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SqualorJolie Kerr is a cleaning expert and advice columnist. She’ll be here every week helping to answer your filthiest questions. Are you dirty? Email her.

Under normal circumstances, I believe in chores. I do wish they had a better name and/or branding! But well, chores are what they are and I believe that having chores is a good habit. Having a routine set of chores is the terribly boring secret to how those people who have “effortlessly” clean homes achieve that lofty state, in fact.

But also, shrug. If you don’t do chores, you don’t do chores. So it’s not a thing I bang on too often about, those basic homekeeping-type things that are good to do every day because chores + nagging = your mom and I am not your mom!

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However, these are not normal circumstances and so I think now is a good time to tell you what a set of basic daily chores might look like! These are not one-size-fits-all, of course, but this is a good start that will apply to most of your homes. Consider them, won’t you? (That is me, not nagging.)

The Eight Daily Chores

“Eight? Lady, are you out of your mind?!?”

No, well I mean yes, but not in this case. Look, I’m giving you two chores per main room in your home—bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, living room—that will all take under 5 minutes to complete. Actually, most of them will take less than a minute, the dish-doing is the one that throws the whole thing off, but even that doesn’t take very much time at all.

Okay, so here they are. I bolded the task I personally feel is the most important of the two because people HATE chores but if I can get you to do just one in each room that will be good enough. (Not nagging!)

Bedroom Chores

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Here’s a secret about making the bed: It will instantly make even the messiest bedroom look much, much tidier.

  1. Make your bed
  2. Put clothes away, in the laundry hamper, or fold them neatly on your laundry chair (you know the chair I’m talking about, and we don’t need to get into it right now. BUT WE WILL GET INTO IT.)
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Bathroom Chores

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When it comes to daily cleaning, the name of the game in the bathroom is mostly about tidying.

  1. Hang up towels, don’t leave dirty clothes on the floor
  2. Wipe sink area and/or squeegee glass shower doors to keep bathroom dry
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Kitchen Chores

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The kitchen is the space that requires the most daily work, chore-wise.

  1. Do the dishes
  2. Wipe work surfaces after meal prep
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Living Room Chores

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Daily cleaning in the living room is basically a matter of picking things up, easy but it will go a long way in keeping the space from getting chaotic.

  1. Bus glasses/plates/snacks to the kitchen
  2. Straighten cushions and throw blankets
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Jolie Kerr is a cleaning expert, advice columnist and the host of the podcast Ask a Clean Person

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