Valdosta Daily Times


March 17, 2013

Don’t let dust bunnies rob you blind with cuteness

VALDOSTA — Spring is like the universal “bat signal” for ‘it’s time to get your stuff together and clean your house’. I don’t know who started the notion of spring cleaning, but like Christmas and Thanksgiving, we worship its comings and get a sigh of relief when it’s finally gone. While spring cleaning won’t leave you leftover turkey, you will get the smug satisfaction that your entire house is now lemony fresh.

For me, it’s just another day because as I struggle daily with a self-diagnosed obsessive compulsive disorder, my home is always spotless (I know, if you could slap me through the paper, right?). However, for you budgeteers that have a life and no time to clean, here is my list of suggestions of how to Spring clean like a budgeting pro.

- Lysol by any other name is just foul smelling water.

When you go to load up your arsenal of cleaning products, don’t be fooled by new bottle shapes, flashy stickers and products that claim to be 99.9 percent more effective. Like a mass produced Tickle Me Elmo during Christmas, cleaning product companies are trying to put new spins on the same old, same old, just in time for spring. Don’t go for the “new thing.” Stay loyal to your tried-and-true brands. You don’t need a different cleaner for the kitchen, the bathroom, the floors. Get some all purpose cleaner in a spray bottle for surfaces, a multi-purpose cleaner that can be poured into toilets and mop water, and glass cleaner and you are good to go.

- While our city’s poo water isn’t that great, it’s still pretty pricey.

Cleaning a house, laundry and dishes can cost more than you think. While water is everywhere, it isn’t cheap. Try to cut down on your cycles of laundry by separating all your laundry into piles at one time. Also, wait to wash your rags and towels until after you’re done cleaning the house.

- Scavenge for hidden treasures.

Before you clean your house, make a list of organizational things that you planned on buying. This way, as you work through your rooms to toss out things you deem useless, you may be able to turn that trash into cash. Maybe you will find baskets you forgot about for storage, or discover an old dresser that could be painted and work as a buffet. Sure, you may not find everything on your wish list, but even one find is better than nothing.

- Neglected and crummy nooks and crannies.

I’m sure there are places in your home that you forget to clean. However, though they are out of sight, they shouldn’t be out of mind because they could be costing you money.

How long has it been since you’ve cleaned your dryer vent? While the dryer trap is easy to access, the dryer vent that is hard to reach is just as important to clean. A full dryer vent is not only a fire hazard, it makes your dryer run less efficiently which means you will have to run a load more times and that will cost you more money.

Don’t forget to clean around your windows and doors. There could be dust, dirt and even mold that could be preventing them from shutting all the way properly which means you will be running your AC and heater more.

Clean out the clutter in your fridge. There is no telling how much food you’re wasting by letting it go bad because you just forgot it was there.

Well my dear budgeteers, that’s all the savvy spring cleaning tips I have for you today. Don’t forget to like me on my new Facebook at

My old Brittany’s Budget Diary Facebook has officially been deleted. Also, follow me on Twitter @VDT_Brittany. I hope you have a great St. Patty’s Day . . . And as for wearing green, try to do it in your pocket. It’s the only green that counts.

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