The Ultimate First Apartment Cleaning Checklist

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first apartment cleaning supplies

When planning to move into an apartment, putting together a collection of first apartment cleaning supplies should be at the top of your list. Although apartments typically appear clean, that’s not always the case. Besides, no one wants to go into an apartment and start touching surfaces without being sure that they have been adequately cleaned and sanitized.

First Apartment Cleaning Checklist

It’s wise to gather your first apartment cleaning checklist of supplies before moving day. Who wants to move into an apartment and start using a toilet or sink that may look clean but still need sanitizing? The following essential cleaning supplies and tools make it easy to give the critical areas a quick cleaning and sanitizing before settling into your new home.

In addition to that, I’ve included tips on how to use these items efficiently to save time. So check out these recommended essentials in my apartment cleaning checklist as well as ways on how to use them in each room.


best cleaning supplies

Keeping most bathrooms clean and sanitary requires a once-a-week thorough cleaning and daily touch-ups. The best cleaning supplies for the bathroom include an all purpose cleaner, rubber gloves and these below.

  • Tile and tub cleaner will do the job of scrubbing away soap scum, mold, and mildew.
  • A mild abrasive cleaner with bleach can also help clean grime from shower floors and bathtubs.
  • If you prefer a natural mild abrasive cleaner, consider using baking soda. Baking soda removes stains, and soap scum without the chemicals present in other cleaners.
  • For those tough to clean areas such as grout on tile floors and showers, a grout brush and toothbrush are useful for scrubbing between the tiles. A toothbrush can also help clean behind faucet fixtures when installed close to the backsplash or mirror.
  • A toilet brush and toilet bowl cleaner remove stubborn stains from underneath the bowl’s rim and keeps the toilet smelling fresh.
  • Pine smelling cleaner is another staple for the bathroom and, when used, will give the entire apartment that just-cleaned smell. I love using it after I deep clean my apartment.
  • A dry pad type sweeper (Swiffer) is excellent for picking up hair and dust bunnies on the bathroom floor.
  • Keep wet pads on hand to damp mop the floor when you don’t have time to go the bucket and water route.
  • A bottle of spray window cleaner in a bathroom makes it easy to keep bathroom mirrors sparkling.
  • White vinegar is an alternative to use for cleaning mirrors.
  • Sanitizing wipes are handy for keeping counter surfaces and sink fixtures clean.
  • Sponges are also handy for quick clean up, and you can get them with antibacterial properties. However, never use sponges for the bathroom in a kitchen. Use white vinegar and baking soda to keep drains clean and smelling fresh.
  • A clothes hamper can help you keep clothes off your bathroom floor and ready for the laundry.


deep clean apartment checklist

Like the bathroom, the kitchen needs daily attention to keep it clean and sanitary. Kitchen cleaning supplies include:

READ: 12 Best Kitchen Cleaning Products For Your Home

  • a broom to sweep up pesky crumbs
  • a mop and a no rinse floor cleaner for cleaning up spills before they become sticky masses that attract dirt.
  • If there is a dishwasher in the apartment, keep dishwasher soap and dish soap for hand washing dishes.
  • A soap dispensing dish brush makes it easy to wash a few dirty dishes or to clean up dishes after a snack.
  • Keep a pair of rubber gloves specifically for the kitchen on hand to protect your hands from cleaners and hot water.
  • An all-purpose sanitizing cleaner and wipes will help you keep counters and food prep areas clean.
  • Keep a roll of paper towels in the kitchen for wiping up spills and for meal preparation.
  • Dishcloths will save money because you can wash them and use them again; however, dishcloths should not be left wet and lying on countertops, neither should they be draped over a faucet to dry. When dishcloths are left damp and hanging out in the kitchen, they become reservoirs for bacteria.
  • Regular household bleach is an economical sanitizer that you can mix with clean warm (not hot) water to sanitize countertops or sinks after prepping raw meat or poultry. To create a sanitizing solution, mix one tablespoon of bleach to one gallon of warm water. You can add this combination to a spray bottle or mix it in a small clean pail. After washing the contaminated surface with soap and water, spray or swab the sanitizing solution over the surface and allow it to air dry.
  • A bottle of hand soap near your kitchen sink is useful for washing your hands after touching raw meat or poultry.
  • If the apartment has stainless steel appliances, you will want a good quality stainless steel appliance cleaner to remove handprints and sticky stuff from the surfaces.
  • Steel wool pads or nylon scrubbers are handy for saving time when cleaning grease or residue from pots and baking pans.

Laundry Room

apartment cleaning checklist

Keeping all areas of your place clean includes your laundry area. That goes for your laundry too like making sure your towels, clothes, bedding, blankets and rugs are washed regularly. Here’s my recommended apartment cleaning checklist for the laundry room area:

  • You’ll need a washing machine cleaner that removes odors from the washing machine. If your apartment comes with a washer and dryer, you should clean your washer before washing your first load of clothes.
  • A laundry basket can help keep your laundry room from being cluttered. Whether you place clothes that need to be laundered in the basket or use the basket to empty your dryer, you won’t have clothes all over the floor or on the top of the machines.
  • Stock the laundry room with plenty of detergent and other laundry supplies like fabric softener for washing clothes. You will benefit from keeping stain removers on hand.
  • If you live in an area with hard water that contains lots of minerals, a water-softening laundry booster can help keep your white clothing from getting dingy.
  • The laundry area tend to get dusty due to lint when drying clothes. Keep a broom or microfiber/Swiffer-type sweeper handy and sweep the floor after you finish washing and drying laundry.
  • Use sanitizing wipes or multi-surface cleaning wipes to keep the outside of your washer and dryer clean.

Living Room

essential cleaning supplies

When you live in an apartment, the living room is not just a space set aside for entertaining guests. It is where you spend much of your time when not sleeping or being away from home. Therefore, the living room deserves some special attention, and this apartment cleaning checklist for this area of your home will help you keep your living room ready when guests pop in unexpectedly.

  • A laundry basket can serve as a clutter basket. Keep the basket in a living room closet or a corner, and when the doorbell rings unexpectedly, you can take a few seconds to grab all your clutter, put it in the basket, and place it in a closet or bedroom.
  • Living room furniture can also become dusty quickly. Rather than grabbing the dust spray and cloth, invest in a packet of dusting wipes. The wipes come pre-moistened and work like dusting spray but are more convenient. You can purchase dusting wipes for cleaning wood and others designed for multi-purpose surfaces like electronics.
  • Another quick cleaning tool for the living room is a lint brush. If you have a pet, you may not notice the pet hair, but your visitors will. Quick swipes with a lint brush can get rid of pet hair on sofas and chairs.
  • White vinegar makes an economical and environmentally friendly deodorizer that does not leave behind harsh chemical smells. It is safe for children and pets. You can freshen a room by putting white vinegar into a clean bottle with an atomizer. Spritz the vinegar into the air and lightly on fabric surfaces that may be holding odors or place some in a bowl, and allow it to sit in the room for several hours to remove odors from the air. The vinegar smell won’t last, but the air in your living room should smell fresher.
  • Baking soda is another natural odor neutralizer. You can place bowls of baking soda strategically around your living room overnight to absorb off-putting odors.
  • If you have a wood or tile floors, keep a microfiber/Swiffer-type floor cleaner and cloths in your living room closet to quickly remove dust from your floor.
  • For carpets, keep a vacuum cleaner near the living room. The robot vacuum cleaners have become super popular lately. It’s like having your own cleaning maid. It’s one I highly recommend in this apartment cleaning checklist.
  • Another essential for the living that you can also use throughout your apartment is a cobweb duster with an extension handle. Many apartments have high ceilings, which makes it hard to reach cobwebs in corners. You can lengthen an extension handle to get to the highest points of your living room ceiling. You can also find extension dusters that work for cleaning ceiling fans, high light fixtures, and the tops of furniture or cabinets.

Build up The Supplies In This Apartment Cleaning Checklist Gradually

It may take some time to build up your cleaning supplies for your first apartment, especially if you are on a budget. However, when you are aware of what you need, you can start with the basics. You can use several cleaning products or supplies in multiple rooms, but you can save time by purchasing supplies and storing them in specific rooms so you can grab them and clean quickly. It also makes sense to buy essentials like all-purpose cleaners in large sizes and divide them among spray bottles to place in each room.

Declutter Your Space Binder Kit

Decluttering is a great start to getting organized. But what about other areas in your life like your home? Taking the leap to declutter your home can be intimidating which is why so many people avoid it. To simplify the process, I created the Declutter Your Space Binder Kit! This 32 page printable pack will help organize the chaos in your life.

I hope you enjoyed this first apartment cleaning checklist! Is there anything missing? Share your thoughts by commenting below!

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