Get the mop and feather duster ready! Following are five ways spring cleaning can actually improve your financial picture.
- Clear clutter. You may uncover loose change or more important things like bills, checks or documents you’ll need for tax time.
- Clean the refrigerator. A sparkling fridge can make produce and other perishable items easier to find, cutting down on costly food waste.
- Disinfect the kitchen. Cleaning all kitchen surfaces thoroughly helps prevent foodborne illness caused by bacteria.
- Control dust and pet dander. Dusting and vacuuming helps remove dust mites, mold spores and/or pet dander that may trigger allergies and related health expenses.
- Organize the garage, basement or attic. Cleaning out storage areas may inspire you to sell items you no longer use, putting money back in your pocket!
MAKE YOUR OWN NATURAL HOMEMADE CLEANERS
Have you ever cleaned your bathroom, but first had to open the window, put on your gloves and try to hold your breath because of the fumes? Some store-bought cleaners can be toxic (think of the skull and crossbones image on some packaging), expensive and bad for the environment. Try making your own cleaners to use around the house instead. It’s inexpensive, the ingredients you need are nontoxic and some of them are likely already in your kitchen. They include:
- Baking soda – A naturally abrasive ingredient, it’s a great deodorizer and stain remover.
- Vinegar – It’s a disinfectant that can remove stains while sanitizing.
- Tea tree oil, grapefruit oil and lemon juice – Tea tree and grapefruit oil are known for their antibacterial properties, while lemon juice cuts grease naturally, leaving behind a fresh scent.
- Liquid castile soap – It’s a vegetable-based soap, which makes it completely nontoxic.
Some of the cleaners you can make include:
All-purpose liquid cleaner:
- One gallon hot water
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoons liquid soap
- 1 cup baking soda first
- 1 cup vinegar second
- 1 gallon boiling water
Allow baking soda and vinegar to foam in drain for five
minutes before flushing with the boiling water.
Window, glass and chrome cleaner:
- 5 parts water to 1 part vinegar, OR
- 1 cup water, 1 cup vinegar, ½ teaspoon castile soap
Tub and tile cleaner:
- Apply full-strength vinegar to a sponge and wipe
- Scour with baking soda
Soft scrub for fixtures:
- ½ cup baking soda
- Castile soap
- 10 drops of tea tree oil (optional)
Add enough castile soap until you have a frosting-like consistency. Scrub and rinse with water.
You’ll breathe easier after making your own cleaners using household items. Happy spring cleaning!