The Ultimate End-of-Tenancy Cleaning Checklist

By on 13th April 2017 (updated: 8th September 2020) in Latest News

Ovenu Cleaning Checklist header


Moving home is an exciting time, but it can also be extremely stressful. Between deciding what to pack and throw away, arranging removal vans and sorting out any last bits of paperwork for your new property, the moving process can be overwhelming for even the most organised.

If you have been living in rented accommodation and want to ensure your full deposit will be safely returned to you, you will need to make sure your property is left spick and span and just as you found it – if not better than when you originally moved in.

We’ve put together a comprehensive list of everything you will need to clean, from all the jobs you can do yourself to the professional cleaning services you may need to hire in. Our ultimate end-of-tenancy cleaning checklist will help you to deep-clean every room from top to bottom, including those pesky kitchens and bathrooms that can be difficult to get sparkling clean.

Whether you’re a tenant reaching the end of a tenancy, or a landlord looking to get their property back into before new tenants move in – returning an entire home to its former glory can be a challenging task. Breaking the task up room by room, and appliance by appliance can make the job much more manageable and ensure that you don’t miss any of the important details.

Cleaning checks for all rooms

Before you start any cleaning, you should walk through the entire property and make a note of any stains, defects or issues that you’ll have to return to. You might find it easier to go through each room and tackle each one of these problem points at a time.

  • Walls – Inspect the walls throughout the property. Make a note of any scuffs, marks, dents, or cracks. You may be able to wipe off any minor marks, but more serious defects might require painting or filling.
  • Doors – Check that all door handles are functioning and inspect them for any defects such as stiff mechanisms or stuck locks. This is also a good time to ensure that all your keys are present and correct.
  • Windows – Windows should also be checked and given a clean. If they’ve not been cleaned for a while then you may need to employ a window cleaner to do this, however this would not be expected of most tenants. You should be able to clean the interiors, as well as the widow sills yourself.
  • Ceilings – Depending on the height of your ceilings you may need to use an extendable broom or duster to properly clean your ceilings. In the kitchen, you may need to pay close attention to any build-up of grease or patches left from smoke or moisture.
  • Fixtures and fittings – Any bannisters, shelves, light fittings, switches and sockets should be dusted and wiped down. These are often overlooked in routine cleans, so there may be a significant buildup of dirt, especially if the house has been rented out for a long period of time.
  • Carpets and floors – Floors should have been vacuumed and cleaned regularly throughout the tenancy, however you may find the occasional spot or stain as you inspect the property. Make a note of any that you find as you walk around so that you can return to treat them with a stain cleaner.

Living Room

  • Remove cobwebs, dust and polish all surfaces
  • Clean and polish mirrors and frames
  • Clean skirting boards and woodworks of dust
  • Clean inside, behind and on top of cupboards and furnishings
  • Clean behind and under furniture
  • Vacuum upholstery of furniture, ensuring to clean beneath cushions
  • Vacuum and mop hard floors


  • Empty and clean cupboards and drawers
  • Dust and polish surfaces
  • Check for damp or mould
  • Polish glass, mirror and pictures frames
  • Clean any wardrobes or drawers inside and out
  • Clean skirting boards
  • Check mattress condition
  • Make sure to clean underneath bed


  • Clean sinks and taps
  • Flush showers, sink and bathtubs with bleach
  • Remove limescale where found
  • Check silicon for deterioration
  • Clean, polish and descale bath
  • Check shower screen/curtain for mould
  • Clean and descale toilet, seat and brush
  • Vacuum thoroughly before mopping with hot water and bleach


  • Clean sinks using bleach and scrub with a non-scratch sponge
  • Flush sinks with bleach to clear any blockages
  • Disinfect and wipe down all kitchen surfaces
  • Use degreasing kitchen cleaner on surfaces near hobs and oven
  • Empty food cupboards and pack
  • Wipe down interiors of cupboards, removing all debris
  • Sanitise cupboards with disinfectant
  • Wipe down cupboard exteriors using a cleaning spray
  • Dust and wipe down the top of cupboard units if accessible
  • Make sure to move all appliances and clean beneath them
  • Use hot water and floor cleaner to deep clean


Oven, Hobs & Grill

  • Wipe off any debris that is easily shifted
  • Use oven cleaning products to remove any stubborn stains
  • Soak burnt-on food with bicarbonate of soda and vinegar
  • Use degreasing cleaner to help clean down hobs and racks
  • If possible, pull oven away from the wall to inspect and clean behind
  • Call a professional oven cleaner to return oven back to the near-showroom condition

Washing Machine

  • Inspect filters, then clean or replace as necessary
  • Inspect rubber seal, replace if too worn
  • Pull out the appliance to properly clean behind and underneath
  • Clean machine through with white cleaning vinegar in the detergent dispenser
  • Add half a cup of baking soda to the drum and wash through
  • Wipe down any remaining residue inside
  • Use a disinfectant spray to wipe down the front


  • Remove the detachable tray and wipe down of crumbs
  • Unplug and tip upside down to remove loose crumbs
  • Wipe down exteriors using degreaser and anti-bacterial spray


  • Remove the microwave plate, then wash with hot water and washing up liquid
  • Wash down the interior with a non-scratch sponge and hot water mixed with a few drops of washing up liquid
  • Use a kitchen degreaser to wipe down the exterior


  • Remove the filter and remove any food debris, then clean with hot water and washing up liquid
  • Use a damp sponge to wipe around the control panel and scrub away any stain
  • Use either a cleaning tablet or white cleaning vinegar to deep clean the interior


  • Empty fridge and freezer
  • Line the freezer with old towels or rags, before defrosting
  • Remove any frozen chunks of ice as you go
  • Once the freezer is empty of ice, wipe down with cleaning spray
  • Take out all fridge compartments and clean with hot soapy water
  • Wipe away any debris, the clean down interior of the fridge with cleaning spray
  • Use a bluejay cloth with hot water to clean the seals of any residue
  • Clean washing machine/tumble dryer including soap drawers, rubber on doors and filters

Final jobs

  • Empty bins and clean inside and out
  • Remove and dispose of rubbish
  • Sweep garden/balcony area and clear these of rubbish

End of tenancy cleaning shopping list

  • A vacuum cleaner with extensions
  • Microfibre cloths
  • Bluejay cloths
  • Non-scratch sponges
  • Old rags/scrap cloth
  • Bleach
  • Duster
  • Glass cleaner
  • Bucket/wash tub
  • Floor cleaner
  • Mop and bucket
  • Carpet stain remover
  • Washing up liquid
  • Limescale remover
  • Degreasing kitchen spray
  • Mildew remover

Get the highlights of this list below in our easy to read checklist:

End of tenancy cleaning checklist infographic

If you work through our list and tick off all these cleaning tasks, you’ll be sure to get your deposit back in full!

For more advice on how we can help make your move smooth, contact us today. We offer many oven and microwave-cleaning services that will not only give you a fantastic professional finish that you can’t achieve on your own but also take all the hard work and elbow grease away from you.

Rik Hellewell is the Founder & Managing Director of Ovenu and a member of the Approved Franchise Association. He established Ovenu in 1993, cleaning 4,000 ovens and proving his concept over five years before starting the franchise business. Since then he has helped over 200 franchisees achieve their dreams of running successful businesses of their own. Established for over 25 years, the Ovenu concept has proven successful across the UK, New Zealand, Australia and the USA.