For many, the end-of-lease clean means finally facing up to the monstrous dust clouds and terrifying patches of mold they’ve spent the past year convincing themselves don’t exist. Especially when you are in between two homes, half in boxes, and needing to do a lot of maintenance in your new home you can geta bit slack. But it needn’t be like that; the key is to clean a little bit every day.

Regularly cleaning throughout your lease is the best way to prepare for the end-of-lease clean.

Plan ahead

Just as cramming all your studying into the night before a test leads to substandard results, cleaning your entire rental property in one foul swoop is a recipe for disaster. Often we find renters that did a quick swoop through the property right before the final inspection. This might initiate a property damage procedure that can have a costly ending.


When you terminate your lease agreement, 30 days before the end of lease date, most agencies will send a property inspector that will provide you with guidelines on how they want to receive the property back. The inspector will have the entry condition report that was done up when you started the lease. On this report that should have a list of items that you might have taken over from a previous tenant or damages that were already present. Items that you have taken over from previous tenants are your possession. The inspector will inform you of what is expected of these items. In most cases these items will have to be removed and brought back in the original state. If you painted walls, you might have to paint them back in the original, white, color.

When in doubt: check with your agency!

Clean room by room

Getting into good habits is the key. And the good news is you don’t need to break your back every single day to ensure you hand over your property in a clean enough condition to get your deposit back. Spending only ten minutes of maintenance when you get home from work, this way you may not even need to hire a professional cleaner when you move out.

Set up a daily schedule and commit to carrying out ten-minute cleaning tasks at the same time every day.  Bathroom tiles that are not cleaned regularly for extended periods of time, they can become really difficult to clean.

Regularly cleaning throughout your tenancy will go a long way towards simplifying your end-of-lease clean. But even then, you’ll still need to put in some elbow grease before you move out.

To reduce the chance of feeling overwhelmed by the task at hand, we suggest cleaning one room at a time. Simply start from the back of the house and move towards the front door. That way, you know that everything’s been taken care of.

Be thorough

Cleaning the floors and walls is a good place to start, but you’ll need to do much more to recover your deposit.

Pay extra attention to kitchen appliances and other areas that aren’t part of your weekly or fortnightly cleaning schedule. And don’t forget to de-grease your range hood. They often come with detachable panels that fit right in to a dishwasher.

And that means you’ll need to clean thoroughly; yard and windows in and outside included.

Checklist: end of lease cleaning


Cooking areas                   Clean oven, racks and stove top. Remove all chemicals and wipe marks.

Exhaust hood                    Clean all oil marks, wash filters and ensure light is working.

Sinks                                     Remove food from drain and clean taps and water spout.

Benches                              Wipe down all surface areas and walls, and repair damages

Dishwasher                        Clean inside, including all racks and rubbers. Remove food and rinse.

Refrigerator                       Clean inside and out. Defrost

Cupboards                         Empty and wipe out.


Walls                                     Fix wall paper, Scrub off marks and remove nails, fix dents or holes and repaint if necessary, remove cobwebs from corners. If you painted the walls a color you might have to bring them back in the original, white color.

Windows                            Clean all windows and doors inside and out. Be sure to include the window tracks and frames.

Ledges                                 Wipe clean all ledges including, windows, skirting boards, top of doors, sliding door tracks.

Extras                                   Any appliance or furniture that was provided, should be cleaned and left in the condition they were received in.

Take over items               Should be removed from the property as they are your possession. In some cases they can be given or sold to the next tenant.

Floors                                   vacuum all floors (even after the flooring and glue was removed)

Stairs                                    Carpet should be removed off stairs, including the glue residue, and brought back in the original state.


Mirrors                                Clean all mirrors and remove wipe marks.

Toilet                                    scrub and disinfect including under seat and around the outside of the bowl.

Shower                                Clean glass, taps and shower head, remove mold and lime from grout

Floor                                     mop floor, remove lime residue and allow area to dry.

Basin                                     Clean basin and drain, wipe down all bench tops, wall tiles and taps.

Extras                                   Wipe down soap and toilet paper holders and radiators. Wipe down vanities and cabinets.


Yard                                      Mow lawn, weed garden, trim trees, sweep paved areas.

Windows                            Clear cobwebs, wash and dry. Scratched or damaged windows are covered under your own insurance.

Pets                                      Clean any animal mess and repair any damage.

Garage                                 Empty and clean any oil marks or dirt, remove cobwebs and clean garage door.

Rubbish bins                      Empty out, wash and dry.

Don’t forget to take your meter readings on the final day and pass these on to your utility provider.