How to Properly Clean Your Rental Before Moving Out

Knowing how to do end of tenancy cleaning is something not every tenant knows how to do, but each will face. 

In this article, we will take a look at some things you will need to clean at the end of your tenancy, how to do it, and why it is important!

Why is move-out cleaning important?

Cleaning the rental property before moving out, either with the help of cleaning services or by yourself, is vital because:

  • Performing end of tenancy cleaning and following your end of tenancy property maintenance responsibilities outlined in the tenancy agreement will minimise or prevent any tenancy deposit deductions.
  • If you take care of the cleaning, you have more control over expenses and time. It allows you to do the entire cleaning yourself, save a ton, or leave property repairs and maintenance over to service.
  • Move-out cleaning will add positives to your tenant history, and you will keep the relationship with your landlord good. It keeps the door open to re-rent or be referred by your landlord.

Move out cleaning checklist

Often landlords attach a move-out checklist to the tenancy agreement, which guides the property repairs and maintenance you will need to perform come the end of your tenancy. 

If there is none in your tenancy agreement, you can ask your landlord or quickly download a move-out checklist from the Internet.

Having a move-out cleaning checklist will help you easily complete all responsibilities. And there are plenty of tasks to tick off, too.

Repair and repaint the walls

At the end of your tenancy, you will have to repair any damage to the walls of your rental. 

If you have used the walls at your rental just to pin framed pictures or a taskboard, you could easily fix that with a bit of putty. 

Put a tiny bit of it on the putty blade and lightly apply it to any nail holes. Leave it for 30-60 minutes to dry. Sand it and apply a bit of paint on it, using the edge of the paintbrush.

Larger wall holes, scrapes, or dents caused by you might call for repairing the entire wall or room. In most cases, your landlord will have the required type of paint you need to complete such a repair.

Dust and wipe down the surfaces

It’s best to do the dusting once you have already packed or while you are packing.

Removing your items will free up any furniture, appliances, and other surfaces while allowing you to clean them easily. Use microfibre cloths to trap the dust while wiping it away. A soft damp cloth could also do the trick.

Start from the ceiling light fixtures and moulding and make your way down, wiping any dusty surfaces in sight, like ledges, blinds, and tall furniture. Make sure to remove cobwebs while doing so, too.

Clean windows and mirrors

Make sure to pick a time of the day when no direct sunlight is shining on the windows to reduce the chance of getting your rental windows streaked. If you haven’t dusted the edges of the mirrors and windows earlier, make sure to do so now with a dry cloth.

Spay the window or mirror with a high-quality window or glass cleaner. Avoid using too much cleaning solution since this can also result in streaking. Wipe them with a microfiber cloth and press wherever a persistent dirt build-up occurs. 

Use top to bottom and side-to-side motions when wiping. Dry off the window with another clean microfiber cloth. 

Clean cupboards and cabinets

With your items packed, this will be far less of a chore. Use a mild detergent like dish soap, water, and vinegar solution for more persistent build-ups. Start for the inside of cupboards and cabinets and wipe down. When you are done, close and wipe their exterior, knobs, ornaments, and handles. Dry off with a clean cloth once you are done.

Deep clean showers, sinks, toilets, and bathtubs

For the toilet, you should start on the outside. You should use a general toilet cleaner to spray the outside of the toilet – tank, lid, and bowl- and wipe with paper. Add some cleaner that preferably has bleach in it into the toilet bowl. Let it sit for a bit and flush.

For the sinks, bathtubs and showers, start with the faucets. You could even unscrew the shower head or the filter on the sink if you have any and submerge them in hard water build-up remover. Vinegar could also work. Wash their exterior and interior too. Clean the drains with appropriate cleaners.

Clean the appliances

Move the appliances out of their place if they are in between other items. Take each off the electrical grid before you start cleaning. Wipe the stove burners with a dry cloth to remove any debris.

If there are removable burners, remove them for easier cleaning.  Add stove cleaner to remove grease stains effectively. Wipe it with a cloth or paper. Do the same for the oven. 

Defrost the fridge if it has a freezer. Take off any easily breakable glass divides and trays, and put them in soapy water for a bit.

Only wipe the metal ones. Use an all-purpose cleaner to clean the inside of the fridge and freezer. Let it dry. Return to the divides,  clean them one by one, and dry them off. Put them back into the fridge and move the fridge back in place.

Sweep, vacuum and mop the floors

The floor is last in line in all move-out cleaning lists. The mop will be your best friend when cleaning a hard floor.

Use some detergent for all purposes and mop up any tile, laminate or linoleum that you have. Watch out with hardwood, though – your mop should not be wet but slightly damp. 

If there are any carpets in the rental, you must check whether they are synthetic or organic. Ask your landlord if they are familiar with safe cleaners they have used before. Vacuum the carpet, pre-treat any stains, steam it, and then let it dry properly, especially if it’s organic.

Take out the trash

With so many tasks on your hands, it’s very easy to overlook the full trash bin in the kitchen. 

This has a simple fix and is an easy win for you regarding your relationship with your landlord. Set yourself a reminder if you don’t have it on the checklist, and empty all the bins once you are done with the cleaning.

When to hire cleaning services?

Using expert end of tenancy cleaners will ensure property maintenance will be done right, and even if your landlord is not satisfied, professional property maintenance surfaces offer a revisit. 

Whether you are a veteran or you don’t know how to do end of tenancy cleaning, cleaning services will untie your hands and free up your calendar. 

Professional cleaning services make the chances of end of tenancy deposit deductions significantly lower since the professionals do this daily.


End of tenancy cleaning is an important part of the move-out process for every tenant and can save you lots of headaches if done right. 

Make sure to plan out properly and according to your circumstances, and do not hesitate to rely on property maintenance services!

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