The living room is one of the main areas in your house that is the most frequented by your household and other people, especially guests. It’s where you welcome people and entertain them, so it must always look presentable. Even if you can’t afford to redecorate it or replace the old furniture placed in the room, one way to make it more pleasing and livable is to keep it clean. Here’s how you can clean your living room most effectively:
1. Get rid of the clutter
Start cleaning out in doing small things like getting rid of the clutter amounted during the day. Throw out any obvious trash. Once you had the time, gather anything that seems out of place in the living room and put it in a pile in the middle of the room. Consider whether you truly need it and if you can’t remember when you last used it, consider donating it, putting it in storage or tossing it out. Doing this regularly will keep clutter from piling up your living room and prevent it from becoming overwhelming next time you clean it out.
To make this step easier, make sure that whenever you’re done using an object, put it away. Enforce this with your family members as well, especially with your kids. One effective way to do this is to put away objects that are left out by them. If they ask where it is, tell them that if they don’t pick it up or put it away, it will be gone. This can help your family form new habits.
2. Make sure there’s a place for everything to go
Once you have got rid of the clutter and re-organized your things, make sure there’s a place for everything you have. It’s the key to keeping your living room clean, organized and presentable, especially since it’s the room where you most likely entertain your guests. If something doesn’t have a place yet, put it on one side or in another part of your house temporarily.
Before you buy something new for the living room, make sure you have planned a specific place for it. If you buy on impulse, sometimes it just becomes a clutter for your home.
3. Sort out your TV cabinet and electrical cords
Organize items that are placed in your TV cabinet. If your existing TV cabinet can’t contain all the items and electronics that you use, consider investing in one that can efficiently manage the items you own without creating clutter and can display them in a presentable manner. If you own a lot of CDs or DVDs, it may be worth investing in dedicated media storage for them. Then, tidy up your electrical cords because if not properly organized, they can ruin your living room décor. Tie them up with Velcro tapes or insulated cable covers to keep them neat and intact. Using a hidden conduit or casings is a more effective solution.
4. Dust down the ceilings and clean walls
Look at your ceiling corners if there are cobwebs in it. See if the walls needed to be washed in the dirty spots. Do some spot cleaning or spot washing as needed, taking into consideration your vents, switch plates, doors, and doorknobs.
5. Dust and clean all wall hangings, like arts and photographs
Take down your wall hangings and let them receive some TLC. Dust and dirt might be settling in these pieces, so they must be cleaned as well. Don’t spray any cleaner or water into your glass frames, as a liquid can still seep behind the glass and damage the photos or art. Instead, wet a clean cloth lightly and simply wipe off the pieces.
6. Vacuum your drapes and blinds
Take down your curtains, draperies, and blinds and have them dusted, washed and/or vacuumed. Curtains must be washed according to the washing instructions for the fabric. You can also use a steam cleaner for them. For your blinds, use the low setting on a vacuum cleaner and a brush attachment to gently clean the slats. You can use an old but clean sock, dip into a mild detergent solution, and then put it in your hand to use as a wiper for each slats. Repeat it using another sock that is dipped in water only.
7. Clean your ceiling fans and lampshades
Use your vacuum cleaner and set it on the lowest setting with a brush attachment to quickly remove cobwebs and dust in your ceiling fan and fan blades. When dusting, start from the top to bottom to make cleaning more efficient. Make sure you tackle the chain and bulb (if your ceiling fan comes with a light fixture) as well as the outer side of the fixture to remove any dust hiding. Sometimes you might need to take down any light fixture and gently wash and dry it before putting it back. Use your vacuum cleaner and attachments to clean the lampshades and your lamps.
8. Dust your surfaces
Give your coffee table, shelves, and TV a good dusting regularly using a feather duster. When dusts become too stubborn, run a slightly damp cloth over the surfaces of shelves and tables to effectively remove dust and spot-clean some fingerprints. For bests results, use microfiber cloths. You may need to vacuum first, especially inside shelves and cabinets that hasn’t been cleaned for a while. Don’t forget to dust from top to bottom, so you don’t need to go back to the spots you’ve already cleaned. For your TV screen, use a dry microfiber cloth and go over the buttons, as well as the back of the TV to remove dust and fingerprints.
9. Clean out your couch
For basic clean-up, especially if guests are coming, simply focus on the visible parts of the sofa. Fluff your pillows, straighten up seat cushions and pick up any food crumbs, hair or lint on the upholstery using a vacuum cleaner. For deep cleaning of your sofa, use a vacuum cleaner with an attachment to suck up the dirt, dust, lint and crumbs on your couch crevices. Do some spot cleaning if there are stains, but before you use any cleaner, test it in a hidden area first.
10. Polish your furniture
Once you have dusted your furniture with a slightly damp cloth or a vacuum cleaner, polish your furniture to make them looking good as new. There are furniture polishes you can find, but you can also make your own. For wooden furniture, you can mix 4 parts of olive oil and 1 part vinegar in a spray bottle. Test it first on a hidden spot, then if it achieves your desired effect, spray it all throughout your furniture until the wood shines.
11. Clean your carpets and rugs
Don’t just vacuum your rugs – take them and your doormats outside and bash out the dust with a carpet beater. This will help make your rugs cleaner and look better. Wipe your doormats down and dust them off. It’s best to shampoo your carpets and rugs to clean them and make them last longer.
Carpets are more difficult to clean, and if they are heavily soiled, you may call a professional to clean it or rent a cleaning machine to deep-clean your carpets. Vacuum your carpet well before cleaning it out with the machine, and sprinkle a bit of baking soda to remove unpleasant odors. When using the cleaning machine, divide the carpet in sections to clean all areas thoroughly. Move as you would when vacuuming – clean each section slowly with a side to side pattern. Once you finish cleaning your carpets, lay down towels in high-traffic areas to keep them clean while it’s drying, plus it also helps them dry faster.
12. Vacuum and clean the floors last
Always save vacuuming for your floors as the last step. This will ensure that you’d suck up all the debris that has amounted from cleaning from the ceilings to your surfaces to the dust that’s already on the floors. Vacuuming the floors must be done at least once a week to keep it clean and tidy. Start with the far corners on your way out of the room, and don’t forget to vacuum the top parts of the baseboards as well, as these areas can be dust collectors.