I like things to be neat and tidy. Working full-time makes keeping my home in that state a challenge. I would love to hire a housekeeper, but until I get a significant increase in pay or win the lottery, that isn’t possible. In an effort to maintain my sanity I’ve come up with four tips on how to keep your house clean.
1. Assign tasks to each family member. Each member of the family is assigned a task that is age appropriate. For example, my daughter (9) can dust the living room and put toys away, while my son (5) gathers up trash and dirty laundry. David runs the vacuum and supervises while I work in a different room.
2. Everyone takes a room and works for thirty minutes. Similar to number one, but this time set a timer for 30 minutes and assign each person a room or specific activity. For example, I will give David the living room, my daughter will gather laundry from all over the house, I will take the kitchen, and my son will float between me and David. This is my favorite because I get a solid hour of adult work and thirty minutes of kid work. David and the kids like it because of the set time limit. They know when the timer goes off that we are finished. Consistency is the key to making this method work.
3. Hire a teenager to help you. Sometimes you need reinforcements. Call in a high school student to come over for a few hours of work. I recommend that you have a list of things you want the helper to work on before he or she arrives. The time she spends doing smaller chores, like folding laundry, dusting and vacuuming, frees you up to work on other, bigger projects.
4. Pay them. I know there are different arguments about paying children to do work around the house, but every family is different and this may work for you. Assign a value to each of the chore for the kids and have them select the items they would like to complete. The more chores completed; the more money earned. Cash can be a great motivator.
As a working mom with limited time, I know that my house will never be spotless, but these are some tips that I’ve used to help control the beast.
What are some tips you use to keep your house clean?