How to clean a house before moving out

There are many reasons people choose to relocate. Financial issues, job opportunities, or the simple need for adventure. However, no matter the reason, you need to clean your old house before you leave it. On the one hand, if you rent the place, cleaning will increase your chances of getting your deposit back. On the other hand, if you plan on selling, cleaning it beforehand will make it more appealing to potential buyers. Any way you look at it, you should clean a house before moving out. It is a big task, but here is a simple guide to make sure you have everything in order.

Start as early as possible

Moving out is stressful and hectic enough. Add cleaning an entire house to that, it can become overwhelming. You might want to put it off until the last day when you have packed everything. However, putting it off will only make the process more stressful. Even if you haven’t packed yet, you can start to clean. Additionally, try packing up rooms you don’t use every day as soon as possible. That way, you can clean out those rooms first.

To make the process of moving less overwhelming, hire a professional moving company to help you. You will surely need assistance for your upcoming relocation if you want it to go smoothly. Make sure to always deal with reputable moving companies.

Have everything you need to clean a house before moving out

When you clean a house before moving out, you need to know which products to use on which surfaces. Carefully examine the cleaning supplies in order to know which are safe for wood and marble, for example. Go through each room of the house to consider what kind of surfaces you will need to clean. Moreover, before rushing to the store, check what supplies you already have. That way, you avoid any unnecessary expenses. Here is a list of basic cleaning supplies that you will need:

  • Disinfectants
  • Glass cleaners
  • Duster
  • Baking soda
  • White vinegar
  • Cleaning cloths
  • Plastic/nylon soft scrubbers
  • Brushes
  • Furniture polish
  • Mop
  • Hoover
  • Broom and dustpan
  • Bucket
  • Rubber gloves
A cleaner you will need to thoroughly clean a house before moving out.
You will need a lot of cleaning supplies in order to clean the house properly.

When buying cleaning supplies, however, don’t go overboard. Moving companies refuse to transport bleach and other chemicals, so you will have to throw out what you have left.

Have a logical sequence when cleaning

In order to avoid cleaning the same area multiple times, make sure you have a plan and stick to it. Start with those rooms which you don’t use regularly and pack them first. Additionally, a good way to clean a house before moving out is to go from top to bottom. The high areas, such as light fixtures and vents, are a good place to start. Moreover, know which products you are going to use in which rooms. That way, you can organize them to avoid constantly going to other rooms to get the supplies you need.

A blank white checklist.
Have a cleaning plan and stick to it to be the most productive you can.

Cleaning the kitchen

When you clean a house before moving out, you should clean the kitchen first. Get rid of food that clutters your cupboards and shelves. If you can’t eat it all in time for the move, a good idea is to donate it. Furthermore, pack all your appliances in a labeled box, especially those you don’t use often. This way you can clean the areas that they were covering.

You might need to move some big appliances, such as the fridge or the oven. If you haven’t moved them in a while, there is sure to be a lot of dirt behind them. It can be a large task, but it’s best done before moving day. That way, you won’t have to clean when the day comes and you can focus on more important things.

Cleaning the living room

The living room is the place a family spends most of their time. Even though you most likely clean it regularly, you’ll find that there is dirt that you cannot see.  Start by wiping down any wood or glass, such as shelves and tables. After that, the carpet and floors are next. You should thoroughly clean the carpet with a steam cleaner, to get out any stains and grime. Moreover, wipe down and vacuum the curtains and blinds. You might be surprised by the amount of dust on them.

A living room with brown furniture.
Your family spends most of its time in the living room, so it will need a deep cleaning.

Cleaning the bedrooms

The bedrooms are usually the most cluttered rooms in the house. For this reason, you should declutter as much as you can before you start to clean thoroughly. Wipe down individual books as well as bookcases and shelves. Clean out your closet and vacuum it. If you have hardwood floors, use a mop and a wood-safe floor cleaner. Don’t forget to wipe the floor under your bed and behind the bedside tables.

Cleaning the bathroom

Unlike some other rooms, you will use the bathroom even on moving day. That is why it’s a good idea to leave cleaning it for the end. Clean the mildew around the bathtub and floor tiles with bleach or another specialized cleaner, to get the stains out. Detach the shower head and clean it on the inside. You should scrub the toilet with a strong disinfectant, to make sure that all the germs are gone. Wipe down the mirrors with a glass polisher.

Cleaning the windows

If you are looking to sell your house, the windows are a key feature when cleaning. Potential buyers will see the windows before they see anything else. For this reason, when you clean a house before moving, make sure to clean the windows thoroughly. Use an alcohol-based cleaner for the glass, on both the inside and the outsides. However, don’t use this product on wooden windowpanes. Instead, simply use a wet cloth, and after that a dry one. If you can’t reach the outside of your windows, don’t try to do it alone. Hire professional help to avoid any injury or damage to your property.

A window cleaner hanging from a rope.
If you need to, hire professional window cleaners to help you.

What to do on moving day

With all this cleaning done before the actual moving day, you will definitely have a less stressful experience. However, the work is not completely over yet. After you have packed and moved out everything, go around the house one more time. Wipe the floors and any remaining shelves with a damp cloth. Make sure that there aren’t any cobwebs you might have missed. Finally, when you clean a house before moving out, keep in mind that you are leaving the place in the same condition in which you would like to see your new home.

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