The holidays are right around the corner, which means you might have last minute guests delivering good cheer. If they happen to catch you between cleaning days, don’t worry. With just a few minutes, you can fake a clean house!
1. Control Odor! That means investing in a good air freshener, opening a window or turning on a fan or air conditioner. If you don’t have room spray, pop a piece of toast into the toaster (but don’t burn it!) or put on a pot of coffee. And take out the stinky trash!
2. Clear Clutter! Grab a laundry basket and get to work. Throw into it everything that you consider clutter–not just the clothes laying on the floor. Hide the basket in a closet and deal with its contents AFTER your company leaves. (The kids might actually enjoy this task!)
3. Clean Yourself! Someone’s called to schedule a quick pop-in on a Saturday or Sunday morning? Make sure your face is washed/shaved. Comb your hair. Control your odor with cologne or deodorant. Seriously, your company will be spending the majority of their time looking at you than your house.
4. Check the Living Room First! This is where you’ll probably be spending your visit anyway, so pay attention to it. Control its clutter (see tip #2). Vacuum, if you can, but if time’s really tight, at least vacuum the main traffic pattern area.
5. Check the Bathroom! Chances are your guest will have to visit it. This is why those pop-up cleaning cloths are so handy. Wipe everything down–including the toilet rim. Clear away the trash, wipe down the mirror and remove clutter from the vanity. Make sure there’s a clean towel out and there’s toilet paper on the holder. Also, make sure there aren’t any floaters in the toilet!
6. Check the Entry! First impressions speak volumes. Again, remove clutter. Sweep or use the Dust Buster.
7. Check the Kitchen Sink! Throw the dishes in the dishwasher–don’t worry if they’re not stacked properly, you can do that later. The important thing is to get them out of view. While you’re at it, wipe down the counter.
8. Etc! If you’re done with your mad-dash cleaning and your company hasn’t yet arrived, keep doing small cleaning tasks until a knock comes to your door. These could include giving the place a once-over with an inexpensive duster or damp cloth and straightening books, magazines and even rugs.