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We are both neat freaks and value having a clean apartment. We’ve lived with roommates who were not on the same level of cleanliness and it didn’t work out well ( you can read more about why cleanliness is important in this post, 5 Crucial Factors in Relationship Compatibility). We just had no patience for dirty dishes being left in the sink for weeks on end or having to wear slippers to keep our feet from getting gross in the common area of the apartment. Yuck. Who wants to live like that?
If you’re reading this, then I’m assuming you want to live in a clean apartment/house/condo/castle/houseboat/whatever residence you choose. If you’re already a super clean person, then maybe you’re reading this to figure out how to create a fast cleaning routine.
Because we’re busy most of the time, but enjoy living in a clean apartment, we’ve developed a 45 minute cleaning routine. We used to clean every week, but then we kind of realized it wasn’t necessary to clean that often. We’d just sweep and have an empty dustpan. Basically just a waste of time. So, now we clean for around 45 minutes every other week and our apartment looks and feels clean.
There are 3 main reasons why it only takes us 45 minutes every other week to clean our whole apartment.
- We pick up after ourselves regularly. So, if we cut chicken, we’ll wipe down the counter after. Or if we track in a couple leaves from outside, we’ll throw them back outside or toss them. Basically we just don’t leave a mess, so we’re just doing basic cleaning every two weeks.
- There are two of us. We both work on cleaning in the 45 minute time frame. If you’re the only person cleaning, it will take longer.
- We have a little apartment. It’s only like 800 square feet. Vacuuming takes like 10 minutes because the rooms are small. There’s just not a whole lot of space, so it doesn’t take much to make the apartment clean.
So, here’s our system for keeping a clean apartment.
We have carpet and linoleum floors. We vacuum the carpeted floors, which are in the bedroom and the living room. We sweep and mop the linoleum floors. This is the vacuum we have from Amazon.
We wipe down the counter and mirror, clean the shower, and clean the toilet.
We wipe off the counters, microwave, stove, oven handles, and the sink.
How We Clean
Doesn’t seem like very much does it? These are the things we do each cleaning session, but there are other things we do occasionally, but don’t need to be done every time. This includes: cleaning the top of the fridge, cleaning the table (we clean it right after we drop food on it, so it doesn’t need a complete cleaning each week), vacuuming dust off the fan, wiping dust off the windowsill ( we only have one window) aaand that’s about it. Tiny apartment leads to an easily clean apartment.
The easiest way to describe our system is top down. We wipe off the bathroom and kitchen counters before doing the floors. We clean the shower before cleaning the tub. Our way of cleaning the shower is kind of weird. We mop it. So we use the tub for water instead of a mop bucket. We then just mop the shower walls before mopping the floors. We clean the mop after each time though, so we’re not just rubbing floor dirt on the shower. Then we clean the tub after we finish mopping. It’s pretty quick and pretty easy. It’s enough to make the apartment seem nice, but doesn’t take as much time as a deep clean. However, since we clean frequently, doing a deep clean doesn’t take that long since most everything is already rather clean.
Cleaning can seem like a burden, especially when you don’t have a lot of time on your hands. But once you get in a routine of cleaning often, it saves you time in the long run. Having to do a deep clean every month because your apartment is really dusty, will take a bigger chunk of time than a quick wipe down and vacuum every week or so. Lastly, here are our top cleaning tips.
- Put stuff away when you’re done with it. So put laundry away as soon as it’s dry instead of leaving it in a pile to deal with later. Procrastinating just causes a build up of tasks, and seems more overwhelming when you actually decide to deal with them.
- Figure out what you use most in the apartment and clean that every week or every other week. Less important stuff can wait longer.
- Do it when you have energy. We usually clean in the middle of the day when we have a decent amount of energy.
- Get in a routine. Almost everything we do seems to be in some form of routine. It’s almost mindless. You don’t have to think, “oh, should I clean? I don’t remember if I cleaned this part of the counter last time.” Instead you’ll just be like “It’s cleaning day. I have this, this, and this to do.”