The Ultimate House Cleaning Checklist (Printable)

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This printable house cleaning checklist is a simple tool designed to keep your household chores organized and on-track. Each task is organized by room and categorized based on how often it needs to be completed (weekly, monthly, annual). The checklist is available to download as a PDF or Excel Spreadsheet.

Download it, print it, and hang it on your fridge. Once it’s up there, you’ll never have to worry about what to clean, when to clean it, when it was last cleaned, or who in the household is responsible.

I created both a PDF version that’s ready to print right away and an Excel Spreadsheet version that you can download, edit based on your unique house cleaning needs, and then print. Download both versions by clicking the links below.

Download PDF: Printable House Cleaning Checklist (PDF)

Download Excel Spreadsheet (editable): Printable House Cleaning Checklist (Excel)

Bonus Resource: If you’re looking for better ways to manage your household responsibilities, you need to check out our Home Maintenance Checklist too. It outlines every maintenance task you should be completing on a monthly and seasonal basis to keep your home running smooth. Like this checklist, it’s completely free and you can customize the Excel version to align with your home’s unique needs. 

If you just want to check out what’s on the list, keep scrolling. In this post, I walk you through each task on the checklist and provide tips and tricks about the most efficient ways to clean.

Use the links below to navigate this post:

Weekly House Cleaning Checklist

When it comes to house cleaning, consistency is key. If you conquer these weekly tasks, not only will your house be cleaner, but your monthly deep cleaning tasks will require significantly less effort.

Kitchen Weekly Cleaning

Throw away spoiled food
I think we’re all a guilty of letting food go bad. Make it a weekly routine to take inventory of your refrigerator and get rid of spoiled food. You’ll not only have more room, but you’ll also keep germs and mold away from your fresh food.

Spray and wipe down the countertops, stove top, and range hood
If you cook as much as I do, your stove and counters are splattered with oil, grease, and food by the end of the week. Wiping it all down with a good cleaner at least once a week it a must. I’m a big fan of Green Works Multi-Surface Cleaner since it’s made with plant-based ingredients but it’s still tough on dirt and grease. Use it along with paper towels or a microfiber cloth. My favorite microfiber cloth brand is E-Cloth but Norwex and generic brands are typically good too. Check out our comparison of E-Cloth vs. Norwex to find out why I prefer E-Cloth.

E-Cloth General Purpose Cloth
E-Cloth General Purpose Cloth (Photo Credit: E-Cloth.com)

Scrub the sink and faucet
Since I’m always cleaning something else in it, I often forget to clean the kitchen sink. Make a point to give it a good scrub at least weekly. Don’t forget the faucet and fixtures too.

Wipe the small and large appliances
Even if they don’t look dirty, it’s a good habit to wipe all the kitchen appliances, large and small. When you cook, tiny particles of grease and smoke travel through the air and stick to every surface. Spray your appliances with an all-purpose cleaner and wipe them down with a paper towel or microfiber cloth. For more tips, check out our step-by-step guide on how to clean stainless steel appliances without streaking.

Wipe grease and splatter from cabinets
Just like your appliances, the surface of your cabinets will collect grease and grime throughout the week. To keep them looking fresh, give them a good wipe.

Wash dishcloths and towels
You should have at least two sets of hand and dish towels so you have a set available while the other set is in the wash. After a few days, dishcloths and hand towels get too dirty to dry your hands or dishes on, start smell musty, and need a refresh.

Vacuum and mop the floor
Give your floors a quick once over with the vacuum and a mop. If you have hardwood floors, two great products are the Bona Hardwood Floor Spray Mop and the Swiffer WetJet. If you don’t own either but are interested in learning more about them, check out my comparison of the two. Spoiler: I like the Bona floor mop a lot better.

Vacuum area rugs and wipe anti-fatigue mats
Neglecting to pick up loose crumbs will lead to bigger issues, like ants!

Dirty anti-fatigue mat in kitchen
Dirty anti-fatigue mat in kitchen

Bathrooms Weekly Cleaning

Scrub the sink, tub, and toilet
It goes without saying that your toilet, tub, and bathroom sink are full of germs. Use a strong bathroom cleaner and spray down every surface. Let it sit for a couple of minutes so it has a chance to kill the germs before you wipe. My favorite cleaner for the bathroom is the Lysol Hydrogen Peroxide Bathroom Cleaner Spray. It’s bleach free so it doesn’t give off that harsh odor but it contains hydrogen peroxide so it dissolves grime, soap scum, and kills 99% of germs. If you go with a cleaner that includes bleach, avoid spraying it near towels and bath mats, even a small drop of bleach will pull the color right out of the fabric.

Wipe the vanity counter and clean the mirrors
Toothpaste, soap, makeup, and all sorts of other toiletries are constantly spilling on the vanity counter and splattering on the mirrors. At least once a week give those surfaces a good wipe.

Wipe glass shower doors
Use a cleaner specially formulated for glass shower doors like Magic Glass & Mirror Cleaner. Spray and wipe in a circular motion with a soft cloth or paper towel.

Cleaning glass shower door with Magic Glass and Mirror Cleaner
Magic Glass and Mirror Cleaner

Wash the soap dish, soap dispenser, and toothbrush holder
These bathroom accessory holders get pretty disgusting throughout the week. Remove the items in them and wash them thoroughly.

Clear long hairs from the drain
The best way to avoid major plumbing issues is to keep your drains clean and clear of long hairs. I highly recommend buying a cheap drain cover to prevent long hairs from clogging your drain.

Vacuum the floor and give it a quick mopping
Before vacuuming, make sure your floor is dry. Give it a quick once-over with the vacuum to pick up hairs and dust. The quickest and easiest way to mop is using a Swiffer Sweeper with a wet pad. It’s much less work than using a traditional mop and bucket and the small head of the Swiffer is perfect for maneuvering in small spaces like between the toilet and vanity.

Replenish the supplies (toilet paper, toothpaste, shampoo, soap, etc.)
While you’re cleaning up, check to see if you need to restock any supplies. Nothing worse than hopping in the shower to realize that you’re out of soap.

Shake out the bath mats
Bathmats collect dust and hair throughout the week. Either vacuum them or take them outside and give them a good shake.

Empty the trash
Keep extra plastic bags in the bottom of your trash basket so you can quickly bag the basket after you empty it each week.

Bedrooms Weekly Cleaning

Declutter
The first step in cleaning bedrooms is to declutter. Pick up and put away clothes, toys, extra pillows, etc. Put jewelry, makeup, and other knick-knacks wherever they’re supposed to be. Decluttering first will make the rest of the cleaning process much easier.

Dust the furniture
With either a small vacuum attachment or a slightly damp cloth, wipe dust the nightstands, dressers, headboard, footboard, and any other hard surface in the room.

Wash the sheets
Washing your sheets weekly is critical for staying healthy. Most of us spend about a third of our lives sleeping. During that time we’re sweating, shedding dead skin, and releasing all sorts of bodily fluids onto the sheets. Do yourself a huge favor and wash them at least once a week.

Wipe smudges from furniture and mirrors
Over the course of the week, your bedroom furniture and mirrors will likely get covered in fingerprints, water rings, and other smudges. Give them a quick spray and wipe them down to keep your room clean and fresh.

Vacuum the floor
Give the bedroom floors a quick vacuuming to pick up the dust, hair, and other dirt particles. Your bedroom should be a sanctuary away from filthiness and a weekly once-over will help achieve that goal.

Empty the trash
Keep extra plastic bags in the bottom of your trash basket so you can quickly bag the basket after you empty it each week.

Living and/or Family Room Weekly Cleaning

Declutter
Throw away the trash, pick up toys, books, and other knick-knacks. Decluttering first clears the way so you can clean the rest of the room quickly and efficiently.

Dust all hard surfaces (furniture, windows, TV, pictures/paintings)
Use a small vacuum attachment or a slightly damp microfiber cloth to wipe down all the hard surfaces. I prefer to use the vacuum attachment since it tends to pick up dust better than a cloth that gets dirty and could potentially spread dust if it becomes over saturated.

Vacuuming windows

Brush off the couch cushions
Lift the couch cushions and brush off any crumbs or debris. Clean out anything that slipped beneath the cushions and into the corners of the couch.

Vacuum soft furniture (couches and chairs)
Over the course of the week, dirt, dust, crumbs, and pet hair will stick to the surface of your couch. Most canister-style vacuums come with attachments specifically designed to vacuum upholstery. If yours comes with one, use that attachment to give your couch, chairs, and any other soft upholstered surface a quick vacuum. If your vacuum doesn’t come with that attachment, you can pick up the attachment on Amazon or buy a small handheld vacuum designed specifically for quick jobs like cleaning the couch.

Vacuum the floor
Finally, give the floors a quick vacuum to suck up all the dirt, dust, crumbs, and everything else. Remember to vacuum last so you can capture everything that fell to the floor when you were cleaning the higher surfaces.

Dining Room Weekly Cleaning

Declutter
If you’re like me, your dining room table becomes the convenient place to plop down mail, recipes, bags, and just about anything else throughout the week. Before you start cleaning, clear the clutter from your dining room.

Dust all hard surfaces (dining room table, chairs, hutch, buffet, etc.)
Use a small vacuum attachment or a slightly damp microfiber cloth to clear the crumbs and dust.

Wipe the dining room table and chairs
Use a general purpose cleaner to clean the inevitable coffee rings, drips and spilled food. For stubborn stains on wood furniture, put a dab of toothpaste on a wet cloth and rub the stain gently. Let it sit for a few minutes and wash away with a clean damp cloth.

Vacuum upholstered chairs
Use an upholstery vacuum attachment like this one.

Vacuum the floor
Canister vacuums usually have smaller brush heads which make it easier to clean under the table and between chair legs.

Garage Weekly Cleaning

Knockdown cobwebs
There’s no need to go crazy cleaning your garage on a weekly basis, but one thing that will make your monthly routine easier is knocking down the cobwebs on the ceiling and wall. Using a vacuum with a long wand works best but, if you find it easier, you could just swipe the walls and corners of the ceiling with a broom.

Sweep the floors
Pull your cars out and give your garage floor a good sweep with a large-head push broom like this one.

Basement Weekly Cleaning

Declutter
Whether you have a finished or unfinished basement, decluttering is one of the most important things you can do on a weekly basis. Like the dining room table, the basement becomes a dumping ground for random stuff and, if you don’t put things away regularly, it can really pile up. Once a week do a walk through and sort things into ‘keep’, ‘donate/throwaway’, and ‘not sure’ piles. You can revisit these piles and take action on a monthly basis.

Wipe hard surfaces
Insects thrive in dark, cold, and moist spaces which is why your basement makes for an ideal home to these critters. To keep your basement bug-free, wipe the surfaces, dry wet areas, inspect the scene for leaks, and clean up any food crumbs on a regular basis.

Vacuum soft surfaces and the floor
Give the floors and couches (if any) a quick vacuuming weekly. If you have concrete floors, sweep with a broom.

Throughout the House

Vacuum entryway, hallway, and stairs
These areas get a ton of foot traffic so it’s important to keep them clean to preserve your floors and carpets and to prevent dirt from tracking into the rest of the house.

Dust doors, door frames, window sills, blinds
A quick wipe with a microfiber cloth is all you need to do on a weekly basis.

Declutter
Get rid of lingering junk in the common areas. Put away bills, mail, and other paper that you don’t need immediately.

Monthly House Cleaning Checklist

If you do your job each week, your monthly cleaning duties should be a breeze. However, we all know that keeping up on a weekly basis isn’t a sure thing. Whether you’re diligent throughout the month or not, it’s crucial to complete these tasks each month in order to maintain cleanliness and order in your home.

Kitchen Monthly Cleaning

Clean the top of cabinets and refrigerator
When it comes to deep cleaning your kitchen, it’s best to start at the top and work your way down. First, dust on top of the cabinets and the refrigerator. You’ll be surprised at how much grease and grime collects up there. As you cook, steam travels upward and sticks to your walls, cabinets, and appliances. You won’t notice it on a daily basis, but over the course of a month, it really builds up.

Dust light fixtures
Be careful not to knock a lightbulb loose!

Wipe the cabinets and drawers
People rave about Murphy’s Oil Soap Wood Cleaner for wood furniture, floors, and cabinets. I tried it recently and was more than impressed. On a monthly basis, give your cabinets a quick spritz with this stuff and watch them transform from dull and dirty to shiny and clean.

Clean the range hood and filter
If you cook as much as I do, grease will build up quickly in your range hood and filter. Regular cleaning will prevent kitchen odors and a greasy mess that, if neglected for long enough, can become a fire hazard. The hood is simple, just wipe it down with soap and water. Cleaning the hood filter is easy as well, just soak it in hot water and soap then give it a good scrub.

Clean the inside of the refrigerator
Cleaning the inside of the refrigerator is easy, here’s how you do it.

  • Remove all food and all movable parts/shelves/drawers.
  • Wipe the inside of the fridge with a microfiber cloth dipped in warm water and dish soap.
  • Wash the removable parts in the sink with water and dish soap.
  • Dry thoroughly so all moisture is wiped up.

DO NOT clean the inside of the fridge with harsh chemicals and/or bleach. These toxins can linger and poison your food. If you insist on using a cleaner instead of soap and water, The Wirecutter recommends Puracy Natural All Purpose Cleaner as a great natural alternative to soap and water. If you need more guidance, this article from the NY Times provides a bit more detail on how to clean the inside of your fridge.

Clean garbage disposal
As I mentioned in Home Maintenance Checklist (I may be biased but I highly recommend checking it out, it’s super helpful!), each month you should clean your garbage disposal. Doing so prevents repulsive odors from developing and debris from getting stuck and damaging the system. To clean your disposal, cut up lemons and toss them in while you’re running it. If you don’t have lemons, use ice cubes.

Run the oven self-cleaner
Almost all ovens made in the last decade or so come with a self-cleaning mode and that’s the best way to clean the inside of it. Every oven is different so rather than give you advice on this one, I strongly recommend that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Cleaning oven using self-clean mode

Clean the inside of the dishwasher
It seems counterintuitive but, in fact, your dishwasher needs to be washed too. Over time it gets clogged up with soap scum and food bits which not only attract germs but they also reduce the efficiency of the machine. First, remove food from the drain, then place a cup of vinegar on the top rack and run a hot-water cycle, then sprinkle baking soda on the bottom of the dishwasher and run another hot-water cycle. Get more details on this process in this article on Today.com.

Throw away spoiled food
Take inventory of your pantry, cabinets, and freezer and get rid of spoiled food. Discarding spoiled food regularly not only gives you more space but it also makes your kitchen cleaner and more sanitary.

Clean the microwave
I love this method from One Good Thing. First, place a bowl of one cup white vinegar and one cup water in the microwave, microwave it for 5-10 minutes, remove the bowl and wipe with a damp cloth. The evaporated water/vinegar solution loosens the debris stuck to the walls and ceiling of the microwave and makes it super easy to wipe clean.

Clean the coffee maker
Cleaning your coffee maker is quite simple. First, clean out all the coffee grounds from the filter. Then, fill the reservoir with half hot water, half white vinegar. Run it for two cycles reusing the water/vinegar mixture for the second cycle. After the second cycle, run 2 more cycles with just water to wash out all the vinegar. Finally, clean the outside with soap and water.

Sanitize the trash and recycle bins
Here’s how to sanitize your trash and recycle bins, step-by-step:

  • After you remove the bag, spray the inside and outside of your bins thoroughly with an all-purpose cleaner. Don’t be shy with the cleaner, it should be dripping wet. Let that sit for 5 to 10 minutes to allow the cleaner to kill all the germs and work its magic.
  • While your waiting, sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda all over the inside of the bin. Baking soda works as a deodorizer so your kitchen doesn’t smell like a dumpster.
  • After 10 minutes, scrub the inside and outside of the bins with a hefty sponge that your willing to part with (trust me, you won’t want to reuse it).
  • After scrubbing, take the bins outside and spray them down with a hose.
  • Once the soap and baking soda are rinsed off, dry the inside and outside thoroughly so there’s no leftover moisture.

Deep clean the floor
I recently published an in-depth article explaining exactly how to deep clean hardwood floors.  If you have hardwoods in your home, definitely check that out. If you have tile or your home is mostly carpet, start with a good vacuuming and then mop or spot clean areas that need some extra love.

Bathrooms Monthly Cleaning

Deep clean every nook and cranny of the toilet: Your toilet should be pretty clean if you’ve been scrubbing it every week, however, there’s one extra step you should complete monthly. Each month, detach the toilet seat and clean around the area where the seat and toilet connect. Water and other bodily fluids can seep in those crevices and be tough to clean without removing the seat.

Unclog the drains
You are constantly flushing food, debris, hair and other things down the various drains in your home. Make sure they stay unclogged to prevent blockage and avoid major plumbing issues down the road. The most effective product is Drain-O which I use all the time and it works like a charm.

Clean bathroom vent fans
If you walk into your bathroom and look up at the vent fan you’ll likely see a dusty mess. Take 5 minutes, remove the fan cover, and give it a thorough cleaning. Or simply vacuum the openings with the dusting attachment. The fan will be more effective and keep the moisture out of your bathroom. If the fan is not effectively removing moisture, you can run into major issues, like mold.

Cleaning bathroom air vents

Wipe the shower rod and rings
Wrap a sponge around the rod and give it a good wipe. Remove the rings and soak them in soap and water. Scrub out any soap scum before re-attaching them to the rod.

Clean out the drawers and cabinets
Remove everything in the vanity drawers and cabinets and wipe down the interior surfaces. While you’re at it, take inventory of your supplies. Get rid of things you don’t need and restock the items that are running low.

Sanitize the wastebasket
Use the same process as I described for the kitchen trash bin with soap, water, and baking soda.

Bedrooms Monthly Cleaning

Wash pillows, blankets, comforter, and mattress cover:
As you sleep, your pillows and blankets collect dust, sweat, drool, and oils from your skin. Most pillows and blankets are machine washable but if yours aren’t, soak them in a large bucket with warm water and laundry detergent.

Wash drapes and curtains
Throw drapes and curtains in the washer with a mild detergent on a gentle cycle setting. Hang dry them.

Dust every surface including the ceiling fan, blinds, and window sills
The best tool for this is a vacuum with a long wand and a small dusting attachment with soft bristles.

Wipe picture frames and windows
Windex and microfiber cloth are the best tools for this task.

Wipe all of the furniture
Clean everything off your dressers and nightstand and clean them thoroughly with a natural all-purpose cleaner and a damp microfiber cloth.

Take inventory of your closet and donate old clothes
Take everything out of your closet and make ‘keep’ and ‘throwaway/donate’ piles.

Vacuum and mop the floor
First, pick up dust and debris with a quick vacuuming. Then spray the floor with a cleaner designed specifically for your floor material (I highly recommend Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner for wood floors and Bona Stone, Tile, and Laminate for all other materials). Mop with a floor mop that has a detachable microfiber cloth head like this one.

Living and/or Family Room Monthly Cleaning

Wash drapes and curtains
Like I mentioned previously, toss them in the washer with mild detergent on the gentle setting.

Dust hard surfaces
Don’t forget the ceiling fan, window sills, and blinds. You’ll be surprised at how dusty blind slats can get!

Vacuum the corners of the walls, ceiling, and baseboards
Use a canister vacuum with a long wand to suck up the dust and cobwebs from those hard to reach corners of the room.

Spray and wipe all hard surfaces, glass, and windows
In addition to dry dusting, use a multi-surface cleaner (or mix a 4:1 ratio of water to white vinegar in a spray bottle) and a soft cloth to wipe away the smudges and gunk from hard surfaces such as your coffee table, end tables, lamps, mantle, etc.

Spot treat any stains on the rug or upholstery
Give your rugs and upholstered furniture a close examination and spot treat them with Resolve. I can’t tell you how many rugs and upholstered chairs this product has saved me. You simply spray it on, wait 3 minutes, and blot with a damp cloth. Rinse the cloth and continue blotting until the stain and cleaner are completely gone.

Spot treating stains on carpet with Resolve
Resolve Stain Remover

Vacuum underneath couches and mop the floor
If you don’t have a ton of furniture, it’s best to clear the room out completely so you have the space to give your floors a deep cleaning. However, I understand that clearing everything out could be a huge ordeal if you have a large fully furnished living/family room. At the very least, move the couches to the side, roll up the rug, and give your floor a good vacuuming and mop once a month.

Dining Room Monthly Cleaning

Wash drapes and curtains
Same as above, clean your drapes/curtains once a month in the washer with mild detergent on the gentle setting.

Dust hard surfaces
In the dining room, this means opening up the hutch and buffet and dusting the shelves too.

Spray and wipe all hard surfaces, glass, and windows
Be careful wiping the thin glass hutch doors, those tend to be very fragile and easily pop out with even the slightest pressure.

Spot clean stains on the rug and upholstered chairs
Again, Resolve will be your best friend when it comes to fighting stains on rugs and upholstery. It’ll work on dried stains that have settled into the fabric, but it works even better on fresh stains. Keep a bottle near your dining room so you can quickly take care of stains as they happen.

Clean behind and underneath large furniture
Nudge the hutch and other large furniture a couple of feet off the wall and wipe up the dust behind them. A microfiber mop is really good for this since it can bend and fit into super thin areas.

Bona Microfiber Floor Mop
Bona Microfiber Floor Mop (Check out on Amazon)

Vacuum the corners of the walls, ceiling, and baseboards
While you have your canister vacuum out cleaning the walls and ceiling in your living room, give your dining room a quick once over too.

Vacuum and mop the floor
So many things can spill on your dining room floor over the course of a month. Give it a good vacuuming and shine the floors with a mop.

Garage Monthly Cleaning

Declutter
Take a quick inventory of everything in your garage and get rid of stuff that you don’t need. All it does is collect dust and get in your way.

Sweep the walls, ceiling, garage doors, and floor
In your garage, start at the top and knock down cobwebs with a broom or vacuum them with a long wand attachment. Brush the dust off the inside of the garage door too.

Clean and grease the garage door track
Stand inside your garage and close the garage door. Above your head is the part of the garage door track that’s parallel to the ceiling. With a damp rag, wipe the inside of the track where the wheels and track meet. After you clean the tracks on the right and left sides, relubricate them with WD-40. Open the garage door and repeat the process on the part of the track that’s perpendicular to the ground. This video explains the exact process I just described.

Wipe shelves, appliances, and cabinets
While you’re wiping down the shelves, give the items on them a second look. Do you really need those raggedy old gloves that you haven’t used in 10 years?

Clean motor oil stains on the floor
Motor oil stains are ugly, they smell, and even worse, they track toxins into your house. Pick up a powder laundry detergent (I recommend Tide Powder) and mix it in a bucket with water so that the mixture is very soapy (the more soap the better). Pour the mixture over the stain and sprinkle more of the powder detergent over the area. Let it sit for 10 minutes then scrub it with a deck brush. Rinse the area with a hose on its most aggressive setting to blast away the mess.

Clean the entire floor
After you clean the motor oil stains, you might as well clean the rest of the floor. Fill a bucket with the same water and powdered Tide mixture. Pour it across the entire floor. Let it sit a minute or two but don’t leave it long enough for it to dry. Scrub the floor with a deck brush until the floor is completely clean. Rinse it all away with a hose.

Basement Monthly Cleaning

Declutter
The more often you declutter, the less decluttering you’ll have to do. Every month, walk through your entire basement and sort things into ‘keep’, ‘donate/throw out’, or ‘unsure’ buckets. If you don’t have the room to create piles, walk around with colored stickers and label each item. Once everything this is labeled, start by cleaning out the ‘donate/throw out’ items so you’ll have room to sort out the rest.

Sweep the walls, ceiling, and floor
Insects love to make a home in your basement. The cleaner you keep the walls, ceiling, and floor, the less likely you will have major insect issues in the future.

Dust hard surfaces
Dust all the large appliances including the furnace, water heater, washer, and dryer, etc.

Wipe hard surfaces
After dusting, wipe all the hard surfaces with a damp cloth. Don’t forget the windows, TV screen, and wood furniture.

Vacuum the floor
Finally, give the floor a quick vacuuming to suck up everything you knocked onto it while dusting.

Throughout the House Monthly Cleaning

Wash the trash barrel and recycle bin
Now that the hose is connected and it’s warm out, it’s time to clean the trash barrels. I’m not going to sugarcoat it, this is a disgusting job and you might need a face mask to block the smell. Tip your barrels on their side, squirt some soap and give it a good blast with the hose.

Declutter closets
Take everything out of every closet in your house, one by one. Give the walls and the floors your closets a good vacuuming.  As you put things back in the closets, decide which items you want to keep and which ones can be donated or tossed.

Wipe doors and doorframes
Doors and doorframes are often neglected. Give them a quick wipe with a damp microfiber cloth once a month.

Wipe blinds and window sills
Blinds are notorious for collecting dust. Wipe them with a damp cloth gently so you don’t damage the slats.

Wash the inside of all windows
Give the inside of your windows a quick spray with Windex or any other glass cleaner and wipe them down with a soft cloth. Avoid cleaners that contain ammonia or alcohol as those will leave streaks.

Annual House Cleaning Checklist

Keeping up with weekly and monthly cleaning is 85% of the battle. The last 15% are those areas that only need attention once a year. Those areas that aren’t easy to see or reach. You know, behind the refrigerator, up in the attic, deep in your carpets.

The following is a list of the house cleaning tasks you should check off the list at least once a year. I didn’t organize this list by room because most of these tasks fall into the “around the house” bucket.

Clean refrigerator coils
The refrigerator coils are what cools the air inside your fridge. Over time they can get dirty and dusty which can make the fridge less energy efficient and cost you money. The coils are located either on the back of the fridge or inside hidden by a kick plate which you can easily remove with a screwdriver. Turn off the fridge and give the coils a quick vacuum.

Clean hard to reach places
Get a friend or family member to help you move bulky furniture and appliances like your refrigerator and dishwasher so you can clean behind and underneath them.

Deep clean your dryer
A dirty dusty dryer is not only gross, but it’s also a fire hazard. Since it’s a safety concern, it’s important to get this one right. Spend a few minutes and read this great article explaining the steps you should take to deep clean your dryer.

Wash the exterior of your house
Washing the exterior of your house is no easy task. If you’re really ambitious or have a one level house, you can do this yourself with a deck brush and bucket of water, bleach, and hand soap. If your house is 2 stories or more, I highly recommend hiring a professional. It’s not worth the risk of getting up on a slippery ladder with a long brush in one hand. You can get a completely free quote on HomeAdvisor.com. If a pro isn’t in your annual budget, this is a task that you can get away with doing every 2 or 3 years.

Clean gutters and downspouts
As I mentioned in our Ultimate Home Maintenance Checklist, your gutters and downspouts are an integral system in your home. They are the pathways for rainwater flowing off your roof and into the ground. They protect your roof, walls, and foundation from water damage. If you allow leaves, sticks, and debris to build up in the gutters and downspouts, it will not only block the water flow but will also make a nice home for mold, pests, bees, and rodents. I recommend cleaning the gutters and downspouts twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall.

Declutter and dust your attic
Spend an afternoon sorting through the stuff in your attic. After you remove what you no longer need, bring the vacuum up there and give the floor and walls a good once-over.

Vacuum your fireplace
DO NOT use your regular vacuum to clean fireplace ash. According to The Spruce, ash dust is too fine for regular vacuums. It will pass right through the filter and clog the motor. Instead, invest in an ash vacuum (they are pretty cheap on Amazon), especially if you use your fireplace often.

Vacuum all vents
You should be vacuuming the AC/heat vents every month anyway, but if you’re not, make it a point to give them a deep cleaning every year.

Cleaning AC and heating vents

Clear out the clutter in your garage
Spring and Summer are the best times to open up your garage doors, pull everything out, and take inventory on what’s staying and what’s going. If you have stuff that’s in good shape but you no longer need, have a garage sale!

Clear out the clutter in your basement
Before you put up signs for your garage sale, check the basement. It’s time to actually get rid of those items you marked as “get rid of” throughout the year.

Mop the basement floor
If your basement floor is concrete like most are, give it a good sweep, then mop it with a cup of bleach mixed in with a gallon of water. The bleach will kill any lingering mold or mildew and completely sanitize the space. Next, mop it again with regular soap and water. Finally, rinse the floor by moping it a third time with just clean water.

Declutter, organize, and clean medicine cabinet
The medicine cabinet is often neglected when it comes time for cleaning and organizing throughout the year. At least once, take everything out of your medicine cabinet, give the inside a good wipe, and, as you put things back, throw away expired medicine and the stuff you no longer need. Also, take inventory of what might need to be restocked.

Steam clean carpets
If you’ve never steam cleaned carpets, here’s a step-by-step guide from WikiHow. Of course, you’ll need a steam cleaner. If you don’t have one, there are dozens to choose from on Amazon, but the best one is the Hoover PowerDash Pet Carpet Cleaner—it’s relatively cheap, powerful, lightweight, and versatile. Don’t take my word for it though, it has over 900 very positive reviews on Amazon.

Steam clean tile floors
Mopping your tile floors is usually enough through the year, but at least a couple times, clean them with a steam mop like this one from Bissell. The heat and moisture of the steam loosens and lifts stubborn stains. It works especially well on the grout between tiles which is difficult to clean with a standard mop.

Wash outside windows
If you have the type of windows that tilt in, cleaning the exterior surface is simple and easy. If not, it’s a much more difficult task. Instead of climbing a ladder and putting your safety at risk, pick up a window washer/squeegee combo that comes attached to a long extension pole. They sell a bunch of these on Amazon and you can get them in different sizes based on the height of your windows. I use this one which comes with a 12 or 24-foot pole. It’s so much easier and safer than getting up on the ladder.

Wash interior walls
Throughout the year, your walls will get dinged up and dirty. To clean them, simply dip a soft sponge in a mixture of warm water and gentle soap. Ring out the sponge so it’s slightly damp, then wipe the walls in a circular motion. After the walls are clean, rinse them with a clean cloth dampened with only water to remove the soapy cleaner. To spot clean stains, mix a paste of water and baking soda. Rub the paste over the stain and let it sit for 30 seconds. Wipe the area with a damp cloth. That’s it!

Let Us Know of Any House Cleaning Tasks We Missed!

We did a lot of research and self-reflection to come up with this checklist. Although every single item on it may not apply to you, we want to make it’s as comprehensive as possible. Please let us know what tasks we may have missed.

Remember, you can download the Excel Spreadsheet version which allows you to delete and/or add any items you wish. Or just download the PDF that’s ready to print right away.

No one said keeping your home clean would be easy, but at least now you understand exactly what you need to do and when to do it. Good luck!

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