Every apartment and house gets dirty—it's unavoidable. How often you need to dig out the scrub brush depends on how big your place is, how many people live there, and whether you have pets. In a busy home, many things need a good wipe-down every single day, but if you live alone, you can let a few things slide here and there.
This list outlines the appliances and rooms that, in general, could use a daily, weekly, or monthly cleanup, but it's all about learning the rhythm of your home and finding a cleaning
The kitchen is the heart and lungs of a home. This is where families gather to chat over coffee and catch up over the holidays, and where all the meal prep and cooking happens. That near-constant use calls for daily cleaning of your table, counters, and floor—basically any surface in your kitchen that receives regular contact.
Your kitchen sink takes the brunt of everything you do in the heart of your home. Meal prep like skinning potatoes and washing vegetables occurs over this vital basin. You wash your hands in the sink after handling raw meats, so your faucet handles need cleaning too. If you have a garbage disposal, all your unneeded leftovers go down the drain.
All these activities and more splash food bits and germs in and around your sink, which tend to leave it looking messy and can cause contamination if left unchecked.
How many times have you moved the milk to get to something in the back, only to find the carton stuck to the shelf? Sure, wiping up messes in the fridge as soon as they happen is best practice, but we use our fridges dozens of times throughout the day and week, and overlooked spills are bound to happen.
In addition to cleaning up these sticky spots before they cement into place, you may have yummy leftovers morphing into science projects; why not make a weekly fridge sweep mandatory?
Some bathroom cleaning, such as wiping the toilet seat and sweeping, should happen daily. But weekly deep-cleaning is necessary, especially if you live with folks who don't always hit the target.
Wipe down the entire toilet: the tank cover, lid, and seat, and those hard-to-reach divots where the screws attach to the floor. Scrub the inside of your tub with a non-abrasive cleaner, moving shampoos and soaps to clean away any dust or hair buildup in the corners. Move everything off your vanity, wipe the surface, then clean the sink, faucet, handles, and mirror. If you make it a regular event, it shouldn't take more than 15 minutes to keep this room in tip-top shape.
We've all experienced the microwave spaghetti sauce catastrophe that wasn't cleaned immediately. Countertop appliances really do benefit from a weekly deep-clean. For the microwave, take out the glass turntable and put it in the dishwasher, then thoroughly wipe down the interior. You may need to let the cleaner set a bit if you'd have a recent sauce-tastrophe.
Take apart your coffee and espresso makers, wash the parts in hot, soapy water, and wipe down the exteriors. In addition to cleaning up the coffee ground dust, these appliances tend to perform best when they don't have crumbs gumming up the works.
Raise your hand if the towel in your kitchen or the washcloth draped over the kitchen faucet has a funky odor—we won't judge! Most of us also have that one family member who insists on using the same bath towel for a month and always leaving it in a heap on the floor.
Once a week, put all the kitchen and bath towels and washcloths through the wash.
Humans sweat. At the end of a long day, you might skip a shower and wait till morning. Then you sweat while you sleep. You might even drool while you sleep (ew!). Given all that, it's nos surprise that by the end of a long week, those bedsheets and pillowcases are ready for a refresh.
Keep your bed, and the air you breathe while sleeping, fresh and clean by stripping the bedsheets every week and putting them through the wash on the hottest setting.
While sheets and pillowcases should be washed weekly, the rest of your bedding probably doesn't need to be cleaned more than once a month. After stripping the bedsheets, put all pillows, bedspreads, and comforters in the wash, preferably on the hottest cycle if the colors won't bleed.
Make sure you dry these heavier materials thoroughly to avoid mold or mildew that could trigger allergies.
Have you baked pizza without a pizza pan? A casserole without a baking sheet underneath? The charred remains of your best dinners live at the bottom of your oven. Depending on how fast you collect blackened mozzarella, monthly cleaning of this essential appliance should suffice.
Chemical sprays can make this a fast, set-it-and-forget-it kind of job, but it's better for your health (and your pets') if you use elbow grease and some hot, sudsy water. If you don't leave this task for months on end, it won't even be too arduous. Afterward, line the bottom of your oven in aluminum foil to collect supper stragglers and make cleaning a breeze next time.
If you're like most of us and always forget something you had to clean, try pairing up this task with a deep clean run of your dishwasher, too!
Cleaning the windows and blinds in your home helps remove the dust and allergens that collect between the slats and lets you see what's happening outside; nope, it's not your eyes, it's just a dirty window!
Doing this slightly more time-consuming chore monthly is usually more than enough, but if you have a smoker or pets in the house, or if you live on a dusty road, you may need to give them some TLC every other week or so.