Nobody likes to spend hours cleaning house – and sometimes there are few hours to spare. Yet some people seem to have a knack for keeping their homes looking spotless even when the time spent cleaning is minimal.

Country Living Magazine polled home bloggers and other busy women to come up with nine little tricks that help keep a home looking spiffy:

  • Take your shoes off – Shoes carry in dirt and germs. Train the family to remove them when coming in the door – and put up a cute little sign in the entryway asking visitors to do the same.
  • Make the bed – Even if the bedrooms are not picture-perfect, a neat bed makes the space looked pulled together.
  • Squeegee the shower every time – It only takes about 20 seconds and it keeps the glass looking clean and bright.
  • Clean the bathroom sink – A quick swipe with a baby wipe will keep it sparkling. Keep the wipes handy under the sink.
  • Wipe down kitchen counters – Keep a spray bottle filled with a home-made solution of one part vinegar with three parts water. It cuts through grease and easily removes fingerprints from stainless steel appliances.
  • Clean up as you go- When cooking, clean up the pots you are finished with, mixing bowls, and extra ingredients as you work. The goal is to have nothing much left after dinner but put your plates in the dishwasher.
  • Do a five-minute clean-up before bed – Get the whole family to pitch in. Five minutes before bedtime, pick up the dog toys, newspapers, and personal items, hang up jackets, put away the mail and put things back in their place.
  • Put your clothes away – Almost every master bedroom has one chair that starts off empty on Monday and ends up covered with clothes by Friday. Before you go to bed, put dirty clothes in the hamper and hang the clean ones away.
  • Open a door or window – Letting in fresh air at every opportunity is a good way to help keep your home feeling fresh and breezy.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.