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RockemChalkemRobot t1_ix8yo54 wrote

I'm going to judge you. Good shit on your part; it's easy to fall behind and let your situation get out of control. Props for recognizing you need to make a change.


KingHalfrican86 t1_ix9arb4 wrote

I was about to be like cmon this is at least them starting then I saw what you said and was like. Perfect. Maybe I was too quick to judge you. My B.


KTfl1 t1_ix97im5 wrote

You might check the tool library for the carpet cleaner or a shop vacuum. If you have deep dirt, you want use that before the regular vacuum.

Just looked through the website and they have both a shop vac and a steamer.


kernelpanic789 t1_ix8zux1 wrote

  1. Rehome the excessive animals

  2. Discard any trash, remove clutter and get generally organized

  3. Spend some money and rent a carpet cleaner. Carpets are the dirtiest part of most homes.

  4. It's going to cost more than the $250 you mentioned but when you can, get your vents and HVAC system cleaned. Especially if you're concerned about air quality this is a must and replace the filters regularly.


my_monkeys_fly t1_ix8zs4p wrote

Buy yourself a vacuum, even a cheap one. That's gonna make a huge difference in air quality. Buy some vinegar, disinfectant, bleach, gloves, and get ready to use some serious elbow grease. I clean for a living, and you can do this. It's gonna take a hard pull on your part, but you can do it


throwawaykibbetype2 t1_ix98t8p wrote

Do not mix bleach and vinegar though. Very important.


usafdirtboyz t1_ix9hrce wrote

Not mixing cleaning chemicals in general is a good rule to go by.


my_monkeys_fly t1_ixbldpb wrote

True. I should have thought to say that. Lol. I always assume everyone knows


throwawaykibbetype2 t1_ixcnwmk wrote

Anytime I see them mentioned together I'm just like wow those don't mix. I've met a shocking number of adults that did not know this haha


my_monkeys_fly t1_ixctewf wrote

I clean professionally, have for decades. I think my brain is getting lazy, and assuming too much which can get someone hurt. Thanks for catching it


arbitrarytrombone t1_ix8zje8 wrote

I would definitely recommend investing in an air purifier, I have 3 kitties of my own and it helps a lot with dander and any other pollutants you have affecting your health.

I always recommend the Pink Stuff cleaner, I prefer the spray bottle but if you have some stuff to scrub at, the paste is very helpful.

To not overwhelm yourself, try focusing on zones. Prioritize the most frequently used spaces in your home and take them down one by one, and sanitize as you clear things out.

Breaking old habits can be very challenging and rewarding yourself along the way may keep you from losing motivation. Good luck to you both!


Tr0z3rSnak3 t1_ix95gxj wrote

You also might want to check your air filter if you are available,that can have a big effect on your air quality


MotherofaPickle t1_ix95ld5 wrote

If you don’t rent a carpet cleaner, get the Arm and Hammer pet carpet stuff (comes in a box kinda like baking soda). It’s a good pet-smell deodorizer and smells a helluva lot better than Old Pet.

Get a vacuum.


JKulp42757 t1_ix9gf4f wrote

Without knowing exactly how bad it is, here's what my general plan would be:

  1. Buy a vacuum, doesn't have to be the best, just something, if the house is really bad, you don't want to end up breaking an expensive one anyway. $60
  2. Trash bags. Get the "contractor" bags at lowes or home depot. 55 gallon, extra thick, you can put a LOT of trash in these, making the job easier overall - $18
  3. Gloves - $4 Walmart
  4. N95 Mask - $16 for 2 at Walmart
  5. Various cleaners/"smell good stuff" - look at the active ingredients, you can go cheap here (generic/store brand) and get the same cleaning power as the expensive stuff - Focus on items that kill germs/odor rather than just covering them up with a scent. $20 should do.
  6. Carpet cleaner - Rental and a bottle of carpet shampoo $70
  7. Air purifier - Walmart has several around $80
  8. Rags for cleaning - $10

1-8 puts your total at $278 - you can probably get it all done for $250. If you plan on any shopping at Walmart, check the app/website first, I've noticed many prices are lower on there for pickup than they are in store. And ya, get rid of the cats asap.


blu3dice t1_ix9pw6a wrote

>2. Trash bags. Get the "contractor" bags at lowes or home depot. 55 gallon, extra thick, you can put a LOT of trash in these, making the job easier overall - $18

THIS. It's worth the extra $$$ for how tough and durable the contractor bags are. You don't want bags ripping and spilling more stuff on your floors etc.


The_Curvy_Unicorn t1_ixawjek wrote

Follow all of this advice, but when it’s time to clean the carpet - AFTER vacuuming very well - post on your local Buy Nothing FB group and ask if anyone has a carpet cleaner you can borrow. I lend mine out frequently. You don’t need the soap for it. Use a mixture of vinegar and water.


tdawg-1551 t1_ix9dzij wrote

One thing that has always helped me when doing a big cleaning job is to do it in zones. When thinking about the whole house, it can be overwhelming to the point you just want to give up before you start. Pick a specific area and clean just that area thoroughly. Maybe that's a bathroom or the kitchen or the bedroom. Get that area clean, then take a rest and do another area.

It's like the old saying. "how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time".


KingHalfrican86 t1_ix9bqv7 wrote

I say start with white vinegar and reuse able rags. Start from the top down. Walls ceiling (esp the fans) get corners too. Then move to tables and furniture and then do the floor last. Very important because you won’t get everything on the rag or in the garbage things will fall. Go room by room and just because the main hangout room is clean don’t let that deter you. I’d honestly say the rooms you use less first because then you won’t feel done until you are and you can move things into those rooms for storage or to clean under them instead of around. Maybe even go as far as rearranging the rooms too.


throwawaykibbetype2 t1_ix98ob3 wrote

Best cheap cleaner is white vinegar can be used for almost anything. Get a gallon at Walmart


petlove499 t1_ix9beez wrote

No judgment here, friend! You deserve to live in a space that feels good to you and serves you. I recommend following KC Davis on tiktok or if you can swing it get the book or audiobook “how to keep house while drowning.”


Axissurfer t1_ix9mvgy wrote

You’re probably going to be overwhelmed when you start. Just clean one room at a time to help with that , I’d start with the rooms you spend the most time in. The satisfaction from finishing those rooms will help motivate you to do the rest of the house. Then come up with a routine to keep up on it.


MunchieMunk t1_ix9tjvg wrote

OP, the dollar store is your friend!! You can buy almost ALL the cleaning supplies you need for general cleaning there. $20 there can clean your house twice over. Use the money you'll save on a vacuum, if you can spend the $50 rent a wet vac from Walmart for a day, it'll change your life.

Good shit changing your life OP. 2023 is going to be a clean and healthy year!


BrownLightning96 t1_ix9042u wrote

Trying to find a vacuum cleaner with your budget I feel might be the hardest part. Thankfully, you should be able to find some good deals with Black Friday coming up.

You can go to a place like Walmart, or a hardware store to look into a carpet cleaner for around 40 bucks for a day.

Look for a duster with the replaceable heads. You can find Swiffers/generic names that have dry pads for sweeping and wet pads for mopping. Clorox/Lysol wipes and sprays are good for cleaning hard surfaces such as counters and bathroom. Find some cheap wall plugins and have one in the living room and another in your bedroom.

With the weather becoming “decent” in the next few days, maybe try opening a window for a bit to get some fresh air in the house. If your breathing is being affected by the cats, then once some are rehomed and the house cleaned and dusted, that should help. Unfortunately, if it’s mold that’s a much bigger problem.

General tips: wash your bedding and towels often. When in the kitchen, wash your dishes as you go so they do not pile up on the counters with food stuck on them.

Hope some of this advice helps!


Suspicious_Side4816 t1_ix90pmy wrote

the kitchen is in fact one of the worst places and i feel thats pretty common. i just turned 19 and my girlfriend is 20. i wasnt raised correctly, my dad never made us clean and such or had us do any chores around the house so its hard for me to stay disciplined in that regard. we’ve thought about making a chore list, or having sundays be cleaning day or something like that.


BrownLightning96 t1_ix96ewr wrote

Best tip I’ve found is to not get behind on stuff. Easier said than done I understand. But it’s easier to clean dinner dishes alone compared to 2+ days worth. My mom taught me to clean as you go so there are less when you are done eating.


Samjamesjr t1_ix99eri wrote

Plenty of people “raised right” who can’t keep their homes clean and plenty who weren’t who do. Have a high internal locus of control and realize you’re responsible for yourself, your girlfriend, and for the living beings currently in your home (and any babies you may have going forward). You both can do this.

In your shoes, I’d rehome the cats immediately. It’s not fair to them and you’ll never get your house clean with them there. They’re also an expense you can’t afford and remind yourself of that. Make things easier on yourself by saying you need to learn to be capable on your own before you take responsibility for other creatures. Pare them down to one.

Instead of buying a vacuum now, could you borrow one from family or friends? “Ours is broken” is an innocent enough lie for now. Save up, buy one on Black Friday if you can. Read reviews and don’t just buy the cheapest thing; get something that will last and won’t be a killer for maintenance. Reusable filters are great. Use the remainder towards cleaning supplies and repair work. If you borrow a vacuum, you force yourself to clean it when you’re done and return it. You’re adding a modicum of responsibility to this situation. If someone asks you what either of you want for Christmas, admit you’re saving up to replace your vacuum and would like to get a carpet cleaner down the road. You’re eying ____ model at ____ store and gift cards would be great.

Easiest way to keep on top of this is just to start. Throw stuff away. “I might get to this later” or “I might want this later” aren’t good excuses. Get stuff out of there, get the house manageable, and you’ll find it easier. Effort begets ease.

You two can do this. You’re young, so consider how she approaches this too. If you both aren’t pulling equally then that’s something to consider. Make good choices now as it’s harder to down the road, trust me on this. You both getting on the same page now will make for an easier life when you’re older. You’re definitely at that spot where you can make the choice on how you want your life to go.


XzallionTheRed t1_ix9nalw wrote

Them having 8 cats and no vaccum, DO NOT borrow someones, or their carpet cleaner of they will never lend you something again. My neighbor borrowed ours and cleaned loose cat litter with our carpet cleaner and damned near ruined it and I had to tear it all the way down and clean the entire thing out to fix what they did. Not to mention replacing parts that were gummed up and wouldn't clean.

Don't do that if you don't have the skills/tools to fix the aftermath please.


Fuselol t1_ixacxgk wrote

The “I wasn’t raise correctly” isn’t an excuse now that you’re an adult. You’ve acknowledged what needs to be done, and you’re working toward that. That’s good. There are a lot of really good advice here. I hope you’re enjoying a clean house soon enough.


Cruiser08 t1_ix93gos wrote

Wal Mart on Independence has Vaccums out for Black Friday deals, $59. Good luck OP!


latemadly t1_ix9cv98 wrote

Watch some videos of people cleaning homes. These help me get motivated and there's always great cleaning hacks. Y'all already have a goal: breathe better. Be sure to meet that goal! Believe it!


babyquinnz t1_ix9gxyv wrote

Get most of ur cleaning supplies at dollar tree it all works mostly the same at least to start. Vacuum is a must just make sure to clean in-between using so that it last as long as possible. For rags I would suggest not dollar tree those don't last long and leave a lot of lint behind. If you need help with cleaning anything specific let me know I have a small cleaning business and would be willing to help with any questions. You can email me at !


AdLess205 t1_ixa591q wrote

Personally I prefer a dirt devil vacuum, I have one called "Endura Reach" it works really well and given you clean the filters regularly you won't have a problem. Microfiber rags work well on multiple things and are machine washable and you can run it through the dryer. Only thing is to keep the microfiber working you NEVER use dryer sheets or fabric softener. For mopping or Swiffering or dust mopping, I recommend an 18 inch microfiber mop pole, they sell them on Amazon as cheap as $20 and they last for awhile and the pads are microfiber as well and you can use them wet or dry. That alone you can use to clean so many things, walls included and no ladders to climb. Chemical wise, I recommend fabulouso diluted to the recommended ounce per gallon of hot water, Zep shower/tub and tile cleaner, Zep acidic toilet bowl cleaner and Zep carpet shampoo if you are looking to shampoo your carpets. Before vacuuming, sprinkle arm n hammer carpet powder and deodorizer and leave it for about 10-15 minutes before vacuuming. Also Zep has a smoke and odor eliminator in an aerosol The works really well too if you prefer that. But the carpet powder helps loosen dirt in the carpet. The other stuff like furniture polish and glass cleaner and such, the dollar stores have good brands. Amazon has a lot of what I mentioned but, Those are equipment and chemicals that work for myself and ones I recommend and I hope this helps 😊


karana113 t1_ixamxji wrote

Watching cleaning shows helps motivate me. I have chronic pain but shows like obsessive compulsive cleaners and hoarders have helped motivate me to clean, and can have useful tips, too.

Dollar tree is your friend when it comes to cleaning supplies. Except trash bags, don't get those there. They rip WAY too easily.

Take breaks when you need. is one of my favorite blogs.

You can do this! Make the habits now and they'll stick with you. One day of dishes = ten minutes. Three days of dishes = an hour. Dishes math is a thing.

I believe in you!


lincoln3x7 t1_ixbdt8k wrote

I might have a vacuum you can have, I also have some cleaning supplies. Message me if your interested.


Sassytheginger t1_ixa8u0l wrote

I addition to what people have said above, rubber gloves (like the ones they sell for washing dishes) are great to wear while running your hand over upholstered furniture. It really makes getting cat hair off very easy.


Sassytheginger t1_ixa9bgd wrote

Also, lots of hot water with just a few drops of dishwashing liquid (not very much or it will make your carpet sticky), and a big glug of hydrogen peroxide can make an excellent substitute for carpet cleaning solutions. BUT TEST IT ON A HIDDEN AREA FIRST AS TOO MUCH PEROXIDE CAN BLEACH YOUR CARPET.


naalks t1_ixa8v7o wrote

If you have the resources, check out the CA thrift in Branson West. They sell trash bags full of rags for $2. Save you a little $$


Railcharger t1_ixabtlr wrote

Hit up an estate sale if you can. They usually have cleaning stuff, That or Facebook marketplace.


Meow_meow417 t1_ixapyei wrote

If you would like someone to clean it for you let me know! I work with a cleaning company


Own-Seaworthiness653 t1_ixay9kp wrote

  1. Put some music on or a podcast to make it fun.
  2. throw away all trash; including items you no longer use or haven’t used within the last 18 months. Go through cupboards and fridge and throw away all expired food. Less clutter = easier to clean

-start with one room at a time -for upkeep, I find it easier to do one chore a day rather than saving everything for one day

Best of luck. The biggest hurdle is recognizing the problem


[deleted] OP t1_ixb6x08 wrote

The best thing you do is to start throwing away absolutely everything that you don’t absolutely need. Get a box of trash bags, start in a corner and just work your way across the room. The less you end up with the better.

And really really be brutal about what you throw out too. Throw blankets? Toss all but one. Old mail? Old birthday cards? DVD’s you’ve not watched in the last month? Toss them. Pans, lids, bowls? Only keep what can be used in a day. Throw all the extra out. Pretend you’re moving out of state and can only take your furniture and two suitcases and get rid of absolutely everything you don’t HAVE TO hold on to.

When you’re done it should look much much more manageable. And it’s hard to make a mess when you don’t have hardly anything. If you have four plates, you’ll never have a kitchen sink full of dirty dishes you know?

Then from there:

vacuum REALLY good. Like super good.

Sweep and mop

Get kitchen sponges and dish soap and clean every surface in your kitchen and bathroom. Just toss the sponges after they get too dirty.

Bust out brushes for the shower and sinks if needed. And use comet because that will cut through almost anything.

Now, do windows and mirrors.

Get paper towels and wipe down all the surfaces you scrubbed earlier.

Sweep, mop, and vacuum again.

Then tackle all your bedding and clothes because they probably have an odor. Toss what you don’t wear there as well.

You got this!!


sp00ksh0wbarbie t1_ixbk45a wrote

Invest in one of those vacuums people plug in and use for their car. Use the nossle to clean baseboard , window seals and such. Rent a carpet cleaner from Walmart for carpets.

Start decluttering before you start wiping down. Then throw things out you don't use.

Then start one room at a time. Get scentsy wax warmer and the humidifier thing you can put oils like lavender, tea tree etc.


muddpie4785 t1_ixbk7hz wrote

Check out She has a good system for getting things neat and clean and orderly, and staying that way. She also has a Youtube channel, and there are several of her "followers" on Youtube as well.


benjamin7519 t1_ixbmmh9 wrote

Greetings from a cattery owner - four adults, and usually 1-2 litters of 6-8 at any given time. My day job is running a vacation rental cleaning company, so, cleaning is kinda my life.

  1. You need an air purifier that's rated for the square footage. I swear by my Hunter HP800 units - rated for 550 sq. ft., and I have 2 in a 750 sq. ft. apartment.

  2. You need a vacuum that can keep up with the pets. I swear by my Sebo - HEPA filtration, plus everything is bagged, so no dust/dander is released when you throw out what the vacuum picked up.

  3. Steam mops work wonders for hard surfaces!!

Good luck!!


jcsunag t1_ixc3sd0 wrote

Do you rent or own? A landlord would very likely loan a vacuum if it will help with the property. If you own the home, asking a neighbor to borrow a shop vac is pretty common. (Just make sure you empty it before you return it.)


ICareAboutNihilism t1_ixcpjve wrote

It might be worth renting an ozone generator if smelliness is an issue. Basically rather than covering the smell with fabreeze or whatever, the ozone will eliminate the odor. You use it after you've done your cleaning.

Only thing is that you need to let it do its thing for several hours while you aren't home, ozone will irritate your lungs like crazy.

After that, I would maybe upgrade your furnace filters too to help reduce particulates.


VegetableLadi t1_ixcrw0j wrote

Baking soda and vinegar will be your friends, esp on a budget. I’d heavily invest in purchasing a couple of spray bottles. OP, don’t give up!

It’ll be a long process getting everything to a “normal”, but I have faith in you.

As a person who suffers from depression and anxiety, sometimes I get overly anxious about cleaning, so I can sympathize with this. I’d suggest reaching out to a family member/friend you trust and talking about this. Getting the work done is one thing, but it would help if someone outside of your home knew you were having trouble with this and could keep you accountable on your cleaning goals for the future.


Comma-toast t1_ixcz2v6 wrote

Vinegar and a spray bottle is cheap. Mix it with water. You might even try red racks or goodwill for a vacuum. Take one room at a time. Don't let it overwhelm you. Any progress is progress. Sally's has gloves in bulk and it might be cheaper than Walmart. Or just wash your hands after you're done and don't touch your face. Vinegar is an odor remover and not a harmful chemical. It smells while you're using it but when it dries it just smells fresh. Dawn dish soap is great for toilets and your shower. I use a dish brush for the shower.


Garbage029 t1_ixai6af wrote

Don't bother with a vacuum. I kept a neat home and went thru like 2 a year before I quit (had shepherds). Get a shop vac, significantly better wont break as easily. You can likely find a 5 gal for under 50 bucks on Craigslist. If craftsman lifetime warranty is honored by home depot now then that's what you should aim for.