The holidays are just around the corner! It’s a season filled with joy, great food and quality time with family. This time of year, may seem like all fun and games, but it can also be a very stressful time for you. You have to plan meals, host guests, and protect your house from holiday havoc.
And one area of your home that’s often hit the hardest during the festivities is your floor. Meals in the dining room often lead to wine or food stains, and guests’ shoes can leave behind scuff marks and dirt. Everything you love about the holidays could cause damage to your beautiful floors.
Whether you have hardwood or carpet, we’re here to help you protect your floor during the holiday madness. It may seem like a difficult task to take on, but it can be a lot easier than you think. There are simple steps to follow to help avoid all that extra stress this year.
When it comes to potential damage to your flooring, the number one villain is dirt and debris that’s tracked into your house on people’s shoes. This is true all year round, but extra annoying in snowy weather when salt grit is used on sidewalks and drive ways. It’s essential to have doormats inside and outside your entrances to your home (don’t forget the backdoor, if you have one.) But be sure to avoid rubber-backed doormats if you have wood floors: if water accidentally gets trapped underneath and goes unnoticed it will ruin your flooring beyond belief.
Pets can also track salt on their paws, so consider keeping baby wipes near the door so you can wipe their paws. Also, you can train them to wait patiently by the door while you dry their paws with a towel, and then reward them with a treat!
STICK-ON FELT PADS
A far deadlier predator of wood flooring is the scraping of unpadded bottoms of chair and table legs (especially dining chairs). The best way to protect hardwood floors from furniture is to use soft furniture pads of which there are several types on the market. Always go with the stick-on felt pad, since they’re really easy to apply and available in most general stores.
For family members, removing shoes upon entering the house should be a no brainer. You get to keep your floor clean and slipping into your favorite slippers gets you straight into “cozy home mode” when you get in from a hectic day out. And since this is your home and your rules should apply, you should feel free to ask guests to also remove their shoes.
Every home has high-traffic areas like hallways and entryways, sometimes even kitchens. These areas of your home can see more wear and tear than most. So, picking the right rug for each room is important. At the entry way or in the kitchen you may want something with extra padding to not only absorb any moisture from wet shoes, but also to provide comfort in places you may be standing for longer periods of time. Whatever choices you make, always make sure to place a barrier between your rug and the floor with an area rug pad.
MOP UP SPILLS
Spills happen, and sometimes people just don’t listen when you ask them to wipe their feet. (Now it makes sense why grandma used to cover her furniture in plastic, doesn’t it?) You should be prepared with an ‘emergency kit’ stocked with the necessities to tackle holiday mishaps. Like a roll of paper towels, some microfiber cloths, and a spray bottle or floor cleaner. So, if your aunt spills her holiday drink on your hard-surface floors or carpets and rugs, remove any excess liquid as soon as possible, and then spray the spill with cleaning solution and blot until all the excess moisture is gone.
As for the salt and other debris, frequent cleaning of hardwoods and laminates with a neutral floor cleaner will help protect against salt buildup. In high traffic areas, sweep daily and mop once or twice a week.
STEAM CLEAN AND ANTI-STAIN NOW
With the upcoming full house of guests, you might be tempted to set up a good impression by getting your carpet steam cleaned before the holidays. This is fine provided you follow up the clean immediately with an anti-stain protective treatment! Most professional carpet cleaning companies offer an anti-stain treatment as an extra. Remember to clean carpets at least a week before guests arrive as, depending on the type of fibers and general humidity levels, carpets can take a few days to dry out completely.
STEAM CLEAN AND ANTI-STAIN AFTER
Hopefully, you’ve been able to react efficiently to any spills or mess and therefore the anti-stain treatment has sufficiently protected your carpet. If not, unfortunately you’ll have to budget in another clean and treatment after the holiday season is well and truly over.
There you go! Now you have simple, easy and helpful steps to make sure your floors stay clean and look the same as the first day you put them in. If you can tackle your floors, now, you can definitely tackle the next holiday dinner party!