Do you struggle to keep a clean house? Use these 13 smart house cleaning tips for busy moms to keep your home clean enough with little kids.
Keeping a clean house as a mother can often feel like an impossible task. The kitchen floor that you just swept? There’s already crumbs and spilled milk on it. The bathroom mirror you just shined? It already has water splatters on it. The stain you just scrubbed out of the carpet? You can bet there’s another stain already setting.
Being a busy mom and trying to keep a clean and organized house is next to impossible – but thankfully it’s not quite impossible.
If you can learn how to do things quickly and in the easiest way possible, you’ll be well on your way to keep your home clean even with countless little feet running around in it all day.
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How to keep a clean house as a mom
A clean house before you were a mom probably meant something entirely different than what a clean house means to you now that you have kids.
Before you had kids you spent time diligently putting things where they belonged, you scrubbed the floors once a week and dusted even the highest ledges in your house. You spent time straightening the pillow on the sofa and didn’t let crumbs pile up in the corners of the floor.
Now that you spend countless hours chasing kids around all day, you’re happy if you find time to sweep the floor once a week, and you can’t remember the last time you scrubbed it with a mop. (It’s probably long overdue.)
But this is just the season of life you’re in right now. It won’t stay this way forever. Your babies will grow up all too fast, and before you know it your kitchen floor will stay crumb-free for a whole week and those little fingerprints on the walls will be gone.
So cherish these moments with your little ones and don’t get stressed out by a house that isn’t perfect.
But, even though you’re busy spending your days playing with your kids and running errands, you don’t want to let your house get too out of hand. And that’s where these cleaning tips for busy moms come in handy. Because they won’t get you a perfect, spotless home, but they are quick cleaning hacks that will help you keep your home presentable and clean enough (because let’s face it, clean enough is more than enough at this stage in our life).
Cleaning tips for busy moms
Use these 13 cleaning tips for the home to get your home clean and organized, and keep it that way, even with little kids in the house!
1. Do a bit here and a bit there
Spread your cleaning tasks out so you aren’t doing everything on one day. Because usually that “one day” that you planned to clean your house on is the same day that ends up becoming extremely busy and you don’t end up getting your cleaning tasks done.
That’s just how it goes.
So, if you can spread your cleaning tasks out over the week, it won’t be as big of a deal if you miss a day here and there, and you won’t have to spend endless hours in a day cleaning.
If you break your cleaning tasks up so you clean bathrooms on one day, dust on another day, and focus on floors on yet a different day, you should only have to spend about 15 minutes to an hour cleaning each day.
2. Include your family
If your kids are old enough to help out, start delegating tasks on to them to do. If you’re cleaning bathrooms, have your kids do the dusting or empty out the dishwasher. If you’re vacuuming, have them tidy the house by picking up out-of-place items and putting them where they belong.
Even young kids can help with small cleaning tasks here and there. Use this to create a chore chart so each member of your family knows which tasks they’re responsible for.
3. Automate where you can
I always thought that people who used those automatic vacuums were just ridiculous. Why spend money on something so expensive when you could easily do the task yourself?
(This was before I was a mom…)
It wasn’t until after I had kids that I realized how much time is spent (wasted?) vacuuming when there’s a pile of other tasks needing to be done, too. If your time is better spent doing something other than vacuuming, automating this task isn’t such a bad idea. Here’s an affordable robot vacuum with stellar reviews.
Related: The Best Inexpensive Vacuum Cleaners For Under $100
4. Touch something once, then put it away
We all are guilty on some level of taking things out and leaving them out, even when we’re done with them. Use the “one touch” rule to keep your home cleaner and much more organized.
The one touch rule is when you only touch something once before putting it away. Which means, if you took a book out to read, as soon as you’re finished reading it put it away (even if you don’t “feel” like you’re finished reading it but a little person interrupted you – if you have to get up to tend to them, chances are you’re going to get busy and forget about the book until you see it laying where you left it later that day – so just put it away now).
If you’re using a hairbrush, as soon as you’re done with it – put it away. If you’re using cleaning supplies, put them away when you’re done.
5. Have multiples
Contrary to what everyone tells you about keeping a clean home, keeping cleaning supplies in each room that they get used can help you keep your house cleaner. That means if you have three bathrooms in your house, you should have three toilet bowl cleaners and toilet bowl brushes, one in each bathroom. This makes cleaning easier for you so you don’t have to make multiple trips across your house to gather all your supplies, and it also brings down the number of supplies that get left out of place.
There is an exception to this, and that is if you’re on a budget and can’t afford to have multiples of everything, if you’re pinched for space, or if you’re trying to keep the number of things in your house to a minimum. In those cases, you’d want to have this cleaning caddy so you can keep all your supplies together.
6. Use these cleaning cloths
Rather than having 10 different cleaning cloths with all of them having one single use, grab these two cleaning cloths and use them for all your cleaning needs. The one is perfect for mirrors, windows, faucets, and stainless steel appliances, and the other one is perfect for dusting, wiping, and everything else. The price is a bit steep on these, but they’re the ones I use and would wholeheartedly recommend – because they’re the only two cleaning cloths you’ll ever need (and they should last you for years), plus you don’t even need to use cleaners with them! They remove bacteria with just water.
7. Put a cleaning schedule on the fridge
The one room in the house that every member of the family enters multiple times a day is the kitchen. And where do they head?
Straight for the fridge.
We talked about delegating tasks to other family members earlier, but to do that you’ll want to use some sort of chart so you don’t have to constantly remind everyone which tasks are their responsibilities for the day. That’s where this cleaning chart comes in handy. You can write each person’s names and tasks they’re responsible for on the board so everyone can easily see what they have to do for the day. Grab an erasable cleaning chart, here.
8. Clean where you’re most bothered, first
We all have that one place in our house that drives us crazy when it’s dirty. (Or maybe you have several places.)
Whatever area drives you nuts to have dirty, clean there first. Getting the trouble areas clean first will help you to not be as stressed, and it’ll give you some motivation to clean the other areas of your home.
Related: Simple Daily Cleaning Routine to Keep Your House Tidy
9. Finish the task, even if it’s not perfect
Remember: done is always better than perfect. Your house doesn’t have to look spotless and perfect. If your focus was a perfect home, you’d never get anything done! Focus on getting some simple cleaning tasks done, but not perfect. Don’t worry if the kitchen isn’t spotless after you clean it. As long as the counters are wiped, floor swept, and dishes cleaned up, you’re doing good.
10. Keep the dirt out
Not much else is more frustrating than just finishing up vacuuming the floors (unless you automate your vacuuming) and having someone (husband? kids? yourself?) drag dirt in right where you vacuumed.
The easiest way to prevent this from happening is to use a shoe rack, or if a rack isn’t your style, a boot mat, to keep the dirt out. Have everyone in your family – and people who come to visit – take off their shoes right when they get in the door so the dirt stays contained to one small area.
11. Wash kid’s toys in the dishwasher
You’re busy and you definitely don’t have time to scrub, sanitize, and boil all your kid’s toys as much as they should be. Throw them in the dishwasher rack and turn it on (some dishwashers even have a special “sanitize” setting). For small toys, you’ll want to use this special bag to keep them all together and so no little parts get lost in the dishwasher.
12. Clean toys up several times
Life with kids means life with toys.
All over the place.
To keep your house a bit more manageable and the toy clutter under control, have your kids do a big clean up of their toys 2 – 3 times a day. The easiest way to do this, so everyone remembers, would be to have your kids quickly clean up all their toys right before lunch – this way after lunch they can play with whatever toys they want, but the ones they were playing with this morning and no longer want to play with are put away. Then just before supper have them do another clean up of all their toys.
Then, after supper, they can take out and play with whatever toys they want, there just won’t be excess toys laying around. Then before bedtime have them clean up their toys for the last time for the day, then you can all start tomorrow off with a clean house that doesn’t have toys scattering the floor.
13. Do laundry often
Doing several small loads of laundry is a lot easier than doing one or two giant loads (or a whole day of nothing but laundry). And though our kids are small, they can sure make a lot of dirty laundry – so getting into the habit of doing a load of laundry every day, or every other day, will make your life a lot easier.
Do you have cleaning tips for stay at home moms tips to add to the list? Maybe you have a favorite cleaning schedule for working moms that you want to share! Share your best busy mom cleaning tips to help other moms keep their homes clean even when they have no spare time!
More Cleaning Hacks for Moms:
How to Clean Every Room in Your House
How to Clean a Disgusting House When the Mess is Overwhelming
8 (MORE) House Cleaning Tips for Moms – how even YOU can keep a clean house!