The 20-Minute Daily Clean Routine That’ll Give You Your Weekends Back

updated May 20, 2024
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A home cleaning schedule should make you free, not tie you down to a series of tasks that eat away at your downtime. That’s why my favorite kind of homekeeping routine helps you check off your to-dos during the week rather than putting them all off to the weekend. 

To get to your housework to-dos before the weekend, commit to cleaning for 15 to 20 minutes five days a week. Then welcome freedom — and a tidy home — when Friday night comes. 

A successful weekday-only cleaning regime relies on two categories of cleaning tasks: ones that you repeat every day as a matter of habit and ones that you do once a week.

Cleaning as Part of Your Daily Routine

Do these tasks every day to stay on top of messes. These should be considered daily habits and not necessarily part of your 20 minutes of cleaning a day. Each should only take a few minutes anyway:

  • Wipe down wet bathroom counters.
  • Squeegee the shower doors, walls, and floors after every shower.
  • Wash dishes after each meal.
  • Sweep or use a cordless vacuum on the kitchen floor and any other heavily trafficked spots.
  • Put things back where they belong after you’re done with them (cushions, remotes, sorted piles of mail, purchases, backpacks or purses).
  • Wipe down kitchen counters.
  • Wipe the table after each meal.
  • Unload the dishwasher and empty the dish drainer. 
  • Clear surfaces of clutter. 
  • Take out the kitchen trash.

Then Once a Week, Tackle These Areas

Spend up to 20 minutes a day on one or a combination of the following tasks:

  • Wiping glass and mirrors in the bathrooms and elsewhere.
  • Dusting.
  • Vacuuming carpets
  • Wet mopping hard floors.
  • Cleaning bathroom counters and toilets.
  • Cleaning out the fridge.
  • Tackling clutter hot spots.
  • Deeper cleaning of kitchen appliances.
  • Deeper cleaning of the bathrooms (showers, sinks, tubs, fixtures).
  • Add laundry as needed, keeping loads small as much as possible and completing the cycle, i.e., wash, dry, fold, and put away.

Following is a sample schedule. Power through one like it during the week and say hello to housework-free weekends.

  • Monday: Dust and clean glass and mirrors throughout the house.
  • Tuesday: Clean out the fridge and clean kitchen appliances.
  • Wednesday: Vacuum carpets throughout the house.
  • Thursday: Wet mop hard floors throughout.
  • Friday: Deeper cleaning of bathrooms and tackling clutter hot spots.