Merry Maids Makes Summer Chores a Blast for Kids

#MMKidAmbassador Tips Get All Ages Involved in Home Cleaning

MEMPHIS, TN - (Marketwired - June 08, 2016) - Summertime is meant for vacations, play dates, picnics and a host of other fun adventures. However, it also happens to be a time when home cleaning tends to take a back seat and messes prevail. While kids are having a ball, parents often pull double-duty to keep the home clean, organized and orderly . . . until now.

Merry Maids, the nation's largest home cleaning company and a business unit of ServiceMaster (NYSE: SERV), has created the "Merry Maids Kid Ambassador" program that encourages parents to find creative ways to involve their children in household chores by offering fun, age-appropriate cleaning tips and tricks.

"During the summer, parents can struggle to find a steady routine to fill their kids' day with fun activities, while also keeping a clean household," says Debra Johnson, a Merry Maids home cleaning expert. "By simply combining the two, turning chores into games and offering small rewards, parents can get kids excited about cleaning and, at the same time, help them learn how to take on more responsibilities."

The "Merry Maids Kid Ambassador" tips provide fun ideas for getting kids involved and excited about cleaning up the most common kid-made summer messes.

Everybody, Clean Up: While kids are home for the summer, it's important to divide and conquer the household chores. Working as a team gives your family extra time for fun.

  • Year 'round, but especially during the summer, everybody helps -- that's the rule. Start with a chore chart and assign three age-appropriate tasks to each child, such as making beds, organizing toys, tidying up their room, sorting laundry. Older kids can even help with more complex chores. Let kids decide which task they want to do first and set a timeframe for completion, like before lunch, so they free up the rest of their day for fun activities. Make the chores fun through "Pretend Play" -- give kids a mini cleaning bucket, gloves, a microfiber cloth and have them dress the part of a cleaning professional. Mary Ann Jernigan, Merry Maids expert, suggests having each chore equal a dollar amount kids can earn and spend on their favorite things. If kids stick to the chart and complete chores for a week, take them on a fun field trip.

Post Play Date Fun: Play dates are perfect for entertaining kids, and not to mention burning some energy. However, it can also mean bigger messes. Glitter from crafts, spilled drinks, ice pop stains, and toys and games can quickly turn this happy activity into a marathon cleanup session for parents.

  • At the end of a play date, plan a kiddie race to see who can clean the fastest. Keep a whistle and stopwatch ready and issue challenges like "pick up all the toys in red before the whistle." By the end of the race, the clutter will vanish. Merry Maids experts Kim Hinkly and Nancy Golino both suggest planning a cleaning dance party with the kids. Set a goal to have their room or play area picked up by the end of the song. Of course dancing and laughing is a requirement. For glitter spills, have the kids use a lint roller. For juice or ice pop stains on cloth, have them rub the wet area with ice cubes.

Clutter, Clutter Everywhere: With longer days for kids to play, and a more relaxed summertime routine, it's easy to get overwhelmed by the clutter that has crept out during a fun day with friends. While it can be one of the biggest cleaning woes of the season, clutter can also be treasure in disguise.

  • If you find your home in disarray after a long day of play, curb your urge to fuss and plan a treasure hunt instead. A treasure hunt with fun clues and a prize is the perfect way to get kids involved and reward them for their efforts. Make notecards with easy clues that lead to a chore. Once each chore is complete, hand out another clue. At the end of the hunt, give a grand prize and runner-up prizes. The reward for parents? A clutter-free home. Merry Maids experts Jane Santos and Tim Griess both recommend a "Toy Jail;" a basket where toys go if kids don't pick them up and mom or dad have to clean up the clutter. The toys can be returned to kids only when they finish their chores.

Keep the Outdoors, Out: Swimming, beach trips and playing in the yard are summertime favorites, but before you know it, the kids are dragging the outdoors inside.

  • To avoid bringing sand, grass and dirt indoors, have kids do a doormat dance to wipe off their shoes. Another trick is to turn on the sprinklers and let kids run through to wash off any dirt or sand before entering the house. To minimize messes, eat outside and let kids help with cleanup afterwards. This is a fun way to enjoy the season and keep your home tidy.

Everything Must Go: The slower days of summer can also be great for decluttering the junk sitting in the attic and garage, and also teach kids essential organization skills. Decluttering is a great way for the whole family to feel more productive, get the house clean and make some well-deserved cash.

  • Host a fun family yard sale. Encourage kids to bring out old toys, clothes and other items they no longer need and sort into piles. Turn up the creativity by having the kids decorate flyers and distribute around the neighborhood, encouraging a sense of ownership. Give age-appropriate tasks to kids on the day of the sale to help set-up and run the yard sale. Let them spend some of the money earned on a special treat such as a movie, a toy or a book. A yard sale allows the whole family to enjoy a beautiful summer day, have fun with neighbors and keep the home organized.

While the "Merry Maids Kid Ambassador" tips are sure to help parents get kids excited about their summer chores, trustworthy Merry Maids cleaning experts are ready to create home cleaning plans customized for each household's needs to ensure a consistent, reliable and thorough cleaning process every time. To find the nearest Merry Maids location, Stay up-to-date on the latest Merry Maids news and tips by visiting the company's Facebook page or following Merry Maids on Twitter.

About Merry Maids

Merry Maids is the largest home cleaning franchise network in the United States. Merry Maids provides services in 48 states and the District of Columbia through more than 470 company-owned locations and franchised outlets. The company also provides home cleaning services in Canada, Ireland and the United Kingdom and has licensing arrangements whereby licensees provide these services in Hong Kong, Japan, South America, South Korea, Southeast Asia and Australia. Through its company-owned and franchise locations, Merry Maids employs more than 8,000 home cleaning professionals that service homes on four continents, including more than 200,000 homes in North America every month. Merry Maids is a business unit of ServiceMaster Global Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: SERV), a leading provider of essential residential and commercial services. Go to for more information about Merry Maids or follow us at and

About ServiceMaster

ServiceMaster (NYSE: SERV) solves the homeowner's dilemma. Every day, we visit more than 75,000 homes and businesses through our extensive service network of expert professionals. Technology powers our trusted experts to engage with customers so they can order, buy and receive services when, where and how they want them. Our well-recognized brands includes American Home Shield (home warranties), AmeriSpec (home inspections), Furniture Medic (furniture repair), Merry Maids (residential cleaning), ServiceMaster Clean (janitorial and residential floor cleaning), ServiceMaster Restore (disaster restoration) and Terminix (termite and pest control). Like, follow or visit us at,,, or

SOURCE ServiceMaster


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