Move Out Cleaning Cost Guide for Tenants and Landlords

Move-out cleaning is essential for leaving rental properties in pristine condition, which directly affects the return of your security deposit and the property's readiness for the next tenant. Costs vary widely, typically ranging from $90 to $390, depending on the property size, condition, and specific cleaning services required.

Nichole Stohler
Last Updated
June 24, 2024
Move Out Cleaning Cost Guide for Tenants and Landlords

Moving out of a rented property involves more than just packing up your belongings; it also requires leaving the property in a clean and orderly state. This is where a move-out clean comes into play.

A move-out clean is a thorough cleaning process that ensures all areas of the property are addressed, from baseboards to carpets and walls. This cleaning is important not only for maintaining good relations with your landlord but also for securing the return of your security deposit.

Let’s explore what a move-out clean entails, why it is essential, and the factors that influence its cost, including house cleaning prices.

What is a move out clean and why is it needed?

After months of living in a rented property, small cleaning tasks can accumulate. A move-out clean is a thorough cleaning process that covers often-overlooked areas such as baseboards, light switches, carpets, and walls. This is important because, at the end of your tenancy, your landlord will perform a walkthrough inspection. During this inspection, they will check that the property's condition and cleanliness are similar to when you first moved in, allowing for general wear and tear.

The importance of a move-out clean lies in its impact on your security deposit. Landlords typically require the property to be returned in a clean state. Failure to do so can result in deductions from your security deposit to cover the cost of cleaning. Therefore, ensuring a comprehensive move-out clean can help you avoid unnecessary expenses and ensure a smooth transition at the end of your lease.

Additionally, some landlords might offer professional move-out cleaning services, which can be beneficial. Hiring professionals ensures that every detail is addressed, potentially saving you time and ensuring you meet the landlord's standards.

For landlords, maintaining high cleanliness standards is essential for attracting new tenants and protecting the property’s value. Thorough cleaning between tenancies helps ensure a fresh start for each new tenant and reduces the need for more extensive maintenance down the line.

Factors affecting move-out cleaning cost

A card with factors effecting move out cleaning costs

Getting a rental property move-in ready after someone moves out takes time and money — but just how much should you expect to spend on professional cleaning? As a landlord, you know that a deep cleaning, appliance checks, and maintenance are key tasks between tenants.

As a tenant, thoroughly cleaning before you leave a property also carries costs but likely saves you money in potential rental deposit deductions down the road.

Move-out cleaning rates can vary widely depending on the property size, level of cleaning required, and location. According to, in 2024, the average cost for move-out cleaning ranges from $90 to $390, with factors such as the number of rooms and additional services influencing the final price. House cleaning prices are also affected by home size, services purchased, home type, geographic location, and the cleanliness of the home. Let’s take a look at the main influencing factors in more detail:

Size of the home

The size of the property is one of the biggest factors in the cost of move-out cleaning. Larger properties generally require more time, effort, and resources to clean thoroughly. Consider the square footage of your whole house or rental unit to help you estimate the cleaning cost.

Condition of the property

The condition your property is in before the cleaning service providers come can affect the overall cost. If the property is well-maintained and relatively clean, the cleaning process may be less time-consuming and cost less.

But if the property requires extensive cleaning due to neglect or damage, move out cleaning services will take additional time and effort — and cost more.

Type of property

The type of rental property impacts basic move out cleaning costs. Condos, apartments, townhouses, and single-family homes have different layouts and features that affect pricing. Apartment buildings require cleaning of common areas like lobbies, hallways, and laundry rooms.

Standalone houses need attention to exterior spaces like yards, patios, and garages.


The specific services you require for your move-out cleaning will impact the cost. Standard cleaning services often include dusting, vacuuming, mopping, bathroom and kitchen cleaning, and surface wiping.

If you need additional services like carpet cleaning, window washing, or deep cleaning of specific areas, this typically bears an additional cost.


The labor required to complete the cleaning job is another factor affecting the cost. Some cleaning companies charge hourly rates, while others may offer fixed pricing based on the scope of work.

Try to be as transparent as possible with the cleaning company about the extent of the work you need done. If the cleaners discover that the property needs more work than you originally let on, like removing stains or dealing with stubborn dirt, the cost of the move out clean will increase at the cleaner's discretion.


Different regions may have varying rates for cleaning services due to dynamics like market demand, local labor costs, or the cost of living. Urban areas typically have higher cleaning rates compared to rural or less populated areas.

Standard cleaning vs. deep cleaning

When prepping your rental for new tenants or hiring cleaning services for your move-out, you'll choose between standard move-out cleaning or deeper cleaning options. But what's the difference?

A standard clean tackles the basics. Cleaners will wipe down and dust surfaces, vacuum and mop floors, and clean the kitchen and bathrooms. It provides a decently maintained home with a freshening-up.

Deep cleaning, on the other hand, is a whole production involving scrubbing every surface and removing layers of grime built up over time. A deep clean goes the extra mile, extracting dingy spills from floor cracks, eliminating soap scum from tile joints, brushing dust out of window tracks.

It's a house cleaning that returns a neglected or heavily used property to a like-new sheen, ready to sparkle for the next renters.

Choosing the type of move out cleaning service you should get comes down to your rental's starting condition and how thoroughly you'll need to refresh it.

Move-out additional cleaning services costs

A basic cleaning typically covers only a certain set of tasks, meaning that depending on your specific needs, you may need to enlist additional services to get the property back to its original condition and ready for new tenants.

Some of the move-out cleaning additional services that you should consider are:

Carpet cleaning

Carpets gather dirt, stains, and odors over a rental's lifespan. Professional cleaners use industrial equipment and solutions to deep clean what regular vacuuming misses. Their methods extract ground-in soil and grime to improve the appearance of your property.

What's the potential cost? According to, carpet cleaning prices usually fall between $120-$240 — the final number depends on home size and carpet condition. More rooms equal higher quotes, as do heavily soiled high-traffic areas.

Deep stains will also drive up costs due to specialized spot treatments house cleaning services need to apply.

Window cleaning

Smudge-free windows instantly brighten any rental and let in more natural light. A professional cleaner uses commercial-grade equipment and methods to eliminate dirt, streaks, and film from interior and exterior glass. Their expertise removes grime that regular cleaning can miss.

What does the average price range for window cleaning look like? mentions that you should expect to pay $150-$302 depending on the number and size of windows — more panes means your cost will be higher.

Hard-to-access second story windows also increase costs due to the extra equipment needed. The cost is worth it, since window cleaning can make a strong visual impact for your refreshed rental property.

Appliance cleaning

Appliances attract layers of splatters, drips, and spills over time. Cleaning professionals tackle baked-on grease, food gunk, and hidden crumb build-up that everyday wipe-downs miss. They detail the inside and outside of refrigerators, ovens, and stovetops for a like-new finish.

What are the charges per appliance? About $10-$40, depending on the size and cleaning intensity needed.

Blind cleaning

Blinds often collect dust, pet hair, and other particles, making cleaning difficult. Professional blind cleaning services have the expertise to remove dirt and grime from blinds without harming materials.

What factors impact the final bill? Size, fabric, and current condition of the blinds will add anywhere from $5-$10 to your total cleaning costs.

Hardwood floor polishing

Hardwood loses its shine to scratches, scuffs, and wear with heavy use. Professional cleaning service providers have industrial buffers and polishes to revive the natural luster of hardwood floors.

What's the typical range per square footage for hardwood floor polishing? Somewhere from $100-$300, depending on the current condition and size.

Tile and grout cleaning

Grout lines readily trap dirt, mold, mildew, and grime over a rental's lifetime. Cleaning service providers use industrial-strength cleaners and tools to extract years of built-up gunk from porcelain, ceramic, and stone surfaces.

What's the total for a typical grout cleaning? Expect to invest $100-$200 depending on the overall size and state of surfaces.

Garage cleaning

Garages become dumping grounds over time, accumulating dust, cobwebs, debris and leftover belongings. Professionals clear out and dispose of any remaining items before tackling built-up dirt and oil staining. They can sweep, pressure wash and detail the space to meet your standards for cleanliness.

What's the average price for garage cleaning? Get ready to spend $70-$200 depending on the garage's square footage and current condition.

Junk removal

If you have unwanted items that you need to dispose of during a move-out, a professional junk removal service can come to the rescue. They can safely and responsibly dispose of furniture, appliances, and other leftover items that you need removed.

What's the average cost for rental clear-out? Expect to invest $60-$370 depending on volume and types of goods needing removal.

DIY vs. hiring a professional

When you need to handle move-out cleaning for the property, one major decision is whether to do the task yourself or hire a professional cleaning service. Let's weigh the pros and cons of these options to help you decide.

Doing it yourself

The DIY approach to move-out cleaning saves you money on the total cost of moving out or getting a rental ready to re-rent. Some of the advantages of this approach for house move out cleaning include:

  • Cost savings: You can save on professional cleaning fees by cleaning the property yourself. This can be particularly beneficial if you have the time, resources, and cleaning supplies to do the job well.
  • Familiarity with the property: For both tenants and landlords, you know the property's layout, condition, and any specific areas that need special attention. You can use this information to concentrate on those areas and clean them thoroughly to meet your standards.
  • Flexibility and control: Cleaning the rental property yourself gives you complete control over the process. You can prioritize tasks, use cleaning products you trust, and allocate your own time according to your schedule.

Hiring a professional

Even though it can increase the actual cost of getting your property ready for the next tenant, there are advantages to hiring professional cleaning services, such as:

  • Time and convenience:  When preparing for a move out, cleaning may fall lower on your priority list behind packing, changing utilities, etc. Hiring professionals frees your time to handle those logistics. As a landlord managing properties, maintenance and listing the property requires your attention, too. Outsourcing deep cleaning creates time for turnover priorities like showings.
  • Expertise and equipment: Professional cleaners have the skills, knowledge, and specialized equipment to tackle even the toughest cleaning challenges. They understand how to handle different surfaces and materials with proper care and cleaning techniques.
  • Consistent standards: Professional cleaning services that specialize in move out clean services know how to meet industry standards and expectations. They are familiar with the specific requirements needed to get the property in pristine condition.

Save money on move-out cleaning costs

Infographic on how to save money on move-out costs

You may wonder how you can reduce the cleaning cost of move-out cleaning. Here are some tips to save money without compromising on the quality of the cleaning.

Tip #1: Be prepared

You can save money on move-out cleaning by assessing the property's condition and creating a plan of action. Take note of specific areas that require extra attention and determine if you can handle them on your own or if you need more thorough cleaning.

Tip #2: Have a move-out cleaning checklist ready

Create a move-out cleaning checklist to help you stay organized and make sure that you don't miss any important tasks. For landlords, you can use this checklist as part of your ongoing operational process for apartment move out cleaning criteria.

Tip #3: Set expectations

If you decide to hire a professional cleaning service, you should establish clear expectations upfront. Communicate your specific requirements and standards to the cleaning service to avoid unnecessary additional charges.

Clearly outline the scope of work, including any areas that require special attention or detailed cleaning.

Ask the right questions to hire the right cleaners

Now that you have a move-out cleaning checklist and know what you need for the move out clean, it's time to talk with prospective cleaning providers. Key questions to ask to find the right company include:

Service offerings

  • What do you include in a standard move-out cleaning?
  • What extra services do you recommend and how will they impact cost?
  • How long will the move-out cleaning service take?

Cleaning crew

  • Are all your cleaners fully licensed, bonded, and insured?
  • How many cleaners will be in my home at once?
  • Can you give references from past customers?

Quality assurance

  • Is there a money-back guarantee?
  • What recourse do I have for addressing any cleaning deficiencies found later?

Process and materials

  • Do you follow a standard operating procedure for move-out cleans? Can you provide a sample checklist?
  • What types of cleaning equipment do you supply? Should I have any on hand?
  • What commercial-grade cleaning solutions will you use?

Enhance your move-out experience with Azibo

For landlords, Azibo offers a suite of tools to streamline your property management. From tenant applications and screening to lease agreements and online rent collection, Azibo helps you manage your rental properties efficiently.

By maintaining high cleanliness standards and using Azibo’s comprehensive services, you can attract quality tenants and protect your property's value.

Sign up for Azibo for free, today

For renters, moving to a new rented space can be seamless with Azibo. If your new landlord isn’t already using Azibo, invite them to explore the benefits of managing rent payments and leases online through our platform. This not only simplifies rent payments but also ensures a smooth transition into your new home.

Invite your landlord to use Azibo

Integrating Azibo's services into your move-out process can save you time and money, making the transition smoother for both landlords and tenants.

Returning a property to its initial condition at the end of the tenancy

A move-out clean is an essential step in the moving process for both tenants and landlords. For tenants, it ensures the property is left in a condition that meets the landlord’s expectations, which is key to receiving your security deposit back in full.

For landlords, it guarantees that the property is in excellent condition for the next tenant, helping to protect the property’s value and appeal. Understanding the factors that influence the cost of move-out cleaning—from property size and condition to the specific services required—can help you plan and budget effectively.

House cleaning prices for move-out services can vary based on home size, services purchased, and other factors such as home type, geographic location, and the cleanliness of the home.

Whether you choose to handle the cleaning yourself or hire professionals, a thorough move-out clean sets the stage for a smooth transition and positive future rental experiences.

Move-out cleaning cost FAQs

How much cleaning should you do when moving out? 

You should aim to leave the property in the same condition as when you moved in, minus normal wear and tear. This includes thoroughly cleaning all rooms, including the kitchen and bathrooms, dusting and wiping down surfaces, vacuuming and mopping floors, and addressing any stains or marks on walls and carpets.

What defines move-out cleaning? 

Move-out cleaning is a comprehensive cleaning process performed when a tenant vacates a property. It typically includes cleaning all areas of the home, such as baseboards, light switches, carpets, and walls, as well as deep cleaning appliances, bathrooms, and kitchens.

The goal is to restore the property to its original condition, ensuring it is clean and ready for the next tenant.

How much does move-out cleaning cost in Seattle? 

The cost of move-out cleaning in Seattle can vary based on the size and condition of the property and the specific services required. On average, you can expect to pay between $150 and $400 for a standard move-out cleaning, with higher costs for larger properties or those requiring more extensive cleaning.

Important Note: This post is for informational and educational purposes only. It should not be taken as legal, accounting, or tax advice, nor should it be used as a substitute for such services. Always consult your own legal, accounting, or tax counsel before taking any action based on this information.

Nichole Stohler

Nichole co-founded Gateway Private Equity Group, with a history of investments in single-family and multi-family properties, and now a specialization in hotel real estate investments. She is also the creator of, a blog dedicated to real estate investing.

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