Many people prefer being a guest at a party rather than the host. Hosting a party can be stressful: preparing food, organizing entertainment and then dealing with dreaded post-party clean-up. While a party can be great fun at the time, when your home is left a mess, you can quickly find yourself swearing off parties.
But if you don’t like cleaning up, it doesn’t mean you can’t ever host a party. All you have to do is be prepared and minimize the potential mess made. Just follow our tips and tricks and you can have a great party without the painful clean-up.
To-do list for BEFORE the party:
- Establish party space
The best space for parties at home is outside. This can make it easier to clean up and easily restricts the mess to outside.
However, if you don’t have an outdoor entertaining area, you can still minimize mess. All you need to do is establish the boundaries of the party. For instance, close doors to rooms you don’t want guests entering, like bedrooms or home offices.
Make it clear where the party is by decorating and setting out food and drinks too. When choosing decorations, avoid decorations that shed, like those covered in glitter or made from tinsel. Paper lanterns are a great option as they can be easily stored and reused.
To protect your belongings, store anything precious or breakable outside of the party space. You can even put rugs away if you’re worried about stains.
- Pick food and drinks wisely
When planning your party menu, keep in mind the likelihood of spills. Certain dishes are more likely to spill, like soups or snacks dripping in oil, and leave a stain.
It can help to also keep food to specific areas of your home. For instance, it may be better to host a traditional dinner party where everyone eats at the table rather than a more low-key affair where people walk about eating snacks.
To protect surfaces from stains, you can use coasters and place-mats. This can also help to direct guests as to where they should be eating.
- Clean party area beforehand
Before the party starts, make sure you clean the party area to minimize what you have to clean up at the end of the night. This ensures that you have a neat home for guests to enjoy as well.
- Make it possible to clean throughout the party
With the invention of disposable dishes, glasses and cutlery, it’s gotten easier to clean up as the party goes on. Make sure guests know where they can dispose of their items by making bins visible.
Or for an eco-friendlier approach, hire crockery, cutlery and glasses and leaving the cleaning for the rental company.
If you’re intending on using your own dishes and glasses, make it easy to clean as you go by making sure the dishwasher is empty before the party starts. This way, you have somewhere to put dirty dishes without letting them pile up. And then when the party is over, you just need to start the machine.
Be ready to spot clean as needed throughout the night too. Have some cleaning supplies ready, like paper towels or a microfiber cloth as well as a suitable cleaning agent. Stains need to be dealt with quickly, so don’t wait until the party is over to tackle them.
To-do list for AFTER the party:
- Throw out or store leftovers
As soon as the last guest leaves, turn your attention to any leftover food. Make a decision now about whether you’re keeping it or throwing it out. Don’t leave this decision until morning, otherwise food may go off and attract pests, like cockroaches and ants.
Store leftovers in sealed containers in your fridge or pantry. Bag up anything you’re going to throw away and put it in an outside rubbish bin to prevent unpleasant odors in your home.
- Wash dishes
Run the dishwasher if you’ve been packing it throughout the night. For other plates and glasses, wash them in the sink or dispose of them if possible. Do this before going to bed as food can be much harder to wash off plates and bowls when left to sit. It can also make your home smell unpleasant.
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- Wipe down surfaces
Wipe down all surfaces to ensure no crumbs or spills are left. This is also good practice for ensuring your home is hygienic. Remember to do kitchen countertops, coffee tables and anywhere else guests may have set food and drink down on.
Do a quick check around the rest of your house for missed spills as well. If you spot any, clean them up as best as you can before they have any more time to settle in.
- Sweep and vacuum
Finally, finish the clean-up by sweeping and vacuuming. You can leave this until the next day if you don’t think your neighbors will appreciate hearing a vacuum late at night. However, it’s best to get this done as soon as possible to deal with any dirt, dust and crumbs that have fallen on your floor.
- Call professionals
The easiest way to clean your home after a party is to hire cleaning professionals. They can handle washing dishes, carpet cleaning and taking out the rubbish, among many other tasks. You can also schedule them ahead of time. Cleaning should never get in the way of a good time. So don’t let it stop you from throwing a great party with friends and family. Just remember the tips we’ve discussed and you can make the clean-up all the easier.