Who said the job of a homemaker is easy? It’s not easy to keep the house clean and organized while looking after all other tasks. From doing laundry to cooking meals for the family to making sure the kids complete their homework on time, managing a house is extremely tiring and overwhelming. However, if not being able to keep your house clean and organized is constantly nagging you, we’ve got the perfect technique for you – zone cleaning.
Zone cleaning is an excellent house cleaning and organizing method that has been popularized by the Fly Lady. With the zone cleaning method, you can keep your home looking its best at all times. You no longer have to freak out when the doorbell rings. Moreover, unexpected guests won’t make you worry about your home because it will be in top shape at any given time.
If you would like to know more about zone cleaning and understand how this technique works, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s see what zone cleaning is and how it can help you keep your home clean and organized.
Understanding What Zone Cleaning Is
Zone cleaning is a simple technique to clean and declutter your home and keep it organized. It helps you do all of this without feeling overwhelmed. As you can tell by the name, it involves cleaning and organizing your home zone by zone. You divide your home into different zones. You spend about 15 to 20 minutes doing any one cleaning task a day for one zone for one week, along with the regular cleaning of your house.
After one week, you move on to the second zone and clean it the same way as the first zone – one cleaning task a day every day for a week. You continue doing this for all the zones. By the end of the first cycle that covers all the zones, your house will be perfectly organized and clean through and through.
For example, your kitchen is in zone 1. The first day you spend cleaning and organizing the pantry, the next day you spend on cleaning the oven, the third day you wipe all the cabinets clean, and so on. Finally, by the end of the week, your kitchen will be spotless and organized, just like you’ve always wanted it to be.
What you need to remember here is that you shouldn’t spend more than 15 to 20 minutes a day on one task because you’ll tire yourself out. Also, cleaning for too long will kill the entire point of this activity.
Start by Determining Your Zones
If it’s your first time trying this cleaning technique out, you may not know where to start. To begin, start by determining the zones. Each part or room of your house will make one zone. If there are a lot of rooms in your house, you can include multiple rooms in one zone. It all depends on what works for you. Zone cleaning is a very personalized approach to cleaning. You can go about it any way you like – as long as you’re not pushing yourself to do too much work in a day.
For example, you can keep the powder room, dressing room, and bathroom in one zone and your living room and kitchen in another. This way, you can create the home zones in whatever way suits your schedule.
If you want to follow Fly Lady’s zones for zone cleaning, you can do that too.
Fly Lady Zones
If you’ve got no idea about how to divide your house into zones, you can take inspiration from the Fly Lady zones.
There are 5 zones, according to the Fly Lady. These are as following:
Firstly, you have the front porch, entrance, and dining room.
Then, the kitchen and pantry come in zone 2.
This zone includes the main bathroom and the extra room, which could be a garage, study room, in-home office, kids’ play area, or a storage area.
Then, the master bedroom, master bathroom, and closet come in zone 4.
Finally, the family room, living room, and den make up zone 5.
Make a Cleaning Schedule
After you’ve defined the zones, the next step is to identify the seven tasks that you’ll do each day of the week in that zone. It’ll save your time that you’ll spend each day thinking, ‘what to do today?’ You’ll know just what’s on your plate for the day, and you can get down to it without wasting time.
Now, it’s okay to feel confused. You may have never looked into cleaning so deeply as zone cleaning requires you to. You probably just clean your house, all rooms at the same time, without thinking about the tasks at hand.
To help you prepare a cleaning schedule that’s practical and easy to follow, we’ve broken down the tasks zone-wise. It’ll help you pick the tasks for your weekly cleaning schedule.
Cleaning Tasks Zone by Zone
Some of the most important cleaning and decluttering tasks that you need to perform for zone 1 include:
- Firstly, cleaning the cobwebs from your front porch
- Sweeping the entrance door area clean to make sure there’s no debris or fallen leaves that you could bring into your home with the shoes.
- Then, dusting the table that you’ve placed in the entryway
- Organizing the shoe stand by the door
- Finally, decluttering the dining room table and leaving only the essentials
There’s so much that you can do in zone 2. The kitchen is usually one of the most-used areas of a house, and it requires extensive maintenance and decluttering every now and then. A week dedicated to kitchen and pantry clean-up is more than sufficient. The tasks that need to be done when working in this zone include:
- Organize the pantry
- Organize and clean your fridge/ freezer
- Clean the oven
- Declutter drawers
- Clean dishwasher
- Clean light fixtures
- Wipe the cabinets
- Wipe the baseboards
- Dust and wash the kitchen blinds or curtains
- Clean the slabs by removing all that’s over them
The main bathroom is a commonly-used area of the house, and therefore, requires some serious attention. You can dedicate the 3rd week of zone cleaning to cleaning, decluttering, and organizing the main bathroom and any extra room that you’ve got in your house that doesn’t fall under any other zones. The tasks that you can do to declutter and clean the main bathroom include:
- Declutter unused and empty bottles
- Then, wash the bathroom rugs
- Next, scrub the bathtub
- Scrub the floors
- Organize the vanity and shelves
As for the other rooms, you can do the following:
- Firstly, get rid of all the clutter
- Then, organize the furniture
- Mop the floors and clean the rugs
- Dust and clean the blinds or curtains
- Finally, arrange the shelves and tables
The 4th week of zone cleaning may be the toughest. It’s the part of your home that has most of your personal belongings. The tasks that you can perform while you’re working on the master bathroom include:
- Organize your linen closet
- Clean the shower heads and the floors
- Clean the vanity
- Organize your shelves and cabinets
- Rearrange the towels
- Clean the light fixtures
- Clean the shower curtains and blinds
- Wash the bathroom rugs
The cleaning list for the master bedroom includes:
- Firstly, rotate the mattress and dust the bed frame
- Wash the rugs
- Declutter your nightstands
- Organize your closets
- Dust and wash the curtains
- Organize the dresser drawers
- Wipe the baseboards
- Finally, discard the clothes you don’t wear and the products on your dresser you no longer use
When you’re cleaning your closet, the cleaning list comprises the following tasks:
- Firstly, arrange your clothes
- Then, arrange your shoes
- Finally, put the larger items, like suitcases, in the lowest shelf of the closet
Finally, by the time you’re week 5 into your zone cleaning schedule, you should have most of your home cleaned, decluttered, and organized. Now’s the time you’ll be working on your living room and family room. The cleaning list for zone 5 includes:
- Clean the windows
- Clean cobwebs
- Dust and wash the ornaments
- Organize the drawers and shelves
- Polish your furniture
- Clean the fireplace
- Vacuum thoroughly by moving furniture
- Wash the carpet
- Clean the magazine rack, telephone, and the corner tables
- Dust and rearrange cushions
Why Is Zone Cleaning such a Great Cleaning Technique?
By the time you complete a cycle, your home will be organized to perfection and cleaned thoroughly. The best part of the deal is – you took your time to do it and didn’t tire yourself out.
Although it might look like a very long process, it’s actually an excellent way to go about cleaning your house. Let’s see why we suggest you try zone cleaning:
- Firstly, after one cycle is complete, the next cycles will be less time-consuming and easier
- You clean your house one part at a time so you can deep clean each of it without tiring yourself out
- Cleaning your house doesn’t feel overwhelming
- Every room of your house will be in top shape and visitor-ready at all times
- You don’t have to compromise on your responsibilities to clean your house. You just have to spend 15 to 20 minutes on one task each day
- Finally, your home will look cleaner, more organized, and more welcoming
Cleaning your home shouldn’t be exhausting and overwhelming. You certainly can’t clean the whole house in a day and expect it to look flawless. If you want your home to look flawless, you need not rush the cleaning and organizing. Take it slow – one room at a time!