With summer well underway, Americans everywhere are likely trying to make the most of the warm months. Kids have ample free time, and many people like to take advantage of these months for travel and fun activities.
However, summer has a way of bringing new messes into a home, like sand from the beach or mud from the backyard. Cleaning doesn't always sound like the most fulfilling way to spend a nice afternoon, though. By staying on top of messes and addressing situations early, you can keep your home in tip-top shape all season long.
It's easy to recognize when something isn't where it should be, and it can be even easier to tell yourself that you'll take care of it later. But the longer you put off simple chores like putting dirty dishes in the dishwasher or picking the clothes up off the bedroom floor, the messier your home will become.
"If it will take you less than two minutes to complete the chore, do it now."
Instead of letting simple chores fall by the wayside, stick to this simple rule: If it will take you less than two minutes to complete the chore, do it now. Clean Organized Family Home noted that this mindset can be instilled in children as young as three or four. Encourage them to put away toys at the end of the day and put their dirty clothes in the hamper.
If you have children, set clear expectations about what they need to do around the home by creating a chore chart, advised Daily Parent. Encourage them to ask questions about the chores they are assigned so that there are no misunderstandings that could lead to tension later.
"Be sure to explain exactly what's expected when he's asked to 'clean the bathroom.' Show him how to clean the sink, polish the mirror, clean the tub, etc," explained Tara Aronson, author of Mrs. Clean Jean's Housekeeping with Kids, according to Daily Parent.
Even if you don't have children, creating a schedule can help encourage you to stay on top of housekeeping tasks.
Before you leave town for a weekend or longer vacation, be sure your home is in good condition. This could include cleaning out the fridge so you don't come home to rotten food, taking out the trash and taking care of the laundry. Coming home to a messy, smelly house can be stressful, so the more you do before you leave, the better you'll feel when you return.
It's also a good idea to plan ahead to next season. While you may not want to think about cold weather, now is the perfect time to complete any home improvement tasks that will make the winter months more comfortable. Be sure your furnace is in good condition to last another year and check your windows and doors for drafts. Neglecting these tasks in the summer can make for an uncomfortably cold winter. Plus, upgrading these features is a great way to increase your home's resale value while also cutting energy costs.
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