Start Now For a Holiday-Ready Home

Holidays preparations seem to start earlier every year, and while aisles of Christmas candy in September might have you saying bah humbug, retailers may be on to something. Fall is the perfect time to get ready for the busy holiday season, and the first step is to prepare your home. Before the baking begins and the guests arrive, here are three ways you can make sure your house is in top shape for the holidays.

1. Clear out the clutter.

Summer might leave your tan looking terrific, but can you say the same for your home? Family vacations and trips to the beach can result in some serious clutter. The first step to getting your home ready for the holidays is to gather all those season-specific items that won’t be used for a while. Tuck an empty laundry basket under your arm and work your way clockwise through each room, scooping up summer sports equipment, spring decor items, etc. as you go. This is a chore that kids can help out with, and you can even make a game out of it. Once you have everything in one spot, quickly sort and label items by season and tuck them into your storage space. Be sure to throw away or recycle broken or worn-out items to create even more space. 

(Tip: A small storage unit — think 5’ x 5’ or 5’ x 10’ — can help you store out-of-season items while you’re not using them.)

2. Do a deep cleaning.

Now that your corners and countertops are clear, it’s time to give your home a good cleaning, starting with your kitchen. It’s the heart of your home during the holidays, so consider using a professional cleaning service to get it gleaming. If you decide to do it yourself, scrub the outside of small appliances like mixers, air fryers, and toaster ovens and wipe down the walls to remove any grease or dried-on food. This is also a great time to thoroughly clean the inside of your refrigerator and oven before filling them with delicious holiday treats.

3. Get ready for guests.

When the holidays arrive, so will the house guests! Give them a warm welcome by making sure guest spaces are clean and inviting. In the bathroom, clean the toilet, tub, and sink, wipe down baseboards and mop the floor. Don’t forget to toss the shower curtain and bath mats into the washing machine and to clean the inside and outside of cabinets and drawers. To guarantee overnight guests get a good night’s sleep, clean and dust under the bed and wipe down nightstands and dressers. Be sure to clean the base and shade of table and floor lamps. They can gather dust and make rooms look dark and dingy.

With your home decluttered and deep cleaned, all that’s left to do is decorate! Whether you go all out or keep it simple, fill your home with guests or entertain a few close friends, preparing your home in advance will help you enjoy a stress-free holiday season.