Have you ever skipped a few chores for a week and caught yourself wondering, what is a dirty house? A lot of people feel like their house is constantly messy, but there are a few ways to figure out whether or not you live in a dirty house.
Your house is considered dirty when it’s unsanitary, meaning it has unpleasant odours, mould, or even insects. A dirty house means there’s more than just harmless clutter. It can be harmful to your health. There’s a difference between living in a “cluttered, messy” house and living in a “dirty” house.
How do I know if my house is dirty?
Now that we’ve discussed what a dirty house is, you might be wondering how to tell if you live in a dirty house. If your house constantly has an unpleasant odour, no matter how many candles you light or how much air freshener you spray, then you could have a dirty house. When you have the time, do a thorough walkthrough of your home to see what the source of the smell may be. It may be as simple as throwing away trash in an underused room that you forgot about.
If you’re leaving crumbs lying around to the point where it’s attracting unwanted pests, this is another sign that you have a dirty house. If you’re guilty of eating in bed, make sure that you’re always cleaning up your mess afterwards because you would hate to attract ants or some other sort of insect. Everyone in your house should be regularly washing their sheets and blankets, otherwise, this is another way you could be attracting unwanted pests. Letting your sheets go unwashed for too long could result in a lot of dust mites since they are attracted to heat and humidity. Everyone has dust mites, but you can reduce the amount within your home by vacuuming regularly. Try using a vacuum that has a HEPA filter so that your vacuum is actually cleaning up the dust, not circulating the dust around your home.
Another way you know you have a dirty house is if you’re constantly letting food go bad to the point of moulding when it’s in your refrigerator. If it takes you a long time to throw out rotten food in your fridge, or if you never clean up any accidental spills inside of your fridge, then this is a good indicator that you live in a dirty house.
The short answer here is that you have a dirty house if it is unsanitary, meaning there is mould in the home, unwanted pests are being attracted, or there are lingering unpleasant odours. This is different from a house that is simply messy, meaning that there is a lot of clutter or disorganization.
What is the difference between a dirty house and a messy house?
As we discussed before, a dirty home is an unsanitary home, which can have a negative impact on your health. A messy home, however, is a cluttered home meaning that you have a living room floor covered in toys or a coffee table constantly covered in paperwork. You can have a messy home that is not dirty. This means that there may be toys constantly sprawled out over your living room floor, but your floors are always mopped and in great condition. The coffee table may be covered in paperwork usually, but it still gets cleaned regularly. This is an example of a home that is messy but also not dirty. If you are a parent to younger children, this concept may deeply resonate with you. The next time the clutter in your home starts to stress you out while you’re doing your best to manage your family’s schedule, just know that a little clutter does not mean you have a dirty home.
You can always have a good spring clean to clear the clutter and destress. You can hire a skip bin to gain the satisfaction of watching the clutter pile up, ready to be taken from your space. It’s an activity the whole family can get involved in and clean up after themselves.
Is it okay to have a dirty house?
A messy house can be completely acceptable, but a dirty house is not. This is only because a dirty house can be damaging to your health. There are a few different ways that a dirty house can be bad for your health. The accumulation of dust in a home without regular cleaning can result in respiratory illnesses over time. If you let your bathroom go uncleaned for a long amount of time, mould and mildew can form. Using dirty toilets can be really impactful to your health. Toilet seats that go uncleaned can actually cause UTI’s (Urinary Tract Infections), damage to your kidney, and other types of allergies. Much like bathrooms, kitchens are also a breeding ground for mould and mildew. Living with a dirty kitchen can lead to diarrhea, cholera, and kidney infections.
In addition to physical health consequences, living in a dirty home can also have consequences to your mental health. Living in a dirty house can make people feel anxious, cause sleep problems, and hinder a person’s ability to focus. These consequences to your mental health can be true whether you’re living in a dirty house or a messy house.
Living in a mess can cause your cortisol levels (cortisol is known as the stress hormone) to rise. Living in a cluttered home can also be a visual distraction that disrupts your ability to focus. Lastly, some studies have shown that people who live in cluttered houses, especially cluttered bedrooms, are more likely to have sleep troubles.
How to avoid having a dirty house
When it comes to cleaning, it is okay to give yourself a break sometimes. The best way to avoid having a dirty house without overwhelming yourself is to prioritise. Messy is okay, but dirty is worse than messy.
Maybe your kid just spilt their breakfast cereal on the bench. They’ve also left a pile of toys in the middle of the living room and you’re running late to take them to school. It seems like a stressful morning as a parent, so how do you stop your house from becoming and staying dirty?
In the time that you will be gone for the day, the toys aren’t going to leave stains or odours. But the milk will. So, in your rush to get out the door, wipe up the spilt breakfast with some disinfectant and bundle your kid into the car. By prioritising the milk, you are making sure that the odour won’t fill your house and create a smelly space to come home to. The toys are considered clutter that can be packed away once you get home.
Everyone’s house gets dirty because life can be busy. You will rarely ever find a completely clean house. Make sure you clean the dirty stuff first and get to the mess when you can.
How dirty is an average house?
Now you might be wondering what level of mess is considered “normal”. You know what a dirty house is, as well as the consequences of living in one. But how dirty is the average house?
This is hard to measure, but on average some surveys suggest that 6 hours a week of cleaning seems to be the norm. These tasks more often consist of light cleaning than deep cleaning. For example, people may dust weekly, but they aren’t vacuuming underneath their living room couch weekly. There is not a lot of information available on how often or how thoroughly others are cleaning their homes. But the general consensus is, even though the majority of homes are cleaned, most people catch themselves wondering if they should be doing more.
It’s important to make sure your home is sanitary, but clutter is perfectly normal. Try to reduce the clutter as best you can when your schedule permits it, but at the end of the day making sure you have a sanitary home is the most important thing.
If you are looking to declutter, upcycling might be a good project for you to consider. There are advantages to upcycling, as well as recycling. We even have a guide to upcycling and recycling! You can also check out the most common recycling mistakes. Maybe you’re looking to hire a skip bin to declutter. Capital Hire can tell you all about what you can put in a skip bin.