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Deep cleaning house checklist: How to clean before moving in.

Last Updated: November 19, 2021

It takes a little elbow grease to turn a new house into a forever home. Before you move in, give your abode a deep clean with our printable deep cleaning house checklist.

Moving into a house is an exciting start to the next part of your life — but it takes a little elbow grease to turn a new house into a forever home.

Giving your abode a proper deep-clean before you move your belongings in is a great way to clear the space of old dirt and energy and prepare it for new experiences and special memories.

So we’ve put together this deep cleaning checklist with links to our Clean Team guides so you can get the job done quick ‘n’ easy.

Should you clean a house before moving in?

Cleaning your house before moving in gets you off to a good start. New construction can leave dust and debris around the house — even if the construction company cleaned before leaving. And if you’re moving into an established home, well, the previous family could’ve left dirt and messes in unexpected places or open houses and tours may have left dirty footprints behind.

Before moving day, make time to give everything a thorough cleaning so you don’t have to clean around boxes and furniture after you move in. And before you get started, have a quick reminder about the differences between cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting so you know which product to use where.

Scroll down below for guides to each part of the house you’ll want to deep clean and take a look at this video that explains a bit more about the importance of cleaning a house before moving in.

Kitchen cleaning checklist

Illustration of a fridge

Before you move in you’ll want to clean 5 specific spots of the kitchen so you can start unpacking without worrying about dirt and germs.

But, when it comes time for a spring cleaning after you get settled, check out our Ultimate Kitchen Cleaning Guide for the nitty gritty details on how to super clean your kitchen.

5 spots to deep clean in the kitchen

2. Stovetop and oven

Set your kitchen up for cooking success. For thorough instructions and types of cleaners to use on specific stovetops click into the links below for our Clean Team guides.

Start by cleaning the stove burners, glass stovetop, and the most important part of the kitchen — your new (to you) oven.

3. Cabinets

Want to keep your new cabinets fresh and free from pesky pantry pests? We’ve got a guide for that.

Learn about how to clean painted cabinets, shelves, and knobs without ruining that new paint job.

Mrs. Meyers cleaning products and Grove Co. cleaning caddy

Become a Grove member

Wondering who Grove is, what types of products we offer, and how to get a free gift set when you sign up? Learn more about flexible monthly shipments, customizing your shipment, and joining millions of happy households — no monthly fees or commitments required.

Grove Expert Tip

Lead Grove Guide Angela Bell on microfiber

“I love to use a simple, microfiber cloth to reduce the need for cleaners. I use a dry microfiber cloth to trap dust, pet hair and dander and a wet microfiber cloth to scrub surfaces. The small fibers are really good at lifting away dirt and grime!”

Bathroom cleaning checklist

We’ve got 4 key bathroom spots to deep clean in your new home before you move in so you can have your first shower or bath without reminders of the previous owners who may have left something behind. Yuck.

And when you’re ready to make your bathroom shine, check out our Ultimate Bathroom Cleaning Guide.

1. Shower head

The good news about cleaning the shower head is that once you do it, you won’t have to worry about it for a few months — or until you experience reduced water flow due to mineral buildup.

Read our quick tips and tricks for shower head cleaning so your water flow is at its best.

4. Grout

To clean grimy grout, we’ve tested a few different methods that work a charm.

Read our grout-cleaning guide for in-depth instructions on how to defunkify it.

Grove Expert Tip

Lead Grove Guide Angela Bell on green cleaning

“Using home cleaning products with cleaner, more natural ingredients is beneficial to our health and well-being and is gentler on the environment around us. Toxic chemicals can irritate skin and lungs, and they end up finding their way into the environment through the air and down our drains.”

Floor cleaning checklist

No matter what type of floor you have, we have tips on how to clean them naturally so your feet won’t get dirty and your floors won’t get damaged. Check out our tips in each guide below.

Cleaning carpet floors

Plush and comfy underfoot? Yes, please.

If you can’t steam clean the carpets before you move in, freshen them up with our guide on deodorizing carpet.

Cleaning hardwood floors

Hardwood floors add a lot of beauty to a home, but they need a proper cleaning before you move in.

Get ‘em their cleanest with our tips for cleaning wood floors.

Grove Expert Tip

Lead Grove Guide Angela Bell on making cleaning fun

“I love to have a cleaning buddy, usually my mom or bestie, to make chores a group effort and spend some quality time while getting things done. A little music, some laughs and a glass of wine as a reward, I now look forward to cleaning day.”

8 forgotten spots in your house to deep clean

Once you’ve got the most important cleaning out of the way, tackle these 8 spots in the rest of the house for a move-in ready feeling of peace.

2. Doors

With a clean cloth and an all-purpose spray, wipe down door handles, the area around the handle, and the tops of the doors too.

Pick a cleaner based on your door type: wood, painted, etc.

3. Light switches and electric outlets

Remove germs and grime from your new light switches and electrical outlets with a damp microfiber cloth.

Careful with the electrical outlets, don’t go too deep!

5. Shelves

Wipe down shelves with a dry microfiber cloth to remove any dust, then wipe them down again with a damp microfiber cloth for an extra-deep clean.

6. Washer and dryer

Clothes dryers don’t get terribly dirty, but it’s a good idea to scrub the lint trap with water and soap, then give the drum a thorough damp-microfiber wipe down.

Cleaning the washer is a bit more involved — but don’t worry, we’ve got you with our guide on the best way to get your washing machine clean, naturally.

7. Ceiling fan blades

Use a cloth or duster to remove dust from your ceiling fan blades. Spread out an old sheet underneath to catch the dust.

After the fan is dust-free, use a gentle all-purpose cleaner to thoroughly clean the tops and bottoms of the blades. Shake out the old sheet outside.

Don’t forget to switch out the filter for your heater too and dust the light fixtures while you’re up there with the ceiling fans!

8. Walls

Clean both painted and wallpapered walls with a microfiber cloth dampened in a solution of warm water and a few drops of dish soap.

Repeat with a clean, damp microfiber cloth to remove any soap residue.

When in doubt, print it out: Printable move-in cleaning checklist

Make sure you hit all the spots with a print-out of our move in cleaning checklist. It’ll help you stay on track while you spiff up your new digs!


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