Category Archives: holiday home cleaning tips

Thanksgiving Home Cleaning: Where to Start So You’re Ready for Guests

Thanksgiving table place setting after a full Thanksgiving cleanYour guests are coming! Before you know it, it’ll be Thanksgiving and all your friends and family are going to converge on your home. The clock is ticking! Use these tips to get your cleaning started so your home is ready BEFORE your guests walk in the door.

Start at the top.

If you don’t want to keep cleaning and re-cleaning, start your Thanksgiving cleaning by looking up. Dust off fans and the tops of cabinets. Wipe off the top of your appliances and vacuum out any spider webs that are hanging out on your ceiling or in corners. Clear out any bugs from the light fixtures or globes and wash them down so your holiday is bright.

Clean off the counters.

A lit bit of work now can save you a lot of work later. Start by cleaning off your counters—every counter—in your kitchens and bathrooms. Clear away any items you don’t need and wipe down every counter in your kitchen and bathroom now, so you don’t have to later.

Clear out the clutter.

If you have anything you’ve been meaning to get out of your house, now is the time to do it. Donate items you don’t need or haven’t used to local charities. Clean out those items now so you can clean under them, vacuum, and mop as you get ready for Thanksgiving.

Schedule a carpet cleaning.

Don’t try to clean up all your carpet stains at the last minute—as in, when your guests are walking through the door. Instead, schedule a deep carpet clean that removes all the stains well in advance and leaves your carpet looking great.

Make a list and stick to it.

So you don’t have to do a last minute frantic cleaning, take our Thanksgiving checklist and break it into daily checklists. Try to tackle a few tasks every day, such as cleaning out your microwave and oven one day and dusting your cabinets another day. And to make your guests as happy with your Thanksgiving meal as your clean home, prepare as many dishes in advance as you can. As with cleaning, advance work makes for a happy (or at least stress-free) Thanksgiving celebration.

50+ Tips that Get Your Home Ready for Thanksgiving (& Complete Home Cleaning Checklist!)

dining room with four chairs ready for ThanksgivingThe clock is ticking until Thanksgiving, which means your time to get ready for another Thanksgiving meal with your family and friends is getting smaller as well.  To make sure your home is ready in time, we’ve compiled a checklist of 50 cleaning tips that’ll help you ready you and your home ready (especially your floors!) for the big day.


  1. Use a list (like this one!) so you can efficiently get all your Thanksgiving preparation done.
  2. Start early with deep cleaning tasks so your pre-Thanksgiving cleaning is not frenzied chaos.
  3. Plan your Thanksgiving meal carefully so you don’t have to run out for last minute ingredients (leaves you more time for last-minute cleaning).
  4. Compile all your cleaning supplies into a basket so you don’t have to keep running back for cleaners and supplies (it’s more efficient and faster!).
  5. Set an alarm or timer so you are attending to the Thanksgiving meal as you do last minute cleaning (you don’t want your guests to wait for dinner).
  6. Set time aside to finish any DIY projects so your guests’ don’t notice the dust.
  7. Clean your pets’ paws off at the door so they don’t track mud in.
  8. Put down rugs by all doors to keep gravel, mud, and snow outside.
  9. Sweep your floors daily to get rid of the debris that gets tracked in and prevent damage.
  10. Ask your local flooring store about cleaners BEFORE you mop your floors; they can look up approved cleaners so you don’t void the warranty.


  1. Clean your front door windows.
  2. Wipe down your door.
  3. Clean any light fixtures.
  4. Dust any entryway or foyer furniture.


  1. Vacuum before you carpet clean your floors.
  2. Soak up the stain first before you clean.
  3. Blot at the stain; don’t scrub or twist carpet fibers when you clean carpet stains.
  4. Schedule a professional deep carpet cleaning shortly before Thanksgiving to avoid staining the carpets after the cleaning.


  1. Wash windows.
  2. Pick up your floors.
  3. Wash your bed sheets well in advance.

Wood floors

  1. Thoroughly wring out your mop to avoid puddles on the floor.
  2. Be VERY careful when using a steam cleaner on your wood floors, or don’t use one at all (this could affect the warranty on your floor).
  3. Only use approved cleaners on your wood floors for a deep hardwood clean (avoid vinegar and ammonia cleaners and follow these other hardwood cleaning tips).
  4. Make sure your floor is completely dry (use fans if necessary).


  1. Scrub your tub and shower stall.
  2. Clean your bathroom door or wash your shower curtain.
  3. Wash any windows.
  4. Clean your toilets.
  5. Wipe down your counters.
  6. Clean any light fixtures.
  7. Wash your mirrors.


  1. Wipe down your cabinets.
  2. Wash backsplash.
  3. Clean the top of your cabinets.
  4. Wash the walls behind your appliances.
  5. Clean the floor under your appliances.
  6. Wipe down your counter tops.
  7. Clean off light fixtures.
  8. Wash windows.

Dining room

  1. Dust any cabinets and shelves.
  2. Clean the table.
  3. Wipe down the chairs.
  4. Add felt pads to all your chairs, table legs, and furniture to avoid scratches on hard flooring.
  5. Put felt tips on all your folding chairs so they don’t damage your floors.
  6. Set the table.

Tile floors

  1. Scrub your grout with an approved cleaner.
  2. Mop your tile floors regularly.

Laminate floors

  1. Do not use water (or excessive water, depending on your floor cleaner directions) to clean your floors (standing water can damage laminate floors).
  2. Use a soft padded mop and approved cleaner to give your floors a deep clean.
  3. Don’t use a steam cleaner on your laminate floors (this could affect the warranty and damage the floor).
  4. Make sure your floors are completely dry (use fans if necessary).

Living areas

  1. Dust shelves, cabinets, and tables.
  2. Clean off fireplace mantels and tile.
  3. Dust the top of frames and clean picture glass.
  4. Wash windows.