As the owner of a residential cleaning company for 14 years, I have hired and trained many cleaners. Some people may think that cleaning houses is easy. True, it doesn’t require an advanced degree, or any degree for that matter, but if you think it’s easy, try doing it for a few months and you’ll see how wrong you are. A good cleaner needs to be aware of how to properly clean various sensitive surfaces, be efficient, discreet (don’t ask), honest, reliable and sensitive to each home’s unique cleaning needs.
I love it when a potential employee has a background in hotel cleaning. Here’s why: Hotels have requirements that they adhere to. Typically, most hotels require their rooms to be cleaned in about 45 minutes for a large room with bells and whistles and about 25 minutes for a small room with few if any (like a ‘no-tell motel’).
During college, my sister worked at a hotel and she was required to clean 10-15 rooms per day. This is pretty typical and you might be wondering how it can be done. The answer is it can’t…UNLESS you have and follow a system. Remember, if you fail to plan you plan to fail and that’s not gonna happen on my watch. So here we go…
Start with your upper level and after cleaning out trash containers, clean the bathroom(s). Here’s how:
- Spray the shower walls and the bath tub with a mild disinfectant spray. If the area is dirty, let the product work its magic for a few minutes. Remove with a dry or slightly damp cloth.
- Clean the toilet paying close attention to under the rim and behind the toilet. Use a disinfectant with either a brush or rag with a gloved hand, wiping the outside as well, and dry.
- Spray the counter top and sink with a disinfectant spray, and use a dry rag to finish the job.
- Clean mirrors, sink faucets and bathtub faucets with window cleaner, using a microfiber cloth.
- Grab some moistened toilet paper and wipe up the floor, getting as much hair as possible. Flush the toilet paper down the toilet. Vacuum or sweep the floor then clean by hand using a rag.
Now that you’re done with the bathroom…
- Make Beds
- Dust furniture, using a microfiber cloth or slightly damp rag.
- Vacuum and mop as appropriate.
Once you’re downstairs, repeat the process and then finish up in the kitchen. Here’s a general guide for efficient kitchen cleaning:
- Remove counters of all food and clutter
- Throw out trash
- Wipe out inside of microwave/toaster oven.
- Wipe surfaces, including range top.
- Wipe faucet and clean inside of sink.
- Sweep and mop floor
Some general tips to keep your space looking cleaner longer:
- Don’t use bar soaps. They cause soap scum build up.
- Get into the habit of using a squeegee after you shower. It takes literally two minutes and will save you lots of time in the long run.
- Cover food with a paper towel when microwaving to prevent splatters. If a splatter occurs, wipe it immediately.
- Remove shoes upon entering your home.
- Adhere to this simple rule: LEAVE A ROOM AS YOU FOUND IT
If you drop it, pick it up. If you open it, close it. If you break it, fix it. If you move it, put it back.
Clutter is the number one enemy of efficient cleaning. If your house looks like this there’s no way efficient cleaning can take place.
If you need help with clutter control, there is no shortage of resources available. A quick search on the internet will give you more options than you’ll know what to do with.
The above cleaning processes are for general, weekly cleaning only.
I realize this may sound self serving, but I’m a big advocate for getting outside help for the more difficult jobs or the jobs you know you just don’t want to do so you probably won’t do them. Let’s face it. You know I’m right. If your budget won’t allow for weekly help, try every other week or even once a month, or maybe just having help with certain areas of your home. Certain items in your home will last longer if maintained properly, so it’s money well spent. Not to mention it’s a great motivator for removing clutter at least once in a while ;).
I’m curious, do you have outside help? If not, why not?