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How To Clean A Very Messy House – Step By Step

Trying to figure out where to start when your entire house feels like a disgusting mess can be intimidating and super stressful. I’m going to walk you through how to clean a very messy house, step by step. Come on, deep breath, let’s do this!

a picture of a very messy house that needs cleaning

Life is busy, messy and sometimes downright hard. Some days you can be super woman with all your ducks in a row, and other times you can hardly make it through the day in one piece.

Having a very messy house sometimes doesn’t make you a failure in any way. It just means you’re human and your life isn’t a fairytale. We’ve all been in this position at some point! And I know just how defeated it can make you feel.

But you should never feel like things are too messy to recover from! I’m here to walk you step by step through the process I’ve used when my house looks like a tornado came through. (or seven little tornadoes!)

Looking for help with your laundry situation? Here are 10 tips for staying on top of the laundry all the time.

I’ve read articles and posts that claim that they have the secret to getting your entire house cleaned in a day and honestly, that’s just not realistic. I’m not going to tell you it’s quick and easy because it’s not. But oh it is so worth it! You deserve to feel content in your home, and so does your family.

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why you should start cleaning your messy house today!

getting started is the hardest part of cleaning your messy house

“The hardest thing about getting started, is getting started.” Guy Kawasaki.

It’s so true. The number one reason why someone gets stuck living in a messy house, is procrastination. If you keep putting it off for another day, or the perfect circumstances, you will never get to it.

Sometimes its a case of over thinking it. We see the big picture, or the fact that the whole house is just so messy and it’s hard to know where to start.

But you know what. Cleaning one thing, no matter how small, is a step in the right direction. Making an effort to wipe that section of countertop, or dust one shelf is a start. And that start will propel you on in the right direction.

So don’t let the big picture scare you. Just make a small step TODAY!

having a messy home hurts you in so many areas of your life

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had people in my life complain that they are struggling with anxiety or depression because of the state of their home. Your home should be a sanctuary. A peaceful, comfortable place that makes you happy.

When your house is overly dirty and messy, you aren’t going to be at peace. You can start to be jealous, comparing with others and dissatisfied with your life as a whole.

Being unhappy about the state of your house can lead to over spending, over eating, a lack of energy…the list goes on and on.

when your home is tidy its easier to see ways to improve other areas of your life

Living in a relatively tidy home, it’s so much easier to be organized in all areas of your life!

  • You waste less time searching for things.
  • It’s easier to keep from over spending. Knowing where everything is in your house, you won’t accidentally purchase things you already have.
  • Your family life will be so much more peaceful and pleasant.
  • It’s easier to be on time, because you aren’t having to look for what you need to get ready to go.
  • Your mental health will improve drastically.

you deserve a tidy home

The word “home” should make you feel comfortable. Thinking of the place you live, should make you happy. You and your family deserve to love the place you live.

things can only get better from here

Ok, so your house is very very messy. The positive side is that it can only get better! Any little steps you take to make your house less of a mess, improves the situation!

how to get motivated to get started cleaning a very messy house

Like I said, taking the first step is the hardest part when you tackle something difficult like cleaning a very messy house. So how do you get yourself psyched up enough to actually get going?

set a specific time to get started

Don’t just decide you’ll start cleaning your very messy house “tomorrow”. We all know how that goes! Starting today is ideal, but it’s not always easy to jump right into a big project immediately. If you get started when you aren’t really prepared, it’s easy to get frustrated and overwhelmed.

The best way is to “make yourself an appointment” to start cleaning. Make sure it’s a time when you won’t be interrupted for at least an hour so that you can make a good amount of progress before needing a break.

get a babysitter if you need to

If you have young kids at home, you might be rolling your eyes thinking “yeah, I never have an uninterrupted hour!”. I get it! I have 7 kids, so I know how it goes.

It really is going to be in your best interest to line up a babysitter for an hour or two. Try and have the kids watched at another house so you can really focus.

make a game plan

This step is essential! Don’t just jump into cleaning not knowing what you want to start with. Pick 5 things you plan to do. Think of things that will make a big difference in a short amount of time. Pick a room to focus on. But most importantly, know that you aren’t going to get it all done in a single day! It’s going to be a process to get back on track, but it’s SO worth it in the end.

set the mood

So, you’ve set a time to get started, now it’s time to set the mood! Get some fun peppy music playing, make a cup of coffee, a bowl of snacks, whatever you think will make the process less painful!

ready, set go!

You’ve got the house to yourself, the mood is set, you have a plan: Gather your cleaning supplies and go, go go! Don’t hesitate, start cleaning and clean non-stop for at least an hour!

where to start cleaning a messy house

Your whole house is a disgusting mess, maybe there are piles of laundry everywhere, dirty dishes in the sink, food stuck to the floors…Where on earth do you start?!

You could start with basically anything. But I’m going to tell you what I would do. What I’ve done myself when I’m cleaning a house that has gotten out of control.

Fist thing, I like to throw in a load of dirty laundry. It doesn’t take much time, but it’s progress that will make you feel more satisfied right off the bat.

Start with the messiest room in the house. Usually that’s going to be the kitchen. The reason I start with the kitchen is because it’s the heart of the home. When I have a clean kitchen, I’m a happy person. It’s easier to keep going when you’ve gotten the hardest room over with.

how to clean a messy house, step by step

  1. Start by throwing a load of dirty clothes into the washing machine and a load of dishes into the dishwasher or sink of soapy water.
  2. Choose a room to work on cleaning for at least an hour.
  3. Grab a trash bag, and gather any trash you can find. Hold onto it, you’ll definitely need it throughout the whole cleaning process.
  4. Choose a surface to clean next. Kitchen counters, top of a dresser, a coffee table…
  5. Keep cleaning each surface in the room until they’re all done. Wipe them down with an all purpose cleaner after they have been cleared.
  6. Clean windows. Window sills, trim, curtains and blinds.
  7. Clean light fixtures.
  8. If you’re working on the kitchen, completely clean one appliance at a time: stove, fridge, coffee maker, toaster and sink.
  9. Doors. Wipe the doors, trim and cabinet doors/drawers if you’re in a room with cabinets.
  10. Wash bedding.
  11. Clean floors. Start by clearing any clutter. Mop hard floors, vacuum rugs, spot clean carpet stains.
  12. Inside closets and cabinets.

Repeat these steps through the rest of the house over the space of a week or more if you need to.

how to keep your house from getting very messy again

You might be thinking, “That sounds like a ton of work! I could never keep up on the house cleaning if it takes this long each time!” But don’t worry, it shouldn’t!

When your house has been really messy for a very long time and you go to deep clean it for the first time, unfortunately its going to take a ton of work to get it neat and tidy.

BUT, hopefully, seeing how much time it takes when you don’t keep up on the cleaning, will push you into getting into a good housecleaning routine to where your house never ever gets that bad again!

Helpful tips for keeping your house from ever getting overly messy again:

  • Establish a daily cleaning routine that is manageable in a busy state of life.
  • Use a housework chore chart for yourself and your kids.
  • Never leave a room empty handed. This tip goes a long way in having less clutter build up.
  • Make a real effort to get some laundry and all of the dirty dishes done on a daily basis.

The best tip of all in my opinion, is to write yourself a memo reminding yourself how good it felt when you finished completely cleaning your trashed house. Describe the sense of accomplishment and feeling of peace you had when you looked around your tidy house after working to get it back on track.

a graphic with a picture of a messy house and text that says how to clean a very messy house step y step!

more cleaning posts you might enjoy

I hope you found these tips for how to clean a messy house helpful! Feel free to share this post with your friends and family members who might need help too! Let me know in the comments if you any other ideas on this topic!

Pin these steps to try later. Tag @athomeontheprairie on Instagram to share what you’ve made with us!

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One Comment

  1. Definitely need these tips! What advice do you have for someone with a baby and a toddler? As soon as I feel like I’m on top of one mess there’s another mess!

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