Tried and tested methods to help you clean your house in 40 minutes

IS Saturday your house clean-a-thon day?

How long does it usually take you? The whole of Saturday morning?

It doesn’t have to be that way.

Here are some tried and tested methods to have most of your house cleaning chores done and dusted within 40 minutes.

Note that this excludes the bathroom and kitchen areas, as these should be cleaned on a daily basis anyway.


• Create a playlist on your cellphone with eight of your favourite songs. Try to stick to songs that are each an average of five minutes in length. Either clip your phone onto a belt around your waist or shove it inside one of your pockets.

• Chase out all the house inhabitants – they’ll only get in the way of your manic cleaning spree.

• Fill the kitchen sink with hot, soapy water and place all the breakfast dishes inside to soak.

• Gather in one bucket the following: a feather duster, two microfibre cloths, a spray bottle of all-purpose cleaner, a damp sponge and a black bag.

• If your vacuum cleaner has a floor sweeper brush attachment, now is the time to put it to good use.

Otherwise, grab your favourite broom, as well as an empty, clean laundry basket.

• Have a bucket with warm soapy water and a mop on standby.
Ready, set, go!

40 minutes to go

Start playing your playlist at top volume.

For the next 40 minutes you’re free to sing and dance along to your heart’s content – it’s all about having fun (and burning off calories too!) while finishing your chores.

Try to do the following before the end of song 1:

1. Moving quickly from room to room, empty all the trash cans into your black bag.

2. All items that do not belong in the specific room go into your laundry basket.

3. Once all the garbage has been cleared out, put the black bag aside.

4. Empty the contents of your laundry basket, placing all the items in their correct places. Dirty laundry remains inside the basket, which is then taken to the laundry room.

35 minutes to go

Before the end of song 2, do the following:

1. Using your feather duster, quickly move from room to room, dusting the ceilings, light fittings, window and door frames, and all the little nooks and crannies where dust bunnies wish to hide.

30 minutes to go

Before the end of song 3:

1. Moving swiftly from room to room, spray all surfaces with all-purpose cleaner.

2. Follow this with a quick wipe using your microfibre cloth. Use the damp sponge to give sticky stains a bit of a rub.

Why do we love microfibre so much? They are super absorbent, they can clean almost any surface with nothing but water, they pick up dirt and other particles, they don’t leave behind lint or streaks and they won’t scratch delicate surfaces.

25 minutes left

This step might take a bit longer than five minutes, so give yourself two songs in which to do the following:

1. Now it’s time to ‘sweep’ the floors. Once again, moving swiftly from room to room, use the vacuum cleaner (floor sweeper brush attached) – or your broom – and quickly give the floors a quick sweep.

2. Vacuum clean all the carpets too.

By now you should have reached the end of song 5 on your playlist.

15 minutes to go

If your whole house is carpeted, you may skip this step.

Before the end of song 6:

1. Go fetch your mop and bucket.

2. Once again, moving swiftly from one room to the next, give all tiled floors a quick but thorough mopping.

3. Keep the sponge at hand to remove sticky stains.

Remember to start at the furthest end of the room and reverse towards the room’s entrance (otherwise you’ll be trapped!).

For best results, wear only socks while completing this task.

10 minutes left to go

Before the end of song 7, quickly do the following:

1. Hurry back to the kitchen and finish doing the dishes.

You’re almost there!

5 minutes to go

Before the end of song 8:

1. Straighten all duvets and blankets.

2. Puff out the pillows.

3. Put out fresh towels.

4. Give everything you might have missed one final wipe.

Time’s up!

Put on the kettle and enjoy this very well deserved cup of tea or coffee.

PS: Your family may now come back inside the house.

*For emergencies, like if your in-laws are 10 minutes away and your house is a total mess, watch this hilarious video:

Mari Scott

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