House that Cleans Itself, The

Creative Solutions for a Clean and Orderly House in Less Time Than You Can Imagine

Non-Fiction - Home/Crafts
234 Pages
Reviewed on 03/14/2009
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite

Finally, a logical approach to a clean house – let the house clean itself!! I admit skepticism when I read the title, The House That Cleans Itself. I was secretly hoping for a magic button like something from a futuristic science fiction movie, poof a clean house. Alas, I will not be able to discard my broom and dustpan completely; but I might not have to use them quite as often. While Mindy Starns Clark does not offer a magic button, she does offer an intelligent, commonsense approach to housekeeping for the cleaning impaired. “By adapting the environment to compensate for and/or eliminate the behavior, your house will stay clean longer and with less effort than you ever imagined.” The House That Cleans Itself takes the reader through a step-by-step plan that evaluates your home, helping to discover problem areas, remove the clutter, and simplify cleaning. While my cleaning habits over the years have definitely gotten better, I still have room for improvement. I found several of the suggestions helpful. The statement I most related to was “If you can’t see it, you can’t remember it.” The logical (why didn’t I think of that) solution, clear plastic storage containers. MS Clark suggests that the reader/cleaner discover their own Home Base Room (or the spot that drives you nuts if it is not clean) and always make it a haven of cleanliness. Since I am a “list person”, I was glad to see the “Handy List For Quick Reference” and a cleaning list for each room. “The Most Embarrassing House Stories” were humorous and allowed those of us lacking cleaning skills to know we are not alone. However, the best part of this book was the Prayer Walk. What better way to keep your home clean than by placing God in the center. She also advocates a daily devotional time along with the items that make that time more satisfying to spending time with God.

L. Boatfield

This book makes sensible suggestions that you wish you'd thought of yourself. Thank goodness for the only book that has ever made a difference in my house, and I have a stack of them! The author recommends changing the set-up of your house BEFORE you change your behavior. She further proposes that if you could change your behavior when it comes to organzation and cleaning, that you wouldn't need her book. I highly recommend this for anyone who is drowning and in despair over the state of their house. If you've been embarrassed when someone dropped by unexpectedly, this is the guide for you. Dive in and change your life!

Lee Bostwick

This book is geared toward women who do not naturally know how to clean a house. We are hard-working and well-intentioned, but we wok ourselves into a frenzy and the house is still not good enough. If this sounds like you, then buy this book. Mindy will help you analyze what you are doing and re-learn it, step by step. She teaches you how to work smarter instead of harder (you're probably already working hard enough). You will learn to how to keep your house good enough all the time, instead of "very nice" once a month. This book will help you relax and find peace with your own personality. And most importantly, Mindy emphasizes that having a daily relationship with God is the only way to start - because unless the Lord builds a house, they labor in vain that build it... even a house that cleans itself!

David E. Fessender

I am really enjoying this book. I bought it because of the title knowing full well that my house won't literally clean itself--but it's fun to dream. I love the true tales at the end of each chapter helping me to realize there are other people out there at least as messy or worse than I am. Right now we are trying to locate movie tickets that were put somewhere...? I'm already thinking of ways to put Mindy's tips to work for me. I don't think my family will like it much! You can tell that Mindy has been there and knows how it feels to be embarrased by the cluttered mess. This book is chocked full of information and inspiration.
Jacque Fessenden

J. Masica

This book is a great way to FINALLY get your home neat and clean, for good. Just like dieting is a quick fix to loose weight, but doesn't keep the pounds off, spurts of frantic cleaning right before guests come over won't keep your home clean once the guests leave. To acheive and maintain your ideal weight you have to change your lifestyle, so why should we expect it to be any different with keeping the house clean? This book will walk you thorugh step by step how to make those lifestyle changes to keep your house clean. I'm not talking about adding 2 hours of chores to your already hectic schedule, but instead looking at WHY the kitchen counter is always a disaster or the coffee table is always cluttered/messy (It is almost like free therapy for your home) and coming up with a solution that works for you, not the solution that "generally works" for people.


I employed a few simple ideas and tools that the author recommended and have been surprised that my housecleaning attitude has turned from avoidance to "enjoyment" that the task of cleaning my house for my family or visitors is not as overwhelming or dreaded as it used to be.

R. Bennett

I highly recommend this book for those who are looking for a process to show how it is possible to streamline cleaning the house and keep it looking that way. Easy reading and reasonable suggestions for organization, cleaning and saving time in the process

M. R. Wilson

I really don't know how anyone can give this book less than 5 stars, unless you're naturally organized or an atheist. I write and speak on this subject and fully expected this book to be full of the same old, same old. Far from it! I thought every chapter was full of fresh ideas and that's impressive considering how many books and magazines I've read.

I just finished the book and it's already changed my house and solved one of my biggest organizing problems (filing). Check out my blog post at

Marguerite E. Randall

This is a wonderful book. It has taught me so much in just the first couple of chapters. A great book for those people who have trouble cleaning and maintaining a clean house. It lets you create your own system that fits you just right.

Nancy S. Erisman

Another delightful mystery by Mindy Starns Clark. Likable characters, romantic interests, and even household hints make for an interesting (and informational) suspense story. Wholesome enough for a pre-teen. I look forward to getting better acquainted with Jo Tulip in future books.