7 Steps to a Clean House in One Hour

If you’re looking for tips to clean house in one hour, then you’re in the right spot!

“Help!  I only have 2 kids, but my house looks like I have 20!”.  Does that sound like you?  Me, too.  Especially on the weekends and school holidays when they are home all day building blanket forts in the living room that, I swear, could rival Fort Knox. 

It’s easy to get completely overwhelmed by the mess. 

You’re not alone.  I, too, have been in the trenches of random lego pieces, dirty socks, and empty applesauce pouches.  And it ain’t pretty. 

Why should I even bother to clean up, when the house will just be dirty again by tomorrow? 

If you ask yourself the same question, then I’m here to help.  Don’t spend five hours cleaning when, let’s face it, by the time your husband gets home it’s not going to look like you did diddly squat.   Just dedicate one hour and have a plan, and you will be amazed at what you can accomplish. 

Need some help?  I’ve compiled my favorite house cleaning tips that will help you clean house in one hour.

Cleaning Tips for How to Clean Your House when you only have one hour!
The Best Cleaning Tips for Moms to Clean House in One Hour

*This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may make a small commission from these links at no additional cost to you.  Read my full disclosure here.

Crank Some Tunes (30 seconds)

There’s a reason why people listen to music while they’re working out.  It can be very motivating.

And, I don’t know about you, but I need some serious motivation to clean house in one hour.  And my motivation just happens to come in the form of Taylor Swift and my extraordinary Amazon Echo.

I even have a playlist called “House Cleaning”… I just say, “Alexa, play House Cleaning playlist” and… voila, instant motivation to get my butt moving!

Start with Jobs that are Automated (10 minutes)

Load and run the dishwasher.

Start a load of laundry.

Getting the dirty dishes out of the sink, or the stinky clothes off the bedroom floor will make a big difference.  Let your appliances help you out!

Then Move on to Jobs that Make the Most Impact (2o minutes)

To clean house in one hour, you can’t be worried about the dust bunnies piling up on the baseboards.  You only have one hour.  That’s not enough time to worry about every little nook and cranny.

Instead, focus on the jobs that will make the biggest impact.  For me, those jobs are:

  • Windex-ing the bathroom mirrors
  • Decluttering and wiping down the bathroom counters
  • Making the bed(s)
  • Decluttering dressers and nightstands
  • Decluttering and wiping down the kitchen counters
  • Folding blankets and general clean-up in the living room
  • Decluttering and organizing the mudroom area – Thanks to my hubby I have a beautiful area for all of the essentials that could easily turn into “clutter”!  Check it out here!

What are the simple jobs that make the biggest impact in your house?

Do you have a dog that loves to drag every last toy to the center of the living room?  Clean those up first!  Nothing says “dirty house” like a pile of toys/shoes/whatevers in the middle of the floor.

Use a Designated “Put This Away” Basket (15 minutes)

When I need a clean house in one hour, I pull out my “Put This Away” basket, which is basically just a laundry basket filled with random things that need to be put away.

Confining the clutter to one basket, and then working from that basket one piece at a time, makes whole-house cleaning a tad less overwhelming.  It’s super quick, too, because you can just carry the basket around your house throwing in whatever isn’t put away.

Dirty socks on the floor… throw ’em in the basket.

Homework out on the dining table… throw it in the basket.

Random lego pieces that you’ve stepped on a bazillion times and still haven’t been put away… save your feet and throw ’em in the basket.

Plus, I have my kids check the basket for anything that belongs to them.  If they don’t take it out of the basket and put it away before the hour is up, then I assume that they don’t want it anymore, and it goes in the trash can.

Harsh?  Maybe.

But I guarantee you will only have to throw one toy away.  After that, your “Put This Away” basket will be priority number one for your kiddos.

Spot Clean the Floors (10-15 minutes)

Once you’ve completed the automated jobs, and the ones that make the most impact, you may be tempted to quit…

Your house should be looking pretty darn good so far. (Pat on the back!).

But forge on my friend!  You still have time left in your hour!

Next… the dreaded floors!

Get out the broom and dust pan or the vacuum and spot clean ONLY!  You know what I mean… clean up the huge piles of dog hair in the corner or last night’s spaghetti sauce on the kitchen floor.  Clean the stuff that’s visible, not the tiny particles of dirt that you may be able to see if you get down on all fours with a magnifying glass.

My absolute favorite tool for cleaning hardwood floors?  My Bissell Powerfresh Steam Mop.  It is seriously the best and easiest way to clean your hardwood floors.

My first experience with the Bissell Powerfresh Steam Mop was actually just a year ago.  We were moving out of a rental house and I realized that my kids had spilt some sort of crayon/paint/clay/art substance on the wood floors.  I had tried literally EVERYTHING to get it off the floors, to no avail. 

Then I finally asked my father-in-law to borrow his steam mop.  Within one minute the mystery colors were gone.  Hello, security deposit!  I raved about the mop so much that my darling father-in-law told me to keep it, and he bought himself a new one.

Trust me, this thing works wonders!

Put Your Kids to Work (No extra time for you!)

If you have kids, Lord knows they made 99% of the mess.  So, enlist them to help clean it up.

If your kids are over the age of 5, they should be able to tidy up their own rooms at the very least.  My girls are 8 and 6… perfectly capable of cleaning their rooms, making their beds, and putting away the toys that have somehow made it to every room of the house.

Side Note – If you never want to make your child’s bed again, I highly recommend that you invest in a Beddy’s!  My 6 year old daughter has a Beddy’s bed system and she can easily make her own bed by just zipping it up! 

Yes, they can be a little pricey – but to me, the time and sanity savings are well worth the price!  Plus, Beddy’s bed systems are super high quality and wash extremely well. 

Have a bunk bed or day bed?  Beddy’s are perfect for these hard to make beds! Check out my full review of Beddy’s here to see exactly how they work!

And the fabulous people at Beddy’s gave me a discount code just for my readers!  Use the code “AMY20” at checkout to get 20% off your order!

Clean house in one hour by letting your kids make their own beds!

Fresh Smell Equals Fresh House (30 seconds)

Tape a dryer sheet over the AC vent.  Light a candle.  Sprinkle carpet powder.  (*By the way, I NEVER vacuum my house without using carpet powder first.  This simple step takes less than a minute and makes a big impact!).

A fresh smelling house works wonders when you have to clean house in one hour.

And that’s it!  One hour of your life well spent!  Now you can kick back and relax in your clean house.  I don’t know about you, but I just can’t fully unwind at the end of the day if my house is messy.  Who wants to put their feet up in a chair surrounded by toys and dirty clothes, am I right? 

I actually do a mini house-cleaning every single night.  Yup, just like my mother I can’t go to bed knowing that there are dirty dishes in the sink.  And with this easy-peasy plan to clean house in one hour, you don’t have to.

My Favorite Supplies for a Clean House in One Hour!

So what are my absolute favorite cleaning products to clean house in one hour?  I’ve linked them here.  Because sometimes a girl really does just want a new vacuum.

  • Shark Navigator vacuum with Zero M– I just got this vacuum about 6 months ago after my Dyson bit the dust… haha, see what I did there? I absolutely LOVE it because it can fit in places that my Dyson couldn’t, and it’s much more pivot-y. Yes, I probably just made that word up. 🙂 And the anti-hair wrap technology seriously works! And I can say that because my daughters and I all have long, thick hair.
  • Bissell Power Fresh Steam Mop – As I said earlier, this steam mop is AMAZING! It will get ALL of your kids’ stickers off your hard wood floor. I know from experience.
  • Arm and Hammer Carpet Powder – I NEVER vacuum without sprinkling this on the carpets first!
  • Ajax – I’m old school… I haven’t found anything that works better as a shower cleaner than Ajax. I turn on the hot water for a few seconds in my shower to get the walls and floor wet. Then I liberally sprinkle the Ajax powder, and I use a toilet brush (not the same one that I use for the toilets!), to make a paste of the water/Ajax. Let it sit for a few minutes and wash it off.
  • Weiman Cooktop Cleaner – This glass stovetop cleaner works THE BEST of any other cleaner that I’ve tried. My husband cooks ALL THE TIME, and let’s just say that he is not that neat. This cleaner will make a glass stovetop look good as new!
  • Pledge Furniture Polish – This classic “dusting spray” as I call it is the only thing that I use to clean my furniture. I use the spray can (not the trigger bottle liquid type) and spray it on a microfiber cloth. This stuff has gotten pencil and pen marks off of my daughter’s furniture and water rings off of my polished wood nightstand.

What about you? What are some of your tried and true, can’t-live-without cleaning products?

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  1. Instead of Windex or special glass cleaner, make your own. Warm water and a couple drops of Dawn soap in a spray bottle works miracles on mirrors, windows, granite counter tops etc.

  2. What are your favorite cleaning supplies? Please send link cause I couldn’t find it

    1. Hi Melody! Thanks so much for letting me know! I fixed the links and they’re all accessible in the post now. 🙂

  3. I used to use carpet fresh also, to add that ,”just cleaned my butt off smell”,lol. Now I sprinkle the laundry boosting pellets prior to vacuuming ! Awesome!!

    1. Hi Kacy! That’s a great tip! Like Downy Unstoppables type of stuff? I will definitely have to try that next time… now you’ve got me wanting to vacuum my house. 🙂 Thanks for your comment!