by - Monday, April 25, 2016

This post may be a tad late, as we're well under way with our spring and summer is quickly approaching. But if most of you are like me, you probably keep putting off that spring cleaning you know is necessary but have been dreading.

So this past weekend I finally bit the bullet and deep cleaned my entire apartment, closets and drawers. A huge pile is waiting in my living room to be hauled off to Goodwill. So if anyone wants to help a sister out, I can gladly spot you a free lunch or dinner. Just saying!

Any who, while I was cleaning I realized there were some super easy tips + tricks that helped me speed along the process. As well as some awesome home cleaning tools I've found that y'all may want to try.Like the vacuum that turned me from dreading to do it, to someone who secretly creates messes just so she can use her vacuum. Am I sharing too much, ha?! Whoops!

Here are some of my tips for apartment spring cleaning. And I say apartment, because that's all I have lived in for the past eight years. I also know that's what many of you own or live in. So, here we go:

1. One space at a time
  • Sometimes I have found myself cleaning one window here and then walking to the kitchen and unloading the dishwasher, then stepping into the living room to tidy up the coffee table. All the while, leaving so many tasks unfinished. Then I find myself redoing most of them and wasting time.
  • Instead, section off your apartment in spaces. Bathroom, bedroom, living room, kitchen, etc.
  • This way you are feeling like you've accomplished something and don't allow yourself to get distracted.
  • Also, create a list of everything you need to do and hang it on your fridge. Even the smallest tasks like taking out the trash. By seeing what you have left to do and crossing off each completed task, you'll continue your motivation long past cleaning your tub. 

2. Start with the longest (most tedious) tasks first
  • I usually start with the tasks that will take the longest. Why? Because I'm usually most productive  and motivated when I first start cleaning. 
  • Also, if you aren't able to get all of your tasks done, I've found it's easier to put off the harder and more time consuming tasks. By leaving the smaller to-dos if necessary, you're more apt to get them done at a later time.
  • For me, this is usually my bathroom. Between cleaning the tub, sink and other areas, it can be the most time consuming part of my apartment to clean. So by tackling this room first, I'm ensuring that it definitely gets done. And if it's the only space in my apartment I get cleaned at that time, I leave feeling accomplished that the hardest room is complete. 

3. Take everything out of the closet... yes, everything.
  • If you're switching over your closet from winter to spring, or right now probably spring and summer, it's good to start with a clean slate.
  • Take everything out. Even the shoes.
  • Vacuum out your entire closet and wipe down the walls and shelves. 
  • Starting with a clean slate allows you the opportunity to go through your clothes to see what you should start getting rid of. Or bonus, you may find items that you forgot about!
  • Try to organize what you'll actually wear, in your line of sight / on the shelves that are easier to reach. So items you won't be wearing now need to go to the back of your closet or higher up. By making sure you have easy access to what you actually wear, you'll save yourself time later on.
  • Take clothes that have been in storage and either steam/iron before putting in your closet. Trust me, you'll thank me later when you're in a hurry and want to wear that new polyester dress but don't have time to iron! You'll probably have to touch it up, but it won't be nearly as wrinkled. 
  • Use wood hangers so your clothes won't wrinkle or rub. I tend to use wood hangers so it helps space everything out. Wood hangers also help prolong the lifetime of your clothing. Plus, they're pretty too!
  • Store clothing you wont be wearing at all, but don't want to get rid of. For me, I store all of this in my hall closet in bins and on the hanging racks in bags.
  • Sell whatever you don't need or wont wear on Poshmark

4. Create piles
  • While you're cleaning you're bound to come across things you no longer need, can't sell or want to just toss all together. So in my living room floor I create three piles (since this is the last room I clean). One to give away, one to toss and one to sell. This helps keep everything in once place and organized.
  • Toss what can't be sold. 
  • Get rid of items you haven't used in years. A few weeks ago I finally let go of all of my college notebooks, sorority handbooks, etc. Those things just clutter up drawers and let's face it, you'll never need them again. Obviously keep a few mementos as special keepsakes, but those notes from freshmen year biology? Toss!

5. Take the garbage out last + maintenance requests 
  • Instead of taking thirty trips to the trash room, pile all of your garbage by your front door or outside the door. Then at the very end you can take it all out at once in far less trips. It also keeps you from stopping and starting so many tasks. Saving time is key!
  • Vacuum last. Since you'll likely be walking around all of the rooms while cleaning, even once a room is technically finished, wait to vacuum at the very end. That way you can go back over all of your tracks and finish off the entire spring cleaning in one neat note!
  • Don't forget the smaller, less noticeable areas. Like your baseboards, behind furniture and underneath the couch. Ask a friend or roommate to help you move furniture if necessary. But dust can easily accumulate in this hidden areas, and they're most of the time overlooked. 
  • If you come across any maintenance requests like blown out lights, air filters that need to be changed, or windows that need to be cleaned on the outside, make a compiled list to leave with your building concierge or maintenance man. 
  • Don't be afraid to ask your building to repaint a faded wall, replace that ridiculously slow fridge, or clean your carpet. You have LOTS of rights as a renter, and if you don't ask, sometimes you won't receive. In my last apartment I got the entire carpet cleaned for FREE simply by asking. 
  • I also like to finish off a clean apartment with fresh flowers. I add a vase on my coffee table and on my nightstand in my room. 

What are some tips you have for an organized spring cleaning?

Shop My Favorite Cleaning Tools


I also want to brag on this vacuum for a second.

When my insanely large vacuum blew up last year… yes, blew up. The front part literally blew off. I decided it was time in invest in a good quality vacuum. I wanted one that wasn't super bulky, was less than $200 and was a two-in-one. I did a ton of research and found one from Target that was less than $190. You can even get it cheaper when Target has their home sales. I got mine for $130!!

The Shark Rocket is a two-in-one vacuum and I will never use anything else. I love having the detachable handheld vacuum for quick pickups and the long stem addition to get under the couch and furniture. It's literally the best "adult" purchase I've ever made and I can't say enough good things about it. I literally "create" messes just so I can use this thing. It's that amazing.

What are some of your favorite tools for cleaning an apartment or home? 

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