Your new home is the perfect opportunity for a fresh, clean start!
There are plenty of services available for you to have your home professionally cleaned, however, it may not be something you’ve considered when budgeting. Luckily, for those of us with no choice but to do the dirty work ourselves, there are many ways to streamline the home-cleaning process.
Just remember, if you’re planning to repaint, or if you’ve bought an older home that needs some repairs, do them before you clean or you’ll double up your work.
1. Assemble a team
By rounding up friends or family to help you with your pre-move-in spring clean, you can drastically decrease the amount of work required as well as the time it takes to get it done. You can treat everyone to pizza afterward and turn it into a mini housewarming party.
2. Come prepared
Put together a comprehensive shopping (and packing) list to buy everything you are likely to need so you don’t have to repeatedly interrupt your cleaning to pop to the shops. This will include cleaning equipment, detergents, and extras like snacks and drinks for your cleaning crew.
3. Fumigate first
To ensure that you don’t inherit any pests like cockroaches, bedbugs, or fleas, you’d best get rid of them before you move in.
You can either have professional pest removal or you can purchase some fumigating spray and do it yourself. Read the instructions on your fumigation product carefully to ensure you buy the correct amount and use your product safely and effectively.
The great thing about doing this before you clean is that your scrubbing will clear away any poisonous residue left behind by the fumigator!
Be sure to abide by UK laws relating to pest control.
4. Clean one room at a time
This will prevent you from getting overwhelmed and will ensure that you don’t miss any spots. Of course, if you are working with a team, you can divide up the house. Either way, a systematic approach is best.
5. Start with the first room you’ll use
Nature calls, so start with the toilet. This way, you won’t have to drop everything the first time someone needs to go. Be sure to put some toilet paper in there as well. Then you may want to move to the kitchen as you’ll want somewhere clean to snack and have a tea break.
6. Dust, vacuum, wash, dry
The first step in home cleaning is always to dust. Then vacuum to get at the smaller specks and tight spaces. You will now have the easiest time coming in with your mop or cloth. Ideally, you want to dry as much as you can to prevent dampness from lingering. An old towel will work perfectly for this purpose.
7. Work from the top down
Start by cleaning the tops of cupboards, light fittings, and curtain rods. Then move to the walls, and then the floor. If you do it the other way around and you just end up having to wash the floor and walls again.
8. Hang curtains early on
An empty house can attract unwanted attention, so it's a great idea to hang your curtains up as soon as possible. This makes your home look lived in and stops people peeping in the windows. Wash and dry your curtains thoroughly before you start cleaning and hang them up at the end of the day.
9. Tackle soap scum smartly
Multi-purpose cleaners should do the trick on the bathtub and shower, but sometimes soap scum can be pretty stubborn. For this, mix equal parts vinegar, dish liquid and water in a spray bottle, spray the scum and leave for half an hour, then scrub off with a sponge or cloth.
10. Don’t forget the toilet cistern
There is no way around it. No one enjoys cleaning toilets, but it's important to give your cistern a thorough clean before you move in. Pour vinegar into the cistern’s water to just underneath the upper rim. Leave it to soak for 12 hours. Then flush it a few times and fully drain the cistern by shutting off the input valve. Then you’ll be able to get in and scrub it properly. Turn the water back on, flush a few times, and you are good to go!
11. Use fabric softener for sticky spots
If you encounter a patch of mystery substance on a floor wall or inside a cupboard that just won’t budge, use fabric softener on it. Soak for a few minutes and then wipe it clean. An added perk is that your home will smell divine.
12. Use white vinegar to eliminate odours
This is a particularly good one for mould that you’ll find in the bathroom, under the kitchen sink, or in the back of a cupboard. Mix equal parts water, bleach, and white vinegar, and spray on the problem area to kill the spores and the smell. Leave to soak, then wash away with a mild detergent. Remember to dry the area thoroughly after you are done. Don’t worry; the vinegar smell will dissipate quickly, along with that pesky mould.
13. Don’t miss these areas
To ensure a complete deep clean, don’t forget these commonly overlooked areas:
● Under and behind the oven
● The stove hob
● Behind the toilet
● Window and door frames
● Light switches and doorknobs
● The tops of built-in cupboards
● The tops of doors
14. Move in the appliances first...
... before the rest of your furniture. This will minimise the damage if anything (like a freezer) leaks or breaks and makes a mess. You’ll also often dislodge dirt, dust and debris when moving bigger appliances, and this can leave a mess all over your floors.
15. Leave time for airing
To ensure that lingering dampness does not turn into mould in your cupboards, wait a day with their doors before filling them.
Whether you’re moving to London, deep into the heart of the countryside or to the coast, cleaning your house before you move in just makes sense. Follow these tips and before you know it, your house will be spick and span, ready for decorating and memory-making.
To begin your moving journey, get in touch with your local Guild Member today.