Ahhh, spring—a time of warming temperatures, blossoming greenery, and the guilt-ridden realization that it’s been five months since you’ve dusted. Yikes.
First thing’s first: Create a donate box
From that extra potato masher to those sandals you wore one time in 2013, odds are your home is full of forgotten items that someone else could find useful. So, before you begin spring cleaning, make a plan to get rid of extra stuff. “Place a donation binunder your entryway table or hang a giveaway bag on an easy-to-access coat hook,” suggests Maeve. “As you clean, drop items into these containers so they’re one step closer to making their way out of your home.” Once your box is full, load it up and head to a reputable donation site like Salvation Army or Goodwill.
For that so-fresh feeling, mopping the floor and scrubbing the sink are always good starts. “[But] the most rewarding spring cleaning fix is to toss old or expired itemsfrom your refrigerator, pantry, junk drawer, and any countertop space that collects clutter,” says Maeve. Grab a garbage bag and go hunting for trash. “Look for half-used condiments, old juices or sodas, ripped menus, almost-empty snacks, and multiples of takeout containers and grocery store bags.”
Before getting down to the nitty-gritty of scouring the restroom, go through the medicine cabinetand scrap expired medications. Not only will you avoid ingesting a past-its-date prescription, but you’ll most likely free up a good chunk of space.
Your bedroom is your haven, so start with something fun, like turning your bedside table into a sanctuary. First, clean out the drawer. Then, “Place favorite photos, treasured memorabilia, perhaps a scented candle, meditation helpers, or a funny book—all things that make you both laugh and smile at the end of the day,” proposes Maeve.
When to hire someone
While the room-by-room method of spring cleaning is meant to be relatively effortless, some chores are undeniably bigger than others. If you find a task to be too physically taxing (or you just really hate doing it), it might be worth bringing in a pro. Take cleaning the windows, for example. “Hiring a professional window cleaning company can save you time, extend the life of your windows, and help identify and resolve potentially dangerous problems, like wood rot or sashes that have been painted shut,” says Maeve.