Cleaning for the cleaners….

I know, I know,….the topic itself makes people roll their eyes. But for me, it’s a new problem.

Housecleaning

You see…I didn’t know the BEAUTY of the “housecleaners” until last year. The topic of “cleaning for the cleaners” didn’t apply to me. But….as my number of children has grown, and my activities/responsibilities have grown, I felt the need to slide this one in the budget. And….I DON’T regret it. If you can make it happen, do it! Especially if you can find a service that you like.

I am definitely a “cleaner before the cleaner”. I have the philosophy that money and time shouldn’t be wasted. If I am paying by the hour for cleaners and I can do a few things to make their job easier and faster, than I’m going to do it. Since they are going to be cleaning my WHOLE house in a 2-3 hour period, ( come on, I could NEVER do that),  I have developed some “housecleaning etiquette” that we try to enforce in our humble abode. I thought I would share a few ideas with those of you who utilize a housecleaner or a service. Don’t forget, preparing for the cleaners is a “team effort” here. Some of these tasks below are done by the kids. Obviously, this is just my opinion…Here goes:

  1. Clear off all items on your kitchen counters that can be stored quickly. I have an “office area” in my kitchen. The mornings that the cleaners come, I put all my files/paperwork in the cabinet under this area.
  2. If you want to have them do something extra, make it easy for them. This morning I asked the girls to wipe down my fridge as well (not something they normally do), so I removed all the kid pictures and magnets so they could do it. I have decided that I want them to use my mop and floor cleaner, so I make sure the mop and cleaner are in their bucket in the kitchen when they arrive.
  3. Leave out a basket on a kitchen island or someplace visible for “little things” they find under the couches, or behind stuff.
  4. Put all shampoo, conditioners, and other bottles in your shower under the sink. I also shove the bag of kid’s bath toys under the sink as well. It eliminates their need to take them down and then replace them in the bathroom.
  5. Only have them clean what is important to you. The rest is not worth your money. I don’t have them regularly dust my kid’s rooms or make their beds. Their dressers are too kid-cluttered and their beds they make themselves. I simply have them vacuum out their rooms. However, I hate seeing how dusty my washer/dryer get so I make sure that room gets vacuumed out, and wiped down.
  6. Leave a notepad in a regular place every cleaning for messages. I leave messages for my cleaners about areas that need extra addition or areas that I cleaned over the weekend so they can concentrate on other areas.
  7. Think about ways to leave little “goodies” for your cleaning people. If we bake cookies or a special dessert during the week, we package some up for the cleaners. I let the kids write little thank you notes as well. Sometimes it’s just nice to be surprised.

I hope you have found this list insightful….maybe not. Maybe you just enjoy walking out the door when the cleaners arrive and you are content with leaving your house “as is”. Either way, I’m sure all of us LOVE the smell of “clean” as you re-enter the house. So…..join me in a glass of wine as we toast the smell of Lysol that fragrances my house.

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4 thoughts on “Cleaning for the cleaners….

  1. Jen

    Good ideas, thanks. I am trying out a cleaning service,again hoping to find something I like before the next baby arrives. So far I have only had folks that I don’t feel were worth the money, though when very pregnant even that would do!

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  2. Jenny

    We have had housekeepers for years. Not because I am spoiled or anything (you know me!), but because we also need the extra help, especially given my wheelchair and everything. There are some things I simply can’t do or take me twice as long to tackle, and once the girls came along and both my husband’s and my responsibilities grew exponentially, it just didn’t seem fair for more to end up on his plate. Originally, BC (before children – heehee!), we had someone come just a couple times a month to give the house a “deep clean.” AD (after deliveries – heehee, again!), we needed more help. In the end, it came down to a nanny/childcare so I could do as much of the work, or have the housekeepers come every week, and expand what they helped with. This was a no-brainer for me: housekeeper.

    I am generally “a let’s clean/straighten for the housekeeper” kind of gal, too. I like to have dishes loaded and run in the dishwasher, so that they can unload and put away, and then load again with any errant water glasses, etc. that can always be found around our house. They help with laundry, so I always try to have as much of that done (even if it’s not folded) and ready to go.

    Unfortunately, I am not as good about clearing off surfaces, or giving them a parking lot for little things/toys they find while cleaning (which inevitably end up stuffed into some random toy bin). LOVE those ideas, and am so glad you shared them! See – you’re a seasoned pro! πŸ˜‰ I hope you’re enjoying the extra hands so that you can tackle those other things that no one but you can do.

    Loving the blog, btw! πŸ™‚

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