Nothing says Fresh Start like a fresh clean space. Hopefully, you followed our tips for move preparation and packing. If you did, you’ll have gone through the step of sorting and downsizing your items. A good purge in your current home can help set the stage for a new beginning.
Of course, a good purge is only the beginning. To truly feel at home in your new place, we recommend a deep cleaning. If you’re moving into a new build, you’re liable to have dust and scraps in odd places. Homes that were lived in before have probably been cleaned by the previous owners or management company, but often dirt and signs of wear are left behind. Do yourself a favor and get your new home sparkling.
Start at the Top
Before you start cleaning the things at eye level, don’t forget the places up high where dust and grime can gather. Lighting fixtures, ceiling fans, shelves, molding, and the tops of cabinets are commonly-overlooked hosts of dirt.
Since most people miss these places, there’s a good chance the previous tenants and cleaners breezed past them before you arrived. Make sure you start by looking upward and cleaning the high spots. When cleaning up high you’ll find that some of that dust will fall below, so there’s no sense in cleaning the floor beforehand. Unless, of course, you are okay with cleaning it twice.
Scrub the Fridge
If there’s one place that can’t be too clean, it’s the fridge. Before you start loading food and things into your kitchen, give the refrigerator a bit of TLC. Thankfully, this task won’t take too long since the unit is standing empty.
Take the shelves and drawers out and clean them separately with warm water and soap. For the inside of the fridge, skip the chemicals and make a mixture of water and vinegar in equal parts. Wipe down the walls and corners with a clean rag and the vinegar mixture. Be patient: make sure you wait until the shelves and drawers dry before reinserting them.
Follow this advice for the freezer.
Tackle the Kitchen and Bathrooms
Once you’ve finished cleaning the fridge, you might as well work on the rest of the kitchen. Don’t forget to start at the top and work your way down. That means lighting fixtures and the tops of cabinets should get some attention first and foremost. Then, move on to the rest of your appliances and the sink before cleaning and disinfecting your countertops. Don’t get burned out – you’ll need to clean the inside of your cabinets as well before you start filling the shelves.
A key to bathroom cleaning is remembering you’re not only trying to shine up your space but to disinfect it, too. Sure, you can start with a sponge and some soap to do the initial cleaning. Just don’t forget to grab the antibacterial spray to ensure it’s germ-free. Don’t forget the places that have probably been overlooked in other cleaning attempts: light switches, taps, the door handle, and toilet paper holder.
Go Room by Room
To avoid overwhelm, take the rest of the house one room at a time. The same rule applies here: start from the top and work your way down. Clean the top of doors and windows, window treatments, closet surfaces, and light switches. Your vacuum should do the trick for these areas. For anything remaining after running the vacuum across them, wipe them down with a wet rag.
We recommend cleaning windows in the early morning or evening hours. The bright light of the height of the day can disguise streaks, and you may end up washing them again.
Save the Floors for Last
We’ve mentioned this one a few times already. If you’re working your way from top to bottom, you should save the floors for last. As you’re cleaning, your floors are liable to get messy. You could start with the floors, but it’s not the best strategy.
If you want to have a deep clean, use a steam cleaner on your carpets. Don’t have one? Don’t worry! Consider hiring the pros, or check with a local hardware store to see about renting one. This step is particularly important if you’re sensitive to dust or allergens, including pets.