The Realistic Guide for Cleaning Your House for Holiday Guests

I’ll be the first to admit that the life shown in regular photos on my feed are not always what life looks like behind the scenes every day. We have a room that we usually “live” in that I’ll likely never photograph in, and our whole house sometimes gets embarrassingly out of order.

Life has been chaotic the last couple of weeks. Working more than ever, photoshoots every weekend, moving rooms around in preparation for the new baby all led to us take a step back and realize we were not ready to host guests next week. So we got to work, and knocked out a massive amount of cleaning and organizing in just a few days. Here’s how we did it:

1. Make a Shared Note & Shared Calendar with your Spouse

My wife made a huge list of everything that we needed to do in each room, then assigned one (or both) of us to each task, and put each room as a calendar item on our shared calendar. We made a pact to not let tasks go late, and built in some buffer just in case life happened.

2. Organize Big Items, Group and Box or Bag Small Items

Don’t try to do everything at once. Start big to small. Everything doesn’t need to be perfect the first time around. If you have a bunch of loose items that all need to be organized, put them all in a bag and put them in your “do not enter” room/closet (see below). Putting away one thing at a time will kill your productivity.

3. Create a “Do Not Enter” Room or Closet for Time-Consuming Organization

We decided to switch rooms in preparation for baby #2, which caused one of our bedrooms to be a catch-all for a playroom-to-be. Random toys? In the playroom. Art supplies? In the playroom. Giant stack of knick-knacks to be organized? In the playroom for you. The room will not be ready before our guests visit, so it has become our room for all things that need to be organized as soon as we have some spare time.

4. Clean your Floors

Nothing ruins a beautiful clean house like dirty floors. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not the best at “deep” cleaning, but I can guarantee that our floors will always look spectacular. Our home has beautiful original hardwood, and we set two separate days to clean our floors (about a week before guests arrive, and the day before). Between our kid’s messes, our two cats, and decorating, our floors take a beating. My go-to solution is the Bona PowerPlus system and Bona Premium Microfiber Mop. The powerful Bona PowerPlus Hardwood Floor Deep Cleaner has an oxygenated formula that loosens and removes heavy dirt build-up and requires minimal effort to remove. Best of all, the Bona PowerPlus Microfiber Deep Clean Pad performs 70% better than other hardwood floor cleaners when paired with Bona PowerPlus Hardwood Floor Deep Cleaner.

5. Relax

You may have kids, or a crazy busy life. Your guests are coming because they love you and your family as well. Your home doesn’t need to be prepped like it’s being featured in an interior design magazine, and your guests won’t think any less of you if your home looks and feels lived in. Unless your floors are dirty, of course.

Cheers, Ty