Halleluiah! Spring is just around the corner. But along with the sunshine, warmer weather and longer days come that headache of a tradition:  Spring cleaning. Where do you even begin? It can seem a little overwhelming at first but don’t fret. Tackle your dust-bunnies and organizational nightmares with these quick tips.

Before you bust out the vacuum or cleaning supplies, reach for the trash bag! The best way to start Spring cleaning is to get rid of the things you don’t need. Scour through your closet and find those shirts and dresses you haven’t worn in years. You got that toaster oven for Christmas two years ago, but when was the last time you used it? If you don’t like throwing things away, consider donating or selling them. If you have the resources and the weather is warm enough, a garage sale can be an easy way to clear the clutter while making a few extra bucks.

Next, hit the floors. This is going to be the hardest part and the most time consuming, so you might as well get it out of the way. For carpets, a standard vacuum may not be enough. If you want to brighten up your carpets, you might want to consider a steamer. Home steamers are quite popular and affordable now. If you have hardwood floors, you have two goals: (1) clean and (2) protect. Use appropriate wood-cleaning products with a damp mop. Make sure you mop up any excess water, as that can lead to unwanted water damage. To protect your floors from future scuffs, try putting foam pads on the bottoms of your furniture. It’s also a good idea to put rugs near all outside doors to prevent visitors from trampling mud and water all through the house.

One area that people often forget is their hanging light fixtures. Dust collects, and to the observant guest, this can look quite sloppy. If you have ceiling fans, the dust has likely built upon the tops of the blades over winter. Now that warmer weather is on the way, you will probably be using the fan more. So to prevent that dust from being flung around the room, use an extendable duster to reach above the blades. While going around and cleaning your light fixtures, remember to replace any dead light bulbs.

Cleaning your house is not enough. Use this time to invest in organizational products and strategies that will help keep your home looking clean and spruced year-round. Consider buying and installing shelves in rooms that seem to get cluttered easily. For home offices, you might want to buy file cabinets or drawers for all those pesky papers. And, of course, the kitchen can always use some work. If you’re handy with tools, research home improvement ideas for kitchen cabinets. There are many inventive ways to make the most out of cabinets and pantry closets.

So here’s to a fresh start and a warm Spring! Shake off the cold, open your eyes, and get that house clean!