Pretty much everyone has found themselves frustrated, head in hand, wondering why does my house…?
So, you’ve got questions about your house. I’ve got answers. Whether it’s mystery odors or stains, odd sounds, or messes that you can’t get under control, you’ll find help here today!
Why Does My house…?
Keeping your home clean and in good shape isn’t easy. Even if you just moved in, there are bound to be things about your new home that you didn’t expect. For those of us who’ve lived in our homes for years, even decades, there are plenty of surprises, too.
Maybe it smells odd when you walk in the door, or the floor suddenly begins creaking. Find the answers to these problems and more today.
Why Does My House Smell Funky?
There are generally two causes for household odors: moisture or bacteria. If you notice a musty, powdery scent when you walk in the front door, chances are you’ve got a mold or mildew problem.
Check out the walls and corners in your basement, if you have one, for signs of water damage. Also, inspect under sinks and around the base of toilets and remove any mold that you find. (Related: How to Get Rid of Mold on Walls.)
Other sources of home odors include:
Dirty garbage disposals
Residue in wastebaskets and trashcans
Drains with greasy buildup or hair clogs (Related: How to Clean a Smelly Drain)
Dusty fabrics, including sofas and bedding
Cat litter-boxes in need of attention
Related: How to Deodorize Your Home Naturally
Why Does My House Cost so Much to Heat or Cool?
Inadequate insulation, old single-pane windows, and poorly-fitting doors all contribute to higher utilities. Even if your home is newer, cracks around windowsills and pipes can allow in outside air.
To find gaps around windows or pipes:
- Light a candle or stick of incense. It’s best to do this on a breezy day.
- Hold it near the edges of your windowsills or where pipes enter the house, and slowly move the flame around the edge of the opening.
- Any flickering that you see is a sign you need to caulk.
Why Does My House Get so Dusty?
The majority of dust in our homes gets tracked in on the bottom of our shoes. Adopting a “No Shoe Policy” helps enormously, so either go barefoot or have everyone in the family wear one pair of shoes dedicated to indoor use only.
More ways to get rid of dust in your home include:
Use mats on both sides of entrance doors and shake or vacuum them regularly.
Brush pets at least once a week, preferably outside. This will help reduce how much dander and pet hair you see floating around. (Related: How to Control Pet Hair in Your Home.)
Wash your curtains and drapes once a season. If you can’t launder them at home, at least tumble them in a dryer on the “fluff” setting to dislodge dust.
Vacuum regularly. In most homes that means a wall-to-wall vacuuming once a week in addition to cleaning high-traffic areas every other day. (Related: How to Vacuum Properly.)
Why Does My House Squeak When I’m Walking Around?
Most homes have wood subfloors beneath the carpet, tile, or hardwood that you walk on. Changes in humidity cause wood to shrink when it dries out or expand when it absorbs moisture. This leads to squeaking.
Make sure your home’s humidity level is in the proper range year-round. This will help reduce dust as well as mold and mildew. (Related: How to Maintain Proper Indoor Humidity.)
If your humidity levels are in the appropriate range, tighten your floorboards.
Why Does My House Have Mice or Bugs?
Your home is nice. Pests want to make your home theirs. To keep them out of your home, you need to get rid of what attracts them and bar their entry.
- Caulk gaps around windowsills and pipes
- Adding weatherstripping to doors and keep them shut.
- Look outside where your foundation and home meet and seal any gaps you find.
- Keep foundation shrubs and bushes trimmed, so there’s at least a 12″ gap between them and your home.
- Don’t stack firewood or other materials against your home’s foundation.
- Get rid of clutter indoors and out. (See below.)
(Related: How to Get Rid of Mice Naturally.)
Why Does My House Get so Cluttered?
The short answer is: because people live in your home. Assuming you can’t kick everyone else out, you need to establish a daily decluttering habit. Pick one room — or even one surface — each day and toss all trash you find on it, put things back where they belong, and tidy up what’s left. (Related: Ending Clutter for Good.)
Put things away as soon as you bring them home, like groceries or school paperwork.
Process incoming mail when it arrives, rather than leaving it on the counter.
Don’t buy new stuff without getting rid of old stuff. The “one in, one out” rule is helpful to keep clutter under control but the “one in, two out” will help thin out the excess even more.
Make tidying up part of your pre-bedtime routine. Buzz through the family room and pick up dishes, food wrappers, shoes, etc., and put them where they belong. Do the same in the kitchen, making sure you’ve cleared the table and done the dishes. (Related: Nightly Kitchen Tidying Routine.)
Why Does My House Never Stay Clean?
No home stays clean all of the time. It takes work, day in and day out. That doesn’t mean you’ve got to break out the vacuum and scrub bathrooms every day, but it does mean you need to give your home daily attention.
- Run a disinfecting wipe on bathroom vanities and faucets.
- Do the same with kitchen countertops.
- Pick up trash and throw it away when you see it.
- Don’t leave dirty dishes in your sink.
- Make your bed!
(Related: Daily Whole-House Cleaning Routine.)
Remember, the biggest secret to keeping a clean house is cleaning before things look dirty. It takes a lot less effort to wipe small spills or run a dust- cloth over surfaces scrubbing grime that’s been sitting there for days.