9 Habits people with Tidy Houses Have in Common
Tips for a Tidy Home
Thanks to the new Netflix show, “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo,” you may be seeing your friends’ social media accounts blowing up with before and after pictures of cleaned out closets, kitchens, and entire homes. #KonMariMethod
Though Marie Kondo’s method has inspired many people to keep things clean, it all comes down to habits. Something you do that becomes a part of your life so much so, that you don’t think about it as a chore; it’s just part of the routine. Things like brushing your teeth – habit. Folding your clothes a certain way – habit. Picking up things around the house daily – habit. Only keeping/buying items which “spark joy” in your life – habit.
So here are 9 habits you can incorporate into your daily life to become one of those people whose house always stays tidy:
This one is less of a habit and more of a starting point. However you choose to start, getting past the purging stage will allow you to keep less stuff in your home, which means less clutter overall to have to keep clean and organized.
Methods to purge your home:
- Go room by room – Take everything out of every drawer, closet, surface, everything and allow yourself to make a decision about each item. Keep, donate, sell, or move to another location in the home.
- Categories – This is what the KonMari method is based on. Start with all clothing, make decisions about each piece of clothing, then move on to another category when done. Then move on to books, papers, misc. (kitchen, bathroom, electronics, etc.), then sentimental items.
2. Give every item a home—and keep it there
Give every item in your home it’s very own space to live, and after you use it, return it back to its home. If something is not in its place, you will know immediately.
For example: Dirty clothes go in the hamper—not on the floor—and clean clothes belong in your dresser and/or closet—not left in the laundry room or piled on the bed.
The same goes for other objects like scissors, pens, and all those wayward objects that should have a designated spot. Umbrellas and coats need dedicated hooks and bins to keep the entryway pristine.
If everything has a home, you won’t feel lost trying to find places to put things when company is coming over in 10 minutes.
3. Never leave a room empty-handed
This goes hand in hand with giving every item a home. If you’re going upstairs, take something with you to put away; whether it’s a stack of clean laundry or toilet paper refills. If you’re heading from the living room to the kitchen, grab that magazine that needs to be recycled and the water glass destined for your empty dishwasher.
4. Keep cleaning supplies handy where you use them
Keep small batches of needed cleaning supplies in key places around the home (kitchen, bathrooms, and cleaning closets) to give yourself more opportunities to find what you need.
A spray bottle of all-purpose cleaner and a stack of cleaning cloths under all of your sinks could be the difference between quickly wiping up a little spot or spill, and forgetting about it until the next time you have to deep-clean the house. This will save you lots of time in the end.
5. Clean the shower while you’re in it
One handy tip is to give the shower a little scrub while you’re already showering. It can be a huge pain to scrub down all of the soap scum at once, so why not do a quick once-over of the shower walls and floor while you’re rinsing your hair?
Tip: One of the best products for keeping the shower clean is natural dish soap because it is designed to fight grease—which is mostly what’s in the soap scum lining your shower walls!
6. Clean as you cook
This is the best way to avoid a massive headache at the end of a meal, which you know you’re going to want to walk away and leave until tomorrow. Even if you need to keep both eyes on the burners, at least fill your dishwasher with any easy dishes and utensils, and fill up your sink to help soak those greasy pots and pans.
Before you go to bed, start the dishwasher (even if it’s not quite full), so you can empty it first thing in the morning, freeing up dishwasher space for when you cook again next! It’s all about the habit!
7. Keep surfaces clear
Flat surfaces collect clutter like none other. Flat surfaces are also what you see as you scan the room, so when you have clutter on flat surfaces, it seems like every space in your home is cluttered. The more you can keep tables, floors, beds, and countertops clear, the cleaner and more spacious these areas feel.
The biggest clutter culprit is paper, so don’t let it pile up. Recycle unnecessary mail the minute it comes in, and create a filing system for the rest of your important documents and to-do reminders.
8. Finish the day with a 10-minute tidying session
For all of those things that got left behind, make a nightly pickup part of your routine.
Set aside just 10 to 15 minutes every night—put on music if it makes the process more fun—and return everything to its “home, or designated spot, from toys to magazines. If you have a few minutes left over, run a cleaning cloth over counters or do a quick sweep, devoting five minutes to a different area every night.
One of the best things to wake up to in the morning is a clean home.
9. Buy a robotic vacuum cleaner
This might seem like cheating, but it’s not. Some people believe it’s absolutely the best money you can spend if you want to keep a clean home but have pets or small children.
You can program it to run daily while you are at work, or overnight—and then you can enjoy clean floors without lifting a finger.
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