How to Make Cleaning Easier to Begin With

Yes, cleaning will always be there to do- especially with young children, but there are definitely a few simple things you can do that can drastically cut down the time you spend doing it.• Have a Shoes Off Policy in Your House: Ok, we know this one is a controversial one, but it really does cut down on the lead dust and other contaminants tracked into your home tremendously.

• Limit Eating to the Kitchen: Maybe popcorn on family movie night should be allowed? But in general, we like this idea. It's something we grew up doing, but didn't continue when we started our own home. We found it at Small Notebook, and are inspired to give it a try.

• Avoid the Pile-Up: It sounds so simple right? Do the breakfast dishes after dishes and wipe down that high chair, counters, table, and floor (if you have toddlers!) right after each meal. There's nothing like seeing a huge pile of dishes in the sink to drain your energy.

• Evaluate Your Current Systems and Create Ones that Work: If you have a mail system, but you notice mail remains unopened on your entryway table for days before making its way to your bedroom floor for a few more days- maybe it's time to reevaluate your system even if it seems like a great one on paper.

• Get Rid of More Stuff and Keep Surfaces Clear: You don't have to be a total minimalist, but it's definitely much easier to dust a clean dresser or table than one covered in trinkets. Keep one or two meaningful pieces on display and dusting can be done in minutes.

What are your tips for creating a house that's easier to maintain?

(Image: Real Simple)

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