How to Clean a Place Before Moving

Need to clean before moving out?

You can hire a cleaning service to do it for you, but that can run you over $200, depending on what exactly you need. (Learn about how much move out cleaners cost).

If you want to save that cash for new shoes and stuff, then you can do the cleaning on your own. But it’s probably not going to be easy.

Here’s what you’ll have to do and why it’s not like normal cleaning:

How to Clean a Place Before Moving Out

I understand that you aren’t a dirty person. You’ve been keeping up your place, cleaning it every couple weeks or so, and I commend you for it. However, move out cleaning is a different beast.

Your landlord’s measuring stick is set to “professional”. He wants a deep clean, a clean that sparkles. Commercial clean. And if your clean doesn’t match up, he’ll hire someone to do it, and he’ll charge you for it. Your efforts will be for naught.

So, get ready to clean fiercely. Here’s what you’ll need to do:

  • Clean the cooking appliances – You want to be able to eat off the bottom of your stove.
  • Clean the fridge – And don’t forget the freezer. Good practice is to defrost it by taking everything out and turning off the power.
  • Scrub the sinks & showers – All should look ivory white and gleamy.
  • Brush/scrub furniture – No hair, no stains, if it’s part of the rental unit. If it’s yours, who cares?
  • Wash the carpet – This one is a killer. It’s hard to do and usually costs over $100 for a service. Fortunately you had everyone take their shoes off when they came in, right?
  • Dust/sweep – Everything. Dust first, then sweep.
  • Clean cabinets, drawers – Make sure everything is removed, including crumbs.
  • Windows – Wipe down your windows, mirrors and screens.
  • Flooring – If you have tile or linoleum flooring, you might need to give it a new coat of wax or protection beyond your basic sweep/mop job.
  • Walls – Fill holes, and repaint where necessary.
  • Repairs – Whatever you broke will need to be replaced, including blinds, railings and furniture.


If this all seems too daunting, which it very well might be, then get on getting a cleaning service to clean your home before you move out.


How to Find Home Cleaners

What Are Move Out Cleaning Services?

How Much Does Move Out Cleaning Cost?