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10 home cleaning tips for busy people

Sure, you'll always see a clean home on TV shows like Real Housewives of Beverly Hills (or AtlantaOrange County, New Jersey or Miami). It's television, after all.

In real life, however, with the triple threat of finding time for work, family, and friends, housekeeping understandably comes in a distant fourth. 

So the chances our weekly housecleaning leads to a spotless home week after week are pretty much slim to none. Not because we don't want a tidy, presentable home. It's just that when time is short, something has to go.

These 10 home cleaning tips for busy bodies provide ways to maximize every cleaning minute you have - and let you know what tasks are OK to skip every now and then.

1. if it isn't begging for attention, don't give it any.

If the dust bunnies aren't hopping out at friends and family, it's OK to occasionally let them be.

2. make the most of every home cleaning minute.

Find tasks that you can do simultaneously. For example, while:

  • making coffee: declutter your countertops or organize the kitchen shelves.
  • cooking: wash utensils and dishes and put them away as you go and wipe down cooktop spills.
  • waiting in the doctor's office: pay bills and balance your checkbook or review your calendar and respond to invitations.

3. heading off housework.

  • Use a doormat to keep dirt outside.
  • Eat only in the kitchen or dining room.
  • Return mislaid items to their proper places each night before going to bed.

4. avoid interruptions when cleaning.

Let voice mail take the calls until you've finished the task at hand.

5. be realistic with your standards.

If you lack the time to buff your home thoroughly, adjust your expectations accordingly.

6. call in the troops.

Hold a family meeting to discuss what chores need to be accomplished in the week ahead. Divvy up kids' chores by age. A family that works together has more time to play together.

7. keep household germs in check.

Streamline bathroom and kitchen disinfecting with a speed-cleaning routine.

8. clean away allergens.

Vacuum frequently and wash bed linens in hot water to remove dust mites. (Read 9 Allergy Relief Cleaning Tips here.)

9. thin your houseplant collection.

If you enjoy indoor greenery but spend too much time maintaining it, choose a few easy-care plants and weed out the rest. Need to find out if plants you can't kill actually even exist? They do! Get the names of 6 easy indoor plants here.

10. make your home safe.

A clutter-free home helps prevent accidents from happening. Here are 10 Home Safety Tips to get you started.

Check out the Clean Organized Home Store for the cleaning products, tools and more for quick cleaning!

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About the Author

Tara Aronson

Tara Aronson is a native Californian. Having grown up in San Diego, she studied journalism and Spanish to pursue a career in newspaper writing. Tara, whose three children - Chris, Lyndsay, and Payne - are the light of her life, now lives and writes in Los Angeles. She also regularly appears on television news programs throughout the U.S.