A Chicago Move Out cleaning service

Chicago Maid Service and Chicago House Cleaning Service Step 1.jpg

1. Book

Schedule your move out cleaning appointment with us online by selecting the date and time you'd like your cleaning professional to show up. 

Chicago Maid Service and Chicago House Cleaning Service Step 2.jpg

2. Clean

A professional cleaner shows up on time to clean your home, and you are charged only after your move out cleaning service. If you have any questions, we're just a call away. 

Chicago Maid Service and Chicago House Cleaning Service Step 3.jpg

3. Relax

Sit back and relax. Our move out cleaning is very comprehensive, and sure to get your deposit back. Enjoy your Sparkly clean home! 

book a chicago Move Out cleaning today!

✓ Same cleaner you know and love every time

✓ Professionally trained

✓ Bonded and Insured

✓ Nationaly background checked

✓ Bring all supplies

✓ Highly reviewed by hundreds before you

✓ Fully customizable Move Out Cleaning Service

Chicago Maid Service


Bedrooms, Living Rooms, and Common Areas Cleaning List


  • Clean accessible surfaces of dust & debris: TVs, tables, countertops, paintings, dressers, chairs, night stands, bookcases, armoires etc
  • Wipe countertops & cabinet exteriors
  • Take out trash & recycling bin
  • Vacuum and Swiffer floors
  • Clean Light Switches
  • Clean Door Handles
  • Clean interior and exterior of doors
  • Clean and detail your baseboards


  • Make the bed & change bed linens (when left on top of bed)
  • Dust furniture & decorations
  • Clean glass table tops
  • Empty all trash cans
  • Vacuum all carpets, small rugs, & stairs
Bedroom Cleaning Area
Kitchen Cleaning Area


  • Wipe down appliance exteriors
  • Clean inside microwave
  • Clean stovetop 
  • Scrub and clean sinks
  • Dust & wipe cupboard and drawer doors
  • Empty trash can & recycling bin
  • Dust & wipe laundry area


  • Scrub and clean sinks
  • Wipe exterior bathroom cabinets
  • Clean mirrors
  • Scrub and clean toilets
  • Scrub and clean bathtubs
  • Scrub and clean showers & shower doors
  • Empty trash can(s)
  • Vacuum bathroom floors and rugs
  • Mop bathroom floors
  • Dust/wipe doors
Bath and Tub Spaces


Nicole B Maid and House Cleaning Service Review For Chicago
Fantastic!!! I have had so much trouble finding a good cleaning service or independent maid to help us with cleaning our home. I was beginning to second guess myself and wondered if my expectations were too high. Sparkly Maid did a thorough and amazing job. I highly recommend them for your house cleaning needs.
— Nicole Brooks. Chicago, Illinois ★★★★★
Jennifer S Maid and House Cleaning Service Review From Arlington Heights
Friendly, detailed, and on time. I liked that they checked with me after they finished cleaning to see if everything was done to my satisfaction - it was! I highly recommend them for apartment cleaning services.
— Jennifer S. Chicago, Illinois ★★★★★
Tony B Maid and House Cleaning Review From Evanston
Great cleaning service with a smile, consistent, attentive to details, arrived on time, and at a fair price. This house cleaning service gets it!
— Tony B. Chicago, Illinois ★★★★★
Ashley M Maid and House Cleaning Service Review From Chicago
Superb! I am close to moving into my new house and really needed a full service cleaning to give my husband and I a fresh start. Two determined women came over and left my house spotless! I am so grateful to Sparkly Maid and their cleaning service. I will be recommending them to everyone I meet!
— Ashley M. Chicago, Illinois ★★★★★

As featured in


1. Regular Cleaning

  • Apartment Cleaning Service
  • Condo Cleaning Service
  • Studio Cleaning Service
  • Townhouse Cleaning Service
  • Bungalow House Cleaning Service
  • Ranch Home Cleaning Service

2. Deep Cleaning Service

3. Move-In Cleaning Service

4. Move-Out Cleaning Service

5. Post-Construction Cleaning

6. Post-Renovations Cleaning

7. Post-Painting Cleanup Services

8. Home Organization Services

5 Tips For Your Move Out Cleaning Service

  1. Begin Packing As Early As Possible: The peace of mind that preparation and advanced planning brings cannot be overstated. Furthermore, it'll also save you money come your service quotes from move in or move out companies.
  2. Stay Organized: Be systematic when packing to save you time and money during your moving day. Appropriately label your boxes, so when the movers come, they can effectively and efficiently perform your move out. Your cleaners will also appreciate your tidyness as they'll be able to move and clean without impediments.
  3. Ask For Help: This is important to ensure you can get your moving finished in one day. There are a myriad of services designed and built to relieve the stress during your move in our move out day. It is especially important to hire a reputable move out cleaning service to ensure you receive your security deposit
  4. Pack Snacks! Even after hiring all the help you can get, you will be moving in, moving out, and especially moving about from place to place. Therefore, be sure to replenish and rehydrate.
  5. Cancel Cable, Newspapers, Cleaning Service, Lawn Services, and Internet: You'll be so busy in the days leading up to your move out, that you won't even notice these life essentials missing.



Your happy home awaits.


Move Out Cleaning – DIY or Hire It Out?

When you vacate a rental, it is usually expected to be clean. Each property manager or rental agency has its own requirements, and if you don’t meet them, you can be subject to fines or security deposit deductions. With all the hard work and hassle that come with vacating a unit and moving, sometimes the last thing you want to do is clean it. However, the costs of professional cleaning crews can be a budget buster. Here are four things to consider when debating whether you should DIY or hire out your move-out cleaning!

If you’re moving out soon, cleaning is just one of the many things you need to do. Check out our top five move-out to-dos!

What Are the Expectations?
First and foremost, fully understand what the expectations are. Some places conduct a professional cleaning between residents regardless of the unit’s condition; in this case, a few hours of your own time may be sufficient. Others will conduct a “white glove inspection” and expect the unit to be immediately ready for new residents. In this scenario, a professional company will likely do a more thorough cleaning so that you pass the final inspection. Before hiring a cleaning crew or committing your own time, ask your property manager/agency for clarification. Ask specifically what will be checked and how clean it needs to be. Consult your lease for details and even ask neighbors what they’ve heard and seen with other residents moving out.

What Is Your Timeline For Your Move Out?
Move-out cleanings typically need to be done once the unit is completely empty and can take up to a full day (depending on how big and dirty the unit is). As such, your moving timeline may play into your decision. If you have the hours to put toward cleaning your old unit before moving into your new one, the DIY route may be worth the cost savings versus a cleaning crew. If the moving truck comes one day and you have to be in your new town and new apartment in very short order, hiring it out can save you precious hours. The old adage, “Do you have time or money?” certainly applies here. If you have the hours in your moving timeline to get it done, consider DIYing to save the cost. If there is just too much to do and not enough time to do it, hire it out.

Hiring it out? If you have the time to get it done, consider DIYing your cleaning to save the cost.

What Is Your Access to Cleaning Supplies?
Take into account how inconvenient it is to hold onto your cleaning supplies. If you’re moving across town, keeping back various supplies isn’t that big of a deal. But if you’re moving out of state or across the country, those things may get packed into a moving truck before you have a chance to do the final cleaning. Hiring a crew will allow you to transport, use up and/or give away cleaning supplies before your big move. If you need to do the cleaning yourself, keep back a few disposable items and ask friends or neighbors to borrow heavy-duty items like vacuums, mops, brooms and steam cleaners.

Do You Like to Clean? - If Not Hire A Professional Cleaning Service!
Lastly, consider how much you enjoy the hard and dirty work of deep cleaning. The cleanliness expectations certainly come into play here. If your unit just needs to be “generally clean,” a quick dusting and vacuum is easy enough for most people to handle. However, if the inspection goes under the oven, inside refrigerators and to stovetop burner plates, blinds, landscaping and light fixtures, be sure you’re up for the task. Professional cleaning crews typically have the supplies, equipment and know-how for tackling common inspection “hot spots,” but if you love (or at least don’t mind!) tackling dust, dirt, grease and grime, doing it yourself will save you a good chunk of change!

A Note About Carpets & Carpet Cleaning Services
Quite often, carpet requirements will be outlined in your lease separately from the rest of the cleaning details. Many rentals will require a professional carpet cleaning before vacating, and they may even demand proof by receipt before returning your security deposit. Other agencies/property managers may do a professional cleaning at their discretion between residents, meaning a simple spot clean and vacuum will clear you. Like with the rest of the cleaning requirements, get clarification from your lease/manager/rental agency. If a professional carpet cleaner is required, ask for recommendations, book early and take advantage of “move out” promotions when possible.

Doing the move out cleaning yourself will save money but will require supplies, sweat and time. Hiring a crew will save you those things but can cost a pretty penny. Whether you hire it out or DIY, it’s a decision that is influenced by many factors. No matter what you decide, be sure to get clarification on the requirements and set aside the necessary time and money to get it done right!


The Ultimate Move in Move Out House Cleaning Checklist

All ready for moving house. Or are you?

If moving house tops the list of stressful experiences people go through in life and cleaning house tops the list of loathsome experiences people face on a daily basis, then cleaning for moving should be a truly nightmarish experience indeed. The mere idea of scrubbing floors and washing windows after the long weeks of laborious moving preparations and exhausting moving tasks may be enough to put you in panic – after all, you have only just finished organizing the myriad details of the relocation process, putting all the required paperwork in order and packing all your earthly possessions, so you are highly unlikely to have any energy left to spare. And yet, you need to clean not one but two properties at the very climax of your relocation endeavor – move-out/move-in day:

1) you will want to leave your old home in top-notch condition in order to be able to get your security deposit back or to make your property more desirable for potential buyers;

2) you will want your new home to be spotless when moving in.

So, no matter how tired and how impatient to close the relocation chapter of your life you may be, you need to take the time and the effort to clean your old property before moving out and your new one before moving in. Luckily, the task may not be as difficult as it seems at first – especially if you follow our simple, yet highly efficient cleaning tips for moving house.

Move Out Cleaning Tips

To make cleaning easier and more effective, you are recommended to:

  • Get hold of appropriate moving cleaning supplies and keep them at hand. There are certain cleaning supplies you can’t do without when preparing your home for moving – disinfecting cleaners, glass cleaners, baking soda, white vinegar, cleaning cloths, dusting cloths, plastic or nylon bristled soft scrubbers, different kinds of brushes, furniture polish, fabric protectors, a mop, a vacuum cleaner, a broom and a dustpan, a bucket, a step stool, rubber gloves, etc. Make sure these items don’t get accidentally loaded on the moving truck with the rest of your possessions – you’re going to need them when the movers depart from your old home and then again, before they arrive in your new property;
  • Prepare and clean the items you are going to take with you as early as possible. You will certainly want to give your household items a good cleaning after the move, but this doesn’t make cleaning them before the move redundant – you probably don’t want to take all the accumulated dust and dirt, stains and grime, bacteria and germs to your new home, do you? Besides, wiping your items clean before the move will make your job much easier afterwards, when unpacking and arranging your new place. So, make sure you empty and clean all the furniture pieces and household appliances you intend to relocate several days before moving day and get them properly packed and ready for shipment by the time your movers arrive;
  • Wait until your possessions have been loaded onto the moving truck to give your old home a final, thorough cleaning. If you start cleaning while your packed possessions are still scattered all around the place, your task will turn out to be much more difficult and time-consuming than necessary – all those moving boxes and furniture pieces will be in your way and you won’t be able to clean the premises quickly and efficiently enough;
  • For best results, always start cleaning from top to bottom and back to front.Otherwise, you may soil an already cleaned surface and have to wipe it again;
  • Complete “dry” cleaning tasks first (such as dusting, vacuuming and sweeping). You just can’t efficiently wash, mop, and/or wipe surfaces with a damp cloth when there is still dust or dirt on them;
  • Clean task-by-task, not room-by-room. This method is much faster and considerably more efficient – when you have equipped yourself with a furniture polish and a soft cloth, for example, it makes sense to take care of all the furniture pieces in the property, not just the ones in your bedroom, right?

General Move Out Cleaning Requirements

The best way to ensure the impeccable cleanliness of your old home before leaving it for good is to follow a detailed moving out cleaning checklist. However, before you can deal with the specific cleaning requirements of the different rooms in your house, you need to take care of some general cleaning tasks:

  • Touch up the walls. Remove any nails, hooks, and screws you have put on the walls and conceal the holes (as well as all other visible marks, dents, scratches, etc.) with a specialized product, such as a Magic Eraser. Make sure there are no stains or smudges anywhere on the surfaces and wipe down walls, baseboards, doors and doorknobs with a wet washcloth to freshen them up (unless the walls are covered with non-water-resistant wallpaper, of course – in this case, just dust them carefully). Vacuum or wash all wall and ceiling vents;
  • Wash the windows. Use a quality glass cleaner to wash all the windows, mirrors, glass doors, and other glass surfaces in your old home. Don’t forget to clean the blinds and the window sills as well;
  • Clean the floors. Vacuum the carpeting and try to remove any stains you find with a suitable cleaning product (consider using professional carpet cleaning services to take care of particularly stubborn stains). Sweep tile, vinyl and/or hardwood floors and mop them clean (using a steam mop will yield excellent results with minimum effort) only after your possessions have been taken out of the house;
  • Remove dust and cobwebs. Look into every nook and cranny of your old property and remove all the cobwebs you can find. Dust all the surfaces in the home and vacuum the upholstery and the drapes to make sure they are free of dirt and dust;
  • Take care of the light fixtures. Wash lampshades and other light covers, dust ceiling fans, and replace burned out light bulbs to make sure the light fixtures in your old home are in excellent condition. Don’t forget to dust and wipe clean the light switches and electricity outlets throughout the house as well;
  • Clean fireplaces of ashes and debris;
  • Empty wastebaskets and take all the trash out of your home.

Move out cleaning requirement #1: Make your home shine with cleanness!

Move Out Cleaning Checklist

Now that you know the basics for cleaning your home before a move, you may be interested in some trickier details that will help you finish the laborious tasks in a quick, organized and efficient manner. So, how to clean your house fast and easy? All you need to do is follow some essential move out cleaning instructions (in addition to the general ones listed above):

1) Kitchen

  • Empty all cabinets and drawers and wipe them clean with a soft sponge and a mild cleaner (use baking soda and water for grease stains). Don’t forget to remove the liners and replace them with new ones when the surfaces dry fully. Clean countertops with warm, soapy water and disinfect them to make sure you have successfully removed any stains, residues, mold and other bacteria or grime;
  • Use a specialized glass cleaner to make all the glass elements in the kitchen (windows, glass doors, glass cases, glass tabletops, etc.) shine;
  • Scrub the sink and faucets with an appropriate powdered cleaning product or use chlorine-free bleach to make them look like new (put some bleach into a spray bottle, add water, spray all over the sink, let it soak for a while, then rinse thoroughly). Drop slices of lemon, some salt and/or ice cubes in the garbage disposal to get rid of any accumulated grime and unpleasant odors;
  • If you are leaving any appliances behind, make sure they are empty and spotless. Move them away from the walls and clean the areas behind them, as well as the floor where they stood.
    • Refrigerator – empty and defrost the fridge, remove the drawers and shelves (clean them as appropriate), and wipe the appliance inside and out with soapy water. When the refrigerator is fully dry, replace the drawers and shelves and put a container with baking soda inside to absorb any possible bad odors. If the electric supply to your old home won’t be turned off when you move out, leave the fridge on low setting. Otherwise, leave the door open to prevent mold;
    • Stove – Remove the grills, oven racks, and drip pans from the stove and scrub them clean (it’s a good idea to soak them in soapy water while you’re cleaning the rest of the stove). Use steel wool to scrub the oven (you will need a heavy-duty oven cleaner) and pay special attention to the oven glass door. Be careful to remove all the grease and grime from the entire stove surface (including the control panel, hood and exhaust fan), as well as from the areas around and behind the stove. Replace the exhaust fan filter if necessary; Good to remember: It’s advisable to wear thick gloves and ensure good ventilation while cleaning the oven as degreasing agents can be harmful to the skin and the respiratory system.
    • Dishwasher – shake baking soda on a damp sponge and wipe down all the surfaces (pay special attention to the filter, the rubbers, the inside of the door and the door edges). Consider adding a small cup of bleach to a cycle to kill any bacteria in the machine and leave it fresh and spotless;
    • Microwave – put a bowl of water with some lemon juice in the microwave and turn the appliance on high for several minutes. Let cool and wipe the inside clean (including the underside filter) with a sponge or a microfiber cloth. Clean the outside of the microwave with a damp cloth.
  • Finish the cleaning process by sweeping and mopping the kitchen floor.

And what about the appliances you’re going to take with you? You can find some useful information on how to pack them for shipment here.

A fresh bathroom will provide for a better start of your day.

2) Bathrooms

  • Tiles – scrub the tiles and grout with an appropriate cleaner (one that contains bleach) and rinse well, so that all the tiled surfaces in your bathroom start shining;
  • Tub and shower – clean the tub, tub fixtures, shower rod, shower head, and shower enclosure with extra care to get rid of soap scum and possible mold growth (you may need to wash or replace the shower curtain). Use an adequate disinfectant product and rinse the surfaces well. Consider applying a paste of baking soda and vinegar to any glass surfaces in the bathroom – leave it soak for an hour an remove it with a damp cloth to make the glass sparkle;
  • Sinks – scour the sink and pay special attention to the faucets, handles, and chromed surfaces (you may need to use an old toothbrush to get mold and stains out of small nooks and crannies that are difficult to reach). Wipe down all towel racks, light fixtures, soap dishes and toothbrush holders;
  • Countertops, vanities, and medicine cabinets – remove all the items from bathroom cabinets, drawers, and shelves, and use a wet sponge to clean them inside and out (including the doors). Clean the mirrors and wipe down the counters;
  • Toilet – sanitize the toilet bowl, tank, and seat. Wipe the toilet roll holder;
  • Vents – dust and wash all the vents found on the bathroom walls and ceiling. Take down and clean the exhaust fans;
  • Floor – scrub and mop the bathroom floor before you move out of the house.

3) Bedrooms and Living Rooms

  • Clean windowsills, frames, tracks, casings, blinds and glass panels;
  • Clean sliding doors and fly screens inside and out;
  • Wash or dry-clean curtains;
  • Wipe down air conditioners and vents;
  • Clean the fireplace and replace the furnace filter (if applicable);
  • Empty wardrobes, closets, and drawers and clean them inside and out (shelves, rods, tracks, casing, both sides of doors);
  • Clean furniture – polish wood surfaces and steam clean the upholstery. Apply a fabric/leather protector, as appropriate;
  • Wash area rugs and clean the floors as described above.

RELATED USEFUL READS: How to pack up a bedroomHow to pack furniture for movingHow to pack clothes for movingHow to move a king-size bed and mattressHow to move a queen-size bed

There is no place for rubbish and debris in your charming garden.

4) Outside Areas

(Not applicable if you’re wondering how to clean an apartment before moving out.)

  • Clean out storage areas and sweep garage/shed floors;
  • Remove all your possessions from the yard area, including anything stuck in the round or hanging from the trees, any tools and equipment, toys and pet items, outside footwear, etc.;
  • Remove dust and cobwebs from walls, window sills and eaves;
  • Make sure the gutters are free from debris;
  • Ensure all outdoor lighting is clean and in working order;
  • Clear out the letter box and compost bin;
  • Sweep patios, verandas, concrete or paved driveways, and stairs;
  • Remove all debris and rubbish from the garden, mow the lawn, trim the edges, weed garden beds and sweep garden paths.

Good to remember:

  1. The move out cleaning list for tenants may contain some additional cleaning requirements, depending on the specific conditions in their lease contracts.
  2. It’s a good idea to take photos of your cleaned house or apartment and keep them as proof of the excellent condition you’re leaving the place in.

Move In Cleaning Checklist

Our moving house cleaning checklist won’t be complete without some advice on how to clean your new home as well. After all, you will need a clean and fresh house where to start your life afresh after the move, right?

So, how to clean your house before you move in? You can simply use the above tips for cleaning when moving out as long as you take some move-in cleaning specifics into account:

1) Deep Clean Your New Home Before Your Items Arrive

There will be no better time to clean your new home than before moving in – when it’s still void of household items and personal possessions. Once the rooms are filled with boxes and furniture, cleaning will become much more difficult, slower, and less efficient. So, you’re strongly advised not to miss the opportunity to deep clean your new house or apartment while it is still completely (or mostly) empty. If possible, get to your new place before the moving truck arrives (a day or two earlier) and get down to work:

The sooner you get rid of the used packing materials and clean your new home, the sooner it will stop looking like a warehouse and start feeling like home.

  • Start with the bathroom as it is the room you’re going to need the most immediately after arriving in your new home. The previous residents should have sanitized the bathroom before moving out, but it’s still recommendable to give it a good cleaning in order to ensure your peace of mind (the bathroom is one of the most germ-filled places in the house). So, make sure you scrub all the surfaces and bathroom fixtures with appropriate disinfecting products and pay special attention to the places that the previous occupants of the home may have missed (such as behind the toilet, inside of the medicine cabinet, in the shower recess, etc.). Consider replacing some inexpensive and easy to install features, like the toilet seat and cover, the shower curtains, the sink handles, and so on – this will considerably freshen the bathroom and make it feel yours;
  • Clean the bedroom next as you will want to set up your bed and get a good rest as soon as possible. Wipe down the walls, wash the windows (if necessary), check if the light fixtures are free of dirt and dust, clean doors and fly screens inside and out (do not forget to disinfect the doorknobs as they are touched frequently and accumulate excessive grime and germs), dust the furniture (i.e. closet) and the shelving, and mop the floors. Once you take out your clean bedding, your new bedroom will be completely ready to provide you with the peace and calm you deserve after the exhausting moving process. Good to remember: Have the carpets in your new home professionally cleaned, unless you have proof that the previous residents already did so;
  • Move on to the kitchen and get it ready to become the epicenter of your family life as soon as you move into the house – after all, there is nothing better than home-made food to replenish your energy after the move and to allow you to spend some fun time together with your loved ones while enjoying the meal. So, give the kitchen a good cleaning – pull any appliances away from the walls, thoroughly clean the areas under and behind them, disinfect all surfaces, scrub the sink, faucets, and countertops, wipe kitchen cabinets and drawers, clean any appliances inside and out (pay extra attention to the oven, stovetop, hood and filter), and mop the floor. Make sure there are no grease stains, soap scum or any other residues left. Your new kitchen will be all ready to welcome you for a house-warming meal;
  • Follow the move out cleaning guide above to take care of the rest of the home and make it spotless and shiny before your items arrive.

2) Clean As You Unpack

Some dirt and dust will be inevitably brought inside your home with the boxes and furniture when your items arrive and you take them in. Therefore, it is essential that you clean the mess immediately after an unpacking task, however small it may be – just take out the trash and vacuum to make sure no dirt will accumulate into your newly-cleaned home.

Too exhausted to clean your new home? Call the professionals!

Dispose of the packing materials in a suitable way – flatten the damaged boxes in stacks (to be recycled) and store away the ones that are still in good condition, sort out all the packing supplies to see if you can use any of them and throw out the rest, etc.

Dust and run the vacuum all over the house once again when you finish unpacking.

Now, your new house cleaning checklist is complete – at last, you can relax and rejoice at your successful relocation experience.

Consider Professional Move Out Cleaning Services

Move out and move in cleaning can be extremely exhausting when you are so overwhelmed with the arduous moving process. It requires plenty of time and effort and adds to the moving stress. Therefore, you may want to consider using professional moving out (moving in) cleaning services – the experienced professionals will do the job for you in a quick and efficient manner and will save you a lot of strain. In certain circumstance hiring professional moving out (moving in) cleaners may be your only viable option – you may not have the time to clean your old house by yourself, you may not be able to arrive in your new property before your items, you may not have the necessary cleaning supplies (you won’t take your vacuum cleaner on the plane with you, so that you can clean your new home upon arrival, will you?), you may be too exhausted to deal with the laborious cleaning tasks, etc.

If so, just get a move out (move in) cleaning quote and see if the price and conditions offered by some reputable cleaning companies will work for you. In most cases, the quality professional assistance will be worth the cost.

Can you think of any other moving cleaning tricks that might come handy when moving house? Please, share your advice in the comments below!


Renters’ Moving Out Checklist

When you move out, you will not be able to have your little one’s handprints adorning the walls of your new home.

A rented property rarely feels like a real home – the thought that you will leave, sooner or later, doesn’t allow you to invest too much sentimental value into the place or to impart warmth and coziness to your temporary residence. What is more, according to the rental contract, you are often not authorized to reconstruct and/or to renovate the dwelling to your liking which immediately renders the place incongruous. If you cannot hang your photos on the walls or do not dare to mark the height of your child on the door frame out of a fear that you may damage the property, then you will never be able to truly relax and enjoy your “sweet home”. Even if the terms in your contract are not that strict and you have a free hand to do whatever you like, as long as you keep the good overall condition of your rental, when you move out, you will be able to take your pictures with you, but you will never be able to replicate the kid’s height mark in your next home. It is often difficult to pack up and move memories but when the time comes to relocate once again, you need to leave the property intact and to move on with your life, hopefully without any problems or arguments with your landlord.

Whether you decide to move out when the contract term ends or wish to leave before the lease has expired, you need to know your duties and responsibilities, as well as your rights, so that you ensure a trouble-free and smooth relocation. Organizing the process, preparing and packing constitute only one aspect of the numerous tasks you have to complete when moving out of a rented property. Here is a detailed renters’ moving out checklist that will help you to avoid conflicts and mistakes and to get your security deposit back.

Renters’ Move Out Notice

Review Your Rental Contract

You need to know well your rights and your responsibilities.

It is common sense that when the imminent relocation becomes only a matter of time, your first step should be to go over the provisions in your lease. You need to know how early you are supposed to notify the landlord about your move, what your responsibilities are and how to proceed in order to receive the money from your deposit.

  • Go through the specific renters’ moving out rights you have signed below;
  • Check all the maintenance obligations you have agreed to and be sure to comply with them before leaving;
  • Pay attention to special provisions contained in the contract.

When you have checked thoroughly all the clauses in the contract and everything is clear, consider the most appropriate course of action that will move you to your new home quickly and problem-free. You are advised to begin with a notice to your landlord.

How To Write A Tenant Move Out Letter

You will not need invisible ink or a special seal, but make sure your landlord receives your move-out notice.

Most rental contracts require a written notification to the property owner at least one month prior to your move. So, make sure the date of your letter is clearly stated and send the notice on time. If you intend to move out before rental agreement, explain the situation carefully and don’t forget to excuse yourself for the inconveniences.

Mention that the property is in perfect condition and provide explicitly the date of your departure, as well as your future address. When your landlord knows that they can get in touch with you, they will be sure that you are not trying to evade responsibility and disappear without paying your last rent or your utility bills. Also, you can ask to have your mail forwarded to your new address.

Make your letter polite and conclude it with a request to have your security deposit returned. If the amount of money equals the rent for one month, you can suggest that the landlord keeps the deposit and you don’t pay the last installment. Or, if that is not an adequate option, arrange to exchange the keys of your rental for your deposit on Moving day. Of course, provided that the property is in the same condition it was when you moved in. You will need a detailed checklist to prove this fact.

Rental Move Out Walkthrough Checklist

A tenant move out process is always complicated and usually turns out to be extremely stressful and nerve-racking. More often than not, one of the parties involved remains bitterly disappointed. However, if you break the overwhelming procedures into small, clear and perfectly doable tasks, you may be able to find an approach that is efficient and delicate enough to yield satisfactory results.

Pay Off Your Bills

Electricity – check; water – check; cable TV – tomorrow…

Remember to pay in time any due taxes, fees or charges, such as waste management fees or vehicle taxes, that were addressed to your rental in order to avoid misunderstandings and mistakes. More importantly, pay all the utility bills up to the moment and notify your service providers about your forthcoming relocation. These include electricity, gas and water, of course, but also your Internet and cable TV providers. If possible, arrange for utility transfer to your new address (especially in the event of a move across town). Unless you can pay online, leave enough money for any bills that are due when the month is over and you will be already away in your new home.

Repair Damages

According to your maintenance obligations, you will be most likely required to repair any damage caused to the property in the period when you lived there and/or during the moving process.

  • Fix and repaint the walls – repair holes made for mounting shelves or installing equipment or for hanging mirrors and pictures, restore crumbling plaster and chipped off corners, replace broken tiles, fix any scratches or dents (both on the walls and the floors), repair damaged door frames and apply a fresh coating of paint if necessary to restore the flawless look of your rented property;
  • Check the electrical and plumbing systems – any leakages or problems will result in claims for damage against you even if they are not discovered during the rental property move out inspection, so take adequate measures to fix any problems. Pipes and ductwork must also be replaced if broken and cleared of debris;
  • Test the heating system and the lighting fixtures – broken appliances or burnt out electric bulbs will do you no good – you are recommended to leave everything in perfect condition, or at least the way it was when you moved in;
  • Inspect smoke detectors and fire alarms – you may not go the length of supplying fresh batteries, but at least make sure these are functional.

If you rented a house, your maintenance obligations may extend to:

  • Time to make the property faultless.

    Inspecting the roof – you could be accused of negligence if you failed to replace a broken tile or didn’t have your chimney swept properly – water or smoke damage to the property is difficult to recover, so be careful;

  • Trimming trees or bushes – your garden, if you have one, should be well maintained, so mow the lawn and trim the branches;
  • Repairing the fence – needless to say, the fence should be in the same condition you found it.
  • Your garage must be free of damage and litter, too!

The tenant moving out process will certainly be easier if you manage to prevent property damage in the first place. But if you have to do any repair works, after all, have them documented. Never forget to keep the receipts for all the materials you purchased and services you paid for. It is also a good idea to take pictures of the damaged area before and after the restoration. If you made some permanent improvements to the property, you may manage to lower your last rent with the amount of money spent.

Renters’ Moving Out Cleaning Checklist

Here is the last spot…

It is essential to clean the property thoroughly before moving out. No signs of repair works should remain and no mess should be left behind. If your place is relatively small and you maintained it well, you will probably be able to do all the cleaning by yourself. Buy some quality products to help you complete this tedious and exhausting task quicker and get to work! However, if you don’t have enough time (or enough strength left) to clear the mess up by yourself, you can always hire experienced cleaning services to do the job for you. The cleaning of specific types of floors or carpets, as well as leather furniture or upholstery that is not yours, may actually necessitate professional help. If you want to forget all about it as soon as possible, have it in mind that full cleaning services will result in a speedy and skillful completion of the task.

And yet, if you are up to the challenge, here is what you need to do:

  • Wipe the windows – clear glass allows more light in and makes the place look brighter;
  • Broom the floors to remove most of the accumulated dirt. Then vacuum to get rid of dust, hairs and other smaller particles. Last but not least – mop the surfaces really well;
  • Wash carpets and curtains – you can’t allow ugly stains to be seen when the landlord comes to inspect the property;
  • Pay special attention to the kitchen and the bathroom. All remaining appliances must be spotless and the bathroom – sanitized!
  • Throw out the garbage. You will produce a lot of trash during your moving preparations, so be sure to dispose of it properly.

Documenting the cleaning work is also a good idea – arrange for some witnesses and take videos. Just in case.

Remove Any Personal Possessions

A colorful tag system for memories.

Well, you will take your personal belongings with you, of course, but there are some items that are really easy to forget. They are not very important but still you are advised to remove them before moving out. Take down your pictures and calendars, remove stickers and magnets from remaining appliances or furniture, do not forget towels and toiletries in the bathroom, pack your own bedding (including curtains and tablecloths, for example), door mats, rags, flower pots, cutlery, hangers… every single item that was not there when you moved in. Double-check drawers and cupboards and then go have a look in the attic, basement and garage. Your tools, dusty boxes, old toys, broken gadgets, stored fuel (you will remember the gas bottles, but what about charcoal or firewood?) or provisions, etc. – everything should either go with you to your new home or be sold, donated or disposed of properly. Walk around the yard – any swing sets or barbeques, forgotten old slippers or stacks of paper? Tidy the property well before moving out!

Schedule Inspection

Contact the landlord about a week before leaving the rented property and schedule an inspection. Make a rental move out statement concerning the condition of the entire place and try to guarantee its clean and cheerful look. You are recommended to leave the utilities on at least till the inspection is over, so that the landlord can verify the good working order of all systems and devices.

Be present at the inspection and stay alert during the procedure! This is the most appropriate time to request your security deposit to be returned and the crucial moment which will determine your future relationship with the landlord. If you part on friendly terms, you may ask for some assistance like forwarding your mail or giving you recommendations to show to your eventual new leaseholder. The move out agreement you will reach is of primary importance.

Achieve A Successful Conclusion

Provided that all of the above tenant move-out requirements are fulfilled, your rental moving out process should have come to a successful end. Be sure to close the windows and lock the doors when leaving. Change your address as soon as possible and make sure that the landlord has it. It is a tradition to return the keys, most often in an attempt to remind the landlord to give you the deposit money back.

How To Get Your Security Deposit Back

It’s a simple equation: you give the house back in good condition, you get the security deposit back in full.

With all your rental moving out documents in order and all the above guidelines strictly followed, you should have no problems getting your money back. In case some disagreement or conflict arises between you and your landlord concerning a specific aspect of the contractual terms, or your definitions of “clean” differ significantly, try to settle the issue with reasonable negotiations. Produce evidence about the repair and cleaning work done or call on some witnesses, be ready to make small compromises and sign a written agreement for getting your deposit back in exchange for better cleaning, for example. Any additional agreement should be legally binding for both parties. Just remember that keeping calm and discussing the controversial issues with the other person can help resolve the problem and avoid greater troubles.

However, if your landlord refuses to return your deposit even though you have strictly observed the provisions in the rental contract, you have several options.

Demand letter

Prepare a demand letter that states your points very clearly – set your requests, detail your reasons and warn your landlord that you are going to file a case in court if your rightful demands are not fulfilled. Specify a deadline (usually about 30 days) for receiving your deposit money and/or any compensation for the delay and try to be as explicit as possible about every issue. Make a copy of the letter and send it with a request for a return receipt and papers proving the date it was posted. The letter will show your landlord that you know your renters’ moving out rights and you are not afraid to take the necessary legal measures to retrieve your deposit, but also that you are willing to discuss the problem first.

Small claims court

If you don’t have a peace pipe at hand, maybe you can settle the conflicts with your landlord over a glass of beer?

If your landlord still refuses to comply with the law, go to a small claims court, prove your points and if possible, ask to receive double the amount of your deposit or at least the interests for the period during which the deposit was illegally kept, as well as for the court expenses. You may even sue your landlord for damages resulting from you not being able to use the withheld money when you needed it.

Of course, remember that going to court without having complied with all your contract obligations will result in losing your security deposit and possibly – a penalty.

Get Help To Move Out By Hiring A Chicago Cleaning Service

If all your due charges paid, any possible property damages are prevented or repaired and the premises are thoroughly cleaned, you should be able to move out of the rented property in a very peaceful and trouble-free manner. However, you may need help to secure the happy ending. Packing your belongings properly and taking them safely out of your rented home is a very demanding task. You need suitable packing materials, a lot of time for appropriate preparation and experienced approach for maneuvering around the place with heavy and bulky items.

Are these your landlord’s legs? Forget about getting your security deposit back!

If it is too much for you, you can always ask for professional help. Trustworthy moving companies can provide full services which will take the burden off your shoulders. The movers are skillful enough to pack and transport your belongings without inflicting the slightest damage to the property or to your possessions. Their speedy and competent approach will save you a lot of time and troubles.

You are ready to start your new life in your new home, keeping only good memories of the place and the people associated with the time before the move.


How To Prepare Your Home Your Move Out

Just a snapshot of a typical relocation scenario to help you find your bearings.

When organizing a residential move, you’ve got a lot of work to do – develop elaborate plans, take care of important chores, make extensive preparations, etc. Each of these tasks requires meticulous attention and great vigilance, as overlooking any little detail may result in major setbacks and lots of troubles. To successfully organize every single aspect of the moving process and make sure that nothing falls through the cracks, you need to prepare really well for your relocation – prepare an effective moving strategy, prepare your belongings for shipment, prepare your home for the movers, prepare yourself for the big change in your life, etc.

Among all the essential things to take care of prior to your relocation, preparing your home for moving is probably the most laborious and the most consequential one. If you know how to properly prepare your house for a move, you will not only ensure a smooth and problem-free relocation process, but will also be able to sell your old property at a considerable profit.

So, take a closer look at the 5 most beneficial things you can do to prepare your home for moving:

1)   Inventory Your Home Before Moving Out

You can’t decide which of your possessions to take with you to your new home, what items to leave behind and sell together with your old property, and what pieces to get rid of prior to your move unless you know exactly what you have – that’s why you need a moving inventory. And if you believe you know what you own well enough and can save yourself the time and effort required to create an inventory, give it a second thought – taking a look at the back of your closet or inside the dusty boxes under your bed should be enough to convince you that a home inventory is indispensable when it comes to organizing your items for moving.

So, take a notebook and a pen and start your tour around your own house – go through every nook and cranny in every room of your home, open cabinets and drawers, look over the shelves and under the beds, etc. Document all your belongings (their type, number, current condition, approximate value, location) and decide what to do with them. You can take advantage of specialized software or convenient moving apps to create your home inventory in a quicker and more efficient manner. Once ready, it will come in handy for many different purposes – organizing your items, calculating the moving costs, estimating the type and the amount of the required packing materials, creating a packing list, labeling the boxes properly, keeping better track of your possessions, insuring your belongings, etc.

If you are not a fan of the old school, you can summon innovative technologies to your aid when creating your moving inventory.

While making your moving inventory, don’t forget to:

  • Take a lot of photos – you will be able to use them as a proof about the condition of your items before the move (in case your belongings get damaged while in the movers’ custody) or as a visual aid when arranging your new home (if you want everything to be the same as it was in your old surroundings) or reconnecting the wiring. Besides, they will help you preserve your memories of your old residence and your old life. Alternatively, you can walk through your home with a video camera to record all your household items (and even speak into the microphone to take important voice memos!);
  • Sort out and organize your stuff – your moving inventory will help you identify duplicate, outdated, outgrown, damaged, or worn out items, as well as any possessions of yours that you won’t be able to use (or prefer not to use) in your new surroundings. Put these no longer needed items aside and make sure all the essentials you’ll need during the last days in your old home and the first days in your new residence are separated from the rest of your belongings (so that you don’t accidentally pack them with other items and load them onto the moving truck).

Once you have documented your possessions, it’s time to decide their fate and declutter your home in order to prepare it for your move.

2)   Purge Your Home For Your Move Out

While you may not particularly like the idea of parting with some of your cherished possessions, you need to admit that throwing everything you own into moving boxes and taking it to your new home is not a viable solution. It will cost you a pretty penny and a lot of effort to move all your stuff across the country, not to mention that you’ll miss the chance to pare down your possessions and simplify your life.

The fewer items you relocate, the less you’ll have to pay for their transportation and the easier it will be to pack and unpack them. Besides, you need your house clean and neatly arranged when potential buyers come to view it (or when your landlord comes to inspect the property before you move out). So, get down to work:

  • Clean out storage areas, closets, kitchen cabinets and cupboards, etc. Laborious as this task may be, it’s essential for decluttering your home and properly organizing your items;

    Pare down your possessions to simplify not only your move, but also your new life.

  • Find a way to get rid of unwanted stuff. Decide what to do with every item you are not going to take to your new home – dispose of damaged pieces and items that are too worn out to be used ever again; donate to charity items of high practical value you don’t need (outgrown clothes and shoes in good condition, outdated furniture pieces, electronic equipment, or household appliances that are still functioning properly, canned food, old toys, books, games, DVDs, etc.); give away to family and friends keepsakes and items of high sentimental value; sell items of high monetary value you don’t like or can’t use anymore (artwork, antiques, specialized equipment, fancy furnishings, boutique clothes, exotic pieces, etc.). Your home will get tidier, your wallet – thicker, your relocation costs – lower, your move – simpler, and your self-satisfaction – increased. It’s a win-win solution;
  • Consider temporary storage for the items you intend to relocate but prefer not to keep in your house during the sales process. Taking advantage of short-term storage while your property is on the market is actually a very good idea, as your home won’t be cluttered with already packed moving boxes and household items you don’t use on a daily basis (it will be much tidier and more attractive to potential buyers).

Having sorted out and organized your belongings, you can finally start packing for your move.

3)   Pack Up Your Household

To prepare your home for a move, you need to prepare your household items for shipment. Your first step is to gather all the relevant information and the required moving supplies. Then, you should take every precaution to ensure the safety of your belongings during transit.

  • Request a list of all the non-allowable items that your movers won’t ship for you and decide what to do with them. You have several options: transport them in your own vehicle; find specialty movers to relocate them; use them up before the move; or give them away;
  • Get hold of appropriate packing supplies to provide the best possible protection for your belongings during shipment;
  • Avoid common packing mistakes and get familiar with some proven packing rules and clever packing tricks to ensure a safe and efficient packing process. Be particularly careful when packing breakables and valuables, cushion the boxes well, seal them securely, devise a clever labeling system (detailed description of the contents of the boxes, clear handling instructions, color-coding, etc.) and provide adequate insurance for your prized possessions;


    A game of search and find while packing up your household belongings will be a lot of fun and will also speed up the process.

  • Prepare large household items and sensitive equipment for the move – unplug and clean home appliances, disassemble furniture pieces, disconnect electronics, etc. Consult the corresponding manuals to make sure you are doing everything the right way, wrap your bulky and awkwardly-shaped pieces in moving blankets or other soft fabrics, and use plenty of sealing tape or plastic wrap to hold the protective materials in place.

Your belongings should be ready when the movers arrive to pick them up on the agreed date and time, but it is a good idea to let experienced professionals handle your delicate pieces (artwork, sensitive electronics) and your heavy household items (furniture and appliances). Otherwise you risk damage to your possessions and your property, as well as personal injuries.

While taking care of your belongings, you need to care of your home too.

4)   Prepare Your House For Sale (or for move-out inspection when leaving a rented property)

Saying goodbye to your cozy old home is certain to stir up cherished memories and evoke powerful emotions. After all, it has long been your safe haven, your comfortable dwelling where you could fully relax, do whatever you feel like, and spend some happy time with family and friends. But now you are about to leave your sweet old home for good and start a new life in a new place.

If you are moving out of a rental, you’ll have to return the property to the landlord, of course. You need to fix any small or major problems in your rented home and clean it thoroughly, so that it is in perfect condition when the landlord comes for an inspection prior to your move. Then, you will be able to receive your security deposit back without any conflicts or troubles.

If you are moving out of your own property, you will probably put it for sale as you will need the money for your new home. To sell well, your house has to make an impression – the more attractive and well-maintained it looks, the more profit you’ll be able to make out of it. So, prepare your home for sale really well:

  • Fix the existing problems – repair any damage to the roof, the walls, and the foundations; fix leaking pipes or fixtures; take care of squeaky floorboards, doors and drawers; replace burnt-out bulbs, broken or too worn-out household items, etc.;
  • Clean thoroughly – wipe all the surfaces in your home, remove the cobwebs, wash the windows, scrub the floors, vacuum the carpets, clean the kitchen appliances, and tidy up the house to make it look spotless, neat, and appealing to the potential buyers. Don’t forget to take care of the exterior, as well (trim the grass and the bushes; remove dead branches, fallen leaves, and other debris from the driveway and the garden paths; clean grimy stairs and decks; polish metal pieces, etc.);


    If potential buyers feel comfortable and welcome when they cross the doorstep of your home, it will be easier to convince them that this is just the right house for them.

  • Set up the scene – create a sense of coziness and comfort in your home to charm and impress the home seekers who cross your doorstep. Open up the curtains and the window coverings to let light inside, place vases of fragrant flowers around the house, use vivid colors and lovely artwork to enhance the appeal of your home – just resort to your creativity and think of effective ways to make people feel welcome.

The attractive interior and exterior of your house will result in a quick and profitable sale. Just be careful when negotiating the details with the new owners of your property to make sure you can stay in your home until the pre-scheduled moving day and get everything ready on time.

Also, don’t forget that you’ll have to transfer the utilities and to put all the property-related paperwork (mortgages, taxes, insurance policies, etc.) in order prior to your move. Changing your addressis another important issue to take care of in order to avoid hassles with your mail and your accounts.

Last but not least, you should get ready for the movers.

5)   Prepare Your Home For The Movers

The better prepared your home, your belongings, and you yourself are when Moving day knocks on your door, the smoother your relocation will be. So, what to do before the movers arrive?

Set Aside Important Items

Designate a room where to store everything the movers are not supposed to load onto the moving truck. Mark it “no-entry room” and lock it safe on Moving day to ensure your peace of mind. Keep your most valuable possessions, the box of essentials you need to survive for a couple of days without the rest of your belongings, certain electronic devices you can’t do without (phone, laptop, etc.) and everything else you intend to take with you in that safe room. Make sure your documents stay with you all the time and be careful not to misplace an important item and lose it in the moving chaos.

Keep Kids And Pets Safe

If possible, leave young children and playful pets with a trusted friend or relative until the moving chaos in your home is over. This way, you will not only ensure their safety but will also help reduce their stress as they will not witness strangers going in and out of your home and taking your possessions away. Besides, you will be able to focus on your tasks and to make sure things go according to plan.

If your kids and pets will stay home on Moving day, at least arrange for someone to look after them in a safe and quiet room where they will not be disturbed.

The time has come to say your final goodbye to your old home.

Prevent Property Damage

Take precautionary measures to prepare your house adequately and to provide proper protection to your property:

  • cover floors and carpets with carpet film protectors, cardboard pieces, old sheets or any other appropriate protective materials to prevent scratching, denting and other damage;
  • use newspapers or old rugs to keep dirt and mud away (especially if it is raining outside);
  • cover the walls with old sheets and wrap the banisters with moving blankets or other thick fabrics;
  • use corner guards to secure the corners and cover the stairs with protective anti-slippery coating;
  • protect the door frames with foam paddings and remove doors from their hinges if necessary;
  • remove paintings, mirrors and clocks from the walls;
  • wrap all your belongings with plastic wrap to protect them from dust and dirt, as well as to keep water away on rainy/snowy days.

Remove Obstacles

Small items can easily cause major accidents if they get in the way of the movers while they are carrying large and heavy household items. So, walk through your home in advance and plan on the best way to take your belongings out of your property and into the moving truck:

  • provide enough free space for the movers to maneuver your household items around;
  • measure the doors and remove them from their hinges if necessary to provide several inches of extra space;
  • direct the movers as to which of your furniture pieces should be dismantled beforehand and how to squeeze them out as easily as possible;
  • secure a safe route out of your property – remove any obstacles from the corridors and the entryway of your home and keep the paths from your residence to the moving truck free of debris, fallen leaves and other potential hazards.

Have Extra Packing Supplies

Last-minute packing emergencies are quite common – you may need to repack something or you may decide to add some extra protection to a certain item, or to pack some specific pieces you intended to leave behind, etc. So, make sure you have some extra bubble wrap and packing tape, boxes and bags, etc., as rushing to the stores for supplies on Moving day will cost you lots of time, nerves and money.

Treat Your Movers Well

It is entirely up to you to turn your new residence into your dream home.

Being a good host will encourage the movers to do a good job and handle your items with greater care. So, provide healthy snacks, bottled water, coffee, and other season-appropriate drinks to your movers to keep their spirits and energy levels up; designate a bathroom they can use (equipped with liquid soap and disposable hand towels); state your preferences in a friendly way and be as helpful as possible. You will receive quality services and a gratifying moving experience in return. Reward your movers with generous tips and rejoice the successful outcome of your relocation endeavor.

Triple Check Everything

Inspect your entire home one last time, not only to make sure that nothing has been left behind, but also to ascertain the perfect condition of your old property and to say your final goodbye.

Lock the house safely upon your departure and head for the brand new life that awaits you in your new home!


Moving Out: Getting Security Deposit Back from Landlord

Every relocation means stress, time and expenses to be made. And when it comes to renting an apartment or house, the situation is a bit more complicated because of one factor. When moving out lots of people wander – do you get your security deposit back? Yes, you do. And getting the security deposit back is a matter of complying with the law. It gives strict rules as to how and when your deposit can be kept and those landlords who don’t wish to comply may not only lose the deposit but also face heavy fines. Unfortunately not all landlords know the law or are willing to apply it. In fact, there are many landlords withholding the whole security deposit back knowing that most tenants won’t take the steps necessary to retrieve it. And of course it is most natural that you may want to get your security deposit back. In order to make sure that you do and that you will have no problems getting security deposit back we have a few ideas we’d like to share with you. Here below we discuss several possible scenarios regarding how to avoid problems getting security deposit back and how to succeed.

Before you move in to your new home…

Before you pick a new home to rent, check the landlord first in details as much as possible. Check the Better Business Bureau not only for moving companies, but also to research what the management of the property is and the neighborhood. Read the reviews that you find online and use a search engine to get to more information and see if there were any complaints from the owner of the building. It will be easier to get your security deposit back if you rent a place from someone who is reliable rather than someone with a bad history. After you decide on which rental unit to take, it is time to prepare to take the necessary steps for getting your security deposit back before even moving in.

Document the condition in which your rental is BEFORE moving in even one box.

Your landlord will ask you for a deposit of some type. Whatever that type is, it is treated as a security deposit by law. As you move in, make an inventory of the condition in which this place is – if your landlord doesn’t initiate this step, do it yourself. Check if all the appliances work properly and write down all damages. Check the light switches, all systems like heating, flush the toilet and so on. You can make pictures or videos as well – just make sure you catch well in detail everything. When your inventory is ready, ask your landlord to put a date on it and sign it. You can also ask for the age of every item in the rental like carpet, paint etc. Most probably you won’t need this information, but if you have to fight for your security deposit, it may matter as to how much you may be able to get back. That is why document everything.  For example, if your landlord wants to charge you for the paint of the windows, if the paint was faded and worn out when you moved in, s/he wouldn’t be able to. If s/he doesn’t agree to sign your inventory, send the inventory by certified mail, send one to yourself as well and keep it unopened). All pictures, videos and the inventory list must be prepared before you have moved in even one box of your belongings. Best would be if you could do that during the day because you will be able to see more details in daylight. You will use this inventory again when you decide to move out – walk through your rental with the landlord and compare the inventory, photos and videos to the current condition of the place.

In the same time maintain the place, keep it clean, tidy and don’t cause damages. It will be easier for you to get your deposit back if you take care of your home. If you notice any damages right after moving in, contact your landlord to inform him/her for the repairs to be done. If you see damages that have occurred after you’ve moved in, inform the landlord immediately as well. Otherwise a leakage in the bathroom could cause other damages on its turn – damages that you may be liable for.

How to get your security deposit back?

  1. When you decide to move out and you wish to get your security deposit back, it is time to fist notify your landlord. If you are a tenant at will (no written lease) give a mouth-to-mouth notification in advance. In most states the law requires you to do that 30 days in advance (check what the regulations in your state are). If you can get that in writing, you and your landlord can agree on a shorter notice period. Technically, you owe your landlord the rent for this period of time and if you don’t pay it, the landlord has the right to deduct it from your security deposit. Copy your notice and send it to your landlord by certified mail, also request a return receipt. You need this prove that you have notified your landlord that you will be leaving. If you don’t have it, you may have your rent or part of it deducted from your security deposit after which you won’t be able to get all of it back. And also in case you find yourself in the small claims court this prove will protect you. If your landlord did not sign for the letter, send it again. After you receive the return receipt, wait for 7 days for your landlord to respond to your demand letter.
  2. When the deposit needs to be returned, most states set a deadline of about a couple of weeks until when you have to receive by your landlord an itemized statement how your deposit has been applied (rent, repair work, cleaning fees, storage or disposing of unclaimed property, etc.), what you have left from your deposit (including the interest on it) and (if it is required in your state) a list of proposed deductions that have not been made yet. Generally, the law allows your landlord to use your deposit for unpaid charges like rent and utility bills, repairs like broken windows, holes in the walls, etc. (but not for wear and tear only like worn out carpet, faded or chipped paint, etc.) and for cleaning the unit in order to give it to the next tenant(s) as clean as you got it. If the rental unit was damaged by a vandal or a natural disaster again your landlord has no right to withhold money from your security deposit. In case of going to the court, your landlord will have to justify the deductions made by proving the costs of claimed repairs like if materials were purchased for fixing damages for example. If the landlord did some work, it should be described. If you see in the deductions your last month’s rent, then it means it was withheld from your deposit. If no parts of your deposit were withheld for your last rent, then you are obliged to pay your last month’s rent.
  3. In this time prepare the property. If there are some damages caused, you will need to fix them before leaving. In this way you won’t give a reason to your landlord to hold money from you.
  4. If you are afraid that you may not be able to get your security deposit back, you can use it for your last month’s rent. Write a note to your landlord informing that you wish your deposit to be used for your last month’s rent, that you will fix any damages (if there are) and you will leave the rental unit clean. You can offer your landlord to come and make an inspection to see if there are any damages to repair.
  5. Your landlord may not agree to that – in this case you will receive a 3-days notice to pay your rent. If you don’t do it though, you cannot be forcefully taken out of the rental unit (locked out, harassed, etc). Your landlord cannot do anything else besides taking you to court. But since you will be moving out and your landlord knows it, most probably s/he will agree.
  6. In the meantime just so you know – your landlord has no right to increase your security deposit over time. You can take your landlord to court for this and you don’t have to pay the increase. And the landlord cannot throw you out for not paying rent because the deposit is not considered rent.
  7. If you are renting a place with other people but you will be the only one leaving, try to figure out something to get your share of the security deposit back. The landlord is not obliged by law to give it to you unless all tenants are leaving. You can try to talk to the other cotenants and agree with them on something. On the other hand, the landlord is obliged to keep your money separately from all other accounts so that when you need them, they can be given back to you. That is why it is called a security deposit and not “landlord’s pocket money for shopping”.
  8. In a case that you wish to leave the property sooner than the date when your lease expires, talk to your landlord. Best would be if both of you try to find someone else to rent the unit. If you don’t, then you may have to pay your rent until your lease expires. In this way you won’t get your security deposit back either. But if you do find someone to rent the place sooner, you will owe only part of the rent. For example, if your rent is $600 and you moved out on the 7th day of the month, your landlord re-rents the place on the 20th, then you owe 2/3 of a months rent which is $400.
  9. Discuss with your landlord what he expects you to do when leaving in terms of a final cleaning. It’s important so that you don’t do under- or over-cleaning.
  10. Whatever you do in terms of repair work and cleaning should be documented. Ask people to attend so that you can have witnesses of your work and then take photos and make videos.
  11. Before you leave, take everything with you – personal items, food, cleaning supplies, etc.
  12. When you’re leaving your property, your landlord will have to come to a final inspection. In some states the law allows you to be present. Either way, ask the landlord to be there are well so if there are any problems to fix or some more cleaning to do, you can take care of that. Before the inspection, the landlord is obliged by law to allow you to fix any damages that you have caused. After the inspection, s/he is allowed to make deductions for damages that have not been fixed, which occurred after the final inspection or were not found during the inspection.
  13. Try to arrange exchanging your keys for the deposit. You can also prepare a statement for your landlord to sign that the place is clean, it is in good condition. If you wish to, you can also take photos. Hold up on them the same day’s newspaper to prove the pictures were not done earlier.
  14. After all the work is done and you know your new address, give it to your landlord. There are some states where if the landlord doesn’t manage to find you within a particular time, he/ she may keep your security deposit. The date by which you should get your deposit back should be mentioned in the lease. Anyway, typically the security deposit is given back to the tenants a few weeks after leaving the property.
  15. You can check the regulations that apply for your state on this link.
  16. If you have no signed lease you should get your deposit in the first 21 days after you leave the rental and hand over the key to it. If you have a written contract, check it and see what it says. If it doesn’t set any deadline or its deadline is more than 30 days after leaving the property, then your landlord has 30 days to pay you back your deposit. It cannot be more by law.

What if you get a “no”?

If your landlord somehow breaks the state law like not sending an itemization for example, or if you are not be happy with the landlord’s deductions talk to the landlord about it. Try to agree on getting more of your deposit back if you do additional cleaning for instance. If you both agree on that, write it down and sign it both of you. This agreement is legally binding and if your landlord fails to comply with it you could go to small claims court.

If your landlord isn’t willing to cooperate, prepare a demand letter. It is good to prepare one in many aspects – first, if you do go to small claims court you may be asked for such a letter and if you don’t have it you lose the deposit. Second, such a letter shows to your landlord that you are willing to do what it takes to get back what’s rightfully yours and that you also know your rights. Making such a demand letter is often very useful because you can threaten to go to small claims court. It is important to write down your story because in case you need it in court, you will need to inform the judge about it. Try as much as you can to be up to the point, specific and professional in your letter. The more angry you sound, the more you will provoke the other person to respond similarly. In your demand letter discuss what are the risks of losing your deposit, the time that the defense will take and the possibility for a public dispute. Surely this will get the other party to think well what to do. When you’ve stated all that, it is time to set your requests. Ask for a particular resolution like a specific amount of money back up to a certain deadline. Lastly, write down that you will file a case in court if you don’t get what you’ve demanded. Make a copy of your demand letter and again send it by certified mail also asking for a return receipt. Keep the papers from sending the letter and attach them to your copy of the demand letter so that you don’t lose them.

Small claims court

If you wish to ensure getting your deposit back, begin by not only making an inventory, but also maintaining your rental unit well.

If you owe your landlord more than what your security deposit is, you can be taken to court. This is the moment when you can ask to have back your deposit or any other money s/he owes you. But the other is possible also. You can resort to a lawsuit in small claims court in the city where your rental is, if your landlord did not provide what you asked for or you are not happy with what you got. Request to have double (in some states you are allowed to ask for double) the part of your security deposit which was – in your opinion, wrongfully kept, and the interest (if your state requires it) plus your court expenses (again, it is possible in some states). If your landlord has sent you a letter on time, informing that s/he is keeping a part or all of the deposit back, you may not be able to get double damages. Some states will also allow you to sue your landlord for damages arising from your landlord’s holding your deposit illegally. All you need to do is pay as little as $10 to $50 and in about a month you will be able to face a judge (no jury here) and present your evidence. If you cannot pay the fee, inform the clerk and he will give you the right forms to fill out, also asking for financial information to prove that you cannot afford to pay the fee.

You don’t need a lawyer for a small claims court – just gather your proofs (notice of your intent to leave, photos of your unit before leaving it and the demand letter). The whole process lasts no more than about 15 minutes – the judge hears out both parties and can either take a decision right away or mail it usually in a few days. If you wish to get a lawyer, you can try to agree on “contingency” – it means that your lawyer will be paid only if you win the case. And if you do, the judge may order that your landlord pays the attorney fees.

Get full security deposit back

Knowing the rules of the game and knowing your rights are the key to success. Follow the info in this article to succeed. If you are wondering how to get rental security deposit back remember to read our guide well. Be strict to yourself and to the advice we give you so that you can avoid problems with your landlord and with getting your security deposit back after you move out.


How To Prepare Your House For Sale Before A Move Out

You’re about to move into a brand new location and the final preparations to move out are underway. This could be a hard time for you – saying goodbye to family, friends, neighbors and co-workers is never easy, and besides, your roots to all familiar surroundings may have gone deeper than you think. On the other hand, this could be an exciting period for you as a new job, a loving partner, loyal friends or thrilling adventures may await you at your new destination. Regardless of the reason for your move, this transitional period will probably be fairly emotional for you – should you need help relocating locally or long-distance, don’t forget that professional moving assistance is just a few mouse clicks away.

And for better or worse, the sale of your house is inevitable.

If you want to sell your property fast and at the highest price possible, then you’ll have to put some serious thought, and effort, into making sure your home becomes a model one. The pristine look of your house will convince your real estate agent and the potential buyers that you are a serious seller who’s done their homework conscientiously.

Here’s how to prepare your home for sale so that it ends up being impressive and appealing to its future owners.

Repair Works

In fall, fallen leaves should be raked and removed from your property.

In order to impress and sell really well, your house should be in tip-top shape. The first step in preparing your home for a successful sale is to tend to the small details and then work your way towards the larger picture.

Repair all the items that need to be fixed (or have someone to do it for you), like

  • Squeaky doors, drawers and cabinet doors, or such that get stuck;
  • Loose or broken tiles;
  • Burnt-out bulbs in light fixtures;
  • Cracked windows or ones with broken seals;
  • Faucets and/or toilets that leak or run;
  • Worn-out carpets should be replaced with new high-quality ones, preferably of a neutral color;
  • Problematic curtain rods or window coverings;
  • Any holes, markings or stains on walls or floors;
  • Any roof damage should be taken care of immediately;
  • Faulty kitchen appliances, and

any other household item that has been known to cause problems or you have recently or just noticed to be out of working order.

Take Care Of The Interior

Some masterful interior design touches, like a vase of fresh flowers, could turn the tables in your favor.

Once all small or major problems in your property have been fixed, it’s time to clean the interior thoroughly. The fresh and gleaming appearance of your house will definitely boost its charm and increase the chances of a quick and profitable deal.

  • The bathroom(s) should look spotless, polished and shiny;
  • Light fixtures and chandeliers should be cleaned, and any debris, like dead bugs, removed from ceiling lights;
  • Any kitchen appliances (refrigerators, freezers, stoves, cookers, washing machines, dishwashers, etc.) that will be left behind and sold together with the property should be emptied, and properly cleaned inside as well as outside. Make sure all of them are in working order;
  • The floors should be mopped and the carpets – vacuum-cleaned;
  • No cobwebs should be visible anywhere inside the house;
  • Shelves and cabinets should be de-cluttered and all remaining items need to be neatly arranged;
  • Any reflective surfaces, like windows (interior and exterior sides), mirrors, sinks, faucets, floors, etc., should be made to shine with cleanliness;

And when the cleaning process is over, your house will have to look impeccably clean – neat, tidy, fresh and highly presentable to future candidate buyers.

Take Care Of The Exterior

First impressions should never be underestimated – your property exterior is what people see first so make sure it is in pristine condition.

Never underestimate first impressions. Keep in mind that the outside of your property is what people see first and where important preliminary opinions are formed. Therefore, the more attractive and inviting and well-maintained your house exterior looks, the bigger that chances are that more potential buyers will cross your doorstep.

  • Lawns and hedges should be neatly trimmed;
  • The presence of flowers will greatly improve any garden (if applicable);
  • Dead branches from trees should be removed;
  • The walkways and driveway need to be swept of debris, like fallen leaves, branches, dirt, etc. In the wintertime, they should be clear of snow and/or ice;
  • Any rusty and squeaky gate hinges need to be cleaned up and oiled;
  • Broken fences will have to be fixed; and

any other issues, no matter how small they may seem, will have to be addressed adequately. If you can notice something out of the ordinary, it’s highly probable that other people will notice it too. After all, if they are willing to pay so much money to purchase a certain property, they will definitely make sure it’s worth the investment.

Finishing Touches

A few short minutes is all the time you will have to impress future owners once they walk through the front door. Try to create a sense of coziness with a touch of excitement and a twist of wonder by placing a pretty rug near the entrance door and a vase of freshly picked and fragrant flowers on a table nearby.

Think of various interesting ways to make people welcome in your home. Incorporate vivid and contrasting colors, turn on all the lights in the house and introduce tasteful pieces of art to provoke genuine admiration.

Final Expert Tips

  • It’s a good idea to invite a few friends over and ask them to go through your entire house carefully and try to find anything that looks suspicious, misplaced or out of touch with the rest of your home. You can turn this into a funny little game: encourage them to be as meticulous as possible by awarding the title “Sherlock Holmes” to the person who has found the most faults. Note down your pals’ findings or any suggestions they may have, and act accordingly to make things right.
  • If you have the time and opportunity to visit other model homes in nearby neighborhoods, do so. Such visits could turn into a fountain of fresh and inspiring ideas for the remarkable sale of your house.
  • Following the above guidelines for preparing your house for sale will surely increase tenfold your chances of success.

    Remember that you and your real estate agent are from one and the same team and both of you should work hard to achieve the set goal.

  • Experts advise that only the real estate agent should be present during a showing because buyers normally feel more comfortable when the owner is not present on the property.

People love exemplary homes where they can feel the owners’ pride of possession throughout the property. If your efforts have managed to excite soon-to-be owners into thinking to themselves, “I could live here!”, then you’re surely on the right track of bringing the sale of your house to a hugely successful end.


Your Eco-Friendly Move Out Tips

Moving is an event that happens to everyone eventually and most people handle it with attention, good and timely preparation. There are basic questions that you need to answer when moving but the truth is that not everyone is aware of considering the environment when moving. It is important for everyone though to think about an eco-friendly moving when the time comes. We all should take responsibility for preserving nature’s recourses and establishing the ways to do it. Make your environmentally friendly moving and follow this article which is going to give you a few easy tips that will help you become “green” and save money as well.

Eco-Friendly Moving – Where to Start
When you begin to prepare for moving use technology instead of paper in order to protect the planet. For example, for becoming more eco-friendly when moving make lists by using your phone. Now there are free phone apps that can help you move and preserve the environment at the same time. Why go for paper that you can loose when you can save trees and be more organized at the same time?

Also, when looking for a reputable moving company for your move, use electronic communication. Instead of letters, ask the moving company to communicate with you with e-mail and telephone. When you send your request for moving calculation ask to receive and electronic version of your estimate before moving day.

In order to move environmentally conscious look for reusable boxes. You can use recycled cardboard boxes and other eco moving supplies. Look for degradable materials like plastic bags that nature can process. Whatever is left after you have moved out and is still usable you can sell it or give it away instead of just throw it out. You can swap some things, too, or donate online at sites like Goodwill. Still, if you want to have an eco-friendly moving whatever needs to go to the garbage and is not degradable put it away and bring it to the recycling center nearest to you.

Recycled boxes for eco-friendly moving
For your eco-friendly moving you may use recycled or plastic boxes instead of regular. This is one of the ways in which you can preserve the environment!

Move Environmentally Friendly – Packing
Use environmentally friendly moving supplies like boxes. Look for recycled packing materials like packing paper and recycled cardboard boxes. Also, when the moving is over, be environmentally friendly and give the packing supplies that are reusable to others who will need them – you can make a moving sale or use the left over boxes for example to keep some luggage in the attic or basement.

If you want to save on moving supplies and help preserve the environment you could also try to think about what to use instead of the regular packing materials. You don’t need to buy packing paper for a start – if you begin to collect newspapers a few weeks before the moving you can use them as an eco-friendly choice. For the fragile items you can rely on towels for smaller objects like packing a computer and blankets for larger pieces of electronics.

Pack as little as you can – every moving expert and moving company that are environmentally friendly will tell you this. It means less to move, pack and less to pay for as well. Clothes, books, computers, toys and etc. can go to your friends who have a family and children. Read more great tips about how to get moving boxes cheap or for free here.

Eco Moving Boxes
It is already possible to rent plastic boxes. They are stronger because they are made of plastic and are more friendly to the environment because after the moving is over there are no thrown away boxes. In this way you also save money from buying boxes. Also they’re easily stackable because of the small types of sizes in which they are offered and this makes them easier to load and unload in the truck and thus saves time for you. Plastic boxes are available for an eco-friendly move wherever you are and you can count on the movers to hand them over to you clean and sanitized.

Eco-friendly mouve out cleaning service companies
More and more moving companies are becoming eco-friendly: contact a mover near you and ask them what they do to preserve the environment.

Plastic boxes come with handles and are water resistant which means you can count on safety as well during transportation besides taking care of the environment. They do not hold dust, cannot be so easily crushed like cardboard boxes and can be used hundreds of times.

After you have moved out remember to use eco-friendly cleaning materials like these, for instance, for your home as well.

Eco-Friendly Moving – Move Out Cleaning Services
Many companies today use environmentally friendly technologies as part of their work. Search for a mover in your state and ask them if they provide eco-friendly moving and how. Some companies have trucks on biodiesel, for example, and are ready to suggest to you even more eco moving tips so just ask moving experts any question about what more you can do.

Were these tips helpful to make your more eco-friendly? Let us know what you have to say in the comments below.


How To Best Pack Clothes When Moving Out

Even meditation will not help you get all your clothes in a moving box.

When compared to all the tedious and often really difficult moving preparations, packing your clothes for a move is no big deal, right? They are not heavy or fragile, cannot be easily damaged and will cause no harm even if you accidentally drop them, require no disassembly or special permits, will definitely fit through the doors, etc. Besides, you consider yourself a pro when it comes to garments – you have packed clothes millions times, be it for a trip, for college, or just for a short vacation at a friend’s place. So, unless you intend to relocate the monsters hiding in your closet along with the clothes, you should experience no problems.

However, the moment you put your suitcase and a nice clean box in front of the wardrobe and open it with the idea to finish packing all the clothes inside for about half an hour, reality will strike you like a bolt out of the blue. Not only will you find that the bags and boxes you have prepared cannot hold even half your garments (most clothing items are light but voluminous and really take up a lot of space), but you will realize that designer couture and fancy accessories just don’t belong in crammed boxes. In order to avoid ruining your beautiful expensive attire and to easily move all your comfortable clothes, you need a methodical approach.

If your wardrobe was a magical portal that could take you wherever you wanted to go, moving to your new home would be quite a delightful experience. However, since you probably don’t own such a teleportation device, you may want to check the following complete guide on how to pack your clothes when moving house in an easy and efficient manner.

Sort Carefully

Every piece of clothing has found its rightful place – arranged for bundle wrapping (see below).

When the start-of-packing flag of your relocation journey has been raised, your first concern should be to sort all your belongings and decide their fate. Clothes make no exception because sorting them properly will save you time, money and troubles when actually packing and moving them to your new place.

Clean Out Your Closet Of Unnecessary Items

There is really no reason to bring some of your clothes to your future home simply because you will never use them:

  • Irrelevant clothes. Different climatic conditions or different lifestyles may render some of your clothes useless or inappropriate after your relocation. You will not wear furs in Florida and you will not need a sun hat in Wyoming. If you are moving from a rural countryside to a big city, you may as well not take your farmer’s outfit and if you are leaving your position at a large international company to start a family restaurant, for example, your cocktail dresses may not be of much use;
  • Outdated clothes. Fashion trends change pretty often and probably so do your tastes. Bright neon colors may have been just right for you a decade ago but you will probably not match them with your office attire now. What was once fancy is surely long out of fashion and what reflected your personality before may not be applicable to your present lifestyle at all;
  • The baby has already outgrown her suitcase?!?

    Outgrown clothes. If you have children, you know that they cannot wear the same garments for more than two seasons. You probably kept those wonderful small shoes your little one made his/her first steps in and many other nice clothing items for sentimental reasons alone but moving them is really not worth the time, the efforts and the money, not to mention the extra space you will need to provide for them;

  • Worn out clothes. Some clothes are just more comfortable than others and seem right for any occasion. However, if your favorite items are too worn out, you will have to replace them, sooner or later. Better dispose of them before the move;
  • Simply not your style. There may be nothing wrong with the summer dress your cousin gave you for your last birthday but you simply don’t feel yourself in it. Be sure that it can serve better purposes than hanging in your wardrobe untouched for years.

If you have many no longer needed clothes in good condition, consider selling them to pocket some extra cash for your move (and for new useful and fashionable clothes). You can organize a moving sale or just offer them for sale online. Or if you don’t feel like selling your personal attire, why not give some nice clothes to your friends or donate them to charity? Someone will surely be happy to receive them. Of course, you should simply dispose of everything that is too worn out or damaged in some way.

Pre-Pack Clothes

You can start packing some of your clothes long before Moving day:

  • Out of season clothes. If you are moving in mid-summer, you will certainly not need fur-lined jackets and woolen sweaters, neither shortly before the move, nor immediately after arriving at your new place. So, you can pack them beforehand to save some time during the last hectic weeks before the move;
  • Specialty clothes. You are advised to pack in advance whatever you will certainly not need before the relocation takes place – all your formal attire if you are not planning to attend a formal event, your swimsuit and hiking clothes because you will not have the time for many pleasure activities, etc.

Put Aside What You Will Wear During The Relocation

Classify carefully the contents of your closet and pre-pack whatever you won’t need before moving day.

Make sure not to have the clothes you will need during the relocation packed with the rest of your garments:

  • Decide what you will wear on Moving dayIt is essential to prepare some appropriate clothes which will provide maximum comfort and protection on Moving day. Don’t forget to take the weather into account when choosing your attire for the big day and make provisions for unexpected atmospheric conditions (what if it suddenly starts raining, for example?);
  • Pack separately the items you will need immediately upon arrival. You will need to take a shower and have a good rest when you finally arrive at your new place, so make sure some towels, underwear and pajamas are packed separately and you have them with you. Don’t forget that you may have to spend a day or two in your new home before all your household items and clothes have been delivered, so provide for a change of clothes as well when preparing your “Survival kit”.

How To Pack Clothes Efficiently For A Move

After you have sorted out your wardrobe, it’s time to think of the most efficient way to pack clothes for moving.

Group Your Clothing

Grouping your clothes serves two purposes: 1. They will be easier to pack because similar items need similar treatment; and 2. You will know where to find whatever specific items you need and you will be able to unpack the clothing you will not wear soon when you have the time. You can group your garments by:

  • If you encounter the Snow Queen, you will need proper attire to impress her (and to survive), right?

    By material. Natural fabrics are very susceptible to creasing, so you need to be extra careful when packing them. Also, have in mind that silks are extremely delicate and woolen clothes are very voluminous. Cotton fabrics are soft and easily creased while synthetics and polyesters can be literally crammed in a box;

  • By season. Classify and pack clothes so that after arriving in your new home you will be able to quickly find and unpack the pieces corresponding to the season when your move takes place and the current weather conditions in your destination city. Most probably, your light and thin summer attire will be relatively easy to pack but you will have to provide adequate protection for the finer items. On the other hand, how to pack winter clothes for moving across country may turn out to be one of the most difficult issues you will need to resolve – you will find some resourceful tips on the best way to pack clothes for moving below;
  • By size. It is common sense that long pieces will be best packed together and smaller ones can easily go in one box. So, separate jeans and pants from T-shirts and tank tops;
  • By purpose. It is only logical that you will need your comfortable garments immediately, so pack them separately from your formal attire which you can pay attention to after you have settled in and dealt with all the urgent matters.

How To Pack Clothes When You Move

Packing clothes in a moving box is not a very good idea but if you have already purchased clean and sturdy boxes (both large and medium-sized ones will come in handy), be sure to place your clothes inside well folded and facing in different directions to keep the surface level. Seal the full boxes with packing tape and label them clearly because you will need to know what kind of clothes have been put in each of the boxes.

However, there are several other more practical packing techniques you can avail of.

Use Wardrobe Boxes

A wardrobe box is a clothes-saver.

Without a shadow of doubt, using wardrobe boxes is the most efficient and easiest way to pack hanging clothes for moving. They are very convenient – tall and equipped with a hanging rack across the top. You can take the hanging clothes out of your closet and transfer them directly in the wardrobe box, hanging them on the metal rod. Simple as that and on top of it, wardrobe boxes will keep your garments wrinkle-free and will provide excellent protection from dust and dirt. This packing method is perfect for fine formal clothing – suits and dresses, boutique items, etc. If you can afford purchasing them, you have nothing to worry about concerning the packing of your clothes. But since they are rather expensive and really take up a lot of space, most people prefer not to spend the money on them and search for alternative easy ways to pack up clothes.

Leave Clothes Where They Are

There is nothing easier than leaving your clothes in dressers and drawers. Just secure them with stretch wraps and have your chosen reliable movers pack and load the furniture with the garments still inside. Clothes are not very heavy, so this is perfectly doable, especially when you are moving across town. This approach will save you really a lot of time and space.

Suitcases Are Meant To Hold Clothes

Fold neatly your more delicate and expensive clothes and arrange them in suitcases and travel bags. They are designed to hold and protect garments and are easy to move around, so packing clothes in suitcases is probably the best way to move your clothes. However, your luggage will probably not be enough to hold all your garments, especially if you reserve the wheeled suitcases for books or other heavy items.

Garbage Bags Or Vacuum Bags

I can’t breathe!

Using garbage or vacuum bags is considered to be a clever trick because packing clothes in them is really easy and convenient and saves a lot of space.

If you decide to use trash bags, cut a hole in the bottom that is big enough for the hangers to get through and pull the bag over a dozen of clothes. Tie the bag in a knot below the clothes or use packing tape to secure the entire bundles. A zip-tie will hold the hangers together and your garments will be ready to move.

Many argue that vacuum seal bags are even more efficient because they hold a significantly larger amount of clothes compared to normal bin bags and when the air has been sucked out of them, they shrink down incredibly to use up really little space.

However, although they are very easy, both methods are not as practical as they may seem. Bags tear very easily and provide too little protection against damage. Besides, they are too slippery which makes it very difficult to arrange them one over the other and to hold them securely in place.

Plastic Wraps And Sheets

Plastic wraps can be used as easily and efficiently as garbage bags but without their limitations:

  • You can wrap tightly in them the exact amount of clothing items you want to;
  • You can accommodate them to the exact length of your hanging clothes;
  • They are not slippery;
  • They can be used to secure and protect drawers full of clothes.

Be careful not to wrap the dog in the sheet too!

Sheets can be used in a similar manner. While they do not have exactly the same advantages, they provide another easy packing method – spread a sheet on the bed and then place layers of clothes over it, starting from the larger ones and making your way to smaller items. Whenever you decide, just wrap the sheet around the clothes and tie it securely. Your clothes will be well protected in the soft large sheet and the bundles will be easy to carry on your shoulders and will not be slippery. You can just put them across the back seats of your car – this approach comes very handy for local self-moves.

Extra Tips For Packing Clothes When Moving

There are several other useful things to know when packing clothes for moving.

  1. Use clothes for padding. Soft cotton items, old clothes and even socks can be used as fillers. Small clothing items that can be easily washed and will not be damaged can fill the gaps to prevent shifting in the moving boxes during the transportation. Some soft fabrics can even be used to wrap your fragile household items in them and larger clothes, such as old sweaters can be placed on the bottom of boxes full of breakables for additional cushioning;
  2. What if the Mad Hatter had to move?

    Fold clothes from the inside out. This way, any creases your clothes might get will be inverted and it will be very easy to straighten them once you have unpacked and turned the clothes the right way;

  3. Tie the bundles of clothes tightly. Even if you purchased wardrobe boxes, you are advised to use zip-ties to hold the hangers together. Tying your clothing items securely is a must-do if you intend to use garbage bags or sheets as it is the best way to prevent them from falling and messing with each other. Consider using neck-ties for that purpose, too;
  4. Pack only dry and clean clothes. Without a doubt, your clothes must be completely dry when packed or you risk having mold growth on them. It is certain that you will wash your clothes after arriving in your future home, but packing dirty items must be avoided because they can stain other clothes and eventually damage more delicate ones. However, any repairs and dry cleaning should be left for after you have settled in your new place;
  5. Bundle wrapping. This is an innovative alternative technique to pack clothes when you move. It is supposed to prevent creasing and to save space. First, make a tiny pouch with smaller items like socks and underwear. Then, lay a large clothing item, such as a jacket, on a flat surface and start piling dresses, pants, skirts, long-sleeved shirts, sweaters, short-sleeved shirts and finally shorts and other small clothes. Put your pre-made small pouch in the middle of the pile and begin wrapping everything around it in succession until all the items have been encased in the biggest one;
  6. Insect repellent. If you intend to store your clothes for some time before unpacking them, make sure that you have packed an insect repellent with your garments. Moths and other insects are quickly and easily attracted to certain materials, so take adequate measures to protect your clothes;
  7. Protective layers. Use layers of tissue paper between your more delicate clothes and on top of them for better protection, especially when they are folded in a box;
  8. Hats and accessories are special. Hats need to go in separate large boxes and you are advised to stuff them with paper in order to preserve their shape. Accessories are best packed in small boxes with some padding materials inside;
  9. Happy moving!

    Pack shoes separately. They need to be clean and paired, ideally in their original boxes. To avoid scuffing and bruising your shoes, you need plenty of packing paper, or at least newspapers. If you intend to arrange shoes on top of each other, stuff some socks inside them and between them too – this will help the shoes keep their form and you will avoid crushing and/or denting them. Also, remember to alternate the directions of your shoes when placing them in boxes to save space;

  10. Always put heavy and large clothing items on the bottom. Heavy items must, of course, always stay under lighter ones. But if you spread large clothes on the bottom, you can actually wrap all the other smaller items inside – this way you will both save space and ensure further protection, so give the idea a thought.