Interiors, Lifestyle

How to tidy and clean fast: get your home guest-ready in a hurry!

Got an unexpected visitor and a super messy house? Don’t panic! Follow my tips on how to tidy and clean fast and you’ll have a guest-ready home in no time! 

Come a little closer, I have a secret to tell you….

Despite being on a one women quest to create pinterest perfection in my home, sometimes it’s just a complete mess! 

I’m pretty sure that it’s not just me though. If you’re as much of an instagram addict as I am, you might be fooled into thinking you’re the only one with discarded toys strewn around like there’s been an apocalypse.

It’s simply not the case.

There’s no getting away from it. The easiest way to ensure your house is guest ready at the drop of a hat, is to have a weekly cleaning routine that you actually stick to (which I’ll get into on another post). But sometimes life just gets in the way, you’re too busy or too tired. Yes it’s true, you have as many hours in a day as Beyoncé – but I’m guessing Bey probably has a team of cleaners to take care of these kind of things! So not really a fair comparison.

So what do you do on those occasions when you get that dreaded last-minute text ‘Can I pop over in 30 minutes?’ but your home looks like a scene from The Hangover? OK, hopefully not quite that bad – but you get my drift.

I like to think I’ve become somewhat of a ninja when it comes to these skills, because life gets in the way of tidying up a lot around here. I’m pretty sure that most of my friends would tell you that my home always looks clean and tidy when they visit. So what’s my secret?

Here’s my formula for tidy and clean home in a hurry.

How to tidy and clean fast

Tidy and clean fast – cleaning routine

1. Prioritise

I always start in the room we’ll be spending the most time, as this will be the place guests are most likely to notice any clutter or dust. Then continue with other rooms they might go in to like the bathroom and kitchen. Then if they turn up a little early or I run out of time at least the room we’ll be in for the majority of the time is looks neat.

2. Tidy the clutter with a big box

I’m aware that this makes me sound like a bit of a weirdo, but I’ve started to clean my house with a box. Yup, you read right – a box. Hear me out on this one, because I think you’re going to like it!

Being a Mum I can tolerate a certain level toy clutter, but on this one particular day it was off the charts. Everywhere I looked there were things that didn’t belong, including a giant cardboard box.

This box had previously been a ‘pirate ship’ for my son and now it was my secret weapon.

Working my way around the room, I threw all the things that weren’t in their rightful home into the box. At the same time I put away all the items that did belong in the living room. I added a bag for any rubbish/recycling into the mix. Within minutes serenity had been restored to the living room. I was amazed at how much quicker it was without numerous shuttle runs to put away all the stray items.

I swear it cut my tidying time in half, especially living in a townhouse with rooms on three floors. So grab yourself a box and clear that clutter first!

Bonus tip Don’t have enough time to put the items in the box away before your guests arrive? Just put all the clutter in the box and stash it in a room they won’t be going in! Don’t worry, it will be our little secret. Then once they’ve left make sure you put all the items from the box away.

3. Dust & Vacuum

Don’t go crazy, but knock of any visible dust from surfaces and then quickly run the vacuum in high traffic areas only, like the entrance hall and living room.

How to tidy and clean fast

4. 5 minute kitchen clean

Here’s my super speedy kitchen clean fast routine that takes no more than 5 minutes, I promise.

  • If there is any clutter lurking, repeat the box method
  • Put all dishes in the dish washer or stack them neatly in the sink if you don’t have one
  • Wipe the counter tops and sink

5. 5 minute bathroom clean

  • Wipe clean the sink, counter tops and toilet
  • Replace the towels with fresh ones
  • Make sure there’s plenty of hand soap and spare toilet rolls
  • Pour some bleach down the toilet and flush for that lovely bubbly, freshly cleaned effect with zero elbow grease
  • Finish up with a squirt or two of air freshener

How to tidy and clean fast:

6. Finishing touches

If there’s a little time left, these extra little touches will create the illusion of home that’s always super clean and tidy.

Take out rubbish

There’s nothing worse than a brimming full bin, take out the rubbish. Not only will you home smell better, but there’s something about a freshly emptied bin that makes your home seem so much cleaner.

Light a candle

Speaking of smells, light a scented candle so your home smells super fresh. It helps to create a calming atmosphere and your guests will have no idea of the frantic tidy up that has just taken place.

I hope that you found these tips helpful for getting your home clean fast and that you won’t feel an overwhelming sense of dread next time you have an unexpected visitor.

Want more tidying tips? Check out my post on how to keep your home tidy with kids.

What’s you best tip for getting your home clean fast? Let me know in the comments below. 


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Simple tips for cleaning your home in a hurry. The perfect cleaning routine for when unexpected guests are on their way to your house and you need your home to look nice and tidy.


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3 Comment

  1. Reply
    Lauretta @ Home and Horizon
    April 5, 2017 at 11:44 pm

    I love this post – right up my street – I’m always having to do last minute tidying!

  2. Reply
    Anne Marie
    April 6, 2017 at 11:12 pm

    I actually sacrificed two drawers in my living room just for toys so I don’t have to run upstairs with every toy that’s been left behind. And as a huge cushion addict, I have to remember to “fluff ” all the cushions. And that instantly makes my living room look clean and tidy : )

    1. Reply
      April 7, 2017 at 4:44 pm

      It’s totally worth it to get rid of the clutter! You can never have enough cushions, that’s for sure ; )

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