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End of Lease Cleaning Checklist & Tips

Our checklist and tips will be helpful whether you chose to hire a professional end of lease cleaning company or do it yourself.

The average bond in Sydney is 2 to 4 weeks rent and so it could be quite stressful to lose such a significant amount of money when you’ve already spent so much on other things associated with moving homes such as removalists, new furniture, rental bond for the new home among other things.

The NSW tenancy agreement states “tenants are to leave the premises in a similar condition to when you rented them, except for normal wear and tear” so this means you either have to thoroughly clean the property yourself or get a professional cleaning company to do it for you.

Tenants should be wary of cheap cleaning companies which advertise a “bond return guarantee’ for a low price as the internet is littered with stories of people who have been ripped off by these so called ‘cleaning’ companies which are usually just ‘booking agents’ who take your money and then outsource the work to subcontractors

Scariest part is, in a lot of cases, the booking agency is located overseas so has never even met the subcontractor in person and have no way of knowing whether the cleaner they are sending you is in fact the person in their database. The customer is usually left to pick up the pieces when something goes wrong.

How Long Does an End of Lease Clean Take and What Does it Cost?

At the end of the day, every cleaning situation is different and it’s unrealistic to think that every end of lease clean will be the same for every situation. For example, the kitchen of a tenant who cooks at home everyday will obviously take longer to clean compared with a tenant who always eats out.

In most cases, you will need to put aside around 8-10 hrs to complete an end of lease clean for a 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom house.

The following end of lease cleaning checklist will help you with the process regardless of whether you do it yourself or chose to hire a company to do it –

Tips before you get started –

  • Check your tenancy agreement before you start, some agreements have special conditions which state that you need to hire the professional services of a cleaning or pest control company in order to be eligible for a full bond return.
  • If possible, start cleaning after the removalist comes in as it will be easier to clean without the furniture getting in the way
  • Clean from top to bottom as dust and debris will be falling onto the floor when you clean
  • Follow the checklist below and go through all the items to ensure you don’t miss anything which can prevent you from getting your bond returned in full
  • Obtain a copy of your tenancy condition report which you would have completed before moving into the property as this will help you assess the level of cleaning necessary to obtain a full bond refund
  • Ensure you allow enough time for yourself or the cleaning company to do the clean, DO NOT underestimate the time it takes.


Let’s Get Started –

  • Bathroom

    • Wash & sanitize all sink, toilets & bathtubs
    • Remove insects and cobwebs
    • Clean all stainless steel taps, soap holders, towel hooks
    • Remove all mould from surfaces (professionals should be used for black mould)
    • Wash and remove spot stains from all surfaces including ceiling and walls
    • Clean all cupboards, medicine cabinets (inside & Out)
    • All mirrors & shower screens
    • Mop Floors
  • Kitchen

    • Cupboard & cabinets (inside & out)
    • Dishwasher and any other supplied appliances (inside & out)
    • Wash bench tops and surface areas
    • Clean sinks, taps and tap handles
    • Wash range-hood, cook top and oven
    • Clean windows, frames, tracks and fly screens and tracks
    • Vacuum and mop floors
  • Bedrooms

    • Dust and clean all surfaces
    • Clean windows, frames, sill and tracks
    • Wipe down mirrors
    • Dust and clean ceiling fans
    • Wipe down air conditioning units and clean the filters
    • Dust and clean wardrobes
    • Dust and clean skirting boards
    • Vacuum and mop floors
  • Living Room & Hallway

    • Clean & Dust all surfaces
    • Dust and clean ceiling fans
    • Clean windows, frames, sill and tracks
    • Wipe down air conditioning units and clean the filters
    • Clean windows, frames, sill and tracks
    • Dust and clean skirting boards
    • Vacuum and mop floors
  • Outdoor areas

    • Remove insects & cobwebs
    • Mow lawn and trim edges
    • Sweep or use a blower to clean external area of debris
    • Empty and clean council rubbish bins
    • Remove stains from garage and driveway

Congratulations, you’ve completed your end of lease clean.

Now all you need to do is contact your real estate agent who will direct you on how to return the keys and complete the forms required to claim your bond back. Alternatively, you can visit the fair trading website for a copy of the form – Bond Refund Form

Simpo are the professional end of lease cleaners with over 20 years experience. Contact us today for a free quote.

4 thoughts on “Move Out Cleaning Checklist for Tenants

  1. I really like your advice to check the tenancy agreement when it comes to the end of your lease. You want to be sure that you are cleaning properly, but you also want to be sure that you don’t spend a lot of money on unnecessary repairs. Do you have any tips when it comes to cleaning your rental before you move? I’m leaving my home soon, and I really want to be sure that I clean it properly.

    • I recommend speaking to your agent if you think there are any areas of the home which you feel may cause you issues (eg. sauce stains in the pantry which won’t come off after cleaning or exceptionally bad stains on the carpet), unfortunately, the tenancy agreement laws in Australia are very vague and open to interpretation.
      By being open and upfront, you increase the chances of reaching an agreement with the landlord instead of wasting time going to a tribunal.

  2. Thanks for the article. I printed it out and will have a go at this myself.
    I’m surprised a cleaning company would publish a guide like this. Wouldn’t it be bad for business if everybody ended up cleaning themselves? lol

    • LOL, yeah it wouldn’t be so good for us if EVERYBODY followed this guide and did the clean themselves. Luckily, the vast majority of clients we cater for are people who are either too busy to clean for themselves or choose not to do it because they’d prefer to get things done professionally and not have to worry about it.

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