Move-In House Cleaning Tips You Should Remember

Even if your new home looks clean, there could still be some hidden places harboring dirt, grime and germs. Since there’s no better time to clean a house than before you move in, it pays to inspect every nook and cranny when you’re doing your move-in house cleaning. There seems to always be a few extra cleaning jobs, no matter how great the place looks. You just have to know where to look!

Ceiling Fans and Light Fixtures

Ceiling fans and light fixtures aren’t on most people’s everyday cleaning checklists, so they’re the perfect place to start your move-in house cleaning. Ceiling fan blades are notorious for having a residue on the top side and if it’s been a long time between cleanings they can take a bit of work. Be sure to vacuum those little openings all around the ceiling fan housing and make sure the fan is set to turn in the right direction for the season. Counter-clockwise keeps things cooler in summer and clockwise keeps your home warmer in winter.

Light fixtures can have similar build up that’s hard to notice until you get up there and get a close look. Most light fixtures have various parts you can remove for cleaning. Domes, covers and globes are often made of glass which is a magnet for everything from dust to cigarette tar. Remove them and clean them in the kitchen sink. Let them dry, reinstall them and let the light shine while you continue with your move-in house cleaning.

Light Switches

Light switches and other frequently touched fixtures may not get cleaned often enough and end up looking dingy. But it’s what you can’t see that should be your biggest concern. Germs build up on these fixtures and get transferred to hand after hand. Clean the switch plates and switches and disinfect them. Then add this cleaning task to your regular cleanings to prevent the spread of germs after you move in.

Door Knobs, Cabinet Pulls and Handles

These frequently touched areas are right up there with the light switches. Just think of how many times someone turns a doorknob or opens a cabinet in the course of a day. That’s a lot of dirt and germs getting transferred all around the house and onto your hands as soon as you touch one of them! Clean all these and give them a good disinfecting. Now is a good time to tighten up any loose knobs or handles too.


For wood, tile, and linoleum floors, use a vacuum attachment to clean corners and edges, and then sweep up all remaining debris. Finish up by mopping, making sure to use a product that’s safe for the surface you’re using it on and clean the baseboards while you’re at it. You can vacuum, but that won’t do much for removing allergens or improving the air quality. Move-in house cleaning is no time to cut corners. Splurge on a steam cleaner rental and get all those carpets fresh and clean.


Your new kitchen may look spic and span, but considering you’ll be storing food and cooking meals, play it safe and give the kitchen a good sanitizing. Equal parts water and white vinegar make a great sanitizing solution. Use this on the inside of the fridge after you remove all the shelves and drawers. Clean the drawers and shelves in the sink, let them dry and put them back in the fridge. Repeat for the freezer.

On to the rest of the kitchen. Start by cleaning the tops of cabinets and work your way down. Clean inside and outside of the cabinets and be sure to sanitize those cabinet pulls. Sanitize the counters and finish up by sweeping and mopping the floor with your sanitizing solution. Go ahead and clean the baseboards while you’re cleaning the floors.


Maid service pros say that bathroom cleaning is as much about disinfecting as it is about sparkling surfaces. Dish soap and a sponge are pretty much all you need for the initial scrub down of the tub and shower, but follow up with an antibacterial spray to get rid of any lingering germs. You could clean the toilet seats, but why not replace them instead. You’ll have newer-looking toilets and not have to worry about germs and bacteria. Clean and sanitize the toilet paper holder, faucets and door handles and finish up by cleaning and sanitizing the floor.

Follow this move-in house cleaning list, and you’ll have the peace of mind knowing that your new place is clean, fresh and as germ-free as it can be. To keep everything nice and fresh, we’ve got plenty of house cleaning resources for all your housekeeping needs.