How to Use a Cleaning and Organizing Checklist in 9 Easy Steps

cleaning and organizing checklist

Raise your hand if you’re tired of cleaning your house. Hand raised? Well, I’ve got some good news and bad news. I’ll start with the bad: your house won’t clean itself. But here’s the good news: with the help of a cleaning and organizing checklist, you can streamline the process, making it more manageable and less overwhelming.

Maintaining a clean and organized home can feel like a daunting task, especially if you’re not sure where to start. This post will walk you through how to effectively use a cleaning and organizing checklist to keep your living space tidy and orderly.

Step 1: Choose or Create a Basic Cleaning Checklist

The first step is to select a cleaning and organizing checklist that suits your needs. The image pasted below is a printable house cleaning checklist that I made which is included in our Ultimate Mom Planner. You can find various templates online or create a customized one that fits your home’s specific requirements. Consider using a daily, weekly, monthly, and seasonal cleaning schedule to ensure all areas of your home are covered.

Cleaning checklist template:

cleaning checklist template
Use This Template

Step 2: Break Down Your Tasks

Once you have your checklist, break down the tasks into manageable chunks. This is key. Divide cleaning tasks by room or by type of task (e.g., dusting, vacuuming), whichever works best for you. This will help you focus on one area at a time, making the cleaning process less overwhelming and more efficient.

Step 3: Schedule Your Tasks

Allocate specific days and times for your cleaning tasks if possible. For example, you might designate Mondays for laundry and Fridays for vacuuming. By scheduling your tasks, you can create a routine that fits into your daily life, making it easier to stay on top of your chores. This also helps you feel a sense of accomplishment when you complete each task (at least it does for me)!

Step 4: Gather Your Supplies

Before starting your cleaning routine, ensure you have all the necessary supplies. This includes cleaning products, tools, and organizing bins or baskets. Having everything you need on hand will save you time and make the cleaning process smoother.

If using non-toxic cleaning products is important to you, check out this article from another mama who highlights 35 non-toxic cleaning products you can try.

Step 5: Start Small

If you’re tackling a larger project like de-cluttering or re-organizing a room and you are feeling overwhelmed, start with smaller tasks and gradually work your way up to larger ones. You can also create a project outline and timeline to allocate certain tasks on certain days. This could also mean beginning with a single drawer or shelf and then moving on to an entire room. Completing smaller tasks will give you a sense of accomplishment and motivate you to tackle larger ones.

Here’s an example of an outline for a room re-organization or makeover:

Week 1: Pick paint colors and theme

Week 2: Start shopping for furniture

Week 3: Research and select painting contractor

Week 4: Remove old furniture and post on Craigslist & Facebook Marketplace

Week 5: Purchase and assemble new furniture

Week 6: Shop for additional accessories like pictures and other decor items

Step 6: Involve Family Members

Moms (speaking mostly for myself here) are notoriously bad at asking for help. I used to clean my entire home from top to bottom by myself. Then I broke my foot and decided I needed help.

Cleaning and organizing don’t have to be solitary tasks. Even if hiring a cleaning person isn’t in your budget, you can rally the troops. Involve your family members by assigning them specific tasks from the checklist. This not only lightens your load but also fosters a sense of responsibility and teamwork. You can even create a family chore chart or house cleaning checklist pdf like the one you see pictured below.

colorful family cleaning checklist
Use This Template

Step 7: Maintain as You Go

My family members have this awesome habit of never putting things back where they go. Especially shoes and socks. It drives me bananas. For the shoes, I realized one day that our shoe rack was way too small for a family of four and that was part of the reason nobody was putting their shoes away. So, I bought a bigger shoe rack, and that problem has been solved.

As for the socks, I find them everywhere. On the dining room table, in the car, on the couch. I don’t have an immediate solution for the sock conundrum. If you have any ideas about how to get your family to put their socks away, please feel free to comment.

To prevent clutter and mess from accumulating, I’ve adopted the habit of tidying up as I go. Put things back in their place after using them, and encourage your family members to do the same. This will make your scheduled cleaning sessions easier and less time-consuming (and will also likely lower your blood pressure).

Step 8: Regularly Update Your Checklist

As your living situation changes, your cleaning and organizing needs will likely change as well. Regularly review and update your checklist to reflect any new tasks or areas that need attention. This will ensure that your checklist remains relevant and effective.

Similar to how I purchased a bigger show rack, if there is a particular area of your house that is perpetually messy or dirty, maybe it’s time to sit down and find a solution. For example, do you need to purchase additional storage bins? Do you need to re-organize a space so it’s more functional?

Step 9: Reward Yourself

After completing your cleaning and organizing checklist and tasks, take some time to enjoy your clean and tidy space. Whether it’s relaxing in a clutter-free living room or enjoying a cup of coffee in a spotless kitchen, rewarding yourself will make the effort feel worthwhile.

Let’s face it, nobody is there to cheer us on when we complete a giant stinky load of laundry. That’s why you have to be your own cheerleader and give yourself positive messages and compassion. Running and keeping a household afloat is no easy task. And the job does not pay (although it should)!

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a cleaning and organizing checklist?

    A cleaning and organizing checklist is a tool that helps you stay organized and efficient while tackling household tasks. It’s a detailed list of different chores and tasks that need to be done to keep your space clean and well-organized.

  • How do I use a cleaning and organizing checklist effectively?

    To use a cleaning and organizing checklist effectively, start by breaking down your cleaning tasks into manageable sections. Prioritize the tasks based on urgency or importance. Then, systematically work through the checklist, checking off completed tasks as you go. Remember to set realistic timeframes and take breaks if needed.

  • What are the benefits of using a cleaning and organizing checklist?

    Using a cleaning and organizing checklist offers several benefits. It helps you stay organized, ensuring that no task is overlooked. It serves as a visual guide, making it easier to delegate tasks if you’re working with others. Additionally, it helps you maintain a clean and clutter-free environment, reducing stress and creating a more comfortable living space.

  • Lee Cristina Beaser

    MS, Founder - The Career Counter

    Drawing on her experience as a busy mom, Lee designs custom printable home planners to streamline routines and improve organization. Through The Career Counter, she empowers mothers to achieve balanced and productive daily lives.

    Our Founder has over 20 years of experience helping people like you

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