(Family Features) Because most people are spending more time at home than usual, ensuring your living spaces are clean and uncluttered can make being home more comfortable and enjoyable. However, not everyone has the time, or desire, to devote to constant maintenance.

A shift toward low maintenance living around the house just takes some prep work and smart tools.

Organize and declutter. Working your way around stacks of things you don’t use frequently, or need at all, can make it difficult to keep your home tidy. Cut back on the clutter by sorting items into categories such as things you use often, those you rarely use and things you don’t need any longer. Donate what you don’t need then work on organizing the rest. Invest in drawers, shelves and storage bins to ensure everything has a place, and only leave out the items you use frequently.

Automate your cleaning. You can simplify your chores by putting technology to work for you. One example is an all-in-one robotic vacuum cleaner and floor mop that keep floors clean so you don’t have to think about it. Newer models vacuum and mop simultaneously, removing up to 99% of bacteria without any harsh chemicals. You can even schedule cleanings from your phone.

In general, smart devices from dryers to dishwashers allow you to plan, schedule, organize and then forget all those chores that are beckoning from around your home.

Manage paper.  It can be easy to allow mail, magazines and other paper to pile up. To help manage the influx, create an “inbox” in a convenient location and put mail and paperwork there all week. Designate one day each week to sort, take action, shred and dispose of mail and other paper you’ve collected.

Install spray foam. Unexpected twist, right? Spray foam decreases allergens, noise pollution and pests in your home. It minimizes mold; it destroys drafts. This one step can save you significant time dealing with a host of issues.

Use time wisely. Devoting a small amount of time to daily maintenance is key. If a task takes just a few minutes to do – like scheduling your robot vacuum to clean or putting dishes in the dishwasher – do it as needed. Then, every day, spend 10-15 minutes tidying up and putting things away so they don’t pile up and lead to more time-consuming chores

A low-maintenance home can free your time for more living.