Cleaning Guides

The Fantastic End of Tenancy Cleaning Checklist [PDF]

Cleaning your property at the end of a lease is both hefty and crucial for any tenant. If you fail to achieve the acceptable property condition, your landlord might deduct from your security deposit.

That’s why we had the professional tenancy cleaners at Fantastic Services compile the most thorough and in-depth end of tenancy cleaning checklist in the UK to help you move out in a breeze.

So if you:

  • Are just about to move out of your rental property;
  • Need to get the property spotless before leaving;
  • Need a handy tenancy cleaning checklist to keep you on the right path;

Then read on!

End of tenancy cleaning checklist

  • Tools and materials. For a thorough cleaning of the property, you’ll need cleaning detergents for different surfaces, a vacuum cleaner, upholstery/carpet shampoo, clean cloths and rags, a soft brush and spray bottles.
  • Walls. Inspect the walls for scratches. Some may be easily removed, for others you might need to consider repainting the area.
  • Doors. Clean all doors, including handles and knobs. Check if locks are working correctly.
  • Windows. Wash windows inside and out. Contact a professional window cleaner for the exterior, if needed.
  • Ceilings. Remove any cobwebs from the ceiling. Use an extendable broom or a vacuum cleaner. Pay special attention to the corners of the rooms.
  • Fixtures and fittings. Wipe down any light fittings, sockets and switches.
  • Upholstery. Vacuum any sofas and armchairs. Furnishings should be stain-free.
  • Carpets. Hoover any carpets and rugs. Emphasise on high-traffic zones and around the baseboards. For heavily soiled items, consider arranging a professional cleaning service or renting a carpet cleaning machine.
  • Appliances. Wipe down dishwasher, fridge, washing machine and oven. Sanitise appliances used for cooking or storing food.
  • Room by room. Focus on cleaning one room at a time. This way you won’t miss anything.
  • Outside the house. Clean any driveways, paths and patios. Clear and organise garage and shed.

Want the checklist template stored on your computer or mobile phone? No problem!

For more detailed information, read our instructions below:

Table of Contents:

How to clean the bedroom at the end of your tenancy

Starting the clean with your bedroom is an excellent way to make quick progress and warm-up for the kitchen and bathroom where you’ll need more elbow grease. Make sure to:

  • Remove cobwebs from ceilings and corners;
  • Wipe down the interior and exterior of cupboards and wardrobes;
  • Wipe accumulated dust and dirt from top of doors;
  • Wipe accumulated dust from top of picture frames;
  • Wipe dirt off curtain rails;
  • Properly vacuum and dust both sides of curtains and blinds;
  • Wipe and polish mirrors, pictures and other wall hangings;
  • Wipe off dust from skirting boards and decorations;
  • Dust off all light fittings and lampshades;
  • Clean and polish metal ornaments;
  • Wipe and polish switches;
  • Remove/repaint dirty marks from walls;
  • Carefully clean power sockets and extension cords;
  • Thoroughly vacuum all mattresses;
  • Mop hard floors and laminate.

How to clean the kitchen prior to moving out

The kitchen’s where your landlord or inventory clerk will pay extra attention to detail. Here’s what to clean:

  • Wash and polish all kitchen worktops;
  • Clean inside all kitchen cupboards, drawers and shelving;
  • Dispose of food leftovers, carrier bags, etc.;
  • Clean and polish kitchen sinks and shine taps, remove any accumulated limescale;
  • De-grease and wipe-off kitchen tiles, remove all mould growth between grout;
  • Degrease and wipe dirt off your oven internally and externally or book professional valeting. Consider cleaning between oven glass too;
  • Remove the presence of grime from extractors and hobs;
  • Scrub gas rings and gas control knobs;
  • Clean your microwave both inside and out;
  • Defrost your refrigerator – dispose of grime, mildew and food deposits;
  • Clean your washing machine inside and out and wipe the rubber seal, rinse soap drawers and filters to remove buildups;
  • Clean dishwasher interior and exterior if accessible;
  • Wipe the exterior of all appliances, including kettle and toaster;
  • Rinse trash bins and remove rubbish;
  • Clean smears from cupboards, shelving, and drawers;
  • Stack and arrange cutlery, utensils, and other dining ware;
  • Clean windows from within and wipe down window sills, ledges and frames;
  • Wipe smears from woodwork (doors, handles, door frames, furnishing and skirting boards);
  • Wipe down radiators if any;
  • Remove dust from plugs and light switches.

Tenancy cleaning can be tedious. Need assistance?

See how Fantastic Services can help you out!

Add a valid postcode e.g. SE1 2TH

How to clean the bathroom at the end of tenancy

Your bathroom requires a specific cleaning approach since mildew, mould, and limescale can easily accumulate on its surfaces. Here’s what the end of tenancy clean checklist for bathrooms looks like:

  • Clean bathtubs, shower installations, tiles, sinks, basins and other bathroom fittings of mould, limescale, and mildew;
  • Remove any cobwebs from the ceiling, walls and around furniture;
  • Clean glass shower screens and doors;
  • Brush and sanitise toilet seats and other utilities;
  • Dust and wipe all fittings, hinges, and doors with a damp cloth;
  • Old shampoos and soap products to be disposed of;
  • Mirrors and bathroom furnishing to be properly wiped and polished;
  • Bathroom floors should be mopped of dirt and stains.

How to clean the living room before you leave

This is the room where tenants gather the most. We offer professional end of tenancy carpet cleaning as an additional service, as well as upholstery cleaning, wiping and polishing of furniture, window cleaning and more. Still, if you decide to act on your own, here is what you need to do:

  • Vacuum all carpets and rugs;
  • Mop laminate and hard-floor areas;
  • Clean the tops of furniture, wall units, shelves, etc.;
  • Clean up walls and corners from cobwebs, spots, and skid marks;
  • Dust and wipe doors, door handles and frames;
  • Dust off and wipe wall-hung pictures, paintings, and other art;
  • Wipe off curtain rails and dado rails;
  • Remove dust and dirt from your light fittings or shades;
  • Wipe off dirt from sockets, plugs, and switches;
  • Wipe off the dust from bannisters and spindles (if present);
  • Cleanup the fireplace and its surroundings;
  • Vacuum any upholstery;
  • Remove all the stains from upholstery, like chocolate or red wine stains;
  • Clean wall spots and finger marks.

How to clean up entrance halls, hallways, and stairs

High-traffic areas are usually prone to marks. Make sure the walls and floors are in good condition before leaving out the property. Here’s what to clean:

  • Wipe and polish the front and back doors;
  • Vacuum rugs and carpets;
  • Clean up any shoe marks;
  • Mop stairs and hallways;
  • Wipe dust and dirt of skirting boards, lighting fixtures, wall-hung pictures, and other wall mounts;
  • Clean treads, risers, balustrades, and handrails of marks, dust or other dirt;
  • Dust-off doors, hinges, radiators;
  • Remove cobwebs from corners, walls, and ceilings;
  • Wash and polish internal windows.

How to clean all appliances before leaving the property

Next up, the appliances. That means the washing machine, fridge and tumble dryer will have to be checked and cleaned. Generally, this isn’t a difficult step but often a neglected one.

Fridge/freezer

Find out if you need to switch off your fridge or freezer before moving out. Usually, this information is included in the tenancy agreement. For an efficient and thorough clean, do the following:

  • Defrost your freezer before commencing any cleaning;
  • Absorb any melted ice with a cloth;
  • Remove and wash all the shelves, grilles, and slots;
  • Remove any stains, grime, or leftover food;
  • Wipe your fridge and freezer both on the outside and on the inside;
  • Clean any dirt and dust that has accumulated underneath and behind;
  • Clean all door handles and rubber seals.

Dishwasher

People think that since the dishwasher was made to clean, the appliance itself stays clean at all times. That is not true, especially if you use it on a regular basis as it can amass grease, soap scum, and leftover foods.

  • Turn off the appliance and start the cleaning with an empty dishwasher;
  • Remove the racks and utensil holders, check if there are any food or soap buildups, and clean them;
  • Disassemble the filter, the spray arm, and the grate and wipe them with a cloth dampened with vinegar and water solution;
  • Check whether your filter needs changing;
  • Clean your dishwasher of any leftover food or soap buildup;
  • Use a toothpick to remove any food stuck on the blades or the filter;
  • Clean the interior of the dishwasher with a white vinegar and water solution, and use a baking soda paste for any tough stains;
  • Dry all surfaces with a paper towel;
  • Reassemble all the parts back.

Washing machine

As your washing machine takes care of your dirty clothes, it filters lots of dirt, hair, and other particles. Its interior and filters need to be thoroughly cleaned.

This sounds scarier than it is, as the filter is often found in a hatch near one of the bottom corners of the machine, or if you have a top-loading washing machine, it will be underneath the fin in the centre of the drum.

  • Remove the detergent drawer and brush off any mould, buildup, or residue;
  • Clean the debris filter from any grime, hair, and dirt;
  • Add a cup of white vinegar and run your washing machine through a hot water cycle;
  • Use a damp cloth to wipe around the rubber seals, handles, and dashboard;
  • Wipe the exterior of your washing machine, including underneath and behind;
  • Dry all surfaces and reassemble the detergent drawer and debris filter.

For more tips on the topic, check out our helpful post on how to clean your washing machine and get rid of the smell.

Oven and microwave

If not cleaned often, your oven and microwave will hold the history of all the meals you’ve ever cooked in them. Landlords and agencies require those appliances to be as shiny as new.

  • Remove the racks, thermometers, pizza stones, and pads;
  • Protect your skin and nails by wearing rubber gloves;
  • Evenly cover the interior of your oven or microwave with a baking soda paste;
  • Let the paste coating do its magic overnight. Meanwhile, clean the racks and other detachable parts;
  • Polish and clean the handles and knobs;
  • Clean the exterior surfaces, including underneath and behind;
  • Wipe the inside of the oven with a paper towel and spray around with vinegar water;
  • Wipe dry one final time and put back the racks and pads.

Toaster

The toaster is one of the most neglected kitchen appliances and can accumulate lots of breadcrumbs and all sorts of burnt food leftovers.

  • Unplug your toaster and let it cool off if you’ve used it recently;
  • Make sure to clean your toaster over a sheet of paper or the sink as cleaning it can be a messy task;
  • Remove the tray as it is much easier to clean the appliance when it’s detached;
  • Shake your toaster so that any crumbs or big chunks of bread can fall out;
  • Use a small basting brush to get to any hard-to-reach corners;
  • Wipe all parts clean until there are no stains left;
  • Polish any knobs, handles, and buttons;
  • Dry the toaster thoroughly before re-assembling and using it again.

Tumble dryer

Lots of fibres and other debris can accumulate inside your tumble dryer. Inspect it thoroughly and check the filter for signs of damage.

  • Clean inside and out;
  • Inspect the rubber seal;
  • Clean the soap dispenser drawer;
  • Inspect and clean the filter.

Furnishings

Landlords and letting agents have an eye for finding dusty and dirty furnishing. Make sure to thoroughly clean each type of furnishing at your home before moving out. Here are the steps to doing so:

  • Use as little water as possible when cleaning your furnishings to avoid watermarking or shrinking their surfaces;
  • Clean any stains or grime;
  • Vacuum curtains and window dressings on a low setting;
  • Pay extra attention to the top and hem areas where dust accumulates the most;
  • Dust your soft furnishings with a brush attachment so that no crumbs or other hard bits and pieces can damage the fibres;
  • Wash and dry clean any removable coverings by following the instructions on their labels;
  • Wipe and polish all hard surfaces to remove any marks and fingerprints.

Drawers, cupboards, and shelves

When doing an end of tenancy cleaning, you should check each and every drawer and cupboard and clean them thoroughly. Here is how to do it:

  • Clear the entire contents of your drawers, cupboards, and shelves;
  • Remove any stickers, stains, or leftover food;
  • Wipe and dust the interior, checking for any webs in the hard-to-reach corners;
  • Polish all handles and glass doors;
  • Wipe the exterior, focusing on the top and back sides.

Carpeting

Landlords and letting agents often focus on the visual appearance of carpets, checking every corner with a critical eye. Cleaning your carpets while moving out is one of the hardest tasks to tackle. Use this checklist or consider hot water extraction or dry chem carpet cleaning to surely impress your landlord:

If you decide to go on your own but are not sure what cleaning method is suitable for your carpet, take a look at our blog post on the best carpet cleaning methods so you can plan your tenancy cleanup accordingly.

Don’t forget to clean the property on the outside, too

The outside of your property should also look equally stellar. All sheds and garages should be organised and cleaned. Driveways, paths, patios and other exterior flooring should be cleaned of any leaves, oil spills, mould, or moss. You should also take pictures of everything you’ve cleaned and write down the day on which you did the photo shoot in order to provide your landlord with proof if needed. If the property curb appeal is dramatic, consider booking the window water fed pole cleaning service and tip the scale in your favour in case of a potential dispute.

  • Check for any scratches, rust, or marks on fences, gates, and borders;
  • Clean and organise the garage and shed;
  • Prune, weed, and cut down grass, plants, and trees;
  • Maintain hedges and shrubs;
  • Scrub and clean any paths, driveways, and patios;
  • Fix any external lighting and decorations.

Check which cleaning tasks are required in your tenancy agreement and complete each one to be absolutely sure that you will be getting your deposit back.

You may also like:
Cleaning Guides
The Fantastic Spring Cleaning Checklist

The Fantastic end of tenancy cleaning service:

When booking an end of lease cleaning with us, you will receive a long list of benefits designed to meet your requirements from start to finish:

  • We provide all materials and guarantee you will receive your deposit back;
  • The Fantastic Tenancy team is available both on bank holidays and weekends;
  • We clean your oven appliance as a part of the service;
  • We offer same-day bookings with real-time availability;
  • If your landlord is not happy with the service, just let us know within the next 48 hours and the same cleaning crew will return to finish the job. Additionally to that, you can extend the period to 168 hours!

Get your deposit back with Fantastic Services!

Leave the tedious cleaning to us.

Add a valid postcode e.g. SE1 2TH

Final tips

  • Before leaving, you should make sure to take photos of the property and the condition you left it in.
  • If there are any disputes between yourself and the landlord after you’ve left the property, you at least have some evidence to fall back on. 
  • As a final tip, we recommend that whenever you move into a new rental property, you photograph the condition of almost everything in the property. Landlords will often take inventory of their properties before you move in, so why shouldn’t you? Having your own evidence to fall back on can help if there are any disputes during a tenancy.

***

Did you find this end of tenancy cleaning checklist helpful? Do leave a comment below if you feel you need more answers!

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