The sun is shining, the days are getting lighter and the daffodils are out in force. Spring is finally here and that means one thing – it’s time for the annual spring clean.
Throw the windows open, turn up your favourite music and get the gloves on – it’s time to start scrubbing. The entire family can get involved as you face down the winter clutter.
But don’t just rush in – here are our top tips for a successful spring clean.
You can’t clean the whole house in one day. Not if you want to do a thorough job, anyway. You don’t want to reach the end of the day to be left with stacks of books, toys and ornaments you’ve pulled off shelves to clean, furniture all out of place and piles of half sorted recycling. Facing all of that will just dishearten you to the point it all gets thrown right back into whichever corner it came from.
Plan to clean one room at a time, and give everyone in the family a job. Make sure you take breaks and finish each part before you start another – sorting, cleaning and reassembly.
There’s nothing more irritating than getting part way through the spring clean and realising that you’ve run out of bin bags. Or, creating carefully folded piles of winter clothes for storage, and realising you haven’t got any boxes. Make sure you get everything in advance.
Before you rush out and spend a fortune on expensive detergents and cleaning products for every different type of surface in the house, spend a bit of time researching cheaper options. Squeeze lemons into water and you’ve got an effective cleaner for worktops, windows, toilets and mirrors – plus it’s great smelling too. If you prefer, mix a little bleach in water and you have the perfect cleaner for skirting boards, doors and walls.
As you sort through your possessions you’ll create a pile of items that you no longer want – or fit in – but are still useable. Rather than add to the huge amount of landfill, list these on sites like eBay to sell them on and make some cash back for yourself.
Set a family member the task of photographing and listing as you go, and by the end of the day you’ll find another job done, rather than a pile of sale items nagging at you.
There are always one or two items that survive the spring clean. Your mother-in-law’s antique imitation elephant foot umbrella stand, and the rowing machine you love to hate. Much as you want to get them out of sight, there are some things that you have to keep, or are too expensive to replace on a whim.
This is where self-storage is your saviour. Put larger items, seasonal clothing and excess furniture in a storage unit, and give yourself peace of mind. Everything is dry, secure, and easily accessible for the next time it’s needed.
You may think that a spring clean is all about getting the freshness back inside your home – but don’t forget the outside too. Make sure the winter wellies are tidied away and send the kids outside to pick up the toys.
There’s no point cleaning the windows inside, if the outside is smeared in winter grime. The good news is that this is one chore you can hand over to an expert. Book your window cleaner in advance, so that everything sparkles at the same time.
As the sunlight streams through your sparkling windows and dances off the dust free surfaces, sit back on your freshly plumped cushions and enjoy the satisfaction of a job well done.