clean house in less than an hour

When it comes to cleaning fast, the key is to “have a system, move quickly and never go back to a room,” says Andre Lewis, manager of Alpha Living, a green cleaning service in New York City. Follow this plan-starting upstairs and working your way down-and you’ll be done before you know it.

Zone 1: Bedrooms
Approximate time: 10 minutes per bedroom

  • Do a clean sweep. Strip dirty linens and toss in the hamper. Stash unnecessary items clogging your dresser or nightstand in nearby drawers or closets. Empty the wastebasket.
  • Make the bed. Lift up each corner of the mattress with one hand and tuck with the other. It’s faster.
  • Deal with dust. Using a dry microfiber cloth, start from one corner around the room clockwise. Dust each surface. If there’s a lamp on the nightstand, clean it top-to-bottom first, then dust the tabletop. Use your long-armed duster on mirrors and wall art.
  • Vacuum. Start from a back corner and vacuum your way out the door, using long firm strokes. Save time by only running the vacuum over each strip of carpet once-not twice. Don’t worry about missing an inch or two.

Zone 2: Bathroom
Approximate time: 9 minutes

  • Do your prep work. Spritz the sink, vanity, shower and tub with your all-purpose spray and let sit.
  • Tackle the toilet. Sprinkle baking soda into the bowl, give it a thorough scrub with the toilet brush, then flush. Next, spray a microfiber cloth with all-purpose spray and wipe down the outside of the toilet and tank.
  • Clean the mirror. Spray on glass cleaner and, starting in the top corner, wipe in a circular motion.
  • Go back to the sink. Use the toothbrush to quickly scrub hard-to-reach spots around the fixtures.Then, working back-to-front, start in one corner and move horizontally, wiping the counter, vanity, fixtures and handles.
  • Wipe down the shower and tub. No need for a full scrub-just give them a quick swipe with a dampened cloth, then pull the curtain shut.
  • Mop the floor. Using a water-dampened microfiber mop, quickly mop your way out of the room, beginning in a far corner and ending at the doorway.

Zone 3: Kitchen
Approximate time: 12 minutes

  • Do the dishes. Load the dishwasher and start the cycle.
  • Declutter. Spend a minute or two removing any clutter from countertops-put items back in the cabinets, stash papers in a drawer. The emptier your counters, the cleaner your kitchen looks.
  • Pretreat. Notice hard-to-remove gunk on your stove or countertop? Scrape it up with the credit card. And use the eraser sponge to tackle any stubborn stains.
  • Clean the counters. Wet a microfiber cloth with all-purpose spray and wipe countertops back-to-front, brushing crumbs onto the floor.
  • Wipe down appliances. Swipe the fridge, dishwasher and stove with a damp cloth.
  • Tackle the floor. Starting in a far corner, sweep your way out. Then give the floor a fast once-over with a water-dampened microfiber mop, again working your way out.

Zone 4: Living Room
Approximate time: 15 minutes

  • Clear the clutter. Quickly scan the room to see what’s out of place. Stash scattered items like remotes and DVDS in drawers; neatly stack magazines on the coffee table.
  • Find out how to curb paper clutter at home.
  • Dust. Start in one corner of the room, and follow the same how-tos as in the bedrooms, working top-to-bottom and back-to-front so that the dust falls onto the floor. And if you have blinds, swipe them with the long-armed duster.
  • Make glass gleam. To clean glass surfaces, spray a microfiber cloth with your glass cleaner and wipe in wide circular motions, working from one back corner to the front.
  • Vacuum. Speed-vacuum yourself out of the room, starting in the farthest corner.

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read article on Yahoo! Shine by Arianne Cohen from Woman’s Day: Clean Your House in Less Than an Hour

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