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12 Tips for Keeping a Clean Home With Kids

Posted January 21, 2023 by Mike Lewis under Tips

12 Tips for Keeping a Clean Home With Kids

Keeping a clean home can be challenging for any parent, but with kids running around it can feel nearly impossible at times. As a busy mom of three, I’ve learned a few tricks over the years to maintain some level of order amidst the chaos of toys and messes. Here are my top 12 tips for keeping a clean home with kids:

1. Declutter Regularly

Kids accumulate stuff, and it piles up fast. I try to go through the house at least once a month and declutter. Have the kids go through their rooms and gather up toys, books and clothes they no longer use. Donate or sell usable items, and toss the rest. Decluttering forces you to deal with the clutter, and prevents it from taking over your home.

2. Assign Chores

Giving kids age-appropriate chores helps them learn responsibility, and also gives them ownership in keeping the home clean. Start with small, simple tasks when they’re young. As they grow older, they can take on more involved chores. Offer an allowance as an incentive if needed.

3. Use Bins and Baskets

Plastic bins, baskets and storage containers are mom’s best friends! Use them to corral toys in play areas, store art supplies, and organize pantry food items. Label the bins so the kids know where things go. Having a spot for everything makes clean-up faster.

4. Create Cleaning Routines

Developing regular cleaning habits is key. Have set days or times for laundry, vacuuming, etc. I like to clean for 10-15 minutes every night after dinner – wiping counters, tidying rooms, and doing any dishes. Quick daily clean-ups prevent messes from getting out of control.

5. Get the Kids Involved

Don’t do it all yourself! Even young kids can help with age-appropriate tasks like dusting, putting away toys or sweeping. Older kids can take on bigger jobs like cleaning bathrooms, folding laundry, washing dishes etc. Offer rewards, make it a game, or put on music to make chores more fun.

6. Limit Clutter

Rotate toys so only a manageable number are accessible at once. Keep surfaces like tables and desks clear so messes don’t accumulate. Designate a spot near the door for backpacks, shoes and coats. Containing the clutter makes cleaning faster and prevents you from feeling overwhelmed.

7. Prioritize Common Areas

Focus first on keeping shared spaces like the kitchen, living room and bathrooms tidy since these get the most use. Closing doors can help contain mess in bedrooms, keeping the rest of the home orderly. Delegate each child’s room as their domain.

8. Establish Cleaning Rules

Set family rules like no toys outside play areas, no food or drinks in bedrooms, put dirty clothes in hampers, etc. Be consistent in enforcing the rules – it will pay off over time. Lead by example – kids are more likely to comply when parents follow the same rules.

9. Schedule Deep Cleans

In addition to daily tidying, block time on weekends for bigger projects – scrubbing bathrooms, mopping floors, dusting, wiping down walls etc. Get the whole family involved to lighten the workload and teach cleaning skills. Deep cleans refresh your home.

10. Embrace Imperfection

No home with kids will be spotless and perfectly organized all the time. That’s okay! Do what you can, but don’t stress over a messy craft area or a pile of toys here and there. Focus most energy on common spaces, and declare kids’ rooms a “mess zone.”

11. Make it Fun!

Cleaning with kids around doesn’t have to be a chore. Turn on some fun music and make it a dance party! Or see who can tidy up toys the fastest. Another idea is to use a timer and challenge kids to clean as much as they can before time is up.

12. Ask for Help

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to ask your spouse, kids or other family members for help. Or consider hiring a cleaning service every other week or so to tackle heavier jobs like bathrooms, kitchen and floors. Just having them get the home “reset” periodically can be a big help.

The key with managing a clean home is establishing routines that work for your family. Don’t aim for perfection – just do your best to keep the most-used spaces orderly, declutter regularly, and get everyone pitched in. Staying on top of the basics makes the cleaning job much easier, even with a house full of busy kids!

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