When you’re a landlord or property owner, you know that an important aspect of running a successful rental property business is preparing for new tenants. Every tenant wants to move into a clean and fresh space because it allows them to feel more at home in their new place.
Even before choosing a new tenant, no landlord wants to show a dirty or unsanitary property to their prospective applicants. First impressions are crucial, and a clean property can be the difference between quickly finding a high-quality tenant and your property sitting vacant for longer than you want it to.
We know that the task of preparing your property for showings and potential tenants can be daunting, so below we have provided a simple guide on everything you need to do after a property inspection and before looking for new potential tenants.
How to Deep Clean a Rental House
Clean Rental Property Hacks
While there are many cleaning supplies that have the ability to take care of the majority of messes in your rental, here are some specific tips and tricks to help with those hard-to-reach places.
Cleaning the Microwave
There are many ways to deep clean a microwave that has been neglected for some time. The most effective method is to do the following steps:
- Spray the inside of the microwave with a multi-surface cleaning solution, making sure to generously cover the entire interior’s surface.
- Turn the microwave on for around 30-60 seconds.
- After the microwave is turned off, wipe everything away.
Cleaning the Kitchen Sink
The kitchen is one room that goes through a lot of normal wear and tear. When it comes to deep cleaning the kitchen sink, there’s one method that is sure to make the area feel brand new:
- Turn on the faucet and run hot water for one minute.
- Pour one-third of a cup of baking soda down the sink’s drain.
- Then, pour half a cup of white vinegar down the drain.
- Let the mixture sit for five minutes.
- Turn the faucet back on, running the sink on its hottest setting and cleaning it from any smells or debris.
Cleaning Walls and Painted Surfaces
If you own a rental property, you know that walls can suffer the most abuse. If your walls desperately need a clean, this is what to do:
- For pencil markings, a mixture of dish soap and water will do the trick.
- For ink markings, any alcohol-based solvent (rubbing alcohol, hairspray ect.) can help. You can also try baking soda and a little water.
- For marker or crayon markings, use a magic eraser to get the job done.
Create a Plan for Deep Cleaning Your Rental
If you want an effective clean for your rental, it requires organization and planning. Spend a sufficient amount of time in each and every room of the home to get the best results.
Here are some of the main areas to focus on before bringing prospective tenants to your rental property:
The kitchen is a huge focal point for many prospective renters. This means that it is crucial to keep this area in top shape. Here are some tasks that are necessary for presenting a clean and sanitary kitchen:
- Ensure there are no leftover items from previous tenants in the cabinets or refrigerator.
- Check for any burnt-out light bulbs and replace them.
- Check to make sure the smoke detector is working and there is an unexpired fire extinguisher available.
- Wipe down each and every surface with a soft cloth, including things like shelving, countertops and the stove.
- Clean all appliances including washing machines, the fridge, and stove and test to make sure they are all functioning properly. Stainless steel appliances tend to be easier to clean than other materials.
- Sweep and mop the floors.
If you show a prospective tenant your property and the bathroom is unclean or unsanitary, it is very likely that the tenant will instantly lose interest in the home. Here are our recommended steps to take when it comes to deep cleaning the bathrooms:
- Wash, wipe and sanitize the walls, light switches, outlet plates, doorknobs, and baseboards of the room.
- Inspect the bathroom for any mold or mildew that may have grown over time, and handle any issue that you find as soon as possible.
- Check for burned-out light bulbs and replace them if necessary.
- Meticulously clean all of the sinks, countertops, and faucets of the bathroom.
- Dust and wipe down any window sills or ledges with a microfiber cloth.
- Deep clean the interior and exterior of any cabinets or drawers.
- Using a generous amount of toilet bowl cleaner, deep clean the toilet bowl. Let the cleaning solution sit for at least 10 minutes, and then scrub with a scrub brush and rinse.
- Deep clean the bathtub and shower, taking care to remove hard water damage and soap scum.
- Use a glass cleaner on glass surfaces to get rid of any water spots that may be present.
- Use the previously mentioned mixture of baking soda and white vinegar in the tub and the sink drains to freshen them up.
- Sweep and mop the floor.
Living Room, Dining Room, and Bedrooms
Now it’s time to take on the living room, dining room, and any bedrooms that are on your property. Luckily, all of these rooms have similar features, meaning you can do the same cleaning process for all of them. So before you bring the next tenant into your rental, make sure to complete the following cleaning tasks:
- Check the cabinets, shelving, and closets for any items that may have been left behind by the previous tenants.
- Wipe down and dust all of the windowsills, windows, shelves, and ledges in the home. Wiping them down with a dryer sheet after they’re clean can help deter dust from collecting.
- Look for burned-out lightbulbs and replace them if needed.
- Clean the ceiling fan blades by dusting and wiping them down with a microfiber cloth, making sure they aren’t covered in dirt or dust.
- Using the cleaning tips and tricks mentioned above, make sure all the walls in the home are free from marks left by the previous tenant.
- Clean all the floors by sweeping, mopping, vacuuming, and using a carpet cleaner if necessary. If your property features a large amount of carpeting, it would be a good idea to deep clean the carpets.
Exterior Areas of the Home
When you hold a showing for a prospective tenant, the first thing they will see upon arriving is the exterior of the property. The first impression of the property can often be a lasting one, so you want to make sure that you get it right.
By improving the curb appeal of your property, you will be sure to attract more applicants and fill your vacancies quicker. So as a final step to deep cleaning your rental, consider the following steps to make the exterior of your home as appealing as possible to potential applicants:
- Get rid of any garbage, debris, fallen branches, or excess leaves that may be scattered throughout the front or back yards.
- Mow the lawn outside the home and remove any weeds from the garden.
- Trim any bushes, hedges or trees that are present on the property.
- Attend to the rain gutters, making sure they are all cleared out and free from debris.
- Sweep any walkways or porches.
- Consider adding new foliage, shrubbery, or flowers to bring the exterior of the home a new life.
- Wipe down and clean any outdoor furniture.
- Check to make sure that all outdoor light fixtures are functioning, and attend to the issue if they are not.
- Use window cleaner on the exterior windows of the home.
Don’t Forget the Garage!
When cleaning the exterior of the rental property, it’s easy to forget the garage (if there is one present on the property). However, it is very important to add this area to your deep cleaning plan.
Make sure you thoroughly clean the walls, shelves, and floors of the space. Additionally, if there are any items in the garage, such as a lawnmower, trash cans (make sure these are empty!) or tools used for landscaping, make sure they are tucked to the side of the garage and not adding a cluttered appearance.
By doing this, you are ensuring that your future tenants can get an accurate idea of just how big the garage is when there is no clutter, and this will impress them more than a garage full of tools.
Bottom Line: Get Your Property Prepared for Your New Tenants
At the end of the day, landlords and property owners expect their tenants to maintain a clean and well-maintained home while they occupy the rental property and have it returned to them in the same condition. In return, prospective tenants will expect the same from them!
By presenting your sparkling clean rental home during the marketing stage, you will be able to attract a wide pool of qualified, high-quality tenants in no time! You can also offer routine cleaning services to renters and even make extra revenue off of it.
Making sure your property is in top condition before listing it is the best way to fill vacancies as soon as possible. Your new tenants will be grateful to move into a clean space and make themselves at home.