12 Places in Your Home You Forget to Clean

Cleaning might be a hassle, but it is absolutely essential to do for every household. However, hidden dirt and dust can easily build up in unexpected places in your house that even a clean freak may forget to clean. Therefore, here’s a list of 12 places in your home most forget to clean, so you can target those neglected spots and cover every inch of your home!

Yes, you wash the cases to your pillows; however, you should also wash the actual pillow once every three to six months to remove any mold, bacteria, and odors. Most pillows are machine washable, so you should be able to throw them into the laundry to clean them. This goes for throw pillows as well. Just be sure to check the labels to see if they are machine washable before throwing them in the laundry.

Places up high or hard-to-reach areas are always the first spots in your home that everyone forgets to clean, especially the top of your doorframes. This hard-to-reach area collects a lot of dust. Make sure to wipe a feather duster or cloth across the top, sides, and entire surface of the doorframes to avoid dust build up.

Under Appliances
The small space under you major appliances collects a lot of dust, grime, and even food. Pull out your refrigerator, stove, and other appliances out every once in a while to clean the surface under them. When you do this, make sure you give the area a good and thorough cleaning. Clean the coils of the refrigerator with a coil cleaning brush, vacuum, and wipe down the walls and sides of the refrigerator. Complete the same cycle for your stove and other appliances as well.

Just like doorframes, baseboards collect a significant amount of dust as well. Baseboards collect dust all day from a multitude of things, especially rooms with a lot of foot traffic. The best way to clean your baseboards is to either vacuum them or run a damp cloth along the surface of them. However, unlike doorframes, this is a cleaning chore you should add to you weekly cleaning list, or at least clean them every other week!

Ceiling Fans
If you haven’t run your ceiling fan in awhile than there is most likely a thick build up of dust. Make sure to clean the blades of the ceiling fan every once in a while to rid your house of excess dust. The easiest way to do this is to grab a pillowcase and put it over the ceiling fan blades. Then pull the pillowcase off and wipe off all the excess dust inside the pillowcase!

Even your dishwasher needs a good cleaning every now and then. Make sure to clean the dishwasher filter and run a cycle with hot water with a cup of white vinegar. This will help remove hard-water deposits, soap scum, and clogged food debris.

Small Appliances
Most areas that individuals forget to clean are the places that are out of sight, like the insides of small appliances. Every once in a while, make sure to unplug your small appliances and give them a cleaning!

Window Treatments
If you are trying to deep clean you house, don’t skip your curtains or window treatments. Curtains build up and collect a lot of dust, dirt, and pollen, so make sure you clean them every once in a while. You can vacuum them from top to bottom or wipe a damp cloth over them. However, if you’re luck and you have machine washable and dryable curtains, throw them in the wash!

Dusting the shelves in you house isn’t the only thing you should clean! Don’t forget to clean the books that the shelves hold as well. When books are left untouched, the paper deteriorates faster. Make sure to remove the books from the shelves and dust along the spine and tops of the book and flip through the pages. The best thing about this cleaning task is that you only have to do it once or twice a year.

Trash Cans
Although your trash cans are just a receptacle for trash, you’ll want to give them a clean every now and again. Take your trash can outside to rinse it. Use a hose, a long-handled brush, and a mixture of white vinegar and warm water to scrub out any bacteria or mildew that could collect in your trash cans.

Shower Curtains
Bring your shower curtain back to life with this quick and easy fix! Throw the curtain in the washing machine with your towels. Add detergent and a cup of baking soda and you shower curtain should come back to life without any spots or soap scum!

Washer and Dryer
It might seem counterproductive or unnecessary, but you should clean the machines that clean your clothes every once in a while! There are a multitude of things that could cause mildew to build up in your washer and dryers. From poor ventilation to leaving damp clothes in your washer, mildew can collect and encourage growth. To prevent this, clean the rubber door seals with 1 cup of chlorine bleach and 2 cups of warm water. Once you’ve finished that, fill the bleach dispenser with bleach and run a complete cycle with hot water without any clothes. You should do this every two to four months to keep every thing clean! As for your dryer, make sure the exhaust duct is cleaned every year by a professional. Not only will it keep your clothes clean and safe, but it is also more efficient and will help you save money.

If you forget to clean these areas, don’t worry! It’s okay if you don’t clean these areas every time. Just make sure you don’t forget about them and clean them from time to time!

Are you looking for a new home to move into? Check out all of Judd Builders many wonderful new construction communities in the Pennsylvania area! From bustling Siena Place to the quaint community of Meadow View Farms, there is bound to be a community that is the perfect fit for you! For more information, feel free to contact us! We’d love to hear from you and answer any of your questions!

12 Closet Organization Ideas You’ll Want to Use Immediately

Do you have trouble finding certain clothing items in your closet? Do you wish your closet was a little more organized? Follow some of the helpful closet organizing ideas below and get your closet in tip-top shape!

1. Use Coordinated Hangers
Coordinated hangers do the same job as other hangers. However, because they’re coordinated they make your closet look a lot more clean and organized! The best part, you can find a pack of coordinated hangers anywhere! From Target to IKEA, you won’t have any problem finding what you need!

2. Use Shelf Dividers
If you have a shelf in your closet, keep it organized with shelf dividers! Keep separate folded items, like sweaters and towels, divided using this handy tool.

3. Store Out-of-Season Clothes Elsewhere
Take your out-of-season clothes and store them away in containers. You can either place the containers up high on a shelf or under your bed. Not only will this open up more space in your closet, but it will also help your keep you closet organized throughout the year!

4. Get Rid of Unused Clothes
If you haven’t worn a particular piece of clothing in at least 12 months, it’s time to get rid of it! Don’t hang onto clothes that you never wear. It’ll just continue to take up much needed closet or drawer space. Either sell or donate your clothing and create more closet space for the clothes you absolutely love to wear.

5. Clean Your Closet While It’s Empty
While you’re going through your closet and cleaning things out, make sure to clean the actual closet itself when it’s empty!

6. Make Your Shoes Visible
Stop using cardboard shoeboxes as storage and opt for clear containers so your shoes are clearly visible. Using cardboard boxes makes it difficult to get to your shoes as well as figuring out where your favorite pair is! Skip the hassle and check out some of these translucent shoe containers from The Container Store!

7. Hang your Belts
Instead of storing belts in your drawer and taking up valuable space, buy a belt hanger and hang your belts! This will create more space in your drawers while taking up minimal space in your closet!

8. Inventory Your Clothes
When you’re organizing your closet, make a list of everything you have. Assess everything you have and see if anything needs to be replaced. Is your favorite pair of jeans worn out? Is your favorite cardigan looking overused? Get rid of it and see if you have something in your closet that can replace it. If not, go shopping to replace the staple item in your closet!

9. Use Drawer Dividers
When you’re organizing your closet, you’ll most likely be organizing your dresser drawers as well. To keep drawers in tip-top shape use drawer dividers to keep all your smaller items like socks, underwear, and delicates, separated! You’ll absolutely fall in love with your drawer dividers when you realize nothing is getting tangled anymore.

10. Place Like Items Together
Hanging your clothing in categories and subcategories will make it easier to find what you are looking for. Place all your blouses together, as well as pants, skirts, and dresses. Then, organize each category in subcategories, like long-sleeve and short sleeve or light colors and dark colors. Creating a system with your clothing will not only make it easier for you to find things, but keep it clean and organized as well!

11. Add Another Level of Shelves
Double up your closet space by adding another shelf or bar. Utilizing all the vertical and horizontal space will help you keep your closet clean and organized. Check out this great product to help you add another level in your closet!

12. Use Specialized Hangers
Not all hangers work for different types of clothing. Although you’ll want to invest in coordinating hangers, you should also buy hangers that hang specialized items, like these sleek hangers! These hangers make it easy to file away your dress pants, but also makes your dress pants easier to access.

How to Create the Perfect Cleaning Schedule for a Busy Household

It’s tough to keep the household clean and in order all the time. Schedules get busy and unexpected things tend to happen that take up your time. However, you can still keep your home clean even if you’re living in a busy household. All you really need to help keep things in order is a cleaning schedule that you can easily and happily follow. Here is how you can create the perfect cleaning schedule for your household and keep your amazing Judd Builders home in tip-top shape.

1. Prioritize
Every household is different. Every home has varied heavy traffic areas, different children, and a unique daily schedule. The first step to create the perfect cleaning schedule for your house is to prioritize. Highlight what is important to you and what you want clean. Do the dishes pile up constantly? Can you never catch up on laundry? These tasks that seem impossible to stay on top of are what you should prioritize cleaning. Whatever you decide are the main priorities of your household should be on top of your cleaning schedule!

2. Make a Small List
Most individuals schedule their life around their cleaning when it should be the other way around. If you schedule your household cleaning around your life, you’ll find that more gets cleaned. The next step in creating the perfect cleaning schedule for your busy household is to make a small and limited list from the priorities that you’ve decided upon. To keep things in check make three small lists of “must do’s” in these three categories: Daily, Weekly, and Monthly. Here’s a good example to follow:

Daily –

  • Make beds
  • Prep dinner
  • Complete at least 1 load of laundry
  • Do the dishes
  • Wipe down kitchen and bathrooms

Weekly –

  • Change sheets
  • Clean bathrooms fully
  • Meal plan (done every other week)
  • Vacuum household
  • Dust heavy traffic areas

Monthly –

  • Change Air Filters
  • Wash quilts and blankets
  • Clean out the car
  • Dust every room

Remember your cleaning schedule and priorities will vary from this list. So think about your household and plan accordingly!

3. Conquer the Clutter
Keeping the clutter under control is a huge aspect to keeping a tidy home. Before you start tackling your cleaning schedule, you should conquer the clutter around your house if you have any. Go through every space in the house and organize the whole room. Anything that you find that doesn’t fit in the room or doesn’t get used anymore put it in a bin to store away. Once the bin is full take it to a consignment store and donate it! Keep this up after clearing the clutter and place any new clutter in the bin to donate later.

4. Keep Up With the Routine
Once you’ve determined your daily, weekly, and monthly lists and conquered the clutter you’re ready to put your schedule to the test! Find a routine that works for you that helps you get your daily tasks done. If you prefer to put in a load of wash and clear the dishwasher in the morning, do it then or if you like to prep for dinner towards the evening that’s when you should do it. Figure out what works best for you and follow that routine!

5. Divide and Conquer
The best part of creating a cleaning schedule is that you don’t have to tackle it alone. Ask for help when it comes to your daily, weekly, and monthly tasks. Ask your wife or husband to help you complete a task or two. If you have kids assign them some chores that will help keep the house clean. Don’t try to do everything yourself. Dividing and conquering is always the best method.

6. Complete the Cycle
This step might seem confusing, but it’s one of the most important steps to follow. When you start a task make sure you follow through and complete it. If you start a load of laundry make sure to dry it, fold it, and put it away. Don’t leave any of your tasks unfinished. And don’t feel bad if you get interrupted and don’t complete the task fully at that moment. Just make sure the task gets done before the day ends. It will help keep the house tidier.

7. Schedule Your Tasks
For bigger and more time consuming cleaning tasks, schedule them around your everyday life. This works best for completing weekly and monthly tasks. Remember this will be different for every household so do things according to your needs.

Minor Home Fixes in a Flash

There are always those minor home projects that you end up putting off every weekend. Stop ignoring these minor fixes and cross them off your to do list in a flash with these helpful tips and tricks!

Furniture Scratches
Furniture scratches can be frustrating, especially when it happens on your favorite piece of furniture. However, there’s nothing a little Old English Scratch Cover can’t fix! They also provide information on how to care for your furniture as well as an array of products to upkeep your furniture’s natural beauty.

Water Rings
You know that frustrating feeling you get when you see water rings on your furniture because someone didn’t use a coaster? Well now you can let go of that frustration and get rid of those nasty water rings. There are multiple ways to remove water rings from your wooden furniture. So get cleaning and rid you furniture of those miserable looking water rings.

Carpet Spills
When something spills on a brand new carpet, it can send homeowners into a frenzy. So stay calm and make sure to blot instead of rub the stain. When you rub the stain you are only making it bigger. So blot stain and check out Shaw Carpets website for tips to help you clean multiple stains and keep your carpets in tiptop shape!

Lumpy Pillows
If you’re unsure if you should throw your lumpy pillow away, there is a way to test it! Perform the “break test” by folding your pillow in half and placing a heavy book on it. If it pops back into its original state it’s still good to use. If not, your pillow is dead and needs to be thrown out and replaced. Also, the “break test” only works on fiberfill, down- or feather-filled pillows not on foam or any other type of pillow.

Mildewy Vinyl Shower-Curtain Liner
This one is an extremely easy fix! Just take the shower-curtain down and throw it in the washer with some old towels. Make sure to put it on a short-cycle using hot water and bleach and it will be as good as new!

Crayon Off The Wall
If you have any kids or grandkids they’re bound to get crayon all over the place, especially the wall. A magic eraser will do the trick, but if you don’t have one handy you could always use a blow dryer to heat up the wax and wipe it off with a rag and dish soap. Or if you have WD-40 handy, spritz it on the crayon markings and wipe it away!

Musty Front-Load Washer Smell
One of the most frustrating things to deal with around the house is the musty smell front-load washers give off. To rid your washer of the unpleasant smell you should move your wet clothes to the dryer immediately before they get musty. That’s easier said than done, but if you’re able to it will help prevent the musty smell from manifesting. Also, keep the front door open to let the washer air dry. However, there are other measures you can take to combat against your washer’s musty smell. Clean the door’s rubber seal once a month with a half and half solution of water and vinegar. You can do a cleansing wash by running your washer empty on the hottest setting with a cup of baking soda in the drum and white vinegar in the detergent dispenser. Also, don’t forget to clean your drain pump filter every few weeks!

Hard Wood Floor Care

the floor clean with a vacuum cleaner

Hard wood floors are valuable and sensitive, but they don’t need to be specially cared for. There are simple methods to cleaning your hard wood floors while still keeping them in pristine condition. Here are tips and steps on how to clean hard wood floors:

First, here are some things to keep in mind before you clean to make sure they are extra clean and sparkly when you’re done:

  • Go shoe free. Keeping shoes at the door and avoiding wearing them on the floors all the time will prevent a lot of dirt from coming in.
  • Dust the baseboards. Before a floor cleaning and after you’ve dusted a room, sweep a dust wand over the baseboards. All the dirt will fall to the ground and will be picked up when you clean the floor.
  • Work from the top down. Clean your floors last because when you clean the rest of the house, dust and dirt will fall on the floor, so you might as well save the floor for last and get it all at once rather than having to go back after you clean the floor the first time.

Now for supplies, all you need is:

  • a broom
  • a dust pan
  • a steam mop
  • steam mop replacement pads

To give your floor a really good clean, move everything from the space, unless it’s furniture you can easily get under, and sweep the entire floor. This allows you to pick up dust bunnies, dirt and larger items that a Swiffer can’t pick up.

Next, use the steam mop to clean the rest. You don’t have to use any chemicals or carry around a bucket, mop or sponge and it does a good job. It’s all natural and will only take a few minutes. You will see the steam on the floor and will see the cleaning pay off when the pad visibly collects all the remaining dirt. Another good thing about a steam mop is that you can just throw the pads in the wash and reuse them. The steam dries pretty quickly so you can put everything back in its place in no time!

For a deeper cleaning every now and then, use a wood cleaning product diluted according to its instructions. Dip a sponge or mop in the water, wring it out as much as possible so it’s just damp, mop the floor with that then rinse the floor with a clean mop dampened in clear water. Wipe up extra liquid to prevent water damage on the wood. This only needs to be done every so often, maybe a couple times a year. The steam mop is perfect for your weekly cleaning.

Things in Your Home You Should Clean More Often

Closeup horizontal image of hands wearing rubber gloves while cleaning stove top range with spray bottle and microfiber rag

Cleanliness is an important aspect in a lot of people’s homes, but there are some places/things that you may not clean as often as you should. Some may seem fairly obvious and others not-so-obvious:

  1. Dryer Lint Trap– It’s very easy to forget to clean out this small nook of space. If you use dryer sheets, simply pulling the lint off the trap after a wash isn’t enough to keep it truly clean.  Washing the trap every six months will improve the performance of your dryer and increase its lifespan. To clean it use warm soapy water and a cleaning toothbrush to wash it gently and let it sit to dry overnight!
  2. Inside the dishwasher– A lot of people may think the dish washer doesn’t really need to be clean considering it cleans your dishes with soap and hot water all the time, but tiny bits of food and grease can get stuck inside small spaces in the washer, making it look and smell bad over time as well as decrease its efficiency.
  3. Refrigerator Coils– Spending only 15 minutes every six months cleaning your refrigerator coils can eliminate 70 percent of the refrigerators malfunctions, extend its lifespan and increase efficiency.When dirt and dust clog the coils, they can’t release heat properly, causing the compressor to run longer and work harder than it should.

For the rest of the important spaces to keep clean that most people forget about, click HERE for the full article.