Summer vacations are coming to the end and with it comes the dreaded cleaning. While on vacation, it can be easy to let messes pile up. When you get home, the dirty clothes, clutter, and grime will be there waiting to be addressed. While this can seem like the downside of the end of any vacation, it doesn’t have to be. Here are a few tips for post-vacation clean-up.
Start with the laundry
When on vacation, laundry can easily pile up. When you get home from vacation, the first step is to load the washer with your first load of clothes and a laundry pack. Starting with rotating through laundry can help to bring down some of the clutter and help to remove unnecessary germs. Here are a few tips for the post-vacation laundry pile.
- Pretreat any stains - While on vacation, you may not have the supplies needed to pretreat a stain. Put a bit of laundry detergent on the stain. Use an up and down motion to break up some of the stain before washing. This will help to prepare the clothes to wash. If you have a stubborn stain, use a vinegar and water soak to help further break it up before washing.
- Break clothes up into loads - When you get home, organize all of our clothes into laundry baskets based on the type of cleaning they will need.
- Use this as a chance to sort through clothes - After laundry is done being washed, use this as a chance to bag up and donate anything that doesn’t fit or won’t work for your next vacation or for the coming school year.
Deep-clean the car
Did you just get back from a road trip? Was your car the home of all of the luggage for the trip? The car is often overlooked when you get back from a vacation. Many people get tired and put off truly cleaning out the car. Spending some time doing a deep clean of the car when you get home can be a game-changer. Here are a few things to keep in mind when cleaning out the car.
- Start with the trash - Trash finds its way under seats, between seats, and hidden in every cup holder. Take a few minutes to grab a bag and remove all trash from the car. You can always do a car wash that includes vacuums and garbage cans if you are wanting to get the job done all at once.
- Wipe down seats and surfaces - The car is a big hiding place for germs and mess. Use an all-purpose cleaner and a cloth rag to wipe down seats, dashboards, and other frequently touched areas in the car. This simple step will remove a great deal of the germs your car is hiding.
- Don’t forget the carpets - If you have a steamer or deep cleaning vacuum, it’s time to deep clean those carpets. With a vacation’s worth of dirt, sand, and mess on it, your car carpets can easily become a mess. Use a steamer carpet cleaner to get your car back to its cleanest.
Do a general home cleaning
For some families, a pre-vacation clean is a must before leaving home. For others, the goal is simply to get on vacation and worry about it later. Whichever camp you are in, it is always wise to do a general home cleaning when you get home. This will give you the chance to wipe down counters, clean bathrooms, and make sure your beds have fresh sheets. Here are a few things to clean up when you get home.
- Kitchen - Do a kitchen round-up by washing down counters, throwing out old food, putting away any food from vacation, and giving the floors a sweep and mop. This simple cleaning will help you to start the week off right at home.
- Bathroom - Bathrooms are one of the biggest mess culprits in the house. Take time to wipe down counters, the toilet, tub/shower, and sweep/mop the floors. Freshening up the bathroom can let you bring vacation home.
- Bedrooms - One of the best ways to clean bedrooms and bring some vacation home is to put on fresh sheets and blankets that have been washed. This simple action can let you sleep on a nice clean bed and feel a bit like the first night in a hotel.
- Living Areas - Declutter and then wipe down common areas that will feel messy in the living areas. It is also wise to give the floors a good cleaning. It will improve the smell of the house and remove any germs you may have tracked in from vacation.
- The Walls - Believe it or not, lots of people ignore one of the largest surface areas in their homes: your walls. Fortunately, a wall mop makes it easy to quickly clean those walls to free them of bacteria, stains, and other dirt.
Find a place for everything
Vacations are a great time to pick up special souvenirs from your trip. This could be a special decorative item or a new shirt from your favorite attraction. While these items are a great memory, they can quickly become clutter and collect dust. Taking a few minutes to find a place for these items can be a huge help when keeping the house clean. Here are a few tips for putting away vacation items.
- Clean toys/coloring supplies before putting them away - When going on vacation you might collect additional toys, writing utensils, and coloring supplies. Take some time to thoroughly clean these with all-purpose cleaner before putting them in their containers and drawers.
- Switch out items - When bringing home new items, it can help to get rid of old items that you might not use as much. Donating old items can give you space for new items without worrying about clutter. It can help to wipe down shelves for knick-knacks before placing them on a shelf.
- Don’t save it for later - When returning from vacation one of the first things many people will want is to save it for later. While that might be the first instinct after vacation, it is better to take a few minutes and get everything put in its place to avoid clutter and future messes.