Image Map

Top Ten Cleaning Must-do's for any Renter!

09 October 2012

You've signed the lease and secured the apartment. The landlord or leasing company is scheduled to slap a fresh coat of paint on the walls and the cleaning crew is on standby. But have you ever noticed there are some key areas that these folks always appear to miss? We'll I've assembled the Top Ten Cleaning Must-Do's for any renter. Consider repeating this regimen each year for spring cleaning.

1) Washing Machine-If you are lucky enough to find an apartment with a washing machine and dryer,  unless you've unwrapped it yourself, consider how many other lucky tenants there were before you. A great how-to on one of my favorite blogs, One Good Thing by Jilliee outlines a great and efficient way to clean your top loading washing machine with hot water, bleach and white vinegar. I followed these directions because I never considered to clean the washing machine! There is soap in there all the time right? True but in reality skin cells, bacteria and fabric remnants are caked on the inside. You seriously will be shocked how disgusting the water looks in the second soaking step!

2) Behind the Stove and Fridge-Take the time to pull them both out, vacuum the back of each, wipe down the walls or cabinets and mop the floor. Surprisingly, most cleaning crews don't make it behind large appliances. In fact, when we pulled ours out the first time, we found mouse droppings indicating we were susceptible for little friends during the winter. 

3) Vent covers- Think of all of the dust that collects on your bookshelves and on the tops of hanging picture frames. Well that same dust and grime also circulates through your air vents. In addition to regularly changing the air filters in the unit, one of the first things that you should clean with hot water and Dawn soap in the bathtub are the vent covers. Unscrew them all (putting the screws in a safe place) and throw them in a sudsy bath of hot soapy water. Scrub and let air dry, in the sun preferably. If you have allergies consider placing cheese cloth at the opening of the air vent before replacing the cover.

4) The Kitchen sink- My grandma always told me that if your sink is clean, then your house is clean. That extends beyond maintaining the stacks of dishes. It is critical to your health to keep your sink as sanitary as possible. Either using a cleaning product like Scrubbing Bubbles, make baking soda into a paste or vinegar with hot water to deep clean the sink. I've even seen some use fresh lemons not only to cure the garbage disposal smell but remove some of the stains around the drain.   

5) The microwave- The easiest way to clean a nasty microwave while sanitizing your sponge is to get your sponge soapy and microwave it around two minutes. The steam loosens the "gunk" off of the sides of the microwave making it easy to wipe it clean with a paper towel. Be careful to let the sponge cool before removing it or you can get burned. This only works for non-metal sponges.  

6) Inside the refrigerator- Clorox wipe the heck out of your fridge giving you a clean slate to add your own food. Why is it that the shelving in the door has all sorts of gunk built up from the ketchup run off or balsamic vinegar leakage? 

7) On top of the stove and in the oven- Starting with the ceramic stove top. I recommend using either ScotchBrite scrubber for cook tops or checkout my pinbuster post on using Baking Soda for cook top cleaning. For the inside, I'm turning to One Good Thing By Jilliee again. She had a post on how to loosen all of the gunk caked on the sides and whatnot of the oven with a pot of hot water and ammonia. I plan on trying this as a pinbuster for validation-stay tuned! The same can probably be done for the oven racks with a little Dawn Soap.  

8) The dishwasher-There are several methods out there speaking to cleansing the dishwasher. One method involved placing running a cycle with a lone cup of white vinegar in the top rack of an empty dishwasher to disinfect. The one caveat to this treatment, however, is that your kitchen and apartment could potentially smell of vinegar for the remainder of the day/weekend. Speaking to the stains, a Kool Aid treatment posted by RealSimple promises to loosen the lime and water deposits so they can be easily removed without scrubbing. 

9) Fan Blades- Drape a pillowcase around each blade which scoops the dust into the pillowcase instead of onto your bed, furniture or floor. My second favorite option, on sheets-changing day, is to use the Dyson to vacuum the blades. Sure, some dusk crud might fall onto the sheets but they are destined for the washing machine anyway!   

10) Shower head- I recently posted a pinbuster post on cleaning the shower heads in your bathroom. It is simple, cheap and effective. Utilizing the natural cleaning properties of vinegar and baking soda with a little bit of time you can get shiny, flowing shower heads.

I hope you enjoyed these DIY cleaning tips for any new renter. After a few moves to new apartments, it sort of becomes habit to hit this hot areas. If you have any other great tips or areas that you recommend need cleaning when you first move in, comment below! 

No comments:

Post a Comment