Inside: Keeping a clean house with kids can be next to impossible. Just when you get one room clean, a disaster happens in the next room. What you need is a cleaning plan, mama! You can learn how to clean your house in 2 hours, and blast through those chores. I’ll even show you how to get your kids to actually help you clean! Grab the free printable cleaning plan below!
Feeling overwhelmed with keeping a clean house? We all feel that way at times, mama.
If you feel like you’re constantly cleaning and just not seeing the results, this cleaning plan is for you. We’ll focus on the essentials and learn how to stay motivated and keep moving so you can blast through those chores.
Kids at home? LIsten, they can help, too. I know, I know, it seems like you can get it done more quickly without them, but here’s the deal.
If you teach them to be team players now and show them how to clean, your future self will love you. Just think about it… in a few years you’ll have confident cleaners to take those chores off your hands. I promise it will be worth the headache now!
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How to Clean Your House in 2 Hours (and Get the Kids to Help!)
Before You Begin
Rethink Clean: Life with kids means you may not be able to achieve the magazine-worthy home you dream of. Let this sink in: Your home is for living in.
Take time to be thankful for the kids that run around living, laughing, and inevitably making messes in your house. For the foreseeable future, your home may not ever be perfect. And that’s more than OK.
Declutter: This cleaning challenge works best when you have a decent handle on clutter, to begin with. If you feel like the clutter in your house is overwhelming, tackle that first. Don’t stress yourself out trying to clean a cluttered house with kids running underfoot.
I know, trust me. Clutter can be overwhelming.
Take a breath. Choose one room at a time, and work through what you want to keep, donate, or trash. This may take weeks or months. That’s OK! It’s worth it and you’ll pay yourself back the time you spend de-cluttering.
Keep it Simple: This two-hour cleaning plan doesn’t include more deep cleaning items. I’ll include add-ons you can do if you have extra time. This cleaning plan is meant to help you feel confident and give you a plan of attack for having a less stressed and decently clean home with kids in the house!
Get Motivated: My favorite tip to getting the house clean fast is to get super motivated before I even begin. Here are a few of my favorite tricks:
- Get everyone on board with a reward when you’re finished. If the kids help they get to enjoy a popsicle on the porch or we have time for a walk, etc. Reinforce the idea that you’re a team. If you work together, you’ll have more time for fun later!
- Put on music! Cleaning is sometimes mindless and exhausting. Good music will keep your spirits up!
- Visualize the end result. Looking forward to putting your feet up in a fresh-smelling house? Got plans for a cozy movie night in a clean and comfy living room? Give yourself some motivation to finish the job!
- Set a timer to keep you going. This is a great way to challenge the kids and keep them focused!
- Set a vase of fresh flowers in your kitchen window. Whenever I have fresh flowers it gets me motivated to tidy up the rest of the house and keep that fresh, homey vibe.
Step 1: Throw Bedding in the Wash (10 minutes)
Before you begin cleaning anything else, do this. Gather all bedding that needs washed and get it started in the washing machine. You’ll change it to the dryer halfway through your cleaning plan and pull it out at the end to finish the job.
Tip: I do a few loads of laundry throughout the week so that on cleaning day my time isn’t tied up folding hundreds of tiny kids’ shirts and underwear. Keep your two hour cleaning time lean and focused! Just focus on the bedding.
Step 2: Clear Floors and Counters (20 minutes)
This step takes a little time, but it will prepare you to blast through the next few steps without stopping. I love to get my kids to help. It takes a little practice, but soon they will be experts at clearing the floors and putting items away.
Don’t expect them to do it perfectly the first time. Trust me, they won’t. Just keep at it and remind them that they are part of the team.
- Have a race with the kids to see who can return the most toys to their spot first.
- Throw dishes in the dishwasher or in a sink full of soapy water to soak. (Don’t clean them yet.)
- Pick up any blankets, books, or miscellaneous things lying around. Return them to where they belong.
- Throw any bath mats or small rugs next to the washing machine. You’ll wash these once the bedding is done. If they don’t need to be washed, set them outside to be shaken out.
Tip: I’m a firm believer in the “touch it once” rule. For dirty dishes, this means when I put a dish in the sink I usually spend the extra 20 seconds to wash it right then. If you follow this guideline you won’t have a huge pile of dirty dishes to tackle in addition to your regular housecleaning!
Step 3: Vacuum Floors (20 minutes)
Once everything is cleared, get geared up to clean the floors! I have a secret for getting my floors done fast. I hardly ever sweep! Instead I use a hard floor vacuum and a regular vacuum.
I love using this Bissell Hard Floor Expert vacuum for all the hard floors in my house. It’s lightweight so my kids can actually do this job for me. This is a great way to get the kids involved. My kids love vacuuming (almost too much!) and it keeps them busy and productive while I knock out the carpeted areas.
Getting a hard floor vacuum is a huge time-saver if you have a lot of tile or wood in your house. Plus it gets up all the little bits of dust and pet hair that a broom would miss.
While my kids are running the hard floor vacuum, I tackle the rugs and carpets. I sprinkle some baking soda carpet deodorizer first for a quick odor refresh. Then I quickly run through the bedrooms and living room with my carpet vacuum.
After you vacuum, don’t forget to shake out those rugs or switch over the wash.
Tip: Remember when you cleared all the floors earlier? This pays off big when you vacuum so you won’t have to stop every ten seconds to pick up random toys.
Step 4: Clean Counters and Hard Surfaces (20 minutes)
Next, it’s time to clean the hard surfaces. Grab your favorite all-purpose cleaner, a glass cleaner, and a few rags. You can have your kids help too if you choose a non-toxic cleaner.
Kids, and especially toddlers, love wiping things down. Who cares if it’s not perfect? They’re keeping busy, and a little clean is better than no clean, right?
Don’t forget these hard surfaces:
- Kitchen counters
- Kitchen tables and chairs
- Coffee tables and end tables
- Doorknobs and high-touch areas on doors
- Sliding glass doors
- Window sills
Tip: Think of ways to work smarter, not harder. One of my favorite tricks is to microwave a damp sponge or glass of water for 30 seconds to steam. Then wipe down quickly!
Step 5: Wipe down Bathrooms (15 minutes)
On to the bathrooms! These heavy traffic areas are usually the dirtiest spots in my home. I do one bathroom at a time instead of running back and forth. It helps to have a little cleaning caddy to keep your supplies close.
Once you nail down your bathroom routine, it won’t take long at all!
- Spray tubs and showers first so they can soak if needed.
- Put toilet bowl cleaner in to soak.
- Wipe down countertops.
- Wipe down mirror.
- Scrub out toilet bowl and wipe down toilet.
- Rinse or scrub out shower.
- Replace hand towels.
Tip: Don’t lose your momentum trying to scrub stains in your sink. Soak a towel with vinegar and lay it on the stained area. Leave it while you clean the rest of the bathroom, then wipe clean.
Step 6: Mop Floors (20 minutes)
You’re almost done! Since your floors are already cleared and vacuumed, mopping won’t be a big deal. Put your cleaner in your kitchen sink and grab your wet mop.
I work from the farthest areas first. Bathrooms and hallways first, then I moved to the living and dining rooms. Finally I finish up in the kitchen. This helps me mop up any drips as I go!
While you mop, have the kids play on the carpeted area. With little kids, play a game where your mop is an alligator. This helps them stay off the freshly mopped floor until it dries!
Step 7: Make Beds (15 minutes)
Your bedding should be just finishing up in the dryer. Pull it out and make up the beds. There’s nothing better than making a bed in a fresh-smelling bedroom!
If your kids are old enough, they can definitely help with this step, too! Make it a race to see who finishes first. For little ones, let them help put the pillows in pillowcases or arrange pillows on the bed.
Extra Time? Do This!
Did you whip through those chores? Got extra time to spare? Add on one of these tasks to make your home sparkle!
Hands your kids a lint-roller or wipes and let them get to work!
- Wipe down ceiling fans or baseboards.
- Clean out one drawer.
- Vacuum or lint-roll couches.
- Wash those dishes you’ve left soaking in the sink.
- Tidy up the refrigerator or pantry.
- Wipes down any spots on walls.
It may not be perfect, but this I hope this two hour cleaning routine gets you motivated!
Life with kids is messy, but it’s worth it! Use this simple cleaning plan to whip your house back into shape, fast.
Share with us, what are your favorite hacks to getting your house clean? Do your kids help out? Share with us in the comments below!