How deep do you go when cleaning for holiday guests? There are some who take it to the extreme Ã¢â‚¬â€ but you can have a clean home without going overboard.
If you think wiping down countertops and fluffing a few pillows in advance of the guest onslaught will land you on SantaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Ã¢â‚¬Å“niceÃ¢â‚¬Â list this holiday season, check that list twice. The extreme cleaners (telephone buttons! vacuum brushes! remote controls!) featured in this New York Times article may make you feel like a slacker.
But you can bring your home to sparkling guest-readiness without going overboard. A few tips from the “Times” will keep your home merry, bright, and clean:
- Scrub your entryway. Wipe down your front door, give the doormat a good shake, and make sure dust and dirt havenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t collected on floors and furniture legs. These are the first things guests will see when they arrive, so keeping them clean will guarantee a good first impression.
- Focus on the kitchen. People tend to gather around the food during the holidays, so make sure your kitchen looks and smells nice. DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t forget to dust the light fixtures and flush sink drains with boiling water.
- Whatever you do, donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t neglect the loo. DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t just wipe surfaces; break out the stiff-bristled brush and scouring powder to really scrub things clean.
- Sniff out bad smells. If you clean your home and something still doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t smell quite right, brew some coffee. The aroma will cover it up.
HouseLogic also has a few cost-conscious cleaning tips to get your home holiday ready:
- Give your garbage disposal some love, considering how much it will Ã¢â‚¬Å“consumeÃ¢â‚¬Â this season. To cut down on odors, chop up a whole lemon Ã¢â‚¬â€ rind and all Ã¢â‚¬â€ and let the disposal gobble it up. Throw in ice cubes to sharpen the blades.
- How about one soap for everything? If youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got a bottle of castile soap ($10 for a 16-oz. bottle), youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re ready for anything. It can be laundry detergent, mopping solution, and shampoo, just to name a few.
- Make sure you can see the guests coming. Keep windows clean and streak-free on the cheap with an easy mixture of vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Wipe down windows with a reusable microfiber cloth.
- With all your holiday cooking, stovetops and ovens are bound to get dirty. Baking soda and water make a simple scouring solution that can scrub off that baked-on gunk.
- To save money, make your own bathroom cleaning products. For example, to unclog a drain for pennies, pour half a cup of baking soda followed by half a cup of vinegar down the drain. Cover the drain for at least 30 minutes, then flush it with boiling water.
What are your tips for keeping your home guest-ready during the holiday season?
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