Moving into a new home is exciting, but unless you’re purchasing a newly built house, the property you move into has naturally been lived in before and is therefore not “new.”

And if it is newly built, there’s dust and other residue from the contractors.

For this reason, it’s worth considering hiring a professional cleaning company to get rid of the dirt and grime left by those who were there before you and prepare your home for “move in condition” before the moving truck is unloaded and the furniture has been arranged.

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Moving is also known to be a stressful time. There is so much to do and it can certainly be overwhelming. Hiring a professional cleaning team can take at least some of the stress away from you, the new homeowner. As a result, you’ll be confident that your new home is safe for you and your family to unpack and move into.

But Won’t the Seller Leave It Clean?

When a family is moving out of a home that is being sold, “broom clean” is often a term used in real estate contracts to describe the condition in which a seller or renter must leave that home.

While there isn’t any legal definition of the term, “broom clean” homes are at a minimum cleared of the previous owners’ personal items and the floors have been swept clean.

For renters, a property should be left in good condition so that their security deposit can be refunded, but for home sellers, the catch-all phrase doesn’t come with the same ramifications. In our experience, unless there are stipulations in a closing contract, the cleanliness of most vacated homes is more a gesture of goodwill than anything.

The Difference Between “Broom Clean” and Move-In Clean

When we are asked to conduct a “move out cleaning,” it is commonly more than just simply sweeping floors and removing cobwebs; although when you compare it to deep cleaning, it’s the difference between a car wash versus an auto detail.

When someone hires us to do a move-out cleaning, our work usually involves dusting surfaces, vacuuming baseboards, floors and carpets, cleaning kitchen sinks, countertops, appliance exteriors and cabinet doors; cleaning and disinfecting all bathroom fixtures, including sinks, toilets, showers, tubs and mirrors; dusting and vacuuming the inside of closets, and finally, dusting any blinds and light fixtures that are remaining in the house.

But a move-in cleaning is a much more detailed cleaning of the home. This is especially important during this time as the pandemic continues to remain a threat to all of us.

The general idea is to rid the home of any previous dust and dirt. It’s easy to look at a new home and assume that it’s spotless, but there are often places in a house, especially in bathrooms and kitchens, where grime tends to reside and even once clean, all high touch surfaces are in want of disinfection.

It’s best to start off with a fresh, clean, sanitary space in which to unpack. In any case, the dirt you’ll create afterward will be your own.

Typical Move-In Cleaning Tasks

There are certain tasks that all professional cleaning companies should complete when a client is moving into a new property. They include the following:

  • Handwipe all woodwork, including baseboards, moldings, sills, window and door frames
  • Clean and vacuum all closets and built-ins
  • Dust all ceiling fans
  • Vacuum all floors, stairs, carpets and rugs, including the interior of closets and mop all floors
  • Clean and disinfect all surfaces in the bathrooms, including the inside of vanities and medicine cabinets
  • Dust/wipe all light fixtures
  • Clean and disinfect all laundry equipment.
  • Clean and disinfect all kitchen surfaces, including inside and outside of cabinets and drawers, the inside of the oven, refrigerator, freezer and dishwasher
  • Clean and disinfect all light switches, doorknobs, cabinet handles and other high touch areas throughout the home

If construction of any sort, including painting or floor sanding, has been done to the home before the move-in, the cleaning company should add the additional task of removing the dust to their work schedule.


It’s a good idea to plan the move-in cleaning in advance. Ideally, there will be time between when you sign your closing documents and your moving trucks arrive. When time doesn’t permit, buyers who are using a professional cleaning company that is insured and is able to provide a certificate of insurance can often successfully arrange with the sellers for access to the home before the closing. If that isn’t possible, proficient cleaning services will organize the cleaning tasks and work with the moving company so everyone gets their job done the right way while minimizing any inefficiencies.

Have you hired a cleaning company to deep clean your new home? If so, I’d love to hear about your experience. And as always, if you have any questions, we are just an email or phone call away. 

Maid Brigade has always been committed to providing customers with the safest, healthiest and most effective cleaning methods available. We are here for you if you have any questions about cleaning and disinfecting. Check out our website, or reach out to us by phone or text at 914-741-0552, or email at