How to Manage Weekend Chores

Welcome to Post 2 of my series about making weekends better! Last week’s post was about having fun on the weekends with kids (this was a major weekend pain point for so many people!) – you can see that post here.


It’s all about chores and weekends.

It’s a tricky balance! You want your weekends to feel relaxing and rejuvenating and full of quality time.

AND you need to get your laundry done and mop your floors and not feel like you live in a house that was hit by a tornado.

Good news – it’s possible to have both (even when you have kids or work full-time).

Here are some of my (and my Instagram community’s!) best tips for managing weekend chores. Of course, not every one of them will work for every single person, but take a look through and figure out which ones might help your weekend chores get done AND still leave you time to enjoy your weekend.

weekend chores

How to Manage Weekend Chores

  • Remember that chores and errands can take up all the time possible. You could literally clean your house all day Saturday and Sunday and still not have finished everything. The nature of housework is that it’s never ending. Only you can decide what is enough and what cleanliness standards work for your life. For me, I’m never ever going to spend my precious weekend hours dusting baseboards. In two decades of being an adult, I’ve dusted my baseboards maybe twice and nobody has died. Nobody has ever even commented on them. Choose a level of cleanliness that works for you and remember that nobody is coming to white glove check the inside of your light fixtures.
  • Set a chore curfew. Similarly to #1, chores can take up the entire day if you let them. Instead, set a time limit on how long you’re willing to devote to cleaning and errands and then do the most important ones as quickly as you can. I’ve found especially with kids (but also for me!) that if there is a never ending day of chores ahead, they’ll drag their feet and stretch out the chores forever. If it’s clear that as soon as the bathrooms are clean and the floors are mopped, you’re going to go to the water park or out to lunch or watch a movie, there’s incentive to get them done and move on.
  • Prioritize your chores and errands. Pick the things you MOST need to get done this weekend – whether it’s cleaning the bathrooms or scrubbing out the microwave or going grocery shopping. Then you get to the things you really want accomplished and don’t waste time doing “nice to have done” chores or errands and not get to the things that really need to be done to keep your life running smoothly but still feel like chores and errands ate up your whole weekend (the worst of both worlds!).
  • Have something to look forward to after the weekend chores and errands are done. Incentives are really effective for kids and adults and knowing you have something fun to look forward to once the laundry is folded and put away or the basement is vacuumed makes it easier to get in and get it done.
  • Work as a family to get weekend chores done. If you’re not the only person who lives in your home, it’s not fair for you to be the only person who cleans up that home. Give everyone an assignment or two and it’ll be done much faster without you having to take it on all yourself.
  • Choose one weekend day for fun and one for chores. If there’s anything to ruin your weekend, it’s spending BOTH days of your weekend cleaning or running errands. If you need a full day to get it all done, pick either Saturday or Sunday and on the other day, let yourself enjoy a day off.
  • Divide and conquer. If you have a combo of household chores to complete and errands to run, split it up so they can be done simultaneously. One mom said, “I do chores while my husband grocery shops and runs errands. He takes the kids.”
  • Combine outings and errands. I love this suggestion – go out for brunch and then grocery shop afterward when you’re already out. Or hit the playground with your kids and then stop at Home Depot or drop off dry cleaning or pick up a prescription or mail a package.
  • Do a little cleaning every day. This was a VERY popular answer with people saying things “I break chores down into smaller jobs for weekdays” or “One chore a night after the kids go to bed. Takes 30 min and saves our weekends!”
  • Consider moving the chores off of the weekend. I heard from SO MANY people that they hate the weekends because it’s just chores, chores, chores and then, because everyone is home all weekend, it’s still a disaster come Monday morning. One mom said they did their house cleaning on Monday evenings which forced them to be more efficient with their time and then it was clean(ish) all week long instead of immediately being undone by a weekend of everyone home.
  • Hire it out. I know that hiring house cleaners is not financially feasible for everyone but if it is something you can swing, it’s the easiest way to get your weekends back and spend time doing things that matter more to you. It’s not morally superior to clean your own house and your kids can learn to be hard workers and responsible without cleaning the bathrooms on Saturday morning. Every person who suggested this (and there were MANY) said things like “Best money I have ever spent” or “It has been a game changer for us” or “worth every penny.”
  • Use grocery delivery or pickup. Many many stores now offer delivery or pickup (and pickup is often free!) – you can save yourself a lot of time and usually money by ordering online and then having things delivered to your house or driving up and having an employee put it right in your car. Bonus if you can do it on the way home from work instead of using your Saturday or Sunday to do it. Stores tend to be WAY busier on the weekend, so it’ll save you time to not go in, plus you won’t be as tempted to impulse buy.
  • Accept that it won’t be perfect. Your house is not a model home or an Instagram shot – it’s a place to live and enjoy your life. If you’re spending your whole weekend (50-100 days a year!) cleaning, that’s an incredible amount of your life that you’re dedicating to chores. If the bathrooms only get cleaned every other weekend, probably everyone in your house will be fine. If you only mop every few weeks or wash the sheets once a month (I wash my kids’ sheets less than that!), that might be a tradeoff worth making for a weekend that rejuvenates you and makes you feel like you aren’t a slave to your home. I loved the commenter who said, “Chores/errands never end, so do what is necessary and LIVE LIFE.” Another woman said, “I lower my standards of what counts as clean!”
Any other suggestions for how to keep weekend chores under control? I’d love to hear – leave your tips in the comments!

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