When You Don’t Have Time to Clean

Have you noticed dust bunnies running around under the living room furniture, bedroom, and other spaces you don’t look at very often? Are the windows a mess to the point where it’s hard to see out? You know it is time to do some deep cleaning, but you don’t have the time. If you took a week off work, you could do deep cleaning. Who wants to take precious vacation time to clean the house? Not me!

In this article, we will look at tips on how to do that deep cleaning in small steps requiring small increments of time. It may take a week or two or even a month, depending on the size of your home. In the end, you will feel you have accomplished a big job in little time. And there will be no more dust bunnies, at least not for a few months.


The key is to create a cleaning caddy with cleaning supplies to carry from room to room. You will want to include several rags, one for dry use and one for wet. Swiffer dusters with long handles are great. Use a liquid spray that is gentle and can be used for all surfaces. You might want a separate caddy for cleaning windows with window cleaner, paper towels, and/or a squeegee.  

Make a list of things that need to be done for each room. Prioritize your list, starting with the most manageable tasks at the top. Many of the tasks can be done in 10 to 15 minutes. For example, if you are waiting on someone, grab the duster and start dusting a room from top to bottom. You will be surprised how you can find 10 – 15 minutes throughout the day.

As you have time, select a task from the list. Start with the easiest room. Below are some tips on what to do.


The fastest way to make a room look clean is to declutter it. Get some empty bins and label them throw away, give away, laundry, _____ closet, room _____. We tend to leave things in the living room that should be in the closet or a bedroom. As you go through each room, picking up things that don’t belong there, place the item in the appropriate bin. When finished decluttering, place each bin in the appropriate room so the items can be put away.

Cluttered room
Free public domain CC0 photo. from Rawpixel

General tips for each room

Each task listed below can be done in just a few minutes.

  • Dust ceiling fans. Use a little furniture polish on a rag to wipe the top of the blades. It helps keep dust from sticking.
  • Dust under and around objects on all furniture.
  • Wipe around all light switches and areas where dirty hands touch.
  • Clean air vents.
  • Dust or vacuum the blinds.
  • Wash curtains
  • Vacuum or wipe with a damp cloth all baseboards.
  • Wipe TV and computer screens with a little window cleaner on a soft rag.
  • Wash mirrors.
  • Vacuum your upholstery furniture.
  • Use a gentle leather cleaner for your leather furniture.
  • Wash the throw blankets every few months. They are great dust collectors.
  • Clean the floor under all furniture. A Swiffer with an extension is a great tool to get into hard-to-reach places to avoid moving heavy furniture.
  • Finish the room by vacuuming the rugs and damp mopping the hard floors.

Weekly living room tips

Do the following once a week in the living room when you have a little time to clean. Your house will always look great. You will never be embarrassed when visitors come unannounced.

  • Declutter. Keeping things in their place makes a big difference.
  • Dust under and around objects on all furniture.
  • Dust under furniture with a Swiffer.
  • Vacuum rugs and damp mop the hard floors.

Keep your cleaning caddy and supplies in a closet, so it is always ready to go when you have a few minutes. I hope these tips are helpful when you don’t have much time to clean.   

Featured Image by congerdesign from Pixabay