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Move-Out Cleaning Checklist – Complete guide for apartments and houses

In any person’s life there comes a time when you have to move to another house. It does not matter if you rented or just sold the property. The house must be cleaned before leaving. In some cases, you can hire a professional move-out cleaning service but that can be quite expensive. Or, maybe you just want to clean it all by yourself.

At first, the job seems easy, but you can easily overlook some things as you have a full property to clean, it does not matter if it’s a house or an apartment. The main advantage of a move out cleaning checklist is that you can easily keep track of the progress.

Move out cleaning checklist for common areas

The following areas are shared by houses and apartments. Cleaning them is the same so there is no point in making a separate cleaning checklist.

Take your time and be sure to go over the checklist step by step.  As an advice, go room by room while cleaning. Move to another room only if you completed cleaning the current room.

Kitchen Cleaning Checklist

One of the hardest areas to clean when moving out is the kitchen. To get started, empty all cabinets and wipe them to get rid of grease stains and dust. After removing the liners, replace them with quality and sturdy ones. For countertops, wash them with soap and warm water to reduce mold, bacteria, grime, and other residues. For glass cases, tabletops, doors, and windows, always take advantage of a specialized cleaning solution to restore its original appearance. 

After that, it’s time to scrub the faucets and sinks. Chlorine-free bleach and powdered cleaning solutions are among the best products you could use. If you want an eco-friendlier cleaning solution, use lemon, salt, and ice cubes to lessen any unpleasant odors and other accumulated grime. 

When you’re done with cabinets and countertops, the appliances are next on our checklist. For the refrigerator, it’s important to empty and defrost it. While defrosting it, place a large bowl to gather all the water. After defrosting it, you should start wipin the shelves, place a container with baking soda to get rid of possible bad odors. Set the fridge on a low setting and leave the door open to avoid mold growth. 

After finishing with the refrigerator, it’s time to clean the stove. Start by removing the grills, drip pans. When scrubbing them, use warm water with a little bit of soap. To clean the oven racks, you can use steel wool to scrub the grease. Be sure to wear thick gloves and other protective gear to avoid respiratory and skin problems. 

In order to clean the dishwasher, you can use a mix of baking soda. Mix it with water, dampen a sponge, and wipe down the surfaces. Also, add a bleaching solution to kill the bacteria and make the areas fresh. Alternatively, you can buy a commercial dishwasher cleaning agent, I It can be found in most stores.

Now getting to the microwave, a mix of water and lemon is more than enough. Put the bowl inside the microwave and heat the water for 1 minute. Then, clean it with a microfiber cloth or sponge to achieve spotless and long-lasting results. 

The areas in a kitchen to pay attention are:

  1. Cabinets
  2. Countertops
  3. Faucets
  4. Appliances – ovens/microwave/dishwasher

Bathrooms Cleaning Checklist

Since you’re done cleaning the kitchen, the bathroom will be the next on the checklist. Every bathroom consists of different elements such as tiles, tub and shower, sinks, toilet, vents, floor, countertops, vanities, and medicine cabinets. Start from scrubbing the tiles and grout with warm water. You can use a tile cleaning solution to remove stains and give the tile a shiny look. Then, clean the showerhead, shower enclosure, tub fixtures, tub, and shower rod. When it comes to the sink, pay extra attention to the chromed surfaces, faucets, and handles. Make sure to use a toothbrush to get the stains and mold out of nooks and crannies. 

In cleaning medicine cabinets, vanities and countertops, don’t forget to remove unnecessary items. From there, use a wet sponge to wipe down the counters and mirrors. 

When it comes to the toilet, all you have to do is to sanitize the bowl, seat, and tank. To clean the vents, simply wash it. Also, remember to scrub the bathroom floor before moving out. 

Living Rooms and Bedrooms Cleaning Checklist

After the bathroom, your next stop will be the bedrooms and living rooms. Yes, the task will be a hassle. Don’t worry! Divide the activities into small tasks. Clean the windowsills, glass panels, tracks, casings, blinds, frames, sliding doors, fireplace, drawers, floors, and other pieces of furniture. Wash the curtains, wipe down air vents, replace the furnace filter, and apply a leather protector on wood surfaces. 

Other General Move-Out Cleaning Tasks  

Clear Cobwebs from the Ceilings 

Getting rid of the cobwebs from ceilings is one of the tasks that many tenants overlook. Don’t do the same thing. Don’t forget to remove the cobwebs and other dirt particles from the ceiling. A broom or vacuum is great to use. 

Remove Patch Walls and Nails 

Yes, it’s disappointing to remove patch walls, especially when they look new. But, when moving out, it’s time to patch up the walls. Before anything else, look for a quality paint and commercial putty that suit the wall design. You can ask for assistance from a qualified specialist if you are not confident to do the task.

Check the Light Systems and Fixtures

Another important task on our checklist is to check whether the light bulbs are working or not. When they have gone out, replace them as soon as possible. Although it’s hard to narrow down the options, pick the brand that experts highly recommend. From there, remove the dust from the fixtures and sanitize light switches.

Check all the Smoke Detectors 

Do smoke detectors in your apartment beep? Then, the battery should be replaced. Although the detectors don’t beep, make sure the alarms have new batteries for your safety. You can find to purchase batteries made specially for smoke detectors; they will run for years.

Cleaning Outside Areas 

Once you finished cleaning the indoor areas, take a break. Sit on the couch for a few minutes to restore your energy. Then, move to the outside areas. Start by sweeping the garage, empty the space, free the gutters from any debris, make sure the lighting units are in a perfect condition, clear out the compost bin, sweep the verandas, scrub the patios, and get rid of rubbish from the garden too. 

Clean the Carpets Thoroughly 

Carpets are prone to stains, and applying the right cleaner can help. Let the carpet cleaning agent sit on the carpet for a few minutes. Then, use a cloth to blot the stubborn stains away. For those who have a hectic schedule, a cleaning specialist is worth the cost. 

Therefore, following this move-out cleaning checklist can make your relocation stress-free and smooth. You can also consider working with a cleaning professional to streamline the process. An expert has a diverse team and a complete set of cutting-edge equipment needed for a successful project.

Last Updated on March 9, 2023

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