Redefine|BDL

As students all across the UK get set to leave home for the first time, a top cleaning expert is on hand with tips for those having to fend for themselves without mum or dad.

RBH Cleaning Hacks

As Group Accommodation Services Manager for one of the UK’s leading hotel management groups, Redefine|BDL Hotels, Mary Curtin knows a thing or two about keeping rooms fresh and clean. She has worked in the industry for 30 years and currently oversees the spotless standards of more than 8,000 rooms across 45 hotels up and down the UK.

For those who are leaving home for college or university having never lived on their own, keeping on top of cleaning may be at the bottom of a long list of things to do. With so much studying on the horizon along with the obligatory socialising and Freshers’ Week, student digs can soon descend into the stereotypical filthy, beer-stained and smelly apartment.

Mary, who was recently shortlisted as Housekeeper of the Year in the prestigious Hotel Catey Awards, has pulled together her top 10 cleaning hacks, ensuring students spend more time with their heads in a book and less time up to their elbows in cleaning products.

Mary, from Kilgarvan County Kerry in Ireland, said: “Leaving home for the first time, the thought of cleaning not just your bedroom, but kitchen and living area from top to bottom, can bring students out in cold sweats. When you think of university it’s all about making friends, studying hard and getting ready for your career – not scrubbing floors and sifting through piles of washing.

“However, housework doesn’t have to be time consuming and onerous. At our hotels we turn round clean and sparkling rooms for guests every hour every day so following these top cleaning hacks will save you time and energy, along with money.”

Top Ten Cleaning Hacks

  1. Beds – If you can't be bothered to make your bed in the morning, at the very least fold the duvet back to allow the bed and bedding to freshen through the day remember to turn your mattress every 3 months so you enjoy a restful night’s sleep a precursor for all the studying.
  2. Stains – Sparkling water is a cheap and easy way to remove tough stains from student favourites such as curry and alcohol.
  3. Greasy pans – Part of the joy of living away from home is extending your cooking exper-tise beyond beans on toast. Using a lemon to clean greasy pans will make sure dirty dishes wont quickly dampen that new found hobby.
  4. Drains – There is nothing worse than being stuck with blocked drains, especially when trying to get ready for a night out during Fresher’s Week. Simply use baking soda and vinegar to unclog a drain.
  5. Hair dye – University or college is all about experimenting and that includes transforming your hair. If you manage to get hair dye on clothes or fabrics, shampoo is ideal for getting rid.
  6. Baths and showers – Keep costs down whilst getting a high shine in the bathroom by us-ing washing up liquid to clean your bathtub or shower.
  7. Clothes – washing up liquid is also great for removing grease stains from clothes.
  8. Microwaves – The easiest way to clean a microwave is place a cup of cold water in the microwave and heat it. The steam from the water will soften the food stains.
  9. Blender – More and more students are bucking the trend of hard drinking and turning to healthy lifestyles, including smoothies. A quick way to get rid of that banana residue is to fill the blender with warm water and a drop of dish soap. Turn it on and let it go for a few seconds, rinse out with warm water and you’re all set.
  10. Walls – occasionally, student parties do get out of hand. Toothpaste should be the first thing you reach for to remove scuff marks on walls and wax can be removed using kitchen paper and a warm iron. Remove as much as possible with the back of a knife and then cover the stain with kitchen paper and iron with a warm iron.

Mary continued: “Cleaning products can be expensive and I’m sure students would much rather spend money on books and enjoying themselves. A good multi-purpose cleaner, washing up liquid, sparkling water, lemon, baking soda and vinegar are all you need to keep your student digs clean and tidy. That, and a little elbow grease goes a long way.”