The Reality of Keeping a House Clean with Twins

Joe Rawlinson by Joe Rawlinson - April 25, 2017

Newsflash: Your house will be a mess with twins.

Twins Playing

I remember when our house was always orderly and I could walk freely through the house without stepping on a hard plastic toy. Those days were before twins.

Before twins, your home may be a house of order and zen-like peace. As a dad of twins, now is the time to lower your expectations.

When your twins arrive, you will not be able to physically handle everything you once did. Some things will have to be let go or left undone.

A clean and orderly house can be let go.

You’ll quickly realized that it is unrealistic to try to keep the house totally clean, especially during the day when the kids are awake.

My wife and I will spend the hour after the kids go to bed (which is at 7:00) doing tag-team cleaning every night. We start in the kitchen and clean up after dinner and then work through the toy room and family room, picking up the random items the kids failed to put away. Then we go on to our evening routine.

We don’t necessarily love that we have to spend an hour every evening cleaning up, but we do appreciate the lower stress levels a clean kitchen gives to start a day.

We’d also rather spend time during the day playing and reading with the kids than cleaning. Granted, as the kids are getting older, we are involving them in more cleaning and chores. However, with newborn twins, you’ll just have a mess.

Get used to the mess. Embrace it. Ignore it. Clear a pathway through it for those late night walks you’ll take to care for a baby.

After a while, you’ll be able to adjust to the new reality. Some time after that your twins will be old enough to not only make a mess but clean it up too. Just lower your expectations between now and then and you’ll be fine.

Picture by Anita Hart

(RELATED: Check out the Dad's Guide to Twins Youtube channel for additional helpful twin tips and tricks videos.)

Further Reading

Dad's Guide to Raising Twins book
Don't forget to pick up a copy of the definitive guide to raising twins. "Dad's Guide to Raising Twins" was written for fathers of twins to help guide you through the first several years with twins. Click here to learn more about the book and get your copy.

9 thoughts on “The Reality of Keeping a House Clean with Twins”

  1. They do get helpful as they get older. My girls are now 10 and they can be quite helpful at times. What we haven’t gotten past is having to buy two of exactly the same things. They are identical and highly, highly competitive with each other.

  2. I have three year old twins and I found this article because I was looking for some words of encouragement. Every day I struggle to keep a clean house and every day I am faced with the same exact mess that I cleaned up the day before. I am starting to realize that the stress of keeping a clean house is not worth it. Tonight it is taking everything I have within to let the toys lay on the floor!

    • @Michelle: so you have twinadoes too! Our house looks a lot like you are describing. We are currently trying to get our kids more involved in cleaning up before bed time. After all, now that they are a little older, the kids should be able to carry some of the burden of cleaning up toys.

      • Well mine arent exactly twins… but they’re less than a year apart… and man does it get messy. i do my cleaning in the morning and its so stressful because someone noticed and called the cops on us because omg there were toys on the ground…. so looking for tips to keep the house perfect till this blows over or the court realizes the reality of toddlers and cleaning…..

        • as long as there is nothing dangerous just toys is not cause for legal trouble. However anyone can call and complain for no reason and get the state involved with your home and they have to check you out (why wouldn’t they) If you feel life the toys are too .much why don’t you try putting half or a third in a couple big plastic storage containers and either putting them up or stacking them out of the way? Then you can even switch out toys every so often and your kids don’t get bored with them. This is something that has worked awesome for our family.

          • @Jamie – Storing toys and then brining them back out again as “new” toys is a great idea. We’ve also used that technique with success.

  3. I have 11 month twin girls and a 2 yr old girl. I have no problem with a clean house. I clean the kitchen while all are in high chairs eating meals, Luckily they all three nap at the same time so I get a lot of cleaning done at that time. The twins are in bed by 7:30pm and 2yr by 8pm. And I clean then too.


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