Moving? You’ll Need This Ultimate House Cleaning Checklist
Moving house can be a highly stressful exercise, uprooting your life and packing it into boxes, organising a removalist, getting rid of unwanted or worn out items, and lastly the big cleanup, so you get your bond back. It’s crucial that you get your bond back because it’s a lot of money -four weeks rent, usually, which adds up if you’re paying $350 – $600 a week in rent. So let’s get down to business and help you make sure you do all you can to have that money returned to you for your next rental.
Outside Cleaning Tips
- Speed up the process by keeping all your cleaning products in one place, a bucket or small bin on wheels. This way you won’t be wasting time running around looking for them.
- Professional cleaners have a system whereby they clean from left to right, back to front, and top to bottom, a good strategy to copy.
- Start with the tasks that don’t require a wet cloth or mop – dust, vacuum, sweep. Then wipe surfaces with a damp cloth and mop the areas that need mopping.
- If you have pets they have probably made a mess, so even though you’ll be taking the kennel, birdcage and fish tank, give them a good clean, so they’re ready for the new home. Once they’re out of the house, clean up whatever mess is left and fumigate the place with flea and cockroach bombs.
- If you have paint tins or anything the removalist can’t take, arrange for the disposal of prohibited or hazardous items. When you book the removalist, ask what items are prohibited.
Cleaning Tips For Inside
- Don’t forget the barbecue, outdoor furniture (even if it’s yours it will probably need a clean), patio or verandah.
- Brush off dust and cobwebs from windows, eaves and walls.
- Mow lawns, weed gardens, trim edges and sweep all the paths.
- Repair any damage your pets or kids may have caused, and clean up droppings and other mess.
- If there is a pool, clean the filter and clear away and leaves and debris.
- Empty and clean the compost bin and the letterbox.
- Clean the outdoor lights and make sure they all work.
- Remove and oil stains from the driveway and garage, and sweep up any dirt and leaves.
- Empty all the garbage bins and wash them out.
- Clean the garage door and if it has a remote control, make sure you give it to the agent when you hand over the keys.
Tips For Cleaning the Kitchen
- For a natural oven cleaning method, mix half a cup of baking soda with water to a smooth paste and spread over the inside of the oven, the racks and the griller, including the tray. Avoid the heating plates in an electric stove. Leave the paste overnight, then remove it and spray the oven with white vinegar, which will form a foam you can just wipe off. Clean the stove top thoroughly.
- Clean the range hood, wash the filters and make sure the light and fan are both working.
- Clean the dishwasher, including the door, filter, and rubbers. To make it sparkle, wipe around the door seals with a damp sponge onto which you have shaken some baking soda. This will remove food and stains, and if you add a small cup of bleach to a dishwasher cycle, it will kill any bacteria, leaving the machine clean and fresh.
- Clean out food scraps and debris from sinkholes, and makes sure the taps sparkle and that the plug is clean.
- Put a couple of drops of mineral oil on a sponge and wipe down the kitchen sink if it’s stainless steel for a great sparkle.
- Clean garbage disposal units by dropping in a sliced lemon with ice cubes and a spoonful of salt. The ice and salt will remove any built up grime, and the lemon makes it all smell fresh.
- Wipe down all benchtops and surface areas, inside and outside all cupboards.
- Especially if the fridge is staying as part of the rental, but also so it’s clean and fresh for the new home, remove all foodstuffs from it and the freezer and clean thoroughly, adding a few drops of vanilla essence on a cloth and wiping over the inside afterwards for a lovely scent.
- Don’t forget to clean behind the fridge and underneath it after it’s been moved from the house. Also, clean behind the microwave and dishwasher. Clean the extractor fan with the vacuum cleaner.
Now Tips For the Bathroom and Laundry
- Using Gumption, Ajax or any other brand of cleaner – or a natural cleaner such as baking soda and vinegar – clean and disinfect the bathtub, shower recess, shower screen, wash basin, and toilet. Here’s a tip to clean the showerhead: fill a plastic bag with vinegar, so the nozzle is submerged in it, tie the bag in place and leave to soak overnight.
- To clean the residue from glass shower enclosures and doors, make a paste of vinegar and baking soda, wipe it over the glass and leave for an hour before wiping it off with a damp cloth. The glass will sparkle.
- Make sure there’s no soap residue or mould or mildew anywhere in the bathroom and wash every surface, including bench tops and tiles. To get rid of mould from grouting and from walls and ceilings dip an old toothbrush onto some bleach and scrub the areas.
- Dust and polish toilet roll holders and towel racks, clean out the sinkholes, drain holes and taps and clean all ceiling fans and mirrors.
Cleaning Tips For Walls and Floors
- For scuff marks on walls and floors, spot clean.
- Using a soft cloth, and sugar soap mixed with warm water, clean all the walls in the house.
- Always clean and mop from left to right, back to front, and top to bottom.
- Vacuum and steam clean all carpets, or call on cleaning professionals.
- Sweep and mop the kitchen, bathroom, laundry and any tiled floors and floorboards.
Good luck with your efforts to get your bond back.
Alex Morrison has worked with a number of real estate agents for over 10 years. In this time he has worked with a range of businesses giving him an in depth understanding of many different industries including home decoration, improvement, renovation and sales.