As we approach the end of summer, I know a lot of us are going to throw at least one last party to celebrate. As the host of any party, however, the dreaded after party clean up is always waiting for you after the party is over. But fear not life lovers, as this guide will help you make it a little less arduous to get your place back in order after your next shindig.
- Prep before the party
Half the battle of cleaning up is fought before your guests even arrive. A quick trip to your local dollar store can supply you with disposable pans, cutlery, cups and tablecloths to help mitigate the number of things you’ll have to clean afterwards. It’s also a good idea to get a folding table to centralize most if not all of your food and drinks. This way you can control where most of the mess will likely end up. If alcohol is going to be involved, take a moment to accident proof your party space as an added precaution. It’s a lot less costly to move that glass coffee table out of the living room than it is to have to replace it. Any dishes you dirty up cooking for your guests should be washed to help keep the sink clear for later.
- Incentivize clean up help
Bribery can go a long way. Enlist the help of some of your guests in exchange for a free meal or favor. Usually if I have overnight guests, it’s pretty much a guarantee that they’ll have a good breakfast and will help clean up without even being asked sometimes. This should NEVER be expected though, so make sure you identify your helpers before they get inebriated. You can take it a step further by designating specific tasks to each of your helpers. This’ll also help enforce cleanliness during the party, as people will try to keep their workloads to a minimum.
- Have a game plan
It’s common knowledge that cleaning up with a plan of attack goes a lot more smoothly than if you just go at it unorganized. As soon as the party is over you should survey the aftermath. Leftovers need to put up as people show signs of getting full. You can still leave out some chips and pretzels for anyone who might get peckish after that. If you’re too tired to wash ALL the dishes as soon as the party ends, prioritize rinsing any dishes that were used for any type of sauce, dip or cheese to avoid having it harden overnight. When you do get down to cleaning, focus on one task at a time. My personal method is to go one room at a time, one task at a time. I’ll go around the kitchen and bar looking and clear out all the recyclables and trash, then organize the dishes, wipe down all my counter and table spaces, then finally sweep and mop as needed. I also take quick 10-minute breaks between every task as needed so that I can coast through each without stopping.
- Bring in backup
There is no shame in asking for help, especially if you’d rather focus on having fun as a host rather than planning out the cleaning. Like I said before, you can ask some of your guests to help you lighten the load. If it turns out that you don’t feel comfortable asking or can’t find anyone that is willing, you can always call in the professionals. That’s right! There are people out there willing to cleanup after your party for a quick buck. A quick web search for “post party cleaning services” will let you see if any such services are available in your area. It’s a good idea to research this ahead of time to get an idea of the cost and availability.
I hope you guys find these tips helpful as we head towards Labor Day weekend. Please be sure to monitor your guests’ alcohol consumption and be sure that no one leaves your place intoxicated. Enjoy the rest of your summer life lovers and be sure to party responsibly. If you have any post party cleaning tips, be sure to leave them in the comments and as always make sure to share and subscribe for more helpful articles.