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How To Set Up a Housekeeping Plan

By on May 19, 2008
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Reader question: How Do I Set Up a Housekeeping Plan? I need a housekeeping plan to get my house clean and clutter free. I also want some kind of housekeeping care plan to keep my house up once it looks the way I want. Do you use spreadsheets or checklists? What do you recommend?

Answer: Decluttering your house is a project all by itself! For great info on clutter busting, check out our Clutter section in the Home and Housekeeping Department. Setting up a Housekeeping Plan for your home is a project that will keep your house cleaning, care and maintenance manageable for you. Designing and creating the plan may take a little time up front, but this is time well spent. By creating a Housekeeping Plan, you are investing a little time now to save you a lot of time in the future.

What are the benefits of a Housekeeping Plan?

Having a plan makes maintaining your home manageable. A regular schedule takes the guess work out of household tasks; you never need to wonder how long it’s been since something was done. Don’t try to clean your whole house in one day! Cleaning is easy if you know exactly what needs to be done and when. A Housekeeping Plan can also be very useful when delegating work to your family.

What Exactly is a Housekeeping Plan?

A Housekeeping Plan is simply a list or schedule that says what tasks you do on certain days. Everyone’s plan will be different, since it is tailored to your specific home and family. We’ve provided a sample to get you started. You’ll need to make small changes to the plan as you go along, until it works just perfectly for your situation. Let’s get started.


How Do I Set Up a Housekeeping Plan?

1. Make a list of all the rooms in your house.

2. Determine frequency. Next to each room, write how many times a week each room needs a regular cleaning (not just picked up, we’re counting on each room getting a quick pick up each day). A regular cleaning can include vacuuming, dusting, washing surfaces, etc. A regular cleaning does NOT include moving furniture, cleaning behind appliances, reorganizing, and other such major tasks. That is a Deep Cleaning, and is done much less frequently.

3. List your tasks. Write down a quick list next to each room of the tasks that need to be done during that room’s regular cleaning.

You now have the information needed to set up your Housekeeping Plan. A Deep Cleaning Plan is something you can set up at another time. Write out the days of the week on paper, then fit each room and its tasks into the schedule. If your kitchen needs to be done every week day, then fill it in for Monday-Friday. If your bathroom only needs cleaning once a week, then place it accordingly. Here is an example of what a Housekeeping Plan might look like:

I’ve Made My Housekeeping Plan. Now What?

Post your Housekeeping Plan in widely visible place. Many people like to use the refrigerator as their command center, but you can choose any location that works for you. It is helpful to keep your family chore chart and your Housekeeping Plan close to each other. This makes it very easy to delegate the work that needs to be done each day to other family members.

Stick to your plan! If you get off schedule, don’t worry – just get right back on the next day. Do a quick pick up every day, but only do regular cleaning according to your schedule. If you stick to the Housekeeping Plan, your house will never get out of control.

Throughout your first few weeks, you may find that changes need to be made to your Housekeeping Plan. Make the changes – you are in control! Gone are the days of not knowing where to start, of feeling controlled by mountains of laundry and piles of dishes, of being the only person who cleans the house! Make the plan work FOR you, to help make your life easier.

Danelle Says: YOU run your house, don’t let IT run YOU!

About Danelle Ice

Danelle Ice is an entrepreneur in Los Angeles and mom of 3. She is the creator of HomeEverAfter.com and SimDanelle.com. Danelle is also known as internet personality SimDanelle, the first virtual person. Danelle is a beauty guru on YouTube, vlogger, blogger, and new media darling. She is a current brand ambassador for for Keurig and previous AMD Tech Mom, Kraft Foods Delicious Byte brand ambassador, and Purex Insider.

12 Comments

  1. Nancy M.

    May 20, 2008 at 5:15 pm

    Thanks for posting this! I need to learn to make a plan of action for cleaning. That way I never have to do the fast cleaning everywhere when someone is coming over.

  2. Danelle Ice

    June 1, 2008 at 10:19 pm

    @ Nancy: You’re welcome! It’s true, a good plan will really serve you in the long run to make life easier. Thanks for reading!
    Danelle, Home Ever After

  3. Crystal

    March 14, 2009 at 6:14 am

    I feel in control already :) Thanks!

  4. Emily

    March 25, 2009 at 9:09 am

    I really need this, too, but, I also have a chronic health condition which makes it a little more difficult to keep up. I always feel like I am behind since I have to sleep and rest a lot. How can I set up a schedule around this. I am still physically able to do everything, but, only when I feel well. Also, I don’t want to spend all me better times just keeping house.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Basically I have about 4 days a week instead of seven. This has been going on for about 6 years and has been really frustrating considering I use to be in control and now I am not. Thanks!!!

    Emily

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  7. Jenny

    November 15, 2010 at 3:18 am

    I get crazy when I look a lists, so I drew my house plan on a piece of paper. Divided it up by number of days available for cleaning in the week, and then broke up my cleaning by room. If the room has the kitty litter in it, then that gets done. If a room has the computer in, that’s the day I clean the room and pay my bills online!

  8. Jen

    January 12, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    Great post. If I could only follow it!

  9. Charlie

    April 1, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    @Emily, can I ever relate to your situation! I’ve struggled for about 20+- years, and although I once
    was able to keep a clean house, I now have chronic, ongoing health issues that really challenge me.
    I think, at least from my experience, there are a few things you can do…

    Reduce your expectations on yourself. You’re not the same person physically, so don’t compare yourself to what you could’ve done a year ago, 6 months ago. If you can accomplish a few things on your list, that’s great, and if not, don’t beat yourself up. Doing that only hurts your self-esteem, which has probably already taken a big hit. Be kind, gentle, and very patient with yourself…just as you would be to a friend.

    Attempt to do a task during that part of your day when you’re at your best…even if you’re not 100%…& if your work isn’t 100%, that’s okay, too! Doing something is better than nothing.

    Don’t be afraid or ashamed to ask for help. We all need help at some point.

    Break tasks down into smaller pieces. Write down the various steps, and when you can cross one step off your list, you’ll see progress. (ie, if your bathroom needs cleaning, list everything individually. Just because most people clean it all at once, and you likely did, too, at one point, that doesn’t mean you can’t do it in smaller steps, and spread out over a few days!

    Hire help whenever possible

    Cook meals in a crockpot to save your strength & health for other things

    Eat and sleep well so you’re in a good frame of mind. Play some music. Use a Grab-it tool if needed.

    And remember…don’t waste all of your precious energy on cleaning. A clean and organized house will make your life simpler and easier, but a day of rest, or to get out of the house is so important.

    I don’t know if any of these help as our situations may be very different, but I hope you’ll find some
    of these to be useful. I’m in chronic pain, I’m exhausted, and I just can’t do it all on my own anymore. Lists have become a great tool, and patience/understanding is vital

    Good luck!
    Charlie

  10. suzy

    June 2, 2011 at 2:03 pm

    I would love a check off list for housekeeping!
    Does anyone have a schedule for Monday thru Friday..
    or at least a schedule for 3+ days when a housekeeper comes to your home?
    Would love to have a check off list for them to check off what they did in each room!

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  12. Home Ever After

    March 17, 2009 at 7:54 am

    @Crystal: You’re welcome! Thanks for reading :)

    Danelle, Home Ever After

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