A time effective way to stay on top of your housework
If you’re like me and struggle to commit large blocks of time to house cleaning – zone cleaning might be the answer for you. Zone cleaning (thanks to The FlyLady) is something that has worked well for me over the past few years and has been such a game changer to our cleaning routine.
Zone cleaning encourages you to break your home into areas (zones) and to focus on one zone per day. I spend 15 minutes (set those timers!) in a different zone of the house each day. To stay on top of clutter, I use the time to make sure that things are put back in their homes first. I do a quick tidy up and then if I still have time, I wipe down benches/dust etc. As a general rule I don’t use the 15 minutes to do the floors as this is done separately, twice a week. You'll be amazed at how much you can do in 15 minutes. Give it a go! The first few weeks can be hard as you work to get on top of your rooms and establish a routine, but once you get on top of the clutter and in turn the spaces – it is a quick and easy way to stay on top of your house moving forward.
As an example, Thursday might be Master Bedroom zone. Firstly, I’d remove any clutter and change the bed sheets, then depending on time, I’d wipe down the side tables, dust the blinds and wipe down the mantel etc. Sometimes during my zone cleaning I find larger jobs (such as washing cushion covers, cleaning windows, cleaning the oven etc.) that need my attention, I add those to my list of three tasks to do on a separate day.
Here are some examples of Zone Cleaning schedules (remember adapt and do what works best for you and your home):
Monday: Living rooms
Saturday: Outdoor Area
Wednesday: Kids Rooms
Thursday: Master Bedroom
Hints and tips for Zone Cleaning..
· It can take some time to establish a routine – stick with it. If you are unable to complete seven zones a week perhaps start with three or four and work up from there.
· Tweaking your schedule is definitely ok (and recommended as you start new routines 😊) – do what works for you.
· Set your larger zones to days that you are home or know you don’t have many standing commitments. Or, if you are doing the kids bedrooms perhaps do those on a day that they are home and can help. The outdoor area might be best allocated to a weekend if you are spending time outside. Make your schedule work for you.
· Perhaps having a set zone cleaning schedule is not for you – maybe you could allocate 15 minutes to zone cleaning a day and then on that day select the zone that works best and do it on that day.
· After you have had the system running for a few weeks/months you might find the clutter in your house has decreased and you have extra time for cleaning the zones or even be able to finish the zone before the 15 minutes is up.
· If you have our Leanne Baker Daily Weekly Planner there is a page towards the front of the planner where you can note down your zones. I’d recommend using pencil on this page, as your daily zones may change throughout the year. If you have the Daily Planner you may record them on the daily layouts as a list of three item or during a time slot.
· If you prefer to have a schedule visible - on say your fridge or command station – perhaps write something out or type it up and print it and stick it up.
· Like anything – stick with it for a few weeks. New systems and routines take time. You can do it!
What I love most about this system is that it fits in with our family and spending 15 minutes a day cleaning is easily allocated into my day – each zone receives my attention each week and I have time free on the weekend to spend with family and friends. That is a big win in my books!
I would love to hear if you have implemented zone cleaning and ways that you might have changed the system so that it works better for you. If you haven’t tried zone cleaning before and decide to give it a go – let me know how you go I always love hearing from you.