Ways to Keep Your Home Clean and Ready to Show

canstockphoto42333215You need your house to look its best when its on the market, but you still have to live there. Use these tools and tips to make your home show-worthy at a moment’s notice (without losing your mind). Cut down on clutter and on the time it takes to make your home shine—from the entryway to the powder room.

 

Tips to Keep the Entryway Neat and Tidy

Your home makes a first impression the moment you open the door, so follow these cleaning hacks to make sure that the impression you make is the right one.

 

  • A place for everything. If your crew dumps coats, shoes, backpacks, keys, and mail in the entryway, give each of those items a home. Add hooks for coats, purses, and backpacks, set up a landing spot for shoes, and add a mail organizer to corral letters, bills, and other important documents.
  • Catch dirt early. Place a floor mat on the outside and the inside of your front door and get the whole family into the habit of wiping shoes on both before they set foot in the rest of your home.

 

 

Tricks that Keep Your Living Room Warm and Welcoming

When someone looks in on your living room you want them to be able to imagine themselves sitting back and relaxing. Don’t let dust and clutter interrupt that peaceful vision—use these tricks to keep your living space serene and inviting.

 

  • Don’t skip the commercials. Use this time to tidy up knickknacks, wipe down tables, and dust the blinds. You can make a family game out of it, with the prize going to the one who gets their commercial break chore done fastest.
  • Fluff pillows every night. You always turn off the TV before bed, so why not add fluffing pillows and cushions to your nightly habit? If you use blankets, fold them up and put them away in an attractive basket or ottoman that doubles as storage.
  • Catch clutter. Place baskets or bins in strategic places where toys, remotes, and other odds and ends tend to gather. Whoever leaves the living room last is in charge of scooping up those items and getting them out of sight in the designated container. If things belong in other rooms, make sure you assign someone to put things back in their proper place at least once a day.

 

 

Hacks that Make Your Kitchen Shine

We all know the kitchen is where everyone tends to gather. Make sure yours looks the part with these daily habits and cleaning hacks that will make it sparkle.

 

  • Wipe it down. Every night after dinner take a few extra minutes to wipe down the counters and table. Make it even easier with disposable wipes that you can grab, use, and toss with no extra maintenance.
  • Keep the table set. If your brood tends to use the kitchen table as a catch-all for things like bags, homework, and magazines, deter them with a beautifully-set table. The effort it takes to put plates in place (and occasionally dust them off) is far less than the time needed to sort through a week’s worth of discarded items.
  • Do the dishes. The last thing any of us wants to do after a long day is take care of the dishes. But loading the dishwasher and hand washing those few delicate items really only takes a few minutes—and you’ll feel so happy you took the time when you wake up to a nice, clean kitchen the next morning.
  • Clean the sink. After your nightly round of dishes, go ahead and wipe down the kitchen sink. Daily maintenance will keep your sink from staining and will eliminate any potential unpleasant smells that sitting gunk can cause.

 

 

Shortcuts to Keep Your Bathroom Nice and Rosy

Bathrooms can be the dirtiest spot in the home, but there’s no reason yours should be. Start using these shortcuts and your bathroom will smell like a rose every day.

 

  • Hang it up. Make sure you have enough rods and hooks for towels and robes—and get everyone in the habit of hanging both up immediately after use.
  • Clean as you go. Mornings are hectic, but you’ll feel better if you leave for the day knowing that every bottle, tube, and brush is in its rightful place. Make it a habit to clear up everything you use in the morning so you don’t have to worry about rushing home to take care of it if your home gets scheduled for a showing.
  • Wipe counters nightly. After washing your face and brushing your teeth, end your evening routine with a quick wipedown of the bathroom counters. And just like in the kitchen, use disposable wipes if it makes this task easier.

 

 

Habits that Make Your Bedroom a Sanctuary Every Day

If you’re like me, the bedroom is often the place where discipline goes by the wayside, but you can’t afford that luxury when your house is on the market. These small habits can make a big difference in keeping your bedroom a place of rest instead of a catch-all for the castoffs of the day.

 

  • Make your bed. Turns out Mom was right—making your bed each morning helps you set the tone for the day. This is one simple task that only takes a few minutes and sets the tone for the entire room.
  • Put clothes away. It’s too tempting to throw discarded clothing on a nearby chair or other handy spot, but those throwaways tend to turn into unwieldy piles fast. Stop the madness and take a few seconds to either hang or fold clothes, or throw them in the hamper instead.
  • Hide under the bed. There is likely unused storage space under your bed. Use this extra spot to keep seasonal clothes, overflowing shoes, or other household schreck out of sight.

 

 

Showing your home is stressful enough without the constant worry of keeping it spic and span at all times. Use these helpful cleaning hacks so you’ll be ready to impress potential buyers, even at a moment’s notice.

5 Tips for Cleaning Your Gutters

 

 

5 Tips for Cleaning Your Gutters. Once first the first leaf falls, many more are sure to follow.

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Fall is great time of year to make sure your gutters are free from clogs.

Keeping your gutters clean of leaves and other debris will help prevent costly damages to your flowerbeds, landscape, siding and even your foundation. Here are few tips that will help you unclog those gutters.
1. Wear Long Sleeves
And rubber gloves. You will be dealing with all sorts of dirt, mud, leaves, sticks and a lot of other gunk. Your arms will thank you for keeping them as protected and clean as possible.

2. Locate and use a stable, extendable ladder
Wen cleaning your gutters, safety comes first. Make sure the ladder you are using will support you easily. Also, ensure that it is tall enough to do the entire job. You don’t want to be extending yourself too much when and over reach when cleaning. Next, make sure that you use ladder “horns” to keep the ladder from damaging the gutters themselves.

3. Use a small plastic scoop to remove large globs of gunk
Hardware stores sell scoops specifically designed for gutters. They run around $25. However, common household items like a large plastic cup and children’s pail or sand shovel work just as well.

4. Use a plastic tarp
Place a plastic tarp beneath where you are cleaning. Your lawn will appreciate you dumping all of the gunk onto the tarp instead of its plush green grass. Containing the mess on the tarp also makes for easy clean up.

5. Flush the gutters
Once all of the gunk and debris is cleared from the gutters, it’s time to flush them with water. A garden hose works great for cleaning out the gutters and downspouts. It also will show you where any leaks are hiding.
If climbing ladders isn’t really your thing, you can always hire someone to do it for you. Depending on the size and height of your house the job could cost you anywhere from $50 to $250. Another option is installing gutter covers. The covers typically cost between $6 and $8 per running foot including installation. Keep in mind that covers still need regular maintenance to keep them clear of debris as well.

Utilize Your Storage Space

There are a lot of pros and cons to living in a smaller space. Each space provides its own challenges, but the key is to learn how to utilize the area effectively; which means, sometimes you have to get creative.window-839824_640

Build storage in your home by making every space work for you. Incorporate adjustable wall mounts in the laundry room, include a bookshelf or storage chest. You can also add storage under your bed, rolling drawers, or find furniture for dual purposes. With larger items, use them in your decor by hanging them on the wall when not using.

Through utilizing your storage and organization, you can live comfortably in your small space. Find ways to upcycle, recycle, and donate the items you no longer want.