Regardless of how disciplined and how well you clean, you are bound to miss something. Anyone can waltz into their apartment and notice a messy room or a juice stain on the counter, but the seven spots listed below have most likely been missed unless you made a conscientious effort to go out of your way and clean them. Write these places down and hang the list up on your refrigerator so you don’t miss them next time you embark on a cleaning extravaganza!
The Space Underneath Your Couch, Chairs, and Bed
When was the last time you moved your couch or bed to vacuum underneath it? Most likely, it has been a few weeks, if not a few months. These are the ideal spots for dust bunnies, dirt, clothes, garbage, and even coins or cash to accumulate. Grab a broom and dustpan to sweep up all the large pieces of debris that would get caught in your vacuum. Then, use a duster or vacuum and move your large furniture to thoroughly clean the space underneath it. At minimum, you should be vacuuming underneath your furniture twice each year, but to keep your apartment in ship shape, in wouldn’t hurt to do this once or twice a month.
Walls, Baseboards, and Trim
You may be surprised with the amount of dust and dirt that ends up on vertical surfaces such as walls, baseboards, and trim. Grab some lamps or lights and make one room at a time as bright as you can, and see how much grime is really on the wall. A duster can be used clean your walls while your baseboards can be cleaned with a damp rag and simple wipe down, maybe a hard scrub to get the tough spots. Once you finish dusting the walls, use a wet rag to wipe off any spots on the walls as well as all dust and dirt on light switches and doorknobs.
Tops of Cabinets, Dressers, Drawers, and Doors
Just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t dirty. The tops of cabinets, doors, drawers, and dressers tend to gather a great deal of dust and dirt. If you need to, use a step stool or a ladder to give the tops of these pieces of furniture a wipe with a duster. If you don’t have a duster, you can always wipe them down with a damp rag for dust, followed by a dry rag to wipe up any excess moisture on the wood. Last, use a third, dry rag and apply a small amount of wood polish to bring back the shiny finish everyone loves. While you have the stepstool or ladder out, you might as well clean the ceiling fan and light fixtures.
Heating Vents and Air Filters
If you have central heating and air conditioning, your filters most likely need to be cleaned or replaced. While filters do an excellent job trapping dust, dirt, and allergens, once these filters are full, all your heating and air conditioning is doing is blowing these particles throughout your apartment, decreasing the quality of the air you’re breathing. Make sure you are cleaning your vents often and replacing the air filter as needed to maintain the best possible air quality you can. Window-unit air conditioners need to be cleaned over the course of spring and summer, even if they’re only used for four or five months. Look through the owner’s manual to learn how to correctly clean your air conditioner. If you threw the manual away, you can always look up your specific make and model online.
Closets are the most common culprit to end up dirty and unorganized. In fact, the closet floor might be dirtiest part of your whole room or apartment. Most folks keep their shoes on the closet floor, which only tracks dirt and debris from the outside, through your apartment, and into your room. Not to mention, you most likely had your shoes on while using a public restroom, which means all the germs and bacteria from those floors are now making themselves at home in your apartment. It is essential to purge your closet a few times per year and get rid of any clothes you aren’t wearing. While you put together a bag of clothes to donate, you can sweep and mop the closet floor, and then clean the bottoms of your shoes, as they are most likely filthy even though you can’t see it.
Clean Your Cleaning Supplies
If your cleaning supplies are dirty, you won’t get very far trying to clean your dirty apartment. If you want your cleaning supplies to work as designed and keep from just spreading the dirt around your apartment, you’re going to have to take your supplies apart and thoroughly clean them, too. Empty out your vacuum’s dirt bag regularly to keep dust and debris from piling up. Once empty, you will need to rinse the dirt bag and hang it up to dry, outside if you can. Likewise, you will need to clean the filter often as well, which will also need to be hung out to dry. Any hair that gets stuck in the bristles of your vacuum needs to be removed, otherwise you’re only dragging it around your apartment. If you have roommates, it may not be a bad idea to wear gloves while you do this.
Aside from regular plant care, such as watering, feeding, and rotating, plants need to be cleaned. Plants, especially ones with larger leaves, will amass tons of dust and dirt. Fortunately, if you are able to move them, you can place them in the shower and give them a quick rinse off. If you can’t move a plant, you can always take a microfiber cloth or paper towel and give the leaves a gentle wipe down. By keeping your plant clean, you will be keeping your plant healthy!