End of Tenancy Cleaning Checklist: A Comprehensive Guide

end of tenancy cleaning

End of Tenancy Cleaning Checklist: A Comprehensive Guide

Relocating from a rental property often brings its fair share of challenges and anxieties. End-of-tenancy cleaning is a pivotal responsibility among the myriad of tasks accompanying such a move.

This cleaning ritual is not just a mere formality or a clause in many rental agreements; it’s a gesture of courtesy, ensuring that the next occupant enters a clean and welcoming environment. Moreover, a thorough cleaning can also play a role in securing the return of your security deposit in full.

As you prepare for this transition, we’re here to simplify the process. Dive into our detailed end-of-tenancy cleaning guide, which meticulously covers every nook and cranny of the property — from the heart of your kitchen to the expanse of the outdoor spaces.

With this checklist, you’ll be well-equipped to leave the property in impeccable condition, paving the way for a smooth move-out experience.

Benefits for Landlords and Tenants

end of tenancy cleaning mom and kids packing up home

End-of-tenancy cleaning serves as a win-win for both landlords and tenants, offering many benefits beyond the immediate cleanliness of the property.

For Landlords

  • Enhanced Property Appeal: A pristine property naturally attracts potential tenants. When a home or apartment shines in its best light, it becomes a more desirable place to live. This not only speeds up the leasing process but can also allow for a higher rental price.
  • Minimised Vacancy Periods: Time is money in the real estate world. A clean property means reduced waiting times between tenants, ensuring a steady flow of rental income.
  • Fewer Deposit Disputes: One of the common points of contention between landlords and tenants revolves around the return of deposits. A well-maintained property at the end of a lease reduces the chances of disagreements, fostering a more amicable end to the rental relationship.

For Tenants

  • Full Deposit Retrieval: The security deposit often represents a significant sum. Ensuring the property is left in impeccable condition maximises the chances of receiving the full amount back. This can significantly aid in covering moving expenses or deposits for the next place.
  • Maintaining a Positive Rental History: Leaving a property clean and well-maintained is a testament to responsibility and care. This positive impression can be invaluable for future rental applications or job references.
  • Strengthened Landlord Relationship: The world is smaller than we think, and you never know when paths might cross again. Leaving on good terms by ensuring a thorough end-of-tenancy cleaning can pave the way for future interactions, whether renting another property from the same landlord or seeking a reference.

Looking to find out how often you should deep clean your rental home? Check out this Deep Cleaning Frequency Guide.

Key Areas to Focus on During End-of-Tenancy Cleaning

Transitioning out of a rental property involves numerous tasks, among the most crucial is the end-of-tenancy cleaning. While it’s essential to ensure the entire property is spotless, certain ‘hotspots’ demand extra attention. These areas, often overlooked or hastily cleaned, can make a significant difference in the overall appearance and cleanliness of the property. 

Below, we’ll delve into these critical areas, offering insights and tips to ensure they shine, facilitating a smoother move-out process and increasing the likelihood of retrieving your full deposit.


Countertops and Surfaces

  • Materials Matter: Depending on whether you have granite, marble, or laminate countertops, use a cleaning solution tailored to the material. This ensures effective cleaning without causing damage.
  • Detailed Cleaning: With a soft cloth, gently wipe down all surfaces, ensuring you cover the backsplash, tiles, and any nooks or crannies where dirt might hide. Consider using a mild abrasive cleaner or a baking soda solution for stubborn stains.


  • Oven: Begin with the interior, using an oven cleaner to tackle burnt-on food residues. Don’t forget the oven racks, exterior, and control knobs.
  • Microwave: A simple solution of water and vinegar can help loosen food splatters. Wipe the interior with a soft cloth and ensure the turntable is cleaned.
  • Fridge: Defrost the freezer, if necessary. Remove all shelves and bins, cleaning them separately. Wipe down the interior walls and floor of the fridge, paying attention to corners.
  • Dishwasher: Check the filter for any trapped food particles. Run a cleaning cycle using a specialised dishwasher cleaner or a cup of white vinegar.
  • Additional Appliances: For any other appliances like toasters, blenders, or coffee makers that came with the property, ensure they are cleaned according to their specific needs.

Sinks and Taps

  • De-scaling: Hard water can leave unsightly marks on your sink and taps. Use a de-scaling solution or white vinegar to tackle these stains.
  • Polishing: After de-scaling, give the sink and taps a good polish using a suitable metal or chrome polish to restore their shine.

Cupboards and Drawers

  • Emptying: Start by removing all items, ensuring nothing is left behind.
  • Interior Cleaning: Wipe the insides of the cupboards and drawers using a mild detergent solution. For corners and tight spots, consider using an old toothbrush.
  • Vacuuming: Before wiping, use a vacuum cleaner to suck up any crumbs, dust, or loose dirt. This ensures a more thorough clean.
  • Exterior Attention: Often, the outsides of cupboards, especially handles, can accumulate grime. Give them a good wipe down, ensuring they look as pristine as the insides.



end of tenancy cleaning -- toilet cleaning


  • Deep Clean: Start with a robust toilet cleaner, ensuring it reaches under the rim. Using a toilet brush, scrub the bowl thoroughly, paying attention to any mineral rings or stubborn stains.
  • Comprehensive Coverage: The seat, lid, and flush handle are frequently touched areas and can harbour germs. Wipe them down with a disinfectant. The exterior of the toilet, including the base and tank, should also be cleaned to remove any dust or splashes.

Shower and Bathtub

  • De-scaling: Over time, showers and bathtubs can develop hard water stains. To tackle these, use a de-scaling product or a mixture of white vinegar and water.
  • Soap Scum and Mould: These are common culprits in bathrooms. Consider using a specialised cleaner or a baking soda paste to scrub any build-up. A bleach-based cleaner can be effective for mould, but always ensure the room is well-ventilated when using strong products.
  • Showerhead: Remember this often-neglected area. A simple soak in a bag of vinegar can help remove mineral deposits, ensuring a steady water flow.


  • De-scaling: Like the shower and bathtub, sinks can fall victim to hard water stains. Use a de-scaling solution or a homemade vinegar solution to restore its shine.
  • Drain: Ensure the drain is clear of any blockages. Mixing baking soda followed by vinegar can help break down minor clogs and freshen the drain.

Mirrors and Glass

  • Streak-free Shine: Use a glass cleaner or a solution of equal parts water and vinegar to clean mirrors and glass surfaces. Using a microfiber cloth can help achieve a streak-free finish.
  • Shower Screens: If your bathroom has a glass shower screen, ensure it’s free from soap scum and watermarks. A squeegee can be a handy tool to prevent future build-up.

Living Room


  • Dusting: Begin by dusting all furniture pieces, from sofas and chairs to bookshelves and coffee tables. Use a microfiber cloth to capture dust effectively without scratching surfaces.
  • Polishing: Wooden surfaces benefit from a good polish, whether it’s a grand oak bookcase or a mahogany coffee table. This enhances their shine and nourishes the wood, ensuring longevity.
  • Upholstery: For fabric-covered furniture, consider vacuuming the upholstery to remove dust or pet hair. If there are removable cushion covers, check the care label and wash them if permitted.


  • Vacuuming: A thorough vacuuming is essential, ensuring you cover every inch. Remember to move furniture if necessary to access hidden areas.
  • Stain Removal: Carpets can fall victim to spills and stains over time. Use a trusted carpet stain remover or white vinegar and water mixture to tackle these spots. For stubborn stains, consider hiring a professional carpet cleaner or renting a carpet cleaning machine.
  • Odour Removal: If your living room carpet has a lingering odour, sprinkle some baking soda, let it sit for a few hours, and then vacuum. This can help neutralize odours and freshen up the space.


cleaning windows and curtains for end of tenancy cleaning

  • Glass Cleaning: Use a streak-free glass cleaner or a homemade solution of equal parts water and vinegar to clean the windows. Wiping in a circular motion with a microfiber cloth or newspaper can help achieve a crystal-clear finish.
  • Exterior Cleaning: If accessible, ensure the exterior side of the windows is cleaned as well. This can make a significant difference in the overall clarity and brightness of the room.
  • Window Sills and Frames: Dust and grime can accumulate on window sills and frames. Wipe them down with a damp cloth, ensuring they’re free from dirt and cobwebs.



  • Deep Clean: Over time, bedding can accumulate sweat, dust mites, and other particles. Start by washing all bedding items, including sheets, pillowcases, and duvet covers, in warm water with a gentle detergent. This not only cleans but also refreshes the fabric.
  • Replacement: If any bedding items are worn out or damaged, consider replacing them. This gesture ensures the next occupant has a fresh start.
  • Mattress Care: While the bedding is off, take the opportunity to vacuum the mattress, especially the seams and crevices. For any stains, use a mild detergent and water, blotting gently. Allow the mattress to air out before replacing the bedding.

Wardrobes and Drawers

  • Emptying: Ensure all personal items are removed, leaving no trace behind.
  • Interior Cleaning: Wipe the insides of wardrobes and drawers with a damp cloth, ensuring all corners and shelves are covered. For stubborn stains or residues, a mild detergent can help.
  • Exterior Attention: The outsides of wardrobes and drawers, especially handles and knobs, can accumulate fingerprints and grime. Give them a thorough wipe, restoring their original shine.


  • Vacuuming: A thorough vacuuming is essential, especially in corners and under furniture. Ensure you cover every part of the carpeted area.
  • Stain Treatment: Accidental spills and stains are common in bedrooms. Use a trusted carpet stain remover to tackle these spots. Consider seeking professional cleaning or using a carpet cleaning machine for persistent stains.
  • Odour Neutralisation: Bedrooms can sometimes harbour lingering odours. A sprinkle of baking soda left for a few hours and then vacuumed up, can help neutralise these and leave the carpet smelling fresh.

Outside Areas


  • Lawn Care: A well-maintained lawn can transform the look of a property. Mow the lawn to a uniform height, ensuring edges are neatly trimmed. Remove any weeds or moss that might have taken root.
  • Hedges and Shrubs: Trim any overgrown hedges or shrubs, giving them a neat and structured appearance. Remove any dead or diseased branches.
  • Flower Beds: Tidy up flower beds by removing wilted plants, weeds, or debris. If the season permits, consider adding a few blooming plants to enhance the garden’s vibrancy.

Garage and Shed

  • Declutter: Start by removing any items that won’t be staying. This is a good opportunity to discard or donate items you no longer need.
  • Cleaning: Sweep the floors to remove dust and debris. Wipe down shelves, workbenches, and storage areas. Ensure any spills, especially oil or chemicals, are cleaned to prevent stains.
  • Organisation: Arrange tools, equipment, and other items neatly. Consider using storage bins or pegboards to keep things organised and easily accessible.

Driveway and Paths

  • Sweeping: Begin by sweeping the driveway and paths to remove leaves, twigs, and other debris. This not only cleans but also prevents potential slip hazards.
  • Washing: Over time, driveways and paths can develop stains from vehicles, foot traffic, or natural elements. Use a pressure washer or a hose with a high-pressure nozzle to wash these areas. For stubborn stains, a mixture of detergent and water can be effective.
  • Weed Removal: Ensure the driveway’s edges and paths are free from weeds. These can be manually removed or treated with a weed killer.

General Reminders for End-of-Tenancy Cleaning:

  1. Review Agreements: Always start by revisiting your rental or lease agreement. This document often outlines specific cleaning and maintenance expectations.
  2. Open Lines of Communication: Engage in a conversation with your landlord or property manager. Understanding their expectations can prevent potential disputes and ensure you’re on the same page.
  3. Tailor to the Property’s Features: Every property is unique. Whether it’s a specialized kitchen appliance, a particular type of flooring, or an outdoor feature, ensure you’re cleaning and maintaining it appropriately.
  4. Stay Updated on Local Standards: Different regions or communities might have specific cleaning standards or practices. Being aware of these can help you meet any local expectations.
  5. Reflect on the Starting Condition: A good rule of thumb is to aim to return the property to the state it was in when you first moved in. This often serves as a benchmark for the expected condition at the end of your tenancy.

Remember, thorough end-of-tenancy cleaning fulfils your obligations and leaves a positive, lasting impression, potentially aiding in future rental or reference needs.

Hiring Professional Cleaners for End-of-Tenancy Cleaning:

End-of-tenancy cleaning can be daunting, especially when balancing the many other moving responsibilities. Many individuals opt to hire professional cleaning services to ensure a thorough and hassle-free cleaning experience. 

Why Choose London House Cleaners?

  • Comprehensive Services: From deep cleaning kitchens to refreshing living spaces, London House Cleaners offers a range of services tailored to meet the needs of end-of-tenancy cleaning.
  • Transparent Pricing: No one likes hidden costs. With London House Cleaners, you can easily access their pricing structure, ensuring you know what to expect.
  • Reputation Matters: Curious about the experiences of previous clients? Dive into the reviews to understand the quality and reliability of their services.
  • Areas of Operation: London House Cleaners has got you covered whether you’re in the heart of the city or its outskirts. Check out the areas they serve to confirm their availability in your location.

Have questions? The FAQ section addresses common queries, ensuring you’re well-informed before deciding. Meanwhile, if you’re ready to ensure a spotless end to your tenancy, contact London House Cleaners today to schedule a cleaning session or to discuss any specific requirements.


end of tenancy cleaning deep cleaning

End-of-tenancy cleaning is a crucial step in moving, serving as a bridge between landlords and tenants. Adhering to our detailed checklist ensures that the property is returned impeccably, paving the way for a seamless transition and the full return of your deposit. We value your journey and experiences. Share your cleaning stories, tips, or challenges in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you!

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