A guide to cleaning up when you move house

A guide to cleaning up when you move house

Last updated: 27/04/2022 | Reading time: 3 minutes

Selling a home and moving out can be hectic. It can be hard to find time to give your property a good clean before you shut the door on your old life. 

There’s no law that says you have to clean your home before you move out, so it’s up to you to decide how much time and effort you want to put into it. 

Either way, it can help to work to a cleaning to-do list.

The basics

Here are some basic cleaning and tidying jobs you could try and get through before moving out. 

Hoover: give your home a thorough go over with the vacuum cleaner, and sweep and then mop floors that aren’t carpeted.

Clean kitchens and bathrooms: give everything a wipe down 

Tame the garden: simply cutting the lawn can make all the difference. 

Other cleaning jobs

If you have more time then you could add these jobs to your to-do list, breaking the cleaning up on a room by room basis. 


  • Give kitchen cupboards a wipe down, inside and out.
  • Clean the oven: you can buy special oven cleaning chemicals, or some people swear by a simple mixture of baking soda and water.
  • Clean and disinfect all the surfaces, counters and backsplash, using a multi surface spray and a damp microfibre cloth.
  • Wipe down the taps and try your best to remove any stubborn limescale deposits.
  • Don’t forget the kitchen extractor fan: take out the filter and either wash it in the sink using hot water and washing-up liquid, or if it needs a deeper clean, put it in the dishwasher.


  • As with the kitchen, give the taps a good wipe down, and tackle any limescale deposits.
  • Clean the shower: don’t forget to clean out the drains.
  • Spend some time cleaning the toilets, including any tiles behind them.
  • Wash the shower curtain if you’re leaving it behind.

Living room and bedrooms

  • After you’ve hoovered, you could use a carpet steam cleaner to really give your carpets a deep clean.
  • Wipe down the skirting boards, doorknobs, and cupboard handles with a wet cloth.
Extra touches

It’s entirely up to you, but if you want to go one step further, there are a few more helpful things you could do for the new owners of your property. 

For example, you could leave behind basics such as loo roll, and instruction manuals for things like the boiler if you have them. If things like the water stopcock are hard to find, then you could leave a note directing the new owner to it.  

You could also leave behind any contact details for tradespeople who you think have done a good job in the past, such as a plumber, electrician or gardener. This is especially helpful if the person buying your house is new to the area. 

Some home movers even go one step further and leave a new home greeting card to welcome the new residents, or even a bottle of wine!

Remember that it’s up to you and how much time you have as to how you leave your old home, but even some of the smaller touches may be a welcome surprise for your buyers.

Click on the buttons below to read more content about selling your home:

Selling my house: what do I need to know?
Tips to sell your house quickly
What happens on completion day of a house sale?

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