Deep cleaning checklist

There’s nothing like walking into a home you know has been taken care of. You may not realize it has been deep cleaned just by walking into it, but you know a clean house when you experience it. It smells nice, it feels nice.

In fact, this one single thing is more important than almost anything else you can do to get your house sold fast.

Not everyone deep cleans their house every spring and fall, so you may be playing catch up in this area when it comes time to sell your house. Trust me, though. You will be so glad you put in the work up front.

Taking the time to deep clean, purge and make your home inviting helps to keep it clean during the selling process and makes moving that much easier.

We realize not everyone has a good idea of how to deep clean a house. These days, with both parents working and families moving more frequently, you may not have been called-upon to deep clean a house.

Even if you elect not to deep clean your house yourself before selling, a checklist is a good idea to give a house cleaner to make sure you’re not paying for something you’re not getting.

Deep Cleaning Checklist

Basic Tips

  • Carry all supplies in a tote you can easily carry with you from room to room.
  • Make it green by carrying clean rags and a bucket for dirty rags.
  • Always clean left to right, back to front and top to bottom.
  • De-clutter every room before cleaning - throw out useless items and donate things you haven’t used in 6 months.
  • Create a filing system and small storage system for papers, keys, and things that would normally fill up a junk drawer.
  • Create a mail sorting system to avoid piling.

Deep Cleaning Room by Room

Every Room

  • Wash windows, sills, and screens. You’ll be amazed at how much cleaner this makes a room feel.
  • Clean all light fixtures and bulbs. Replace burnt out bulbs. Your home may be much brighter than you’re used to by now.
  • Light switches.
  • Ceiling fans: blades and lights.
  • Using a hose attachment, get all cobwebs from corners and the joints between walls and ceilings.
  • Dust the tops of everything: doors, cabinets, trim, appliances, etc.
  • Clean under and behind all furniture.
  • Remove all trinkets to clean and dust, around and underneath.
  • Polish the furniture.
  • Wash all rugs and mats.
  • Clean switch plate covers and door knobs.
  • To clean walls: Grease, smoke, and dust build up on your walls over time. Resist the urge to spot clean, as it can make the rest of your wall look dingy in comparison. Instead, wash walls using a general-purpose cleaner with hot water. Start at the top of the wall to avoid drips and in a corner so that you wash one wall at a time. Use a clean mop. Rinse the mop head frequently in clean water. Press lightly, as flat paint doesn’t absorb much water. If a wall needs serious scrubbing, you may want to consider re-painting. This may also be a necessity if there is smoke damage - or you have smoked inside your home for any length of time. If this is the case, all drapes and upholstery will need to be steam-cleaned as well.
  • Empty and clean all trash cans
  • Vacuum or lint roll lampshades
  • Vacuum upholstery

Entry

  • Hose down/scrub around front door and light fixture.
  • Polish exterior light fixtures and door hardware.
  • Clean up your yard and landscaping.

Kitchen

  • Clear off countertops, scrub.
  • Polish faucets and sink.
  • Deep clean inside of fridge and freezer - make sure to take out and clean the drip pan.
  • Take your stove apart, remove knobs, scrub thoroughly with degreasing cleaner.
  • Clean the inside of your stove and oven door along with the broiler drawer and ledges.
  • Inside/outside of the microwave.
  • Clean chairs/barstools
  • Wipe cabinets inside and out.
  • Wipe baseboards.
  • Vacuum and mop floors, paying special attention to corners and cracks along cabinet bases.

Bathrooms

  • Wash all walls and tile. You may need to use a grout cleaner for mildew or discolored spots in your tub or shower. Use an old toothbrush to get the corners and cracks. Hair products do tend to coat the walls and build up over time just as with grease in the kitchen.
  • Clean towel racks and toilet paper holders.
  • Use an old toothbrush and whitening cleaner on sinks, toilets, tubs, and showers.
  • Bleach shower pan if necessary and remove drain cover and scrub clean.
  • Clean glass shower doors.
  • Scrub and disinfect every surface of the toilet.
  • Wash and polish all mirrors.
  • Clean or put away all items on the countertop.
  • Wash and replace all linens in use - towels and area rugs.
  • Scrub floors and baseboards.

Laundry Room

  • Clean washer and dryer. Remove lint and knobs and wipe down inside and out. This is a good time to clean the lint from under your dryer drum.
  • De-clutter the top of your dryer and all surfaces, corralling all products into one cupboard or basket.
  • Scrub floors and baseboards.

Garage

  • Make sure everything is well lit, well organized, and clean.

Closets

  • Vacuum the floors.
  • Dust the walls and the shelves.
  • Consider not only categorizing, ironing, and straightening all hanging clothes but also investing in matching hangers for a uniform look. Make sure all storage items are stacked neatly and shoes are all clean and lined up nicely or on a rack.
  • Place cedar blocks in the closet to freshen the air and prevent moth

Extra tips

To eliminate smells:

  • Wash the inside of your fridge with baking soda and water.
  • Boil lemon juice in your microwave.
  • Add lemon juice to your dishwasher.
  • Put lemon rinds down your garbage disposal.
  • Put activated charcoal in the fridge to keep bad smells away.
  • The best smell for your home is clean - don’t attempt to cover up bad smells with heavy air fresheners
  • Have your carpets professionally cleaned before showing your home and put large rugs at the front door to control dirt tracked in. You can also ask those viewing your home to take their shoes off when they tour the house.
  • The best time to wash windows is on an overcast day. 1 part vinegar to 8 parts water and two drops of dishwashing liquid make a great window cleaner. Spray on and wipe with newspaper.

Takeaway

It's a common fact that clean homes net more money. If your home is squeaky clean, you will not only sell your home faster, you will make more money.

When you are ready to put your house on the market, please give us a call. We would be honored to help!

248-348-7200