Spring Cleaning Tips: Strategies For Getting Your Home Organized And Spotless

When spring cleaning is almost upon you, it's easy to feel panicked and quickly go through the motions of getting your home in shape. However, if you want your cleaning to be really thorough and effective for the rest of the year, it's important to read more and take a second look at your cleaning regimen. You might be able to improve your life by implementing a few of these top cleaning strategies.

Put A Clothing System In Place

Spring is a great time to revamp your wardrobe and get rid of unused clothing and accessories. One way to make this process easier on yourself is to organize your clothing throughout the year based on whether you use it or not. You can do this a couple of ways, depending on whether you use a dresser or a closet for your clothes:

In A Closet: Turn all of the hangers so that they face the same direction every spring. It's best to put them looping behind the rod, to make things easier on yourself later. As you wear clothes throughout the year, turn the hangers around and hang them back up looping outside of the rod. Once the year's gone by, you'll know if you have any unwanted clothes in your closet just by taking a quick look at the hangers. Of course, it's still up to you whether your unworn items get a second chance or a trip to the donation box.

In A Dresser: When you put clothes into your dresser in spring, make sure the top of each garment is facing you, so the clothing appears upside down. As you wear them throughout the year, just fold them up and flip them around so that the tops -- the necks of T-shirts and the waistbands of shorts, for example -- face away from you. At the end of the year you'll only have to go through your dresser once to identify unworn and potentially unwanted clothing.

Sanitize Those Rarely-Cleaned Fabrics

When spring cleaning comes to mind, you're likely to picture yourself getting germs off of the surface you're already used to cleaning, like the kitchen counter and the floors. However, fabrics in your home can go overlooked, and they need love too.

For example, carpets need a thorough cleaning once per year. Manufacturers recommend this cleaning be done with professional equipment, but a really powerful steam mop and some carpet shampoo will do the trick if you have them. Otherwise, it might be a good idea to call your local cleaners.

Curtains are another secret source of germs and possibly even mold that often go overlooked. If it's been too long since your last curtain cleaning, give them a good run through the washing machine, or follow cleaning instructions for more delicate fabrics. Don't forget to include your shower curtain, too! If you skip cleaning it, you could end up getting sick.

Furniture is yet another often-neglected source of germs and dirt. If your want your home looking its best, it may be time to break out the upholstery cleaner and put your couch through the wringer. Be sure to vacuum out all of the mystery crumbs that may have accumulated inside it as well. Also, if you have pet furniture, now is the perfect time to give it a thorough cleaning, which will help keep pet dander and fur out of the air in your home and get rid of pet smells.

Plan Ahead For The Big Purge

If you know you'll be discarding and donating a ton of stuff during your spring cleaning, it's best to sit down and plan ahead before you start in order to make the cleanup simpler at the end.

Consider renting a small dumpster for items you intend to through away, especially if you'll be getting rid of large furniture items and bulky older electronics. Dumpster rental companies will haul away the trash as soon as you call them, which can leave you feeling clean and refreshed instead of staring at a huge pile of junk in your front lawn.

Before you give away old items to charity, make a list of them and their estimated prices. When tax time rolls around next year, you'll be able to claim their value as a charitable deduction. Next, call local donation centers and ask if they'll be willing to do pickups. Some charitable organizations will be happy to send helpers to your home to move big, unwieldy items for you. They can also lend a hand if you have quite a few things to give away, making the sorting and donating process much faster.

With organization, a keen eye, and planning, your spring cleaning process should be even faster and more effective than ever. Now, if you start to feel overwhelmed by it all, you can also remind yourself that it'll be a whole year until you have to do it again. Happy cleaning!