Staying on top of the cleaning in your student accommodation might not be high on your list of priorities. However, it’s very easy for mess and dirt to accumulate, and before you know it, you’re living in a filthy house that seems too unmanageable to sort out.
Cleaning might seem like a tedious chore, but it’s essential to keep the house clean for hygiene reasons, not to mention avoid any hefty cleaning fees after you move out if your landlord has to bring in professionals. Living in an unclean environment is not only revolting, but it can also be detrimental to your physical health – as well as your mental health; a cluttered house creates a cluttered mind.
So, to help you out, here are some super quick, low-maintenance cleaning jobs you can do each week to avoid your student accommodation becoming uninhabitable, broken down by each room:
First up is the bedroom, this one should (hopefully) not be too bad as you’re not preparing food or washing in there – we assume. But bedrooms can become very messy quite quickly, and if your room looks like a tornado hit, you might be at a loss as to where to start. Follow these tips to get your room back on track:
1. Invest in a laundry bin
Clothes all over the place? Get yourself a laundry bin to drop them in while they’re waiting to be washed; it’ll keep them off your floor or the back of your desk chair. Additionally, if you’re planning to wear something again, get in the habit of putting it back in your drawers or wardrobe. It only takes a few seconds, and it will help prevent your room looking overly cluttered.
2. Remove things from your room a little at a time
Chances are you’ve accumulated plates, mugs and cutlery in your room. Take a moment (it only takes a moment!) to gather it all up and bring it to the kitchen, even if you aren’t ready to clean them yet. Aside from crockery, grab anything else you might want to remove, like stacks of paper or newsletters you’re done with. You don’t need to make an active effort to do this, just grab something each time you leave your room, so you slowly remove the rubbish over time.
3. Make the bed each morning
It’s amazing how much difference a made bed makes to the look of a room. It’s an easy habit to get into. For a quick version, just toss the duvet on top and ignore the pillows and sheets; it’ll be a much nicer bed to crawl into at night, too.
4. Keep a duster handy
Keeping cleaning supplies nearby will make it easier to use them. Desks accumulate dust and dirt quickly, especially if you eat at your desk. Once a week, do a swift wipe down of the surface. It will only take a moment but will make everything look much better.
5. That all-important vacuum
The floor will rapidly gather dust, debris and hair. If you only vacuum at the end of your tenancy, you’re going to find it incredibly unpleasant and time-consuming. Once a week, run the vacuum around your room. This is probably the most annoying aspect of cleaning, but it’s important.
When it comes time to move out, your room will already virtually be spotless because you’ve been keeping on top of it, so you won’t need to waste time.
The kitchen is arguably one of the worst rooms guilty of becoming dirty. All those people making food and no one doing the washing up? It’s bound to get messy in there. Here’s how to stay on top of the kitchen:
1. Wipe down the hob after every use
Yes! It might seem like a big ask, but it’s really not. Your hob might look like a greasy, sauce-splattered mess right now, but think how easy it would be to clean a spotless hob that has only been used once. Every time you and your housemates cook, simply use a sponge to wipe any spills away and your hob should remain clean and sparkling regardless of how much it’s used.
2. Clean pots and pans straight away
Yes, pots and pans are the worst things to clean, they take forever, and the sauce is always dried and caked on. But it’s only like that because you’ve left it for three days before deciding to wash them. If you wash your pots immediately, the foodstuff will come off instantly with no trouble, and you won’t have to do it late at night when you’ve finally remembered to do it.
3. Wipe down surfaces and the floor weekly
Again, this is a chore that only seems like a lot of work because of how messy they are initially. Once you get into the habit of wiping the sides down every week, the job will feel like nothing at all. Same with the floor. If you don’t feel like breaking out the mop, just spray some cleaning stuff and use a sponge or cloth to remove any stains or food.
4. Clean spills immediately
The microwave, the oven, the floor…if you’re dropping food or splashing sauce anywhere, wipe it up straight away. If you leave it to dry, it will just create a more difficult job down the line. It only takes a second, and if it’s your mess, you shouldn’t be leaving it for someone else to have to clean up.
The bathroom is another horrifying room for houses that don’t have an effective cleaning routine. Here’s how to keep on top of it:
1. Scrub the toilet once a week
Yes, it’s a bit gross, and your toilet might look like something is living in it at the moment, but scrubbing it every week will mean it isn’t able to accumulate stains and mess. Keep toilet cleaner next to it and, once a week, squirt some around the bowl and give it a quick scrub.
2. Wipe down the sink
The sink can quickly accumulate toothpaste stains, hair and various muck. Keep some cleaning spray and a cloth nearby and wipe it down every week or so. If there’s too much stuff on the side of the sink that makes the job difficult, consider getting a basket or a glass for the bathroom for everyone to keep their toothbrushes and toothpaste in so they’re out of the way.
3. Spray the shower regularly
Nowadays, you can get sprays that clean showers with no scrubbing or wiping needed, you don’t even need to wash it off. Consider getting one and leaving it close to the shower to be used a few times a week. It will keep it clean and prevent limescale build-up – and it only takes a few seconds to do!
Finally, the living room, which may currently be full of empty beer bottles, shoes and video games. This is probably where you host your parties and gatherings, so it can get messy pretty quickly. Here’s how to prevent it from getting unmanageable:
1. Get a designated bin
If this room is frequently used for drinking, consider getting a designated bin for bottles and cans, which can then be added to your recycling later, so they’re not all scattered all over the room at the end of the night.
2. Vacuum once a week
This room needs frequent vacuuming due to frequent footfall. Consider keeping the vacuum in this room if there’s space for it, so it’s easy to grab and whizz round the floor at least once a week.
3. Find a designated place for everything
Whatever you keep in the living room, DVDs, video games or shoes etc., find a place for them all that keeps them out of the way and looking neat, and make an effort to return everything to where it belongs when you’re done with them. It will help the room look tidier, and it’ll make it much easier to find all your belongings when you need them.
We hope these tips and ideas will help you keep your student accommodation looking great. At Student Housing Lancaster, we provide student accommodation in Lancaster. Feel free to browse the listings on our site and book a viewing if you’re looking for accommodation for next year.