Quick Emergency Clean Up Tips

Dear Home-Ec 101,

What’s the best plan of attack if I need to make the house *look* clean for visiting parents or (especially) in-laws, but I don’t necessarily have the time or desire to do it up right? In other words, what spots do I absolutely have to hit to make it look like cleanly, responsible adults live here?

Signed, Not-Neat Nashvillian

What's the best plan of attack if I need to make the house *look* clean for visiting parents or (especially) in-laws? Here are emergency clean up tips...

retrochick.JPGIvy says:

Boy, can I relate to this question. There have been way too many times in my life that my house has been a disaster, and someone has called to say they are on their way over. Fear not, fellow Nashvillian, I do have a plan with emergency clean up tips for you!

Grab an empty laundry basket and go around and pick up all the clutter in your living room, or whatever area of your house you use to receive guests. Toss that laundry basket in your bedroom closet. Then, go shine your bathroom until it is sparkling.

house cleaning help

Click the picture for more cleaning help!

Quickly, load your dishwasher and run it. If you still have leftover dishes, stick them in your oven. (provided you’re not cooking for your family- and make sure you remove the dishes before you use your oven again!) If your family is the type to open up your refrigerator and help themselves, do a quick wipe down to make sure your fridge is not too terribly heinous.

Finally, sweep and vacuum your floors, and close the doors to any rooms that are a total wreck. Good luck with the in-laws!

Submit your household questions to helpme@home-ec101.com.

P.S. Try these tips when you have a little more time for unexpected company.



3 Comments

  1. Marla on July 2, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    I’ve always been a fan of this trick my older sister taught me – spray lemon furniture polish on the door frame of the front door (or whatever door they will use to enter your home) – enough that they will smell it when they walk in. This is a subconscious mind trick that makes people think your house has just been cleaned.

  2. Kathy T. on March 19, 2007 at 2:16 pm

    Or you can put the car in the garage (cover the window with aluminum foil if necessary), lock the doors, and turn out the lights. Problem solved!

  3. Cookie on March 19, 2007 at 9:38 am

    There are two techniques that require even less work for unexpected company.

    1. Position the vacuum cleaner near the edge of the room and tell guests that you were “just getting ready to clean”.

    2. Have an assortment of Get Well cards on the mantel on a table top and tell guests that you’ve been sick.

    As for the in-laws…better get to cleaning. Trust me, SHE will notice.

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