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If you’re thinking about doing some spring cleaning and want to know where to start, try this list of 14 short spring cleaning chores for the entryway or hallway. The best part is you can get a lot of these done while working in short bursts of 5 minutes or less. Or customize the tasks by breaking them down into even smaller pieces and/or do them at your leisure.
We also provide how-to instructions, helpful habits, and tips to make the cleaning process easier for you, now and in the future, including tips for people with bad backs, joints, and hips.
In this post…
- What to Do
- What You’ll Need
- Tips to Get You Started and Motivated
- 5-minute Spring Cleaning Hallway and Entryway Chores
What to Do:
- Pick at least one out of these 14 spring cleaning chores for the entryway and hallway and try to complete it in 5 minutes.
- Plan ahead by knowing what you’ll be working on as well as how you’ll be going about it.
- Prep the area with whatever you’ll need, such as a trash bin, cleaning products, tools, duster, etc.
- Set a timer for five minutes or longer if desired.
- Try to clean without stopping or getting distracted.
- Clean as fast you’re able to move.
- Treat it as a game.
- Allow enough time to clean up after you’re finished, or opt to go 5 minutes longer before you begin.
- Whatever you don’t finish can be moved to the next day or even later in the day.
- If you want to go longer than 5 minutes, avoid going too long since the goal is to set more manageable timeframes.
- Try merging sessions. For instance, if you were to work in the kitchen, you could do a few drawers for 5 minutes and then work on the microwave and whatever else for another five.
What You’ll Need:
- Whatever items you’ll be using to clean.
- A timer.
- Anything that will help prevent extra trips (i.e., trashcan step ladder, etc.).
- A donation bag (optional).
Tips to Get You Started and Motivated
1. Make It Entertaining!
If you think you’ll be going longer than 5 minutes, or hope to do more than one task or challenge at a time, make things fun for yourself by adding entertainment you enjoy and can do at the same time. However, make sure you won’t get distracted by whatever entertainment you choose.
Some popular types of entertainment for most folks typically include music, YouTube videos, podcasts, the news, or audiobooks. You can also use songs, videos, or programs like Audible’s timer feature to time sessions.
2. Pay Attention to How Long Cleaning Projects Take
People commonly overthink how long cleaning chores will take, leading to procrastination and ineffective cleaning routines, and practices.
By keeping track of how long chores take early on in your cleaning journey, you’ll have a better understanding of what to expect, how to plan, and may feel less overwhelmed or prone to procrastinate.
3. Combine Spring Cleaning Entryway or Hallway Chores
If you finish before your 5 minutes are up, it can help to do other similar chores back-to-back.
For instance, if you plan to do the baseboards, maybe consider doing anything above the baseboard level first to avoid having dust and debris onto areas where you’ve already cleaned.
And in some situations, you may be able to “stack” similar chores to save time, such as running washable textiles that you usually have sitting on the couch before vacuuming or cleaning the sofa itself.
Have fun with it, experiment, and get creative. I love turning it into a game to see how much I can really get done in x-amount of time.
5-minute Spring Cleaning Chores for the Hall and Entryway
Do these hall and entryway spring cleaning chores in the order that works best for you. However, try to move in a direction that will save you time and effort. As an example, it helps to work in the same direction throughout the room (clockwise vs. counter-clockwise) and from top to bottom. This way, you won’t have to clean an area or item more than once, and you’ll be less likely to skip over spots by accident.
Depending on the size of your room and the number of items in it, specific tasks may take longer than 5 minutes. Again, customize the challenge or project to suit your preference, household, and schedule. Points such as vacuuming or mopping the floor after you clean or do a task are likely to be left out since they may take longer than 5 minutes. Feel free to do these as you see fit.
If you need to break some projects down due to having a larger room or more stuff, feel free. You can also do more at once or spread it out throughout the day, week, month, or even quarter. Don’t forget to bookmark us so you can finish out the room at your own pace.
Don’t forget that you can expand and contract each task to see more or less information. Under each task, you’ll also spot helpful habits and spring cleaning tips about certain chores.
1. Declutter the area.
Decluttering is a great way to make your home look cleaner and feel more inviting. Above all, it can speed up your cleaning time and help you spot areas that might need your attention as you clean.
The entryway, or foyer, in particular, can be a hotspot for clutter since it’s usually where people kick off their shoes, drop off mail, leave bags, keys, and whatever else they might track in. Whereas hallways get most of the foot traffic and occasionally need a good cleaning to spruce things up a bit.
Regardless if you start your spring cleaning chores in the entryway or hallway, or even mudroom, take a few minutes to declutter the area before you begin cleaning. Depending on how much stuff you have and what area you’re working on, it should only take a few minutes. If you need more time or want to work on it throughout the week or month, please adjust accordingly.
Before you start the timer, figure out a place for specific items to go as you declutter so that you can put them away, donate them, repurpose them, or deal with them in whatever way you see fit once you’re finished or later on.
Create bags, bins, or designated spots for like items to go until you can get to them later. Such things might include:
- A trash bag or wastebasket for trash or recycling.
- A bag for mail
- A donation box or bag.
- A bag, bin, or hamper for items that you need to take elsewhere in the house once you’re done with your challenge(s) or at a later time.
Set the timer for 5 or so minutes and try to finish before your time is up. If you start in the entryway and have time left over, think about areas such as a nearby closet or see if you can squeeze one of the tasks below in before the time is up. Or try to hurry and put all the items away.
Tote-ly awesome hack: As mentioned in the kitchen and dining 5-minute spring cleaning posts, one of my favorite cleaning hacks is to have laundry hampers, totes, or baskets around with me as I clean or declutter a room.
This way, I can save myself a couple of trips going back and forth. And, as mentioned above, I can easily cart items to their next destination with ease.
We previously did an in-depth review on what turned out to be our favorite go-to basket to use, which is the Clevermade Laundry Tote 2-Pack set from Costco (review link).
I love how their sturdy metal frame collapses into hardly anything at all, making them extremely easy to stash away behind couches, between the washer and dryer, in closets, etc.
We keep several hidden throughout the house just for the sake of decluttering. Doing so gives me fewer excuses to blow things off, and it’s super-convenient.
I’m also thinking about getting one of Clervamde’s adorable Luxe versions, which comes with an optional shoulder strap and several cute patterns to choose from. If you have one already, let me know what you think down in the comments.
KonMari: If you feel that you struggle with getting rid of or donating items that you may not need anymore, we highly recommend checking out The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. She has some pretty awesome decluttering and folding methods, among other household issues.
2. Clean or dust vents and ceiling fixtures.
Set a timer for 5 minutes to work on dusting the vents, ceiling fixtures, or even wall fixtures if you have any.
And because you’re more than likely to have time leftover, don’t hesitate to add more tasks that might be similar. Some of the next few chores listed below are great add-on options if you have the time.
Maintenance is essential: Try to dust your vents, including the AC-Furnace return vent, at least once a month to prevent buildup and to make sure that your ac or heating unit runs as best as it can.
It’s also essential to change your filters regularly. Most types require changing every 2-3 months, depending on the type, quality, and how often you use your system.
If you struggle to remember, try setting a scheduled reminder on your device’s apps. We love using Google Home Hub for this so that everyone is reminded in a kind of bulletin board manner, but even devices like Alexa or your phone will work!
3. Dust ceiling, walls, wall decor, and light fixtures.
If you haven’t already, take a few moments to dust your walls. You don’t have to be super meticulous, so you should be able to get it done fairly quickly with the right tools and if you hustle. If you’re unable to reach the ceiling or need a ladder, you can skip that part of the step or try again later.
Dusting the walls and ceiling can be done with a regular duster, such as a microfiber duster or Swiffer 360, which has been my everyday go-to for ages. It’s not the greatest for ceilings but works well when the dusting walls.
Either way, try to use something extendable or that comes with a long handle, if possible, and that will obviously reach where you need it to.
On most occasions, I prefer to use a floor dust mop to dust my walls, such as this one by E-Cloth or another favorite product of mine, the 6ft extendable Swiffer, which I’ll be reviewing in the coming weeks. They’re good to use for easy reaching, work great on ceilings, and cover a lot of space in one go, which speeds up the entire process. Love it! They’re also great for getting at one of our next steps: baseboards.
To avoid wet lint issues, it can be beneficial to dust the walls first and then clean in the next step. But feel free to use a lightly damp microfiber cloth or cleaning towel on certain items if you think it might be easier, such as your light fixtures and any wall decor, which will also help provide a deeper clean.
Helpful Habit #1
Give it the good ole one-two: It’s a good idea to dust any ceiling and wall fixtures, such as lighting and fans, once a week—or, at the very least, once a month. That also goes for wall decor, including ornate pieces or pictures.
Dusting them more regularly will make it a lot easier to clean since dust and dirt won’t stick to the surface due to humidity and other factors. A quick wipe down with a barely damp cloth usually works well for cleaning, takes seconds, and can probably be done less frequently with consistent dusting.
And don’t worry about removing sconce-like or fixed lights from the ceiling to get at the interior each time you plan to dust. Doing a quick once-over over the exterior will help you avoid dust buildup and should keep dreaded dust bunnies from launching a full-on assault, dropping from the ceiling like sneaky paratroopers.
You can get the inside of hard-to-clean lights a few times out of the year. For instance, during spring cleaning chores, whether in the hallway or entryway or elsewhere in the home.
Helpful Habit #2
Brand spanking new: Believe it or not, dusting your walls and ceiling a few times a year can help keep your paint looking cleaner and newer year-round. And, believe it or not, keeping things such as walls and other surface sparkly-clean can make a big improvement on the value of your home—or even help you get that rent deposit back if you’re a renter. Best of all, it takes just a few minutes.
4. Clean and demark the walls and ceiling.
While we don’t always notice marks or grime on our walls, it can certainly become noticeable once they’ve been cleaned since your place is likely to look that much better.
In short: taking some time during your spring cleaning chores to demark and clean your hallway or entryway walls can be an excellent way to make the paint and your home look newer, not to mention a whole lot cleaner.
You can remove certain marks and scuffs from the walls by carefully cleaning them with a microfiber cloth. Some scuff marks can sometimes be removed with items such as a Magic Eraser.
In either case, make sure to test whatever product you’ll be using in an inconspicuous spot. And it’s always a good idea to demark with a Magic Eraser before cleaning your walls due to the material they leave behind on surfaces. It’s also important to avoid scrubbing any surface too hard to avoid removing too much paint.
Washing By hand
Some people prefer to wash their walls by hand and using a lightly damp cloth, step ladder, and whatever else they need. However, I like to try to at least attach my microfiber cloth to something like an OXO Tub and Shower Scrubber for easier reach and maneuverability when in a pinch.
Wall Mop Method
In Part 1 of our 5-Minute Spring Cleaning Kitchen Chores post, we mentioned cleaning the walls and how some individuals, myself included, use microfiber mops with a swivel head to “mop” walls.
It’s similar to the technique with the Oxo scrubber mentioned above but a little more practical and a lot simpler to use. Flat-styled mop heads tend to work better than other types on walls and ceilings and cover more surface and with greater reach than other methods, such as using the Oxo-Scrubber-and-microfiber cloth trick or doing it by hand.
There are also actual wall cleaners on the market, which are essentially the same thing. In either case, it’s much faster, more efficient, and can make cleaning the walls a breeze.
Disclaimer: No matter which method you use to wash or de-mark your walls, check to see if your paint can handle washing and use a mop at your own risk. Also, avoid using too much water. You should only need a little bit. Too much water can soften the paint and cause damage.
Dust first: Always try to dust before using anything wet. It’ll help prevent lint and debris from sticking to any surfaces, resulting in less mess to clean up.
Test and test again: Before you wash your walls, test whatever material you plan to use on your walls to ensure that it won’t transfer color onto the surface on accident.
5. Dust and clean wood trim, such as baseboards.
Spring cleaning time is always a good time to clean your trim and baseboards if you haven’t already. Consistently keeping up on them several times throughout the year can make them easier and faster to clean, too, since dust and dirt have less chance to stick to surfaces. Plus, it can make a massive impact on the look and feel of your home.
Drop that base: If it’s been a while since you’ve cleaned your baseboards or trim, we recommend giving them a detailed cleaning by hand. After which, you can work towards maintenance cleaning, such as by making sure to dust them at least once a month so that they stay cleaner for longer.
To speed up the process, use a good-quality microfiber cloth with a little bit of water. Make sure to wring it out—you only want a small amount of water to allow the microfiber to attract dirt and dust, but not so much that the water clogs up the fibers before any dust or dirt can attach to them.
When in doubt, cheat: Just as with walls, you can use a lightly damp mop on baseboards to speed things up—especially if you dust and/or clean them consistently throughout the year. We love this trick for maintenance cleaning, but if you haven’t cleaned your baseboards in a while, we recommend starting by hand to clean them more thoroughly first.
This is an excellent method for people with bad backs and hips and those who struggle to kneel on the floor. It’s also super quick! We so far love using my O-Cedar Spin Mop on baseboards, but I’m still on the lookout for other options. But play around with what you have to see what works first, but do at your own risk.
6. Dust and clean furniture.
Spend a few minutes dusting your furniture to help remove any debris, loose dirt, and lint before cleaning. Afterward, try to clean your furniture within the same timed session, start a new one back-to-back, or do it at a later time.
Some folks like to do this with furniture polishing products, such as Pledge or Endust. I prefer to use a barely-damp microfiber cloth since it’s residue- and chemical-free and because our furniture tends to stay dust-free longer when I just use water. However, do what’s best for the type of furniture you have or what suits your preference.
Clean any decor items in the order you feel is best, whether back-to-back or later on, if you have a lot of stuff to work on.
7. Replace worn or missing furniture pads.
Replacing worn or missing bumper pads isn’t a crucial task to get done, but it can soften sounds within your home as well as protect your cabinetry.
It’s also super quick and easy to do, and you likely won’t have to do it again for a long while. Your ears and any neighbors with shared walls will thank you!
Take a few minutes to replace worn-down felt or missing rubber pads on your cabinet doors and drawers. Pay special attention to any doors or drawers that tend to make a lot of noise when shut or that tend to get slammed often.
If you have extra time left, try working on other tasks on the list or get creative with the remaining time. For instance, you could try placing felt pads under other items in your home, particularly pieces that are hard, heavy, or annoying to move, such as a curio or oven, and that you want to be easier to maneuver, even on your own.
You can find of list of those items in our post about, 5 Ways to Use Leftover Rubber & Felt Furniture Feet Pads. It may only take a few minutes to do, but it can make a huge difference in your overall cleaning routine.
8. Wash textiles or fabric items.
Take a little time while working on your hallway or entryway spring cleaning chores to clean any washable, textile-type items if you have any that might need some tidying up.
This is also a great time to go through clutter that you don’t use or need or that might belong someplace else, such as shoes, coats, toys, and even pet trinkets.
We also like to include wiping down any wipeable surfaces, such as faux plants or baskets that can be cleaned by hand or according to the manufacturer’s care instructions.
Examples of textiles or washable items that can be cleaned:
- Small, machine-washable rugs or doormats, including ones that can be hosed off outside
- Window treatments
- Sports gear
- Pet gear
- Seat cushions
- Artificial plants
To wash or not to wash: If you enjoy artificial plants, always consider how hard or easy they’ll be to clean before purchasing them.
Some varieties can be more fragile than others, such as silk. Other, often less expensive types can be wiped down with a microfiber cloth or ran under the tap, with any excess water shaken off and left to air dry afterward.
I call this “watering” my plants. The more often you do it, the easier they are to clean. So don’t let the grime buildup. Places like HomeGoods, Target, and Amazon have great and affordable artificial plants. Plus, they’re usually a breeze to clean regularly. HomeGoods is always my favorite!
9. Dust and clean any knickknacks or decor.
Use a lightly damp cloth to wet dust any knickknacks in the room (when safe to do so). How long it will take can depend on how many things you have as well as how long it’s been since you’ve last cleaned.
Once again, take as much time as you need and feel comfortable doing it in one day. Or work at it in 5- to 10-minute increments and as you have spare time.
Wet dusting: Dry dusting is great for upkeep and can make quick work of dusting in general—especially if you stay on top of it. However, it’s good to wet dust ever so often since it’s a little more effective.
We love to use an E-Cloth and their polishing cloths as a faster, more efficient, and chemical-free method. They manage to get most items around the house looking ultra sparkly, from baseboards to our crystal lamps and mirrors. Above all, they speed up the overall process. And, as mentioned earlier, because there’s a lack of residue left behind, things seem to stay dust-free longer.
Less stuff = less work and less stress: While many people love their knickknacks and decor pieces, having too many items in a room can visually overstimulate us and become a distraction.
Because of the visual stimulation and distractions, too much clutter may potentially increase stress levels while giving us even more work to do when it’s time to clean—sometimes without us even being consciously aware of it.
And if dusting takes you a long time and feels like a huge hassle, it may be because you have too many items and might benefit from decluttering.
Decluttering speeds up the amount of time it takes to dust and clean. It can also help to make a room feel more comfortable and look better. Lack of clutter is often why model homes, hotels, homes in magazines or TV shows look fantastic and relaxing. They don’t have a lot of stuff sitting out.
You can also try rotating decorations when you feel you might have too much sitting out and aren’t ready or willing to get rid of certain items.
10. Clean the window treatments.
Give your window treatments a good cleaning. This would involve anything from curtains and valances to blinds, shutters, and shades.
Blinds, shutters, and hard-surfaced treatments.
Nowadays, there are various ways to clean hard-surfaced treatments, such as blinds, shutters, vertical blinds, and non-fabric shades. A lightly damp microfiber cloth (recommended) is the best choice in most cases.
Some folks even use specially designed tools for blinds found on the market, while others may opt to go the DIY route, such as wrapping microfiber cloth around a pair of tongs.
It all comes down to preference. I personally find it easier to dust often and then use a barely-damp E-cloth.
Curtains, valences, and shades.
If you have curtains or valences that need to be cleaned, it’s best to follow their care instructions. In some cases, vacuuming or steaming might work, depending on how dirty they are or the kind of material involved.
Certain types may need delicate handling or professional cleaning, such as dry cleaning. Some individuals may freshen their curtains for spring cleaning time in the dryer, which is also great for removing fur and other types of debris, or they might decide to wash them in the washer first.
Rinse and repeat: If possible, make sure to clean, or at least freshen, your window treatments several times a year and dust or vacuum them regularly when possible—especially hard-surfaced options. This can help reduce household odors, potentially increase their longevity, and better maintain overall appearance.
Blinds, shutters, and shades should be dusted at least every month and wiped down every season or every other season.
Some people, myself included, like to do maintenance-styled dry dusting on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to keep things in check. Maintenance cleaning tends to be far easier, more efficient, and without needing to be as detailed in the effort.
11. Clean interior-side of windows and doors.
Clean the inside portion of your windows—especially if it’s been a while since they’ve been cleaned. Feel free to get the outside, too, or put the windows into their own separate category.
Make sure to clean:
- Window sills
- Trim, including locking mechanisms
- The interior-side of the screen, whether by hosing off entirely outside or using an old microfiber cloth that you don’t care if it might get stained.
Cheaters occasionally prosper: Hate hosing off the screen and waiting for them to dry? Try wiping them off with an old, somewhat damp microfiber cloth instead.
However, if they’re really filthy, we recommend hosing them off and giving them a good cleaning first, using microfiber as maintenance cleaning. It’s also advisable to only use a microfiber cloth that you don’t care about since staining can sometimes occur.
12. Clean area rugs and doormats.
Don’t forget to clean any washable doormats or rugs according to their care instructions for your entryway or hallway spring cleaning chores.
Some types may need to be professionally cleaned or done with a non-commercial carpet cleaner, such as our Bissel Pet Revolution 2x, which I hope to do a review on soon. Other, often smaller rugs can sometimes be machine washed or, depending on the material, hosed off outside.
Suck it up: Thoroughly vacuum rugs or carpeting before carpet cleaning, whether you do it yourself using a carpet cleaner or choose to have them done professionally.
Don’t get bogged down: If you plan to carpet clean on your own, avoid oversaturating the carpet or rug. This can create issues with mold.
It’s also essential to use a machine that provides adequate suction and agitation, which we plan to soon. Either way, make sure you get most of the water back into the machine instead of it being left on the carpet.
Dirt magnet: If you clean your carpets with a machine, we recommend doing at least a single pass afterward using water only to rinse the soap away. Otherwise, the soap can attract more dirt later and also cause the carpet to gunk up. It’s also recommended to do a final dry pass to ensure as much moisture is sucked up as possible.
13. Clean points of contact.
Make sure to clean any points of contact in the room if you haven’t already. These often include high-traffic areas and items that we frequently touch regularly, many of which get their fair share of bacteria, grime, grease, and other unmentionables over time.
Common points of contact in the dining room:
- Door handles
- Light switches, pulls, and knobs
- Cabinet and drawer pulls, knobs or surfaces
- The back of chairs
- Window treat pulls, batons, and cords
Don’t forget to clean around areas such as doorknobs and light switches. Whether we can see it or not, they get a little bit of abuse and gradually get dirtier over time. It might not be as noticeable until things start looking pretty filthy from a distance.
14. Wipe clean furniture.
Cleaning the furniture is straightforward and easy to do. Again, use your favorite furniture cleaner or polish, such as Pledge or Endust, or a slightly wet cloth or microfiber product if that’s your preference.
You may also need to have a vacuum and duster on hand if you haven’t dusted or vacuumed the area yet. If you need to break down pieces of furniture to do in 5-minute increments or more, feel free to do so.
Try to get the detailed nooks and crannies and the back of the furniture—especially since these spots often get neglected. If possible, at least try to vacuum underneath it and vacuum and clean the floor where it usually rests.
As previously mentioned in our 5 Ways to Use Leftover Rubber & Felt Furniture Feet Pads post, if you struggle to move items while cleaning, you may want to consider using felt pads on hard floors or pads designed to be on carpet. They make cleaning around heavy items extremely easy, which means fewer chances of procrastination and far less effort involved.
Thoroughly clean around your furniture as often as you can throughout the year to keep the task manageable—especially if you have pets and/or children. Larger or heavier pieces should be moved and cleaned around at least twice a year, if not every quarter or so.
Getting your spring cleaning tasks finished in the hallway or entryway can be relatively quick and easy. In many cases, you can get a lot of small jobs done in 5 minutes or less, and you may even be able to finish in one day, simply by following some of the tips we covered. And the more you stay on top of it, the faster seasonal cleaning, or even just spring cleaning, becomes.
- Give yourself a set amount of time to finish a task. It will help you get things done in a faster and more efficient manner.
- Set a timer, make a timed music playlist, or listen to x-amount of pages or chapters of your favorite audiobook to pace yourself.
- Treat it like a game and move as fast as you can.
- Prep your space before starting.
- Stack more than one session or task on top of other ones if you want to clean for a longer time period.
- Break jobs that might take you longer than five minutes into smaller sessions or continue later on if you need or wish to.
- Make things entertaining by listening to distraction-free music, Podcasts, audiobooks, or shows and videos that you won’t feel the need to watch.
Are you spring cleaning this year? Where’s your favorite place to start? Comment down below!
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