Monthly Archives: March 2018

Last Minute Tips that Get Your Home Ready (FASTER!)

dining room with four chairs ready for ThanksgivingAre you expecting a house full of guests? Do you feel overwhelmed by your huge list of cleaning? Things need to get done FAST. We won’t waste any more of your time; instead use these tips to get your home ready (quickly!) for all the people (and fun!) that is to come.

Pre-clean as much as possible.

One of the most effective ways to make your cleaning better and faster is to pre-clean as much as possible before you dig in. Sweep the floor before you mop. Pick up clutter. Wipe down counters. Spray cleaners that need to “soak in” before you scrub.

Take a few minutes to prepare BEFORE you tackle the cleaning.

Before you scrub a counter or clean the toilet, organize yourself (and your team hopefully!). Gather all the supplies you need, such as cleaners, sponges, brooms, and mops. Make a list of every cleaning and maintenance task that needs to be done around the house and assign a member of your family to each task.

Carry your supplies with you.

If you want to speed up the cleaning process, carry your cleaning supplies with you. When you clean the bathrooms in your home, gather all the cleaners and cleaning supplies together. Put them in a carrying case and take them with you from bathroom to bathroom. When you’re pressed for time, don’t experiment with new cleaners. Talk to the professionals for recommendations for cleaners that won’t damage or discolor your floors and counters. If there is no other option that a new-to-you cleaner, test the cleaner on a surface or flooring that is not visible to guests—before you use it everywhere as you clean.

Divide and conquer.

When time is of the essence (and guests are coming!), don’t take a whole-home cleaning on yourself. Split up the checklist and assign each room or cleaning task to every person on your team. Then, divide and conquer until the home is clean and ready for a get-together.

Don’t forget the outdoors.

First impressions count when your guests pull up to your home. Don’t forget to clean walks, do yard work, and include all the outdoor maintenance and cleaning tasks that impress your guests before they even walk through the door.

Minimize the after-party clean up.

There’s no shame in prepping your home now so your clean-up list is shorter when all the fun is done. Put rugs by all the doors (inside and outside) to catch any mud or debris that can get tracked in to your home. Keep a cleaner and towel or wash cloth in arm’s reach so you can mop up any spills and prevent warping or damage to your floor. You can also ask guests to leave their shoes at the door. Lastly, schedule a professional carpet cleaning that can make your home look like a house full of fun never happened.

Spring Cleaning Mistakes that (Almost) Everyone Makes

shopper looking for cleaners for spring cleaningEven it doesn’t always feel like spring, it’s time to roll up our sleeves and clean off all the dirt and grime that accumulated through winter. Cleaning out the refrigerator, sweeping away cobwebs, deep cleaning the floors…spring cleaning comes with an extensive to-do list and a million chances to make mistakes that can slow down your progress and leave a mark long after your spring cleaning is over.

Using the wrong cleaning supplies

Not all cleaning supplies are created equal; using the wrong cleaning supplies on your surfaces and floors can cause fading or scratches. As dirty as the stain is, avoid using abrasive sponges, pads, or cleaners that can damage your counters and floors. When using a cleaner on your flooring, test a spot that is hidden in a closet or under furniture before you use it to clean the entire floor. If you have new flooring, visit your local cleaners to purchase cleaning products that are approved by the manufacturer and won’t void the warranty.

Not gathering cleaning supplies

Don’t jump into spring cleaning without a plan—it’ll take longer and be less efficient. Instead, use a spring cleaning checklist and divide up the tasks into a manageable schedule (don’t forget to include other helpers in your schedule). As you work, gather up all the cleaning supplies you need for each room; it’s faster and more efficient. Before you clean your bathroom, collect all your cleaning supplies and then go from one bathroom to another. Do the same for every room in your home until you can (happily) proclaim your spring cleaning done.

Using too much water and cleaner

It’s common to attack your spring cleaning with a vengeance; however, that cleaning tactic can become an issue when you leave puddles behind. Puddles can permanently stain surfaces and flooring (especially wood and laminate), so make sure you don’t apply an excessive amount. Wipe down all surfaces and flooring after you clean to ensure you don’t leave any extra liquid behind (and cause any excessive damage!).

Not sweeping or vacuuming

When you’re done tracking in all the mud and grime of winter into your home, don’t start mopping and carpet cleaning until you’ve removed all the gravel and grit that gets tracked in. Vacuum your carpets and sweep hard floors BEFORE you start deep cleaning floors (or contact a professional floor cleaner to take on the vacuuming and deep cleaning); this simple step can remove deep grit and prevent scratching the floors.

Steam cleaning wood floors

As tempting as it may be to use a steam cleaner on your wood floors, don’t. Steam cleaners can leave excess moisture on the floors, leaving behind stains and permanent damage. Using a steam cleaner on wood floors can also void the manufacturer’s warranty; if you have any questions about the correct way to deep clean your wood floors, use these tips or contact the local flooring pros to schedule a deep clean.

Washing windows on a sunny day

It’s a common picture of spring cleaning: washing windows on a beautiful spring day with the sun brightly shining in the background. However, this common practice is not necessarily going to get you the streak-free impeccable results you’re trying to achieve. Washing windows on a sunny day can cause the window cleaner to dry as you work, leaving behind a ton of streaks.

Scrubbing carpet stains

Elbow grease gets you great results when you are scrubbing grout or washing the walls. It is, however, the enemy of carpeting. When tackling carpet stains as part of your spring cleaning, blot at the stain. Don’t scrub, which can damage carpet fibers. If you have a carpet stain that you can’t get clean, contact a carpet cleaner to remove the stain and clean the room carpeting.

13 Cleaning Tips That Keep Your Luxury Vinyl Floor Looking New

luxury vinyl plank floorLuxury vinyl floors are a popular choice these days. These floors are water-resistant, durable, and look great (just like wood and tile). They are a great addition to any home’s décor because they’re gorgeous—and can keep looking as striking as the day they were installed IF you use these cleaning tips.

Preventing Damage

  • Place mats and rugs by the door and in high traffic areas to protect the floor from dirt and chemicals that get tracked in.
  • Train your pets to stop at the door so you can wipe their paws off before they come in.
  • Attach felt pads to furniture to avoid scratches and damage to luxury vinyl flooring.
  • When moving furniture and appliances, sweep the floor and place the furniture on cardboard to avoid scratches. Lift—don’t drag—the furniture and appliances as much as possible.
  • Clean up spills as soon as possible to prevent stains.
  • Keep your luxury vinyl floors looking like the day they were installed by purchasing window coverings (and keeping them closed when possible) to avoid fading.

Vinyl Floor Maintenance

Cleaning Tips

  • Do not clean the vinyl floor immediately after installation; wait 48 hours (ask your installer for an exact time frame) to allow adhesives to dry before you mop the floor.
  • Only use manufacturer approved cleaners so you don’t void the warranty (visit your local flooring pros to find out what cleaners are approved and purchase them).
  • Use non-abrasive, gentle cleaners on luxury vinyl floors.
  • Always sweep the floor before you mop.
  • Vinyl floors are water resistant, but don’t use too much water as you mop. When you are finished, make sure there are not water puddles left on the floor.