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One of the main reasons we put off cleaning is because it feels like an overwhelming amount of work. So we avoid and ignore it, only to have it become more and more daunting, until we eventually break down and scrub the floors Cinderella-style, vowing we will never again let it get to that point. Yet the cycle continues — until now, that is.

It’s the beginning of a new year, and with a few quick steps and cheats, your home will always seem spotless without your having to do too much at one time. Keep reading for easy tips for how to clean fast, and the order in which to do these life-changing home hacks.

Basket speed clean: Corral any random loose items and tabletop clutter into baskets for each room. Go through rooms one at a time and make snap judgments about what is contributing to untidiness. Don’t think too much about it: If something isn’t decor in its intended place (a candle on a nightstand, etc.), then toss it into the basket. It can take five minutes total just to clear surfaces off and create a clutter-free effect.

At the end of the night before bed, or at any other interval throughout the day, quickly sort through each basket and put things back where they actually belong. Your baskets should never get too full or out of hand if you’re clearing off surface clutter daily.

Next, wipe down surfaces: After you’ve cleared the kitchen counter, dining-room table, any hallway tables, dresser tops, nightstands and coffee-table surfaces, wipe them down with a wet towel. Wiping down surfaces daily takes mere seconds, but it goes such a long way toward creating the effect of a sparkling home and prevents the buildup of beverage rings, dust, hair and food crumbs.

Sweep and/or vacuum: Vacuuming is like a magic Band-Aid fix. Never vacuum before you’ve wiped down surfaces, as particles and crumbs invariably fall to the floor while you’re cleaning them.

Empty all trash cans: It’s a lightning-quick cheat to a cleaner-looking home. Especially in the bathroom and anywhere trash cans don’t have lids, a visibly empty trash can devoid of trash psychologically makes things seem cleaner.

Fluff all pillows: Fluffing all the throw pillows in your living room breathes new life into the place. It’s the easiest, laziest trick in the book.

Make your bed every morning: Your entire house will seem cleaner with a made bed. Plus, making your bed in the morning sets the tone and mode for the rest of your day — which means you’ll be less inclined to let the house decline into messy status.

Hide the hamper: Rooms look less clean when piles of dirty clothes are in sight. If you do laundry only once a week and your hamper isn’t hidden in a closet, put it somewhere where you and others can’t see your dirty clothes.

Clear your fridge door: The kitchen looks fresher and more streamlined without clutter on the fridge door. Clear it off for a kitchen that’s cleaner looking in seconds.