Spring is officially here, and after being cooped up inside your house for months, you’re no doubt in need of a change of scenery. Sure, you could take a vacation. But it costs a whole lot less to do some indoor and outdoor spring cleaning, instead. It’s amazing how freshening up your surroundings can also refresh your spirit.
Below are three indoor spring-cleaning tips, followed by three outdoor ones.
1. Conquer one room at a time.
While each space in your home will require its own checklist and time commitment, plan to do some of the same things in every room. TasteOfHome.com recommends that these tasks include wiping baseboards and walls; dusting blinds and washing windows; mopping, vacuuming or even shampooing rugs and carpet; dusting or polishing furniture; cleaning windowsills and ceiling fans; dusting electronics, décor and shelving; and sanitizing remote controls, computer keyboards and mouses. Along the way, don’t be afraid to declutter toys, tools and books, and consider recycling mail, magazines and paperwork.
2. Commit to letting things go.
Letting things go can mean either discarding them or donating them. Prime items for consideration? Clothes you don’t wear anymore because they’re outdated or holey. MadameNoire.com has some other solid suggestions for things you can toss without remorse, including stained or tattered towels, old hygiene products, expired emergency foods like canned goods and bottled water, and deteriorating shoes and purses. Items to consider donating include decent clothing and shoes; dishes; CDs, DVDs and Blu-Rays; read or unread books; stuffed animals; and extra furniture.
3. Go green with cleaning products.
BiofriendlyPlanet.com warns that “many commercial cleaning solutions are made with harmful chemicals that pose a risk to you, your family, your pets and the environment.” Instead, the website recommends using homemade solutions involving such products as baking soda, white vinegar, lemon juice, rubbing alcohol, borax and cornstarch. For details about how to use these items as powerful cleaning agents, click here.
1. Get on a ladder.
A spring roof inspection should be on every homeowner’s to-do list, according to AmeriPro Roofing. Note missing or worn shingles, look under eaves and on all exterior walls for water and other types of damage such as discoloration and hail damage, and photograph anything that looks awry so you can better explain it to a local roofing contractor. As long as you’re on the ladder, scoop out gutter debris and clear the canals by running water from the hose through them. Use the hose to also ensure downspouts are working.
2. Prep outdoor items for use.
Hook up all hoses, scrub the grill and fill the bird feeders. Then clear the sidewalks of debris, sweep off and wash down the decks, bring out the furniture and get ready for some outdoor living.
3. Be on poop patrol.
Last, but certainly not least, thoroughly traverse the yard with a pooper scooper and search for dog droppings that have collected over the winter months. I know my yard looks like it’s littered with landmines right now!
Of course, spring cleaning can entail many more tasks — especially depending on how deep of a clean you want. These tips will get you started; the rest is up to you.