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Housekeeping Tips for Busy Parents

Manage the Mess With 5 Easy Housekeeping Tips

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Stop tripping over toys, fighting impossible stains and feeling like you always have a mop in your hand. Try fast, simple housekeeping tips that keep you ahead of the messes, despite the kids' best efforts to make your home look like a disaster area.

1. Clean a Few Minutes Each Day

A woman dusts pictures hanging on the wall
Photo © Melissa Ann Barrett / Flickr
Stay on top of the mess to stay in control of the mess. Instead of having a cleaning marathon to make the whole house sparkle, spend a few minutes each day tidying up. Your home will always be spotless and ready for company. Use a printable house cleaning schedule to keep your housekeeping tasks in order by days of the week and get into the habit of daily cleaning. Once you do, you'll always be motivated to keep the house looking great without feeling like you're constantly picking something up, wiping down a counter or vacuuming the carpet.

2. Clear the Clutter

De-clutter your house to make it feel cleaner
Photo © lejoe / Flickr
Get organized and de-clutter to save time and make your home spic and span. An easy way to de-clutter is to donate old toys, clothes, books and other items. Charitable donations are also tax deductible when you itemize your taxes. You get to help others through your donations while helping yourself too.

3. Get the Kids Involved

Kids help clean the house
Photo © Maria Teijeiro / Getty Images
Moms can always use an extra pair of hands. Those little hands are usually eager to help when it's time to clean and do chores around the house. Assign appropriate chores for your kids. Children as young as two can be in charge of simple cleanups and older teens can take a step toward bigger cleaning roles. When everyone pitches in, cleaning becomes less mom's job and more of a family responsibility.

4. Tackle One Room at a Time

A woman stands in front of a giant floor plan
Photo © Kutay Tanir / Getty Images
The house is dirty! You start calculating the square footage in your home and wonder why you thought you needed that much space in the first place. Focus on one room at a time to make housework more manageable. Plan room by room cleaning for the kitchen, bedroom, bathroom and living room so you're not overwhelmed with a major cleaning project.

5. Look Beyond the Obvious

A mom stares down her dirty sons
Photo © Steve Baccon / Getty Images
A good cleaning routine goes beyond your basics of dusting, sweeping and cleaning countertops. Look beyond the obvious tasks to keep a clean, germ-free home.

A home with a potty trainer needs special treatment to properly remove urine out of the carpet. Most parents have faced tough stains, such as crayon markings and grass from outdoor fun.

When it's time to eat, even the tastiest meals can leave odors in the air that can easily be eliminated. And when the garbage starts to stink, the entire house feels dirty. Get rid of those lingering smells before they happen.

These smaller elements of your housekeeping ritual usually pop up in any house with kids. Fortunately, they don't take much time to conquer so your home will always feel clean.
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