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Get Your House Clean in 2 Hours!

Want to get your house clean and company-ready but feeling overwhelmed by piles and dirty dishes and laundry? Well, help is here!

Get Your House Clean in 2 Hours!

In this post, I give you a simple plan to get your house clean so you can host guests this weekend or just enjoy a cleaner home for yourself and your family!

This two-hour step-by-step plan will help you get all the major cleaning done so that your home looks presentable for your guests (and I’ve got a FREE printable checklist for you that you can print and hang on your fridge to keep you on track!):

Get your house clean in 2 hours: The plan!

1. Gather the laundry from the hampers and start a load of laundry (3 minutes).

2. Set the timer for 15 minutes and take a laundry basket and a trash bag and go through each room in your home. Quickly straighten, pick up, and put away everything that’s out of place. Put all trash in the trash bag and put everything that doesn’t go in that room in the laundry basket (15 minutes).

3. Put away all contents in the laundry basket and throw out the trash (5 minutes).

4. Head to the kitchen and load the dishwasher or hand wash the dishes (15 minutes).

5. Switch the laundry from the washer to the dryer and start another load in the washer (2 minutes).

6. Sweep or vacuum your kitchen floor and wipe down your countertops (10 minutes).

7. Take some toilet cleaner and go squirt it in all your toilets (2 minutes).

8. Take some window cleaner and spot clean the main glass windows/doors/mirrors (3 minutes).

9. Take a dust rag and quickly dust in the main rooms of your home (10 minutes).

10. Vacuum all the major traffic areas in your home (20 minutes).

11. Head back to the bathrooms wipe down the toilet, sinks, floor, and bathtub/shower. Change the towels (20 minutes).

12. Switch the laundry from the washer to the dryer and fold the clean laundry (15 minutes).

13. Light a candle or simmer some potpourri on the stove and enjoy your freshly-cleaned home!

Get Your House Clean in 2 Hours!

Get Your House Clean: Free Downloadable Checklist

Like to cross off lists? Download the free 2-Hour House-Cleaning Checklist to keep you on track and remind you of what you’re supposed to be doing next. Now you have no excuse for getting distracted.

(We made two different styles so you can choose which you like best and print that one. You could even laminate it and hang it on your fridge if you think you might regularly use it!)

3 Tips for House-Cleaning Success

1. Set the Timer

A timer works wonders in helping me stay focused and work quickly. Plus, it makes it seem more like a game to see if I can finish my project before the timer goes off!

2. Turn on Some Music

It’s much more fun to work when you’re accompanied by cheerful, upbeat music. There are lots of great channels available that you can stream on Pandora or Spotify. (Here’s one I’ve been listening to recently.)

3. Stay Focused

Don’t worry about the next thing on the list or your overwhelming to-do list. Just focus on the project at hand until the timer goes off. Then, move on to the next project.

If your house is a complete disaster, it might need more than two hours. However, remember not to get too hung up on making it perfect.

Just work quickly and efficiently and do the best you can do in the time you have. Even if your house isn’t pristine after two hours of work, I’m sure it will at least look quite a bit better than it did when you started. 😉


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  • Laura L. says:

    Yay! I’m so glad you’re going to go back to making more real life posts. I’ve really missed them. I mean the deals are great but I miss the cleaning / decluttering / organization challenges, recipes, and home making stuff. I did enjoy your fashion challenge (GYPO I think it was called) earlier this year. Thanks for all you do. Merry Christmas!

    • Thanks so much! We tried to going back to money-saving/money-related only posts this year and I just didn’t like it like I thought I would. I have SO much else I want to write about! 🙂 More coming the changes, what you can expect, and why next Saturday. 🙂

      • Diane says:

        Hi Crystal,
        I enjoy your personal/family posts, too. I’m so glad to hear that you’ll be featuring more of these in the future.
        I wish you a beautiful Christmas!

        • Thank you so much! I’m excited to bring them back after a year of trying to see what it would be like without posting them here!

          • Theresa says:

            I’m excited for the posts to come back! I missed the goal posts, frugal living tips and reading posts. The blog has been missing personality this year and I’m glad to hear you’re coming back to it.

            • Thanks so much for your encouragement! It was an intentional move and I don’t regret it because it was really clarifying for me to find out what I love to write about and what I love to share! And I’m happy to be bringing back those things I really love to share about — and those things that I think others really enjoy reading about, too!

    • Sophie PIper says:

      LOVE this post. Super helpful. I get overwhelmed by the house, but when I start moving fast it makes a huge difference. Once I start seeing results, I get motivated to get more.

  • Julie C says:

    Merry Christmas to you and your staff ! Hope you have a safe and wonderful trip back home. Thanks for all that you do for all of us blog readers each and every day.

  • Heather Harman says:

    Great cleaning plan!

    If only my washer ran a load that quickly! Beware of the newer “energy efficient, water-saving” models. Mine takes 55 minutes or more.

  • Chrissie says:

    In so excited to hear about the Changes. I fell in love with your blog two years ago and really enjoyed the book posts, and inspiration! I stick around for that! Glad to hear more will be coming my way for 2018, I’ve missed it! Merry Christmas

  • Looking forward to seeing all that you have planned for 2018! May God grant you and your family a blessed Christmas. Christ is born! Glorify Him!

  • Lauren says:

    I too am really excited that you will go back to some of the sharing posts that I have missed.

    Wondering how you start a load of laundry so quickly? We have little kids that still get stains on a lot of the laundry, and I feel like it takes me at least 15 minutes to stain treat all the clothes. Do you have a detergent that you don’t have to stain treat everything, or is there a different way you sort your laundry that’s more efficient than mine? 🙂 I hope you have a very merry Christmas.

    • S.T. says:

      I’d like to know, too. It takes me a long time with all the stain treating. Lots of little kiddos over here!

      • My kids are older now, which means not as many stains! Yay! 🙂

        When they were younger, I tried to stain treat immediately. Whenever they got into their jammies at night, I’d take the stained items to the washer, spray them with Shout, and throw them into the hamper in the laundry room. That way, I didn’t have to dig through laundry to check things for stains when I was doing laundry.

        Also, one thing we do (that is a huge no-no, but it works for us), is that we rarely ever sort laundry. If something is brand-new, we soak it first and wash it separately. If something has special care instructions (which very few of our clothes do because I just try to stay away from items with special care instructions!), I take care of it myself (instead of putting it in the hamper). So when the kids go to start the laundry, they just dump it in without sorting.

        Most of our clothes have been worn a LOT (my kids don’t have a lot of clothes — they prefer to have a few items that they re-wear over and over and over again), so we don’t have to worry about things bleeding into other things because they’ve all been washed so much! 🙂 (And yes, I know, we break all sorts of laundry rules, but works for us!)

        • Chris says:

          I rarely sort laundry either. I even wash towels with clothing.

        • Renee says:

          I don’t sort clothes by color or care label either. Nice to know I’m not the only one. I sort clothes by person or by the room they come from/go to so that folding & putting away is easier. All daddy’s dirty work clothes in one load. All boy kids clothes. Girl kid clothes. & mom & baby clothes together get washed on a gentler cycle.

  • Anne says:

    We have a 2 story home. When I am company cleaning, I start downstairs. Once that is where I want it (1 – 2 hours depending but my spouse is usually cooking so I’m free to clean), I venture upstairs. Once the bathrooms, dusting and floors are clean, I’m usually done. I don’t worry about doing laundry since my guests won’t care if my hamper is full and we use cloth napkins all the time so waiting to do laundry until guests are gone is often better. The hamper isn’t usually full anyway because we do our laundry both regularly and frequently. We usually don’t clean the kitchen separately because we clean as we go daily and my spouse deep cleans the kitchen floor after every social event we give.

    If I’m cooking, I clean the bathrooms within the week before and my spouse takes care of the dusting and floors.

    I often subscribe to Jean Kerr’s theory of party giving. If you get enough people in the room, you can’t see the dust in the corners or whatever bugs you the most.

  • Miranda says:

    Thanks for the post Crystal! Perfectly timed! Shared:) Have a Merry Christmas with your family.

  • Stephanie says:

    Merry Christmas! I did this yesterday. I am a teacher off for Christmas break. It felt so good to get up this morning and have everything done. Of course, it took me more than 2 hours, but worth it!

  • Meredith says:

    So excited for you to share those kinds of posts again!
    Merry Christmas!

  • Diane says:

    Merry Christmas ! Blessings to your family in 2018.

  • Nicole says:

    I’ve been using this list of yours for years, but can’t find my file. I was getting ready to search the site and this was the first post! Its a little bit of sanity on a night that I am feeling totally overwhelmed with my house and a sick family before Christmas. Thanks to using this for years, I know I can get my house clean in 2 hours and feel a little more sane! Thank you and the new printable is very pretty.

  • Thank you for the great post, Crystal. I am definitely looking forward to reading more about your life. 🙂

    I’m taking a few days next week to throughly clean so that I can start the New Year with a really clean home.

  • Sarah Ann Wong says:

    Thank you! This checklist is a Godsend and is a very doable way to get our house in order for Christmas in hardly any time at all. Hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas.

  • Quinn says:

    This really helped me!
    I had a messy house to clean up and knowing I had a plan to follow made it possible to tackle!!! And I didn’t feel overwhelmed like I normally do.
    This might be my go to when life happens to help me get back on track of my daily and weekly systems I have adopted through Clean Mama.
    Thank you for posting this!

  • Kristie says:

    I pinned this and I signed up! I love the idea of cleaning in an organized and quick manner. And I love checklists! 🙂

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