sofa in need of cleaning after a house party

If Dallas isn’t one of the best sports towns in the entire United States, then we don’t know what is. We’ve seen some incredible performances lately, with the Rangers winning it all in 2023, the Cowboys excelling with Dak Prescott, and Luka looking great in another season with the Mavs.

No sports season is complete without a big Dallas bash for all your friends and family gathered around to watch the ’Boys or your other favorite Dallas crew. We all know, though, that sometimes these watch parties get as messy and tough as the battles on the gridiron. And at CottageCare, we understand that party hosts are putting in just as much pre-game prep as the Cowboys before they take to the turf at AT&T stadium.

If cleaning up the house for the big party has you stressing like 3rd and long with only a few minutes left to play, then you’ve come to the right place. CottageCare is here to help you write your cleaning playbook for your party, and maybe even lend a hand—if you’ll put us in, Coach.

Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty.

Quick Party Cleaning Playbook

When you’re thinking about having family and friends over for a party, you might feel a sense of overwhelm at all there is to clean, organize, and pick up. If you just need some quick reminders, a little pre-game pep talk, then make this quick-hitting party cleaning list part of your playbook.

  • Rearrange Furniture — Move furniture to create more space for activities.
  • Vacuum and Mop — Clean all floors, especially in high-traffic areas.
  • Dust and Wipe — Clean shelves, tabletops, and counters.
  • Wash Glassware — Ensure all necessary glassware, particularly wine and shot glasses, is clean.
  • Replace Table Linens — Use fresh table sheets for a clean look.
  • Clean Light Fixtures — Enhance lighting by cleaning all light fixtures.
  • Remove Cobwebs — Check and clear cobwebs from all areas.
  • Declutter — Remove unnecessary items like clothes and toys.
  • Air Out — Open windows or use fans to freshen the space.
  • Sanitize Bathrooms — Clean and polish faucets, toilet bowls, and sinks.
  • Clean Windows — Ensure all windows are spotless and clear.
  • Organize Fridge — Clean the fridge’s interior, discarding expired or unneeded items.

Prepping Your House a Few Days Before the Party

If you have some time before the big game, make sure you don’t wait until the two-minute warning. We don’t like to watch our Dallas teams try to play catchup at the end of a game—and we don’t want to be caught with only a day of cleaning time!

There’s no hard-and-fast rule for when you should clean your house before a party. Everyone’s situation will be different, so we can’t prescribe how many days out you should get a start. Here’s what we do know, though: There’s hardly a worse feeling than rushing to get everything done the day before or the day of a party—especially if you have food to prep and other party essentials to take care of. You don’t want to underestimate how long thorough cleaning will take you. If you’re planning a party for a Sunday afternoon or evening, start thinking about cleaning the weekend before. Strategizing in advance will help you stay on your game and avoid getting overwhelmed at the last minute.

Think Like the Away Team

If you have some a few days in advance of your party, try thinking like the away team first. Put yourself in the shoes of a guest who is stepping onto your turf.

  • Move through your space like a guest. When you’re thinking about cleaning, you might be able to generate a big list of what you want to hit in no time at all. But what will your guests see and where will they go? Prioritize the spaces where your guests will actually spend time, and don’t waste time cleaning rooms or spaces they’ll never see.
  • Set the right boundaries. Remember that you have the home-field advantage here. You can set the boundaries for your guests. We don’t need guests committing neutral-zone infractions, so make sure you determine where you want guests to go. Close doors where you don’t want guests, or even try signs if you want to be sure they don’t venture into a room you’re not going to clean.
  • Make a list of high-priority areas. Once you better understand where guests are going to go and what they’re going to see, make sure you prioritize those spaces as you plan and execute your cleaning playbook. 

Declutter and Clean Ahead of Gameday 

After you determine your high-traffic areas, you can hit them a little bit at a time before game time. Here are some essentials to tackle leading up to the big party.


  • Store Shoes — Put away shoes in closets or bedrooms.
  • Declutter — Remove or organize any other items that don’t need to be in the entryway.

Coat Closet

  • Make Space for Guest Coats — Move personal jackets to bedrooms or other closets temporarily.
  • Organize Accessories — Place hats, gloves, and any other accessories together in a basket for easy access.


  • Clean Glass — Wipe down windows for clarity and improved lighting.
  • Dust Window Sills — Clean the sills and ledges to remove dust and debris.
  • Check Curtains and Blinds — Ensure they are clean and functioning properly.


  • Sanitize Surfaces — Clean and disinfect counters, faucets, and handles.
  • Restock Supplies — Ensure ample toilet paper, hand soap, and fresh towels are available.
  • Clear Clutter — Remove any unnecessary items from countertops and shelves.


  • Clear Counters — Remove trash and unnecessary items from counters.
  • Organize Pantry — Make room for countertop items like bread or snacks in the pantry.
  • Clean Appliances — Wipe down the refrigerator, oven, and other appliances.

Living Room and Den

  • Recycle Periodicals — Put magazines and newspapers into the recycling bin.
  • Tidy Décor — Store away or reorganize any seasonal or excessive decor.
  • Straighten Cushions and Throws — Arrange sofa cushions and throw blankets neatly.

Dining Room

  • Declutter Table — Clear the dining table of any non-dining items.
  • Store Seasonal Décor — Put away any seasonal decorations that are out of place.
  • Polish Furniture — Clean the dining table and chairs for a fresh appearance.

Pre-Game Cleaning Warm-Up

Once a team is in pre-game mode, they’re just about ready for action. They’re hitting the field and getting warmed up, they’re getting hyped up for game time. Even as soon as the night before gameday, our Dallas teams are getting in the right headspace. You should approach cleaning in the same way. You want to ensure that you’re ready to impress the away team with your arena. 

Hit A Little Bit at a Time

The best teams know that the game is a marathon, not a sprint. Yes, they go hard throughout the entirety of the matchup, but they know that maximizing the whole game is better than a few bursts here and there. Steady progress is better than a desperate swing for the fences or hoping on a Hail Mary. 

So when you’re close to game time, say the day before or even the morning of, make sure you pace yourself so you’re not worn out by the time your guests arrive. If you live with family or friends, we recommend having a huddle with your teammates just to make sure everyone knows the playbook for the party.

Remember! There’s no shame in calling in a pinch cleaner. Just like our Rangers make use of clutch runners, hitters, and pitchers at the right time, you, too, can call in a reliever! CottageCare offers professional house cleaning in Dallas to help make sure you’re ready for the big game.

Prep Your Turf

Now that you’re closer to game time, you have to make sure you’re on point. If you’ve been planning and preparing and advance, hopefully, the remaining workload isn’t too crazy. Either way, here are some pre-game cleaning tips for you to keep in mind.

Rearrange the Equipment

If necessary, rearrange any furniture to make your space more conducive for guests. Perhaps you need to move some chairs or push some things against the walls to make more space. Just make sure that your equipment on the field is all set in place before the away team arrives!

Paint the Field

Did you know that some NFL teams need to repaint their turf every week? In the same way, you might want to think about “painting your field” with some decorations to match the game. A few accents with your favorite team’s branding can go a long way. 

Tighten Up High-Traffic Areas

The whistle is about to sound for kickoff! Are you ready? At this point, so close to game time, you don’t want to have to stress about everything. Focus on high-traffic areas. Here are some items for you to keep in mind. 

  • Sweep and mop floors
  • Vacuum rugs
  • Wipe kitchen counters
  • Doublecheck the bathroom
  • Ensure the living room is comfy
  • Spot-check any other areas where guests may go

Remember, you don’t want to stress just before tip-off or the first pitch. Let little things go and focus on what your guests will actually see based on the boundaries you determined earlier. 

Game Time Cleaning Blitz

Here we go! Time to impress with some serious spin moves, some slugging, and some threes from beyond the arc! Actually, you made most of your best moves without anyone watching . . . but that’s okay! That’s how cleaning should be: behind the scenes so that no one notices a thing.

Ready Your Supplies

Every time a team hits the field, they’re a hundred percent ready to go. With these tips, you will be too!

  • Keep Cleaning Essentials Nearby — Keep paper towels, disinfectant wipes, and a multi-surface cleaner within easy reach.
  • Designate Trash and Recycling Zones — Set up clear areas for guests to dispose of trash and recyclables.
  • Prep for Spills — Place absorbent cloths or a mini spill kit in areas where accidents are likely, such as near the drinks station.
  • Organize Dish Collection Points — Have designated bins or baskets for collecting used dishes and utensils.

Adapt on the Fly

Even the best teams can’t prepare for absolutely everything. You’re going to encounter some unexpected situations. It’s all okay! You’ve practiced for this.

  • Keep Cool During Accidents — Remember, spills and mishaps are part of the game.
  • Focus on High-Value Gains — Don’t sweat over a few crumbs here and there. But you should tackle drink spills and other messy situations immediately with your prepared supplies to prevent stains.
  • Laugh Off Missed Shots — If someone misses the trash bin, simply pick it up with a smile. Grab the rebound and make the layup.

Don’t Forget to Have Fun

Remember to enjoy yourself! Championship contenders are serious and leave everything on the field—and they have fun while doing it. If you stress too much over keeping everything shiny during your party, you’ll end up missing the point of why you threw the get-together in the first place: quality time and memory-making with family and friends.

Yes, there’s a lot to do. Yes, cleaning can be stressful. But make sure you take some time to sit back, laugh, and enjoy all the hard work you’ve put in.

Post-Game Cleanup

Once the big game is over—and Dallas came out victorious, of course!—you’ll want to prioritize your post-game cleanup. The bottom line is that some cleaning tasks are best taken care of as soon as possible, while the rest can wait until after you’ve had some time to rest and recharge.

For Immediate Review

We know you’re beat from the game, but here are some cleanup items that require immediate attention. Letting them go for another day might make for more of a mess.

  • Catch Up on Any Stains or Spills — You might have been able to hit these when they happened, but if there are any spots or spills you missed, take care of these to minimize lingering marks or damage.
  • Take Care of Dishes — If you have dirty dishes, you’ll want to load the dishwasher. If you’re washing by hand or have too many dishes for a single load, you might want to consider doing some soaking overnight. Remember the dish collection point from earlier? If you have that set up ahead of time, you can just use the bin to soak.
  • Remove Obvious Crumbs or Food Debris — Letting food sit out overnight is never a good idea. If you see any crumbs or food left out, dispose of it before you head to bed. Saving a few minutes of work isn’t worth attracting any kinds of critters!
  • Take out the Trash — No doubt the trash bins and extra trash bags are overflowing from the night. Do yourself a favor and get these outside in the bin or dumpster as soon as you can. Your nostrils will definitely thank you in the morning!

Save It for Later

Thankfully, you don’t have to take care of everything immediately after your party. Do yourself a favor and catch your breath before worrying about the following.

  • Punt Sweeping and Mopping — You might want to take care of any crumbs or spills, but for the most part, sweeping and mopping can be punted downfield—or until the next day or so. 
  • Delay Reorganizing — You probably rearranged a few things to make your space more conducive to the gathering. Don’t bother trying to put everything back into normal living conditions! Let decorations hang for a day or two, and, unless it’s really in your way, don’t bother putting furniture back until you have more energy.
  • Wait to Wipe Down — At some point, you’ll probably want to wipe down all the surfaces where you had guests, but it doesn’t have to happen immediately! Take care of the kitchen and maybe the bathroom the day after, and hit the other rooms as you are able over the next few days. No need to rush!

Need an Assist with Your Cleaning in Dallas?

Phew—cleaning can take a lot out of you! We might not be good enough to keep up with the Cowboys, but cleaning like this for a party can sure feel like taking a few hits!

At CottageCare, we’re always ready for you to put us in, Coach! If you need an assist, that’s exactly why we’re here. When you need professional cleaning services in Dallas or Plano, you can sub us in at any time. Whatever happens with your favorite team on the field, cleaning can finally feel like a W every time with CottageCare.