In case you haven’t gotten on it just yet (and we don’t blame you because 2020 hasn’t been the easiest), we’re here to remind you that it’s time to get through your spring-cleaning chores checklist. It’s best to get things underway before the dust bunnies decide they’d like to spend the summer in your home, after all. And while you’re at it, we’d like to recommend some eco-friendly spring-cleaning tips so that your house isn’t just spic and span but also clean and green.
And don’t worry, being environmentally friendly when cleaning your home doesn’t have to be too expensive or difficult. Our “green” guide to cleaning your house hopes to make it as easy as possible.
Use green cleaning products
By “green” we mean natural items that you probably already have in your larder versus strong chemicals. For instance, a nasty mould and mildew problem can be solved with a few spritzes of vinegar. Have the area marinate for a few hours then scrub it. Follow it up with a baking soda-and-water mixture to rub the mould off without hurting the surface.
Speaking of baking soda, this item is very versatile. It can hang out in your refrigerator to absorb unpleasant odours, be used to freshen up rugs and carpets and help remove grime from used cookware. Baking soda can even be a quick fix for unclogging a sink (the process also involves hot water and vinegar).
Lemon juice is a surprisingly good stain remover. If you do a little research, you’ll be amazed at the different ways you can use kitchen items as eco-friendly cleaning products.
Make your rooms smell amazing
Room smelling a little stale? Instead of reaching for the can of air freshener, take the natural route with natural DIY potpourri. You can use cut-up fruits, cinnamon and an assortment of herbs and spices to your liking then have them simmer in a pot of water on the stove and just enjoy the aroma as if wafts through the house.
Another easy eco-friendly potpourri option is to put some dried fruit, flowers, and spices with a few drops of essential oils in a little bowl in areas that you want to freshen up.
Reuse old fabric for cleaning rags
If you have a pile of old clothing items that can’t be donated because they’re probably too faded or frayed, consider using them to replace paper towels in your arsenal. Cloth diapers and thick socks are very absorbent and therefore great for sopping up spills or cleaning the car in lieu of a sponge.
Or you can cut up old shirts to create rags for polishing furniture, fixtures, and even floors. So if you think an item’s not fit to wear anymore, maybe it’ll have a long second life as part of your cleaning equipment.
On a similar note, you can use outdated newspapers (if you still have them) to clean your mirrors and windows with a few squirts of vinegar instead of using paper towels. Just be careful that the inks don’t start running onto the frames.
Eco-friendly laundry drying? Use the sun!
Saving electricity is another way to go green while cleaning around the house, and one way to do this is by drying clothes with a sun and clothesline combo. Spring and summer are the best times to do it since it’s hotter and drier, so you can just let the electric clothes dryer hang back until rainy days. You save money on electricity and reduce your carbon footprint. Sounds like a plan!
Include energy efficiency in your spring-cleaning plan Since you’re trying to become more eco-friendly, declutter your home from energy-wasting appliances and habits.
Start with replacing your halogen bulbs with more power-saving CFL or LED lamps. Use power strips with switches so you can easily turn equipment off when they’re not in use or unplug them entirely. Cleaning air ducts, refrigerator coils, air conditioner filters are also good tips for improving energy efficiency at home so you’re not needlessly spending on electricity.
Clean out the refrigerator and pantry
Sometimes food just piles up in the refrigerator and pantry and we forget to eat them. It’s a good idea to be more conscientious about our consumption so it can help to track and label the items we’re buying and going with a “First In, First Out” mentality when planning meals. But since we’re also spring cleaning, we can also put inedible and expired food items into our compost bins so they’re not completely wasted.
Now if there are shelf-stable food items that are still unopened and unexpired in your larder, consider donating them to shelters or food kitchens so they can make use of them in cooking for people in need.
Beautify your home with some well-placed indoor plants
The recent lockdowns have left people clamouring for more greenery as they’re unable to go out as they normally did, which is probably why indoor plants are even more popular this year. Accentuate all the cleaning you’ve been doing by adding a few house plants here or there, but just make sure you’re committed to giving these the appropriate care and nutrition they might need. House plants can cheer you up and boost productivity – two things most of us need help with during this pandemic.
Did our green guide to spring cleaning help?
We hope our Earth-friendly tips come in handy as you go down your chores checklist. We think you’ll find that integrating even just little “green” steps in your day-to-day lives take you a long way. You’ll probably be surprised at how easy and cost-effective it is if you’re creative.
A deep cleaning is one way to get your house noticed by buyers too
Putting your house on the market? A thorough cleaning and decluttering should be part of your preparations, but there’s still more to do. If you’re unsure of where to start, Upside’s expert real estate agents can guide you through steps that can make your house more attractive to house hunters.
Get in touch with us today and book a free, no-obligation appraisal with your local Upside agent.