How to Thoroughly Clean Your Living Room

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Whether it’s winter or summer, the living room needs regular cleaning because it is one of the busiest rooms in a house. The living room, or family room as some calls it, needs a deep clean every 3-4 months because of all the dust and dirt it collects over time. Because it is easy to overlook these build-ups, deep cleaning every surface is key to freshening up your space. A cleaner and more organized living room is guaranteed to leave you with a feeling of renewed comfort to relax in.

What You’ll Need

A clean broom

A duster

A step ladder

Cleaning cloths (consider using microfiber cloths)

A small bucket with a handle


Gentle cleanser

Glass cleaner

Furniture polish

Vacuum with upholstery, dusting and crevice attachments

Two bags or boxes marked “Donate” and “Trash”

10 Steps to Cleaning a Living Room Effectively

1. Take down draperies, blinds, and curtains

Start by removing curtains, drapes or blinds. If they are washable, launder them immediately. Otherwise, clean them according to the manufacturer’s directions. If you’ve put them in the washing machine, you can continue with your cleaning in the meantime.

Once they are clean, tumble dry or hang them dry. If you begin with this step, your curtains or drapes will be ready to be rehanged by the time you’ve finished cleaning the living room. 

2. Decluttering

Start small. Give yourself a target of 15 minutes to clear out the clutter. Decluttering can be as simple as moving items to the rooms they belong to. You can also pick up knickknacks and other items you no longer want to keep and put them in the “Donate” box and gather all trash from surfaces and under furniture and place them in the trash bag or box set aside.

3. Take down books from bookshelves

You can choose to do this while decluttering your space. In order to thoroughly clean all furniture, you need to clear out any object that stops you from accessing every nook and cranny. You will usually be encumbered by books when you start dusting down the bookshelves. And if it seems like you have too many books (is that even possible though?), consider donating or selling them. Too many books on a bookshelf can also contribute to a living room appearing to be cluttered.

Also, remove any artwork from the walls or bookshelves before the next step.

4. Dust from top to bottom

When dusting, always start from the top and work your way down. As you clean, the dirt accumulated will fall. And if you start from the bottom, you’ll just end up wasting time re-dusting everything! And really, no one wants to spend more time than necessary on cleaning! Below is the order in which you should proceed:

  • Using a long-handled duster, clean the ceiling and the ceiling fan.
  • Clean the air vents.
  • Dust the walls and the artwork.
  • Wash the walls to remove dirty spots if necessary.
  • Take down any light fixtures and gently clean them before replacing them.
  • Going from left to right, or vice versa, clean all accent lamps, lampshades, lamps, doorknobs, doors phones, remote controls, light switches, and video-game equipment.
  • Gently clean the television screen.
  • Unplug and check cords for fraying and wear.

Remember to check on the drapes or curtains. If the washing machine is done, take them out so they can dry out.

5. Do the windows

Wash both the insides and outsides of the windows using a microfiber cloth and a glass cleaner. Vacuum or dust windowsills and corners.

Take this opportunity to go around the room and clean all glass surfaces, including picture fronts, glass décor, and tabletops. As before, work from left to right and from top to bottom.

6. Start cleaning the furniture

Move on to the couch. Take the pillows and cushions lying around outside and let them air out while you continue to clean. Pull the furniture from the wall and dust behind them.

Ensure to remove any sticky buildup from your furniture and check for scratches. If you can, try fixing those scratches or get someone to help you.

7. Clean the floor

Whether you have wooden flooring, carpets or rugs, you will want to seek the help of a professional if your floor is heavily soiled. If you are not comfortable with having a stranger around the house, you can choose to rent cleaning machines. But bear in mind that you’ll need to know how to use the machine efficiently and know every attachment that comes with it. It might be better to save yourself some time and have an expert scrub your flooring clean.

8. Clean the doormats

To keep your house clean, you’ll need to have clean doormats inside and outside your doorways. Otherwise, whatever dust has accumulated on the doormats will be transferred to the inside of your home by shoes.

9. Rehang the curtains, draperies, and blinds

This step is pretty straightforward and requires no further clarification. Ensure that the curtains are dry before rehanging them.

10. Finishing touches

Throw away the trash, donate the items you will no longer need and straighten any remaining magazines and books. You can also spray the room with air freshener to fill your home with fresh fragrances you love.

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