Saving Time and Money

Minimize the minutes, squeeze the dollars, and keep your house looking great.

Clean Quick

Cleaning doesn't have to be an all-day task if you use your time wisely.

In 30 minutes: Sweep the kitchen floor and wipe the cooktop; wipe the sink, mirror, and toilet in guest bath; and dust the dining or living room table.

Two hours to clean: Kitchen and bath basics; vacuum living area floors and dust major furniture; declutter throughout the house.

Double Time

Minor chores to do while talking on a portable telephone:

  • Unload the dishwasher.
  • Sweep the kitchen floor.
  • Fold or wash a load of laundry.
  • Pick up around the house.
  • Iron two or three garments.
  • Polish silver.
  • Clean out the catchall drawer.

Cleaning on the Cheap

Hire a reliable neighborhood teenager, such as your regular baby-sitter, to come in and baby-sit for a whole day while you or your spouse clean the house. It's more economical to pay a baby-sitter than a housekeeper.

Hire outside help with some of thebigger household chores such aslawn care.

Carpet Service: Maintain your carpets with deep cleaning once or twice a year. Have all the rooms cleaned at the same time for the best price.

Heating Service: Save energy by having a heating and cooling service check your system in spring and fall. Routine maintenance saves repair cost.

Chimney Sweep: Hire a licensed, bonded, and insured service to clean and inspect after the heating season. Schedule repairs in summer or early fall.

Cleaning Service: Although you may not get the best price, hire a service occasionally to clean before special occasions or when you are extremely busy.

Lawn Care: Look for services that offer what you need. Beyond seasonal lawn care, ask about occasional chores such as pruning or fertilizing.

Gutters: Be cautious about cleaning gutters if you do it yourself. If you hire help, use a service that is insured, licensed, and bonded for safety.

Window Washer: If you have storm windows and/or a two-story house, this is worth the cost. Look for a service that cleans inside and out.

Child Care: Cut back on other expenses and only hire a nanny or day care with stellar references. For baby-sitting, set up a co-op with your friends.

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