Do I have to do an end of tenancy clean?

by | Apr 30, 2024 | Moving, Moving Guides

How clean should my house be when I move?

Whether or not it’s required by your contract, it’s considered polite to clean your house when you move out. You may well be back in touch with the new occupants to collect a package or confirm some details. Leaving the home in good condition when you move in gets your relationship off on the right foot.

If you’re a tenant, there’s likely a clause in your contract about the condition your home should be in when you move out. Typically, you’re asked to return the property to the same state as when you moved in.



Check your contract and inventory

According to the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS), cleanliness is the number one reason landlords dispute deposit returns. To make getting your full deposit back easier, there are a few ways to make sure your cleaning meets expectations:

  • Take photos of your property when you move in to show any existing marks, scuffs and stains
  • Take photos again as you leave to show the property condition in case of a dispute
  • Use the property inventory to check the original condition of furniture and fixtures
  • Check your contract for which areas you are responsible – do you have to tidy the garden?


What does an end of tenancy clean include?

An end of tenancy clean typically includes a deep clean of the entire property. Any special requirements should be listed in your tenancy agreement. You should expect an end of tenancy clean to include:


  • Cleaning and disinfecting floors and surfaces
  • Emptying and cleaning cupboards and drawers
  • Emptying and cleaning inside, on top of and behind the fridge
  • Descaling the taps and sink
  • Cleaning inside and around all appliances
  • Degreasing the hob and oven



  • Cleaning and disinfecting floors and surfaces
  • Deep cleaning the shower stall and bathtub
  • Deep cleaning the toilet, including behind it and under the bowl rim
  • Descaling the taps and sink
  • Emptying and cleaning cupboards and shelves



  • Deep cleaning carpets to return them to the condition in the inventory – this might require shampooing or using a steam cleaner
  • Emptying and cleaning cupboards and drawers
  • Cleaning the mattress
  • Filling in any picture-hook holes and cleaning off adhesive marks


Living room

  • Cleaning the furniture, including removing any stains
  • Polishing wooden furniture
  • Emptying the fireplace



  • Deep cleaning the carpets
  • Removing marks and scuffs from walls, either by cleaning them or painting over



  • Cleaning the window panes
  • Dusting blinds and washing curtains


Do I need to hire a professional for an end of tenancy clean?

The Tenant Fees Act of 2019 made it illegal to require that tenants hire professional cleaners at the end of a tenancy.

However, the landlord can still enforce that the property be returned to its original condition. If the property is not cleaned properly landlords have a right to hire a professional cleaner and remove the cost from your deposit before returning it.

That’s why it is important to take photos of the condition of the property on the day you leave, in case of any disputes.

Even though it’s no longer legally required many tenants do choose to hire professional cleaners. An end of tenancy clean takes hours of time, and at the end of the process, a dissatisfied landlord might still want to bring in a professional.

Many professional cleaning services offer end of tenancy guarantees. If you do not get your full deposit back you can claim a partial or complete refund. Check for cleaners with this policy when booking.


How much does an end of tenancy clean cost?

The price of an end of tenancy clean depends on the size and condition of your home. Some services will charge an hourly rate, while others will offer a fixed quote for the complete job.

For reference, our cleaning partner Housekeep offers an end-of-tenancy cleaning in a one-bedroom flat from £200 and a three-bedroom house from £310.

Housekeep also offer one-off and recurring regular cleaning on the schedule you prefer. You can find out more and claim a no-obligation free 2-hour clean here. 


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