The end of winter signals a lot of things: snow and ice melt away, the days get longer, flowers start to bloom, the sun finally comes out, and temperatures warm up.
It’s a time to shed the heavy clothes, claustrophobic feelings, and cloudy pre-spring months and leave them behind.
This time of year often leads to spring cleaning, an annual purge of unnecessary belongings. A tradition of giving your home a good deep cleaning before the summer months arrive.
You don’t have to wait for April to get started, though.
This quick guide will explain spring cleaning’s origins, why it’s important, and how to get a jumpstart on doing it.
Why People Spring Clean Their Homes
People started giving their homes a thorough cleaning every spring for pretty good reasons.
Homes 200 years ago were lit by oil lamps and warmed by burning coal or wood, none of which are clean-burning substances.
The result was a film of dark soot and ash that coated ceilings, walls, shelves, furniture, window sills, and personal belongings.
The grime needed to be cleaned away, a process which was done when the weather warmed in the spring and the windows could be left open to air out and dry the home.
And while we may not have oil lanterns or wood fireplaces in our homes, adding a layer of soot, Spring cleaning is still just as relevant today as it was 200 years ago.
Being cooped up all winter accumulates more dust, germs, and dirt than all of the other months of the year.
A thorough deep cleaning as the weather warms and we start spending less time indoors can help get us prepared and in the mood for the upcoming summer months.
How to Dig into Spring Cleaning
The biggest thing to remember is that spring cleaning is a process, and you don’t have to finish your whole home in one day.
Take your time with it, grab that old bicycle out from the closet, and try to enjoy the process! Here are some easy-to-follow steps to get you started.
1. Put things back where they belong
If your home has accumulated some clutter over the winter, the first step is to put the piles and randomly placed items back to where they belong.
Clothes go back in the closet, dinnerware and cups in the kitchen, shoes in the coat closet, and so on until all items are in their rightful places.
You’re not cleaning during this step, merely organizing.
2. Thin out what you own, one room at a time.
Now that everything is where it belongs, it’s time to sort what you have and figure out what you don’t need.
Holidays, birthdays, shopping trips, vacations, and other assorted gifts and purchases accumulate quickly, often overwhelming your closets, drawers, and shelves.
Grab a couple of boxes — one for donations and one for trash — then start in one room and sort your belongings.
Part with duplicates, items you were gifted but do not want or need, and anything you no longer like, haven’t worn in more than a year, or have no intention of using in the future.
You’ll know when you see it if it’s something you want to keep, so trust your instincts.
Gently used items can be donated to give them a second life with someone else who needs them.
3. Clean your space
This is easiest to do if you combine it with step two.
Once you’ve sorted your belongings in one room, clean it! Dust shelves, furniture, window sills, and baseboards.
Refold the clothes in your drawers and rehang the ones in your closet. Group like items together in baskets or drawers, and organize shoes side-by-side in pairs.
Vacuum your carpets or sweep your hardwood. Clean windows, mirrors, and other glass surfaces.
Wash your sheets and make your bed. Put books and other knick-knacks back on shelves.
One thing that could definitely use organizing is your accessories. Try using an over-the-door hanger on the back of a closet or bedroom door.
Most of all, make sure the whole room is done before moving on to the next. This will help you know where you left off should your spring cleaning take more than a day.
4. Disinfect bathrooms and kitchens
These two rooms will likely require the most elbow grease because they collect the most dirt, grime, and bacteria.
For bathrooms, scrub toilets, sinks, bathtubs, and showers with a quality, bacteria-killing cleaner.
Wipe down glass and windows with window cleaner, wash towels and washcloths, and switch out loofahs and toothbrushes.
As with the rest of your belongings, thin out what you own.
Toss out unnecessary products like dried-up makeup. Take expired and leftover unused medications to an appropriate disposal site and recycle what packaging you can.
Remember, you’re cleaning and organizing, but also giving yourself a fresh start: Use up or toss anything you no longer want or need.
Kitchens get similar treatment.
Sort your dinnerware, pots and pans, souvenir cups, baking gear, and anything else that’s accumulated in your cupboards. Put whatever you’re not keeping in the donate or trash boxes.
Group like things together when putting them back in the cupboards. Disinfect sinks and countertops with a quality cleaner. Run the clean cycle on your dishwasher if you have one.
Clean out your fridge and freezer. Take everything out and wipe down your shelves and drawers with a disinfectant.
Make sure you let the inside dry before replacing food items.
In the meantime, sort your refrigerated and frozen food and drinks, removing anything that has expired. Recycle what you can.
A Clean and Organized Home Is a Happy Home
The nice thing about deep cleaning is that it doesn’t have to be reserved for the start of spring. You can do this same process every few months or as often as you’d like! Deep cleaning your home will go a long way toward welcoming the spring and summer months, though, and doing it regularly will keep you organized all year long.
The nice thing about deep cleaning is that it doesn’t have to be reserved for the start of spring.
You can do this same process every few months or as often as you’d like!
Deep cleaning your home will go a long way toward welcoming the spring and summer months, though, and doing it regularly will keep you organized all year long.
Spring is a time for new beginnings. If you’re looking to upgrade your living situation, our community has the perfect place for you.
So call us today or come in and take a tour in Washington DC today!