even enter your home, you shouldn’t need to clean them every day, either. Instead, aim to pick one weekend day for a weekly wash, then stick to it. Of course, spot clean as needed.
5. They Always Make Their Bed
Yep—this one’s inevitable. If you want to be a Clean Person (TM), you should start by making your bed. It’s a tiny, two-minute time commitment that can change the way you interact with your space for the entire day. Not only are you less likely to throw clothes all over a made bed, but you’re also a lot less likely to get back into it for a mid-day snooze. Once you’re done, be sure to grab any water or tea glasses that have accumulated on the bedside into the kitchen before you leave the room.
6. They Always Keep An Eye on the Hamper
Some days, getting to the laundry just isn’t possible—and that’s okay. A good baseline is to think about doing a load every other day to keep it from getting out of hand, which is generally easier to remember than “once every few days.”
7. They Always Clean As They Go
Cleaning as you go means different things in different rooms. In the kitchen, this usually entails cleaning your prep station and dirty dishes as you’re cooking to save yourself some time in the end. In the bathroom, this means wiping the floor right when you get out of the shower and clearing off your vanity as soon as you’re done with your makeup. In the bedroom or elsewhere, it means clearing clutter before you leave the room—like a child’s school project, or the clothes sitting on the dreaded chair. Always dedicate an extra five to ten minutes to hang up every item of clothing you discarded, even if it’s at the end of the day.
Some of these habits may feel alien to you, but others are likely already second nature. The sooner you start incorporating them into your routine, the sooner they’ll become part of your routine!