Have anyone of you come across an experience with entering a homestay while being shocked about the condition of the house, which is upsetting and appaling? Dusty carpet, leaking pipes, clogged toilets… all of these are definitely a no-no for guests and would probably drive away them to come again.
To run a homestay or any vacation rentals business, cleanliness and maintenance of the property is perhaps the most basic things you need to take care of. Plus the cleaning fee is included in the rate for every tenant, keeping your homestay in a spick and span condition is no doubt, the fundamental responsibility of every owner. Let’s turn the mood on for cleaning, and read about the cleaning tips and tools for your homestay.
1. Turn your bathtub & toilet bowl sparkling as it is new.
A bathtub in the toilet creates a bonus point for your homestay, but a dingy bathtub just makes things worse. So do clean your bathtub regularly with a few basic household products and a little elbow grease.
White vinegar makes an excellent natural cleaning solution, especially on smooth surfaces like acrylic that release stains easily.
- Mix vinegar and washing powder in equal proportions into a spray bottle, apply the mixture liberally to completely cover the affected area.
- Let it sits for 10-20 minutes, then scrub the areas with a brush.
- For a very troublesome spots, you can sprinkle a little baking soda onto the vinegar as it soaks.
(Resource: The Forked Spoon)
While for toilet bowls, first flush your toilet to drain as much water as possible to start the cleaning process.
- Pour a cup of the same mixture (vinegar + washing powder) into the toilet bowl and swish it around with a toilet brush.
- After letting it sit for about 1 minute, add about 1 cup of baking soda to the toilet bowl together with another 1 to 2 cups of vinegar. You will then see a fizzing action.
- Let it sits for up to 30 minutes, swishing it several times until you see the stain is gone. If any stain remains, just scrub it with the toilet brush or a stiff-bristled nylon brush. Finally, flush to the toilet to rinse.
2. Get the grout lines on your tile floor and walls shine again.
It is easy to get tiles clean and gleaming, but it is much harder to clean the grout between them. Sometimes, you may think to repaint the grout to make it white again. In fact, you can easily clean grout using simple products which you may already have at home.
Similarly to the above, you will need baking soda, white vinegar and water.
- First, make a thick paste of baking soda and water with 3 parts of baking soda to 1 part water. Then apply it to the grout lines with your finger, you may want to wear a glove to help prevent irritating your skin.
This versatile cleaner will work with all colours of grout, but vinegar can be harmful to some natural stones such as marble or limestone. For a better effect, the vinegar now come into play.
- Make a 1:1 solution of white vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Spray it to the paste applied, and you should immediately see fizzing action on it.
- After the bubbling has stopped, use a brush or toothbrush to scrub along the grout lines. Finally, mop the floor to remove the residues.
3. Get rid of mattresses dirt and smell
Mattresses is the most important item that should be cleaned and vacuumed regularly, especially before your guests come for their stay or after they have left, as every guests will definitely sleep on that mattresses and have the most contact with. Given enough time, mattresses just become dirty and dusty and sometimes, yellowish.
- To get them looking like a brand new once again, you just merely need to sprinkle them with baking soda.
- Leave it for a few hours and then vacuum it up. All traces of dirt and smell will disappear immediately.
Magically, this technique will free your mattress of odor, dead skin cells, oils, and dust mites.
4. Maintaining your kitchen utensils effectively.
Kitchen utensils take food straight from our plates to mouths, so it is essential that they are cleaned properly and well-maintained. Surely you wish to place your guest’s health in the first place, not wanting them to get ill or food poisoning which caused by your kitchen utensils.
(Source: The Daily Meal)
Some homestay owners may provide guests with kitchen utensils which are made of several types, such as plastic, metal or wood. Thus, you will need to take into account of how to clean and care for them, as you can simply drop plastic implements in the dishwasher, but wood and metal implements may require special care.
For wooden implements,
- Use very hot soapy water to rinse away any bacteria that left on the surface, especially if the utensil is used on raw meat or fish.
- Pour course salt over the surface and rub a cut lemon over the surface until the salt has dissolved. The lemon should help removing smell while the combination will lift the stain.
- Rinse with cool water and set in sun to dry.
Alternatively, baking soda plays a good role in removing stains and smell too.
- Sprinkle baking soda over the top and drizzle on lemon juice.
- Use a clean cloth to scrub the stained area.
- Simply rinse and set in the sun to dry.
For metal implements, stainless steel often present some tough cleaning challenges, such as stubborn stains.
- First of all, soak the cookwares for several hours in warm, soapy water. Then, scrub and remove any crusted or built-up food on it. Do not use steel wood pads or copper-based scrubbers to prevent scratching of the surface.
- To clean burn marks from the cookware, sprinkle baking soda onto the surface and rub with a dry cloth or sponge. You can add a little water to achieve a paste-like consistency.
- To remove water spots, soak the pan in vinegar then clean as usual with a mild detergent.
5. Removing stain from carpets.
Carpets do a great job in decorating the house, as a homestay with carpets and without carpets really make a great difference for a house’s interior appearance. Some homestay owners experienced the head-cracking problem when you see stains of red wine or baby urine on the carpet, if you do, you know the pain.
Vinegar again, is the superhero of stain removal. Try these different formulas for homemade carpet stain remover to remove a variety of common stains.
- Rub light carpet stains with a mixture of 2 tablespoons salt dissolved in 1/2 cup of white vinegar. Let the solution dry, then vacuum.
- For tough, ground-in dirt and other stains, make a paste of 1:1 of tablespoon vinegar and cornstarch, and rub it into the stain by using a dry cloth. Let it set for two days, then vacuum.
- For fruit and fruit juice stains, mix 1 tablespoon laundry detergent with 1/2 tablespoons of white vinegar then combine with two cups of water. Work the solution into the stain and blot.
- For coffee and tea stains, combine 1:1 of white vinegar and water and blot the stain.
To fight with another carpet-destroyer, the chewing gums, simply grab an ice cube from the fridge to save your carpet.
- Freeze the gum first with ice cubes in plastic bag, then scrape with a butter knife.
6. Make the windows glow.
To prevent handprints and water stains on the window, all you need is newspaper. Not only does it work really well, the paper and ink acts as a light abrasive to give you really clean windows.
After cleaning the window using any window-cleaning solution, crumple the newspaper and wipe off the residues and spots in a circular motion. After all the liquid has dissipated, you will get a shiny, streak-free windows!
7. Fighting off limescale from tap and sink.
When it comes to dense limescale, particularly around the spout of your kitchen sink tap, simply using detergent to clean it may not be enough. Fortunately, what you need is simply a lemon.
Lemon has an acidic properties which removes limescale naturally. To start-off, cut a lemon in half, scrub the flesh over the tap while pay extra attention to limescale-heavy areas. After leaving for around 2 hours, rinse and dry it.
After all, the best kitchen cleaning hack is perhaps the simplest and most obvious one – never let it get too bad in the first place. Use a kitchen brush and sponge to give the sink a quick but thorough clean after every use, it will really help prevent limescale and grime buildup.
However, not every guests will do that little extra move automatically. Perhaps, homestay owners may attach a note beside the sink with a warm reminder to clean the sink after using as well as not to soak greasy dishes for too long.
Do you find these tips helpful? Try them out and let us know. If you love them, don’t forget to share this post with your friends and if you have more and want to share it with your fellow homestay owners, feel free to leave us a comment below!