How To Speed Clean Your House Before Guests Arrive

These speed cleaning tips will get your house looking neat and clean in 30 minutes or less!

How to speed clean your house before guests arrive


I like keeping my house clean, tidy, and in order, but let’s be honest here – with a 9-month-old baby and a sweet but naughty dog, things can go from “Home Beautiful” to chaotic in a matter of minutes – baby toys scattered over the floor, a half-chewed rawhide sticking out from between the couch cushions, drool (human or dog – who knows?) on the carpet… you get the idea ūüėÄ

I don’t mind things not looking perfect – my house is “lived in” – but when company is coming, I do like it to look organized and clean. Every now and then I’ll get a¬†phone call from my husband – “so and so is popping over real quick after work.” When our house was listed for sale, our¬†realtor might call and say “I have someone who wants to view the house in 30 minutes.” Panic mode!

In a perfect world, we’d have plenty of advance notice so I can do a full clean and tidy up, but we don’t live in a perfect world. So how do you make your house look presentable in under 30 minutes?

The key is to focus on completing tasks that will have the biggest visual impact. We’re not talking about scrubbing the grout in the shower or dusting the ceiling fan blades (unless the dust is 5 inches thick and you’re planning on turning the fan on – haha!) You want to focus on things that people will actually notice when they walk in the door. No-one is going to be looking at the crown molding to see if there’s any dust on it, but people will notice when a drool covered rawhide pierces their leg when they sit down on the couch.

How To Speed Clean Your House Before Guests Arrive


1. First, light a scented candle to make your home smell inviting. I love these wood-wick candles – not only do they smell amazing, they make a crackling sound while burning that sounds like a tiny wood fireplace.

2. Tidy up the main living area.

  • Straighten up the couch cushions
  • Put toys into a toy basket
  • Fold and put away blankets
  • Remove clutter from side tables

3. Clean the surfaces

  • Wipe down the kitchen and bathroom countertops
  • Wipe down the stove top and microwave
  • Wipe the coffee table and side tables, mantle, TV stand, etc.

4. Move dirty dishes to dishwasher or fill sink with warm, soapy water and let them soak.

5. Do a quick vacuum¬†and swiffer the tiles/wood floors. If you don’t have enough time to vacuum, I love this rubber broom – it picks up dog hair and dust and fluffs up the carpets.

6. If it’s daytime, open all the blinds – a bright house feels cleaner than a dark one. If it’s evening, use dimmer lights like a¬†lamp¬†instead of bright overhead lights.

Now make yourself a cup of tea, sit on the couch, and relax. Then when company arrives, casually say “Hi” and act like your house always looks this tidy, because it absolutely does, right? ūüėČ

Do you have any other tips for making your house look presentable in a flash? 

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Hi I'm Ashli. I'm work-at-home mom of one who loves being outdoors, reading, running, exploring Japan (where I currently live) and teaching other moms how to make money online.

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