Move-in House Cleaning Checklist

Last update: 1 year ago

Deep cleaning before moving in
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Whenever you are moving into a new apartment or a house, there is a high chance someone lived there before you. Unless you know for yourself that the house is empty and brand new, then you can’t trust your landlord 100%.

One of the best ways to accept your new house as a home is to take care of it before you even move in. Things like cleaning, changing some sanitary appliances and reordering the way the furniture suits your taste are all great examples of first to-do things.

But you can’t accomplish anything great unless you have a plan to follow.

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Why is deep cleaning important before unpacking

Not only deep cleaning your new home is good for getting to know the place, but it’s also a pretty good way to sanitise the place that you’re going to live in.

It often takes up some time to clean the whole house thoroughly, but it’s always a good idea to do so before you unpack and the house is still empty. This will give you peace of mind that you are moving into a clean and safe environment.

There are many things that you have to consider before you begin deep cleaning, and we are going over all of them. After you know what to do when you start, the task of deep cleaning your new house will seem less annoying, and it will be just another thing to complete.

After that, all you’ll have to do is stick to a regular cleaning schedule. Don’t neglect specific duties and places, as constantly maintaining the property will pay off once it’s time for a routine rental inspection from the landlord or agent.

How to best tackle the move-in house cleaning

We mentioned above that it’s essential to have a plan before deep cleaning the house. That’s why we created the Fantastic Move-in Cleaning Checklist that will help you deep clean your new home from top to bottom! Before you get to it, though, take a look at a few crucial tips to keep in mind.

1. Scout the house

Before you start cleaning, scout the place, try to find the hidden dirty spots and mark them on paper. Look under beds, behind couches, and most importantly, behind any kitchen appliances. You’d be surprised how dirty the oven can be.

2. Plan the cleaning

It’s easy to start, but often you’ll find yourself trying to keep away from areas that you’ve already cleaned but need to use. That’s why it’s essential to know when to start. This varies from house to house because of the layout, but still, it’s not that difficult.

3. Clean the dirtiest things first

Before you vacuum and dust the place, you should do the dirtiest things first. Clean behind furniture, dust vents, and invest most efforts in disinfecting the bathroom and kitchen.

Move-in cleaning checklist


  • Disinfect all appliances inside out – stove, oven, microwave, fridge, dishwasher, etc.;
  • Clean cabinets and drawers;
  • Wipe light fixtures, light switches, handles and other high-touch points;
  • Disinfect the sinks, taps and countertops;
  • Vacuum everywhere, especially behind and under appliances;
  • Mop the floor.


  • Change/disinfect toilet seat;
  • Disinfect the toilet bowl, sink, tap, shower and tub;
  • Wipe cabinets and mirror;
  • Check for mould and clean it in full;
  • Scrub tiles and grout to remove grime, then rinse well;
  • Check and clean air vents, if necessary;
  • Mop and let dry.

Living room

  • Wash window glass, sill and tracks;
  • Vacuum/steam clean carpets and upholstered furniture;
  • Wipe all hard-to-reach places – behind and under furniture, door frames, shelves, etc.;
  • Disinfect door handles and light switches;
  • Dust light fixtures and baseboards.


  • Vacuum/steam clean carpets;
  • Clean under the bed and behind furniture;
  • Wipe inside drawers and wardrobe;
  • Wash window glass, sill and tracks;
  • Disinfect all surfaces;
  • Dust light fixtures and baseboards.
Download the Fantastic move-in cleaning checklist here fast and easy! Download

Often landlords require the carpets to be professionally cleaned before tenants leave for good. However, if you have doubts about yours, you can always steam clean them yourself or hire a professional for specialised dry or steam carpet cleaning.

Things that you have to throw away when moving in

A new home may be a fresh start for you. However, it should always be a second life for the house or apartment.

It doesn’t matter if you are renting or buying a place that someone else lived in before you move in. There are some things that you have to get rid of. The list isn’t long, so it would be pretty inexpensive to replace with brand new ones or your own.

  1. The toilet seat/seats. It’s gross thinking that someone else used the toilet seat before you. You can get a brand new toilet seat fairly inexpensive, so there are no excuses to keep the old one! Having more than one toilet? Then change them all.
  2. Rugs. Rugs can be dirty and can contain a lot of microorganisms on them. If you really like the one that is already in there you can try to save it.
  3. Any bathroom curtains. Having bathroom curtains that have been there before you move? Well, you can’t ever tell for how long they’ve been sitting there. However, there is a chance the landlord changed it before you moved in, so contact him and ask.
  4. Any cutlery. It’s always best to bring your own cutlery, so make sure to either store the ones that have been there or throw them away.
  5. The mattress. It’s not mandatory to throw it away, and if you can clean the mattress, then definitely do so. As mattresses are not very cheap, then we would suggest requesting one from your landlord.
  6. Any old pillows. This is pretty self-explanatory. Just throw them away.

Of course, this list isn’t 100% full because every household is different. If there are some things that you’d want to fix, clean or throw away, then definitely do so. And if you don’t want to bother with cleaning yourself – you can always book end of lease cleaning online!

Renting has its perks. If you know how to deal with them, it will be tenfold easier, rather than going into action without an idea of what you have to do.

And after you’ve cleaned everything, voila! Now your new living place has a touch of you in it, bringing you one step closer to making it home.

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Move It Melbourne
Move It Melbourne
5 years ago

It’s good to read and understand the helpful cleaning tips before Moving. Thank you so much for sharing this article.

2 years ago

Great ideas, Your information is very inspiring. Keep it going. Thanks

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