Best ADHD Cleaning Hacks and Easy Speed Cleaning Tips

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Do you have a hard time getting started when it comes to cleaning your house?  if you have ADHD brain, staying on task for the duration of cleaning is daunting  It’s so easy to get distracted along the way.  These ADHD cleaning hacks and speed cleaning tips will help you keep a clean and organized home. 

ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) impacts the ability to start tasks, stay focused and maintain organization.  This means routine cleaning becomes an organizational nightmare.  Once you learn the best tips for ADHD cleaning, household cleaning will become less overwhelming, 

family speed cleaning their home with cleaning caddy and vacuum

Why ADHD Cleaning Hacks Help

ADHD affects executive functioning.  In plain English, this means skills used in planning, focusing, remembering instructions, and multi tasking are more challenging.  And what is a clean house made up of?  All those executive functions!  Do you struggle in the following areas? 

  1. Task Initiation: Do you struggle with getting started? A simple task like washing the dishes seems insurmountable.
  2. Distraction: Getting easily sidetracked leads to half-completed tasks scattered around the home.
  3. Time Management: Underestimating or overestimating the time it takes for cleaning tasks leads to frustration and nothing getting done.
  4. Overwhelm with Clutter: Sensory overload from clutter causes significant stress and prevents you from getting started or completing the job.

If that sounds familiar, then these ADHD cleaning tips are for you. 

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mom and daughters speed cleaning living room with music and timer

ADHD Cleaning Hacks for Your Entire House

​The goal with these tips is to help you get started cleaning, to stay on task, to manage your time well and to avoid overwhelm.  Regardless of which living space you are cleaning, these tips help you break everything down into smaller steps that are more manageable.

Use a Timer

Set a timer for short bursts of cleaning (e.g., 10-15 minutes). This creates a clear beginning and end, making the task less daunting. A timer keeps me from losing track of time.

I also like to turn this into a game.  Can I beat the timer and get all the dishes done?  If you don’t get it all the way finished, don’t worry!  It’s still better than when you started and 10 minutes of focused cleaning time really does make a lot of difference. 

portable cleaning caddy

Make a Portable Cleaning Caddy

I recommend either having a portable cleaning caddy that goes with you from room to room OR have cleaning supplies handy in multiple rooms. For example, if I have to run downstairs to get the cleaning supplies for the upstairs bathroom, I’m probably not going to do it. (Just being honest)

Having a portable cleaning supply caddy means you can focus on the actual cleaning jobs without waste time running after supplies. I like to have these items in my cleaning basket.

One-Minute Rule

If a task takes less than a minute, do it immediately. This prevents small tasks from accumulating into a bigger mess. Instead of setting that mail on the counter, can you throw out the junk right away?  Instead of leaving your shoes by the bed, put them in the shoe rack immediately.  Staying on top of these small tasks makes a big difference to a clean home.


Create simple, visual checklists for daily and weekly cleaning tasks. People with ADHD have a hard time knowing where to start. Visual prompts help maintain focus and track progress.

Break the cleaning chores into doable steps.  Write down the first step and start there.  It’s pretty satisfying to cross things off a to-do list.  

Zone Cleaning

Divide your home into zones and focus on cleaning one zone at a time to avoid getting overwhelmed.  For our house we focus on the important areas first.  Clean only the kitchen or the entryway and living room.  Break your space into smaller areas to keep it manageable. 

Organize with Clear Bins

Use transparent storage bins, so you can easily see what’s inside without needing to open them.  When I watch home improvement shows I get so annoyed by the storage options.  They just aren’t practical!  Keep your bins clear and easily accessible.  Let’s be honest if there is a candle or something sitting on top of my storage box, there is no way I’ll put things in that box. Keep your bins functional and accessible. 

use a portable cleaning caddy to clean rooms faster; white basket wtih gloves, cleaning sprays, and microfiber cloths

Daily Tidying Sessions

Schedule a daily 5-10 minute declutter session to maintain order and prevent pile-ups.  When my kids were younger we did this as a family activity at certain times of the day.  I use the timer and we just tidy up for a small amount of time with a focus on the main areas. 

Use a Catch-All Bin

Have a bin in each room where you can quickly stash miscellaneous items. Empty and sort it during your scheduled cleaning times.

Immediate Reward

Give yourself an immediate reward after completing a cleaning task to boost motivation. I do this with my kids too. If we set the timer for 10 minutes and work on bedrooms then we can go outside and play for 10 minutes and just repeat until the job is done.

Declutter with Photos

Take before and after photos of small areas you clean. Seeing immediate results is very motivating.  I also use those “after” photos for a visual representation of what the area should look like.  It’s good to compare the photos with the checklist to make sure I didn’t miss any steps. 

Label Everything

Label shelves, boxes, and drawers to remind you where things go, reducing clutter from indecision. And, yes, it’s okay to have a “Miscellaneous” label.

kids on floor with whiteboard making daily routine for cleaning

Create a Routine

Assign specific tasks to specific days (e.g., Monday is for vacuuming) to build a predictable cleaning schedule. Avoid putting large cleaning tasks on days you know you will be extra busy with kids’ activities or meetings.

Stick to the same cleaning routine each day or week to build habits that stick.

Use Fun and Quality Tools

Invest in cleaning tools that you enjoy using (e.g., a brightly colored broom or a vacuum with fun features) to make the process more enjoyable.  All your cleaning tools should also be very functional and in good condition.  If your vacuum has lost sucking power, the results will be disappointing.  

Choose tools that make more tedious tasks easier.  For example, a robot vacuum can do its job every day and I don’t even have to think about it.  A curved ceiling fan brush is way easier than having to get out a big ladder and wipe down the fan blades with a rag.  

woman cleaning bathroom sink with headphones

Keep Your Mind Busy

Listen to music,  a favorite podcast, or audiobooks while cleaning to keep your mind engaged.  

Sticky Note Reminders

Place sticky notes in areas where chores frequently need to be done as visual reminders..


​Honestly, this should probably be number 1 on the list.  We all have too much stuff.  Make it a goal to actively declutter and keep only the most important things.  Again, focus on one area or drawer at a time.

 Go through your bathroom one cabinet at a time to declutter expired products, tidy up linens, etc.  Removing clutter and things you don’t use is one of the best ways to transform a messy house.  With fewer items, there is less chance of overwhelm. 

Two-Bag Technique

Carry a trash bag and a donation bag around the house once a week to clear out unnecessary items.

Top-Down Cleaning

Clean from the top of the room (e.g., dusting shelves) to the bottom (e.g., vacuuming floors) to streamline the process.

Streamlined Wardrobe

Ugh, laundry! There’s a never ending supply of clothes to wash and put away at my house. Reduce laundry loads and clutter by minimizing your wardrobe.

Separate clothes out by seasons. Keep only the items that are essential and your favorites.

Involve Your Family

Another great way to make household chores is to involve a family member.  Make it more of a social affair with music and turn your cleaning chart into a game.  

man and woman surprising a friend at the door by visiting last minute

Speed Cleaning Tips When You’re in a Hurry

Did you just get notice guests are arriving in 15 minutes? Are you panicking because your house is a disaster? Use these speed cleaning hacks to focus your frenzy and get your house “clean enough”.

Obviously, my speed cleaning tips mean you’ll need to go back and actually clean later. When you just need to make the place presentable for guests arriving on short notice, though, these shortcuts work.

Focus on Speed Cleaning High Traffic Areas

When guests are on their way, focus first on the areas your guests will most likely go. In my case, this is usually the kitchen, living room, and bathroom.

Start with one of these high traffic areas and work quickly. The goal here is not to pass a white glove test, but to have your home in a presentable condition.

At my house, the kitchen is the first thing people see, so I start there. I also try to keep my dining room table clean and free of clutter. If I start there and work my way outwards, I can leave a trail of cleanliness behind me.

Tidy and Clean the Surfaces

When you’re speed cleaning, the goal is not perfection. This is not the time to sort through everything under the bathroom sink and dust the baseboards.

Remove clutter. Dust. Get things off the counters and floors.

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Declutter Quickly with a Laundry Basket

I don’t know about you, but horizontal surfaces are the bane of my existence. Using laundry baskets to banish clutter for the ’10 minute notice’ guests is a great secret! You can clean up clutter so you look “clutter free” in under five minutes using baskets. Here’s how.

  • Find your laundry baskets
  • Dump dirty laundry onto the floor and close the door if you must. (The empty baskets are more important than the clothes right now.) 
  • Run through your house and throw anything on the counters, floors, and tables into the baskets. Now you can stuff the full baskets back into a room where you can close the door.
  • Done. 😉
spot clean the floor

How to Speed Clean Floors

My husband stood there looking at me with his mouth open when he caught me cheating on “mopping” the floor one night. Our entire first floor is huge gray tile and it shows every speck of dirt, mud smudge, and drink drop. It drives me bonkers trying to keep it clean, so I often cheat.

After I sweep the floor, I take a microfiber cloth and a spray bottle of cleaner (any cleaner will do if you’re crunched for time). I spray the noticeable spots on the floor and wipe them clean with the cloth. Drying time is minimal and the obvious spots are gone! 

My disclaimer: Not all cleaners are  good for your specific floor. Make sure whatever you’re using is safe for yours.

Hide Dirty Dishes

Do you have a dishwasher or an oven? These places are great for hiding dirty dishes. You don’t have to take the time to organize your dishwasher, just shove them in, being careful not to break anything. 

If you get your dirty dishes in the dishwasher, go ahead and turn it on! Then you don’t have to think about them again until they’re clean.

You can do the same thing with your oven if you have to. Just hang a towel or two on the handle over your oven’s window so anyone passing by won’t discover your secret. And don’t forget you left dishes in there, either! 

All-Purpose Cleaning Wipes

All purpose wipes keep me sane. You can make your own and keep them in a large jar if you don’t want to use disposable wipes. I keep a jar in my cleaning caddy and then simply toss it in the laundry. 

These wipes are a godsend when I’m pressed for time. I can take an all-purpose wipe and run it over the counter, stove, glass table, and wood. They don’t do a fantastic job on every surface, but they clean well enough on all surfaces.

girl reading on couch with oil diffuser in foreground

How to Mask Smells

Sometimes you might need to mask the fishy smell from last night’s dinner or the bathroom smell from kiddos who don’t pay attention. You can use just about anything to help with odors. 

I keep a diffuser and essential oils by my front door so I can get some going on a moment’s notice, need be. I have also been known to pop in a pan of frozen cookie dough so my house smells delicious as well! (Just make sure you don’t have dirty dishes in your oven if you do this.

Speed Cleaning Tips Per Important Room

Whether you are cleaning with ADHD or you are just in a hurry – the best way is to start with the rooms where visitors are most likely to be. Focus on making those rooms calm. For me, that’s three areas: the kitchen, the bathroom, and the living room. Here are specific tips for those three areas.

Minimalist Kitchen

Kitchen Speed Cleaning Tips

My kitchen is either nice and clean, or it’s a complete disaster. It’s rarely in between. Here’s how to do a quick tidy of the kitchen when you need it done fast!

  • Grab your portable cleaning caddy
  • Grab a laundry basket for quick decluttering if you have non-kitchen items in the kitchen
  • Get out the garbage can for easy access
  • Put all dirty dishes in the dishwasher
  • Spray and wipe down counters with an all purpose cloth
  • Use baking soda and water to give the kitchen sink a quick refresh
  • Take out garbage and non-kitchen items
  • Sweep the floor / spot clean as needed
clean powder room

Speed Cleaning Tips for the Bathroom

I think it’s important to have a clean bathroom for guests. If you have a powder room with only a toilet and a sink, cleaning time will be even quicker! Make sure to have fresh hand towels for guests!!

  • Grab your portable cleaning caddy
  • Pick up dirty laundry / towels
  • Scrub the toilet bowl + lid + outside of toilet
  • Clean the sinks
  • Change out the towels
  • Clean the bathtub
  • Sweep the floor / spot clean as needed
  • Grab the trash
  • Walk away!
living room speed cleaning tips

Living Room Speed Cleaning Checklist

Need to speed clean the living room? Here are a few tips:

  • Grab your portable cleaning caddy
  • Grab a laundry basket to quickly declutter everything that doesn’t belong
  • Plump up the sofa / chair cushions and pillows
  • Fold throw blankets
  • Dust around knick knacks – don’t move anything
  • Straighten pictures
  • Spot clean floor or quickly vacuum
  • Light a candle or use a diffuser for a calming scent
  • Done!

Quick clean-ups can be a lifesaver as long as you’re prepared and have a strategy. You can clean three rooms in under ten minutes if you have to. Sorting through that laundry basket mess later is another story!! 

Don’t spend your cleaning time in distracted despair. Use your ADHD brain to your advantage to break tasks down, add some fun, and you’ll be able to finish what you started. Share any of your best speed cleaning hacks or ADHD cleaning tips in the comments.

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About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long-time green-living enthusiast, and rural Iowa mom of four. She empowers families to grow and eat seasonal, local foods; to reduce their ecological footprint; and to come together through impactful travel.

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