You’ve got a new place! That’s great; you’ve spent time looking for just the right area and now you’re finally moving in. Unfortunately, the former tenants didn’t leave the place very clean and now it’s up to you to do the moving in cleaning.
For simplicity’s sake, we will assume that you are renting. If you’ve just taken possession of a house that you will purchase, there’s not much you can do about the state of the place, but if you are renting there are a few cleaning tips that if you take into consideration, you should have an easier time getting your cleaning deposit back when you vacate.
Some letting agents/landlords do not require that the apartment be fully cleaned when the tenant moves out. Others are very strict about this. If you paid a cleaning or damage deposit in order to move into the apartment, you should do a walk through with the landlord present the day you move in. Make arrangements to meet him/her at the residence before the moving van gets there, while the place looks exactly as the last tenant left it.
Some landlords have a damage sheet/inventory list already printed out and ready to go. These are legal, binding contracts that state what damage if any was left by the previous tenant and absolves you from any responsibility. If not, simply take a sheet of notebook paper around with you to each room and the two of you can write down the damage that you see. Both of you need to date and sign it and keep copies.
Okay, now that he/she’s seen that the last tenants broke the small window in the kitchen door or the ceiling panels had water damage, ( if you are expected to fix any of this the landlord needs to take it off your rent) you can go ahead and do your moving in cleaning.
Get the worst of it first. Any cleaning that needs to be done before the furniture arrives, the rest you can save for later. Pick up any obvious dirt and make sure the oven and refrigerator are clean. Sweep out cupboards and throw some bleach in the toilet. Sinks, the bathtub, and the porcelain on the toilet are probably the worst, so scrub it down and move onto the bedrooms.
The bedrooms should be the easiest of the moving in cleaning. The former tenant or the landlord should have shampooed all of the carpets, so the only thing that should need to be done in these rooms as far as cleaning is to dust out the closets; run a dust mop across the top of the clothing rod before hanging up your clothes. Use the same dust mop to remove any cobwebs in the corners near the ceiling in all rooms and wipe down the windowsills.
By burning incense or spraying the entire apartment with your favourite scent, you can remove that empty, new apartment smell and start feeling like the place is yours. Smell is the sense that contains the most memories, so making the apartment smell like your favourite scent will help you settle in faster.