Saturday, December 5, 2009

7 Quick Tidy Tips that Make a Big Impact

With the holidays upon us, I know many will host guests or holiday parties and may even have some drop-in visitors. If you've got someone dropping by last-minute (as my inlaws often do), then you might only have 5 or 10 mins to do a quick tidy up before they arrive after receiving a call from them that they're on their way. Let's face it, nobody's home is immaculate 24/7 unless they have a housekeeper on staff full time or they never get out to enjoy life.

Here is a list of  tips that take very little time but make a big visual impact in your home.


1. Make Your Bed- Nothing looks messier than an unmade bed. Of course you can always just shut the door but it does make a huge difference in how you feel about your home even on a daily basis. A made bed instantly makes any bedroom look neater.

2. Gather Loose Items- If you grab a bin or basket and can round up kids' toys, magazines, and any other odd items laying around the house, they'll be much easier to grab vs. holding them in your arms. This way you can quickly deliver the items back to their designated areas or if you're really pressed for time, you can stash them in a bedroom closet and put the items away after your drop-in guest leave.

3. Load it Up- Any kitchen instantly looks neater by moving the dishes from the sink to the dishwasher. The trick is to make sure day-to-day that you never let the dishes pile up excessively or your dishwasher may not have enough room.

4. Fridge Facelift- Many fridges often have various papers taped to the front doors as well as  loads of magnets on the sides and front as well. As a Professional Home Stager this is one of the first things I recommend to my clientsfor their showings. It's quick and easy and makes a dramatic difference.

5. Fluff the pillows- If you're having a short drop-by visit, the guests are likely to use the bathroom and the living room area as well as kitchen. Focusing on these areas is best, the sofas and chairs need to be fluffed/plumped up as do the pillows so they look neat and inviting. Any blankets or throws should either be stored away or neatly draped over the edge of the chair or sofa.

6. Beautify your Bathroom- The same tip that held true for rounding up items in your home is true for the bathroom. Keep all personal care items, toothbrushes, prescription meds out of sight. If you have a lot of items, round them up in a basket and place them in your linen closet where you can later put them back neatly, if you're pressed for time. You can also use storage baskets to gather these items and place them on a bathroom shelf or under the sink. Be sure to draw the shower curtain and change out the hand towels for a new, clean set. Also,  make sure there is a full roll of toilet paper and some hand soap.

7.  Toss theTrash- Any visible and non-visible trash cans should be emptied from the bedrooms, bathrooms, office and kitchen and taken to the garage's main trash bin. This eliminates odors from kitchen scraps and instantly neatens the room. Nobody likes to look at a full trash can or worse, try to put their garbage into one that is about to overflow. Light a few scented candles and place them in rooms such as the living room, kitchen and bathroom or a hall console table to freshen up and add additional warmth to your home. You can also open a few windows for 5-10 minutes to eliminate stale air.

These of course are not meant to be 'cleaning' tips but rather quick tidy-up and de-cluttering  tips that can be used everyday in conjunction with an already clean home. I will be posting some holiday clean-up schedules in the coming weeks as many prepare to entertain.

For more great cleaning and tidying tips, visit our previous posts on keeping a clean car , keeping a clean fridge  and cleaning with natural ingredients.

Have a Wonderful Weekend!

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