It’s springtime, and with all the fun and excitement of the season, we need to remember a vital spring tradition: Spring cleaning.
Spring cleaning is a great time to examine your home and life and clean up the things you no longer need.
What Month is Spring Cleaning?
Though a spring clean can take place during any of the spring months, March-June, I prefer to complete it early in the season. March is the ideal month for a spring clean, as it can still be cold and a good clean is the first step to enjoying the freshness of spring.
Why Do They Call It Spring Cleaning?
Spring is the time of rebirth and renewal. As the Earth washes away the dead things of winter, so should we wash away the things you no longer need.
Historians aren’t sure of the exact origin of spring cleaning. It may have roots in ancient Persia or Israel.
Regardless of the origin, spring is a great time to let go of the clutter and get your house (and life!) cleaned.
What is Included in a Spring Clean?
Spring cleaning can include anything that you need to clean. There is no right or wrong way to conduct a spring cleaning. Many people use this time to toss out the things they no longer need, while others use it to examine their personal lives.
Many people consider cleaning out their attics, garages, and basements a significant component of spring cleaning. Others downsize their closets or wardrobes.
10 Tips for a Successful Spring Cleaning
Cleaning up in the springtime is an age-old tradition, but it can also be stressful and difficult. There’s a lot to consider when cleaning a season full of stuff or a lifetime of memories.
Here are some tips that will help make spring cleaning a little easier.
Make a Plan
If you have a lot to clean, it will be helpful to set up an action plan. Dedicate one weekend to the garage, the next to the attic, and a final weekend to the inside of the house. If you have helpers, assign each person a specific area or task.
Planning your big clean will help ensure everything gets accomplished.
Set a Schedule
You don’t have to do everything at once. Once you know what needs to be tackled, create a schedule and a goal for achievement. Be sure to give yourself ample time to recover and recuperate from the hard work of cleaning, and give yourself and any helpers you may have grace if tasks aren’t fully completed on time.
Check Your Exterior
Does your siding need a power wash? Maybe your driveway needs sweeping, or your mailbox needs a fresh coat of paint. These simple outside features also need cleaning, so be sure to include them in your action plan for your spring clean.
Use the Marie Kondo Method
It’s challenging to let go of the things we’ve collected. Marie Kondo emphasizes a decluttering method that can help. When you look at an item, ask yourself if it brings you joy.
Things that don’t bring you joy can be discarded, while useful things should be kept.
Marie Kondo doesn’t have a monoploy on decluttering. There are plenty of tools and tips available to help you clear your space.
Don’t Just Clean “Stuff”
Spring Cleaning may typically mean cleaning out the garage, but it can refer to many other types of cleaning. Use this time to clean up your finances. Get rid of any useless subscriptions you might be carrying, go over your budget, and ensure your financial life is for the year.
You can use this time to “clean up” your personal life and your body as well. Meditate more, eat better, start working out, and clean up any bad habits you have. Spring is the time for renewal, so embody it with your actions.
Check Your Coverages
Cleaning up your finances also means checking on your insurance coverages. Make sure that you are still getting the best rates on your home, auto, and health insurance. Fill in any coverage gaps, and make sure you still need everything that you are paying for.
Have a Yard Sale
Do you know what makes spring cleaning a lot more appetizing? Making money from it.
Host a yard sale to sell the stuff you don’t want anymore. This helps you downsize and make money at the same time. You can’t beat that.
If you don’t have the time or energy for a garage sale but don’t want to throw things away, consider donating instead. Your local Goodwill will take most items, and you can simply drop them off at the nearest drop-off point.
Donating can also help you with your taxes, so if you donate over $200 worth of stuff, be sure to itemize and get a slip from the Goodwill donation center.
Don’t Stress About It
An important thing to remember with this type of cleaning is to not stress out about it. This entire process is for you and to help you cleanse your own life. Don’t worry if you can’t accomplish everything you want.
Keeping a relaxed attitude about the cleaning process also means not rushing it. Take your time to do it correctly, and don’t feel like you have to accomplish anything in a given timeframe.
Celebrate Your Wins
The best part of spring cleaning is when you’re done and can celebrate a job well done. To make the cleaning more bearable, celebrate the small wins along the way. Give yourself special treats for accomplishing big projects, and plan a big event for when your cleaning is all done.
20 Things to Clean While Spring Cleaning
While conducting a typical clean, we usually clean our floors, countertops, sinks, and toilets. However, many things in our homes need cleaning, even if we don’t think about them all year long. Here are 20 things to check on while spring cleaning to make sure your home is as sparkling as it should be.
Doormats are often the types of things we set and forget. Take this time to shake them out and run them through the wash (if they fit!). Clean doormats are a great way to freshen your living space.
If you don’t have a self-cleaning oven, you may not clean out the inside of the oven as often as you should. Spring is a great time to remedy that!
Mantles often have knickknacks, odds and ends, and various other collectibles that you may or may not still need. Springtime is a great time to dust the mantle off and decide if you still need that figurine you found at a yard sale four years ago.
If your home has a chimney, spring is when to clean it out, mainly if you used it throughout the winter. Generally, chimney sweeping requires a professional, so check your local listings for someone in your area that can handle this task.
If you have a pool, spring is when to get it ready for summer. Take the cover off, get the systems up and running, and check the chlorine levels to ensure it’s ready to go as the weather heats up.
Some garbage disposals need to be emptied, and if that’s the case, spring is the perfect time for that. However, all garbage disposals can use refreshing. Grab some disposal tablets and run the blades to give your kitchen a refreshing scent.
Baseboards are often neglected during routine cleaning. Take the time to run cleaning wipes across your baseboards to remove the dust. Cleaning baseboards is an easy way to give your home an added shine.
When spring cleaning, don’t forget your best friends! Many dogs shed heavily in the spring, so this is a great time to take them to the groomers for a defluff and shampoo. They will smell better, but your house will be less hairy for the first week or so.
Drains often get full of hair and grime. During your spring cleaning, detach the bathtub drains and pull anything out that may have gotten stuck. Pour some drain de-clogging solution down to ensure that any would-be clogs get destroyed before they become problems.
How often do you take down the curtains and run them through the wash? If it’s been a while, take the time to do so. Cleaning the curtains will help freshen your rooms.
Check the care tags before running them through a wash cycle. Some curtains may be dry clean only.
You likely vacuum with every cleaning, but when was the last time you steam cleaned your carpets? Spring is a great time to do that.
You likely don’t have a steam cleaner, but many cleaning companies do. You can rent a steam cleaner from Lowes if you want to do it yourself.
Exterior windows don’t often get enough cleaning love. Many are hard to reach, but cleaning them will brighten your home in ways you can’t even imagine.
Cleaning the gutters is likely one of the least desirable spring-cleaning tasks, but it needs to be done. The winter probably left fallen leaves, dirt, and grime in your gutters, and it’s best to clean them out before the April storms arrive.
Lamps brighten up our living space, but they are also spots where dust accumulates. Take some time to dust off the lamp fixtures and clean off the lampshades. You might be surprised at how brighter your rooms look with dust-free light fixtures.
Don’t wait until the next food drive to clean out your pantry. People need food all year long, and spring is a great time to donate anything you might not need for the next few months. Take the time to clear out your cabinets and give the local food bank anything you don’t need that isn’t expired.
When you’re done cleaning the pantry, check out the refrigerator. This is a great time to wipe down all the surfaces, wash the drawers, and even clean the outside. Also, check for anything that may have gotten lost in hidden recesses!
When was the last time you dusted the corners of your ceilings? Spring cleaning is a great time to grab your duster extender and make sure your corners are cobweb free.
Our walls enclose us and keep us safe, but they often get forgotten when it comes to cleaning. Wipe down your walls this spring to give your house a fresh look. Check your paint and interior decoration to find out the best cleaning supplies to use. It may differ depending on what type of decorations you have.
When summer comes, you will want your HVAC system running correctly. Spring is a great time to clean out the vents and hire a service provider to ensure no issues with your system.
When was the last time you moved your couch? Spring is a great time to move all of your furniture and clean up any dust bunnies lurking behind it. Clean under your bed, under your entertainment center, and around your bookcases to get all the hidden spots.
Ready for Spring?
Spring cleaning is the perfect way to get ready for spring. Dive in and organize your life for a happy, successful spring season!
Melanie Allen is an American journalist and happiness expert. She has bylines on MSN, the AP News Wire, Wealth of Geeks, Media Decision, and numerous media outlets across the nation. She covers a wide range of topics centered around self-actualization and the quest for a fulfilling life.