Vacations are great: finally — a week alone when you and your family can relax and spend quality time together. At the beginning of the trip, you’re feeling relaxed and euphoric which lasts a couple of days…until you start thinking about returning home. You know that dreadful feeling — the one you begin to feel as soon as you start packing up your belongings and continue to feel even when you’ve returned home from the trip.
The overwhelming realization of all the chores and items on your “to-do” list hits you. No matter where you go —beach, mountains, big city, overseas— there seems to always be a ton of cleaning up to do. But the situation doesn’t have to be so stressful! Here are some tips on how to make your post-vacation cleaning as easy as choosing your next dream destination!
Clean Before You Leave
Spending a little time planning before you leave can be something you thank yourself for later. One simple way to ensure an easier time of returning home is to clean before you even leave. Creating a clean, organized and decluttered space to come home to is such a relief and makes for an easy transition.
- Before you leave for vacation, wipe down surfaces and sweep the floors to make sure there aren’t spills or crumbs that can attract unwanted houseguests (critters and bugs) while you’re away.
- If you’ll be gone for more than 3-4 days, check out the food in your fridge, and throw out any that could potentially go bad and spoil before you return.
- Take out the trash and clean any dishes to minimize the possibility of attracting bugs.
- Lastly, spend as much time as you can picking up clutter and tidying your spaces. Wash your sheets and make the bed so you have clean sheets upon your return.
- Also, put away clean clothes, pick up dirty ones and put them in the hamper. The last thing you want to come home to is a dirty and cluttered space — it just adds to the stress of unpacking and getting back to the real world!
The post-vacation laundry piles can be massive, depending on the number of people who went on the vacation, how long you were gone, and what activities you did.
- One tip is to pack all the dirty and clean clothes separately. If one suitcase contains everyone’s dirty clothes, it makes it easy to unpack this one right outside the laundry room and distribute the clean clothes in the other suitcase. If you only have one suitcase, pack a white trash bag for dirty clothes. This’ll help separate the clean clothes from the wet or dirty clothes.
- When you return, any wet clothes should be immediately removed from the suitcase to prevent mildew, which can occur easily and quickly.
- When packing your bags back up to return home, make sure you really think about what clothes are dirty. If there’s a chance it may be slightly dirty it’s probably a good idea to throw it in the “to-clean” pile. Sometimes you may just want to wash everything—as much of a pain as that may seem to be—so that nothing is dirty or germy and being brought back into your home.
Dust Upon Your Return
When activity levels in your home are low, more dust can settle due to lack of movement; this can lead to air becoming stale.
- If you dust as soon as you return, you’ll maximize the overall cleanliness of your home. Even if you cleaned the whole house before you left, dust can and will settle over the surfaces of your space. Dusting and doing other cleaning chores like vacuuming are best done as soon as you have time.
Vacations are meant to be relaxing, calming, and a nice break from reality, so there’s no reason your home can’t be that same sanctuary when you return! Try these tips to make post-vacation cleaning easy so that all that remains are the happy memories and a healthy home!