Our room-by-room cleaning checklist guides you through everything you need to tidy up before hosting a holiday gathering with friends or family.

By Jessica Bennett
October 19, 2020
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Holiday hosting involves a lot of prep work. Once you've decked the halls and completed a grocery list for your favorite holiday dishes, there are still a few important tasks to check off your list. Before guests arrive, you also need to clean your home to get it company-ready. Although you don't need to deep-clean your home from top to bottom, you should tidy up the spaces you know guests will frequent. That includes the entryway, main living areas, kitchen, and any bathroom visitors will use.

The most important thing is to make sure these areas appear clean and clutter-free; you don't need to go overboard scrubbing and organizing every inch of space. A little strategic holiday cleaning and decluttering will go a long way, which means you can spend less time with a vacuum and scrub brush and more time enjoying the company of those you love. To help you sort through which tasks are worth your limited time and attention during this busy season, we've curated a complete holiday cleaning checklist that guides you through each room of your home. Refer to this list to prioritize cleaning duties and get the job done as quickly as possible. Although it's particularly helpful around the holidays, this house cleaning checklist can also come in handy anytime you're hosting guests.

Credit: Adam Albright

Holiday Cleaning Tips for Your Entryway

An entryway offers the first impression of your home as guests arrive. In addition to decking the space with holiday decor, take the time to clean and organize your entryway before gatherings. Give visitors a warm (and tidy) welcome by following these holiday cleaning steps.

Checklist
  • Entryway Holiday Cleaning Checklist

Credit: Adam Albright

Holiday Cleaning Guide for Living Areas

Holiday gatherings typically center around main living areas, such as the dining room and living room. Determine which rooms guests are likely to congregate in and focus your holiday cleaning efforts there. Make sure these spaces look their best with a quick once-over before the doorbell rings.

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  • Dining Room and Living Room Holiday Cleaning Checklist

Credit: Adam Albright

Kitchen Holiday Cleaning Tasks

If your holiday festivities include food, there's a good chance your kitchen will be on display for guests to see. To quickly clean your kitchen, focus on the problem areas that are most visibly messy. This kitchen cleaning checklist will prep your space for holiday hosting.

Checklist
  • Kitchen Holiday Cleaning Checklist

Credit: Adam Albright

Bathroom Cleaning Tips for the Holidays

Freshen up the bathroom that guests are most likely to use, which might be a first-floor powder room or a guest bathroom. If your visitors are spending the night, make sure the bathroom is also stocked with plenty of supplies, including extra towels and toiletries. Follow this checklist to prep your bathroom for the holidays.

Checklist
  • Bathroom Holiday Cleaning Checklist

If you've finished these holiday cleaning tasks and still have some time, take a few minutes to set the mood by lighting a candle, putting on some music, and setting the thermostat to a temperature your guests will be comfortable in. These extra touches will help set a festive tone and make you feel more comfortable knowing your home is clean and ready for the event.

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