Move Out Apartment Cleaning: How to Get Your Security Deposit Back

When moving out of an apartment, the one thing you are working towards doing is getting the area clean enough, so you get your security deposit back. How well you clean your place determines whether or not you get that money back, so taking the time to do it the right way will only help you in the end. Get your cleaning gloves on, grab your all-purpose cleaner and let’s get to work with these tips from Cheap Sacramento Movers (1601 Alhambra Blvd #100, Sacramento, CA 95816, (916) 584-9939)!

All-Over Cleaning

If you have holes where picture frames or other decorations were hanging, be sure to remove all nails and putty in the holes to make the wall smooth again. Grab a duster and dust off every surface including baseboards, window sills, blinds, cabinets and all ledges. Clean all doorknobs, doors, outlet covers, light fixtures, light switches and walls with an antibacterial wipe to kill any germs and wipe off anything you might not have known about. Make sure all carpeted areas are vacuumed, and stains are gone from the floor, if necessary, hire a professional to clean the carpets.


In all of the bathrooms, it is important for you to remove all soap scum from showers or bathtubs and use bleach to clean these areas as well. Take the time to vacuum out the drawers and remove all build up and loose hairs that might be hanging out in the corners. You will want to clean the toilet, vanity, mirror, and floors to make them sparkle how they did when you first moved in. Double check to make sure the exhaust fan is clean and if it needs to be cleaned use a wipe or vacuum to get all dust off of it.


In the kitchen, you need to make sure all of your personal belongings are emptied from the pantry and cabinets. If you placed cabinet liners inside your cabinets, be sure to remove and clean under them. Wash the front of your cabinets with a wood cleaner to make them shine and remove any spills or other grime build up. Clean the faucet and sink to make it shine as well and use a cabinet cleaner to get all excess crumbs or food off. One of the toughest parts to clean is the refrigerator, but it is necessary to take the time and clean all shelves and get all build up or food crumbs out. Take out your appliances and clean behind them to make sure you get all traces of food out for the next person who will live there.


Once all of your personal belongings are packed away, you need to make sure all baseboards are clean, carpet is vacuumed, and light fixtures are dusted to get your deposit back.

If you are unsure whether or not you should clean an area of your apartment, go ahead and clean it to be sure. The goal of cleaning should be to make it just as clean, or cleaner than it was when you first moved in. When the landlord enters your apartment to evaluate it and get it ready for the next tenant, they need to smell the freshness and be surprised at how well you cleaned. If you do each of those things, you will be sure to get your security deposit back!


Common Moving Company Scams and How to Avoid Them

When it comes time to relocate, your top priority is getting your stuff where it needs to be ASAP. Unfortunately, there are also some unscrupulous moving companies more than willing to take advantage of your urgency with questionable and outright deceitful practices. You may not be able to avoid every potentially dishonest moving company out there. However, you can reduce your odds of being taken advantage of by being aware of some of the most common moving company scams.

1. Fake References

Some scammers will falsify references by having employees post fake reviews or creating web pages with made up testimonials. They might even have friends or employees go to review sites to boost ratings. Get some peace of mind by:

  • Asking for names and phone numbers of a few references you can call yourself
  • Checking your state’s Secretary of State website to confirm the status of a moving company
  • Getting their state carrier license number
  • Checking the Department of Transportation’s website to verify their license if you are looking for interstate moving companies

2. ‘Too Good to Be True’ Estimates

Scammers will sometimes make an estimate that’s very low to lure customers concerned about the cost to choose them. They will often take the money and not show up to complete the move. If they do show up, they’ll likely find reasons to charge you more for things like “complexity of the move,” or they may add fees for little things here and there. If cost is a concern, take the following steps instead:

  • Compare rates among your preferred moving companies
  • Ask for quotes that detail what’s included in the price
  • Get any pre-moving estimates in writing
  • Never sign any documents with spaces left blank, so other details and amounts can’t be added later

3. ‘Losing’ Your Expensive Items

Companies that show up to do the work may have employees with an eye for your expensive belongings. In some cases, they’re all in on it, including the person who’s supposed to supervising your move. They may say certain things got lost. Other times, you may open boxes to find some things missing. A local moving company in Phoenix says you can protect yourself and your belongings by:

  • Only choosing companies with licensed and insured movers (they’ll pay if your belongings are damaged or missing)
  • Making a complete list of all items, especially the expensive ones
  • Locking valuables, you plan to transport yourself away in a separate location on moving day when movers will be in and out of your home

4. Holding Your Goods In Storage

Dishonest interstate moving companies may hold your stuff in storage and claim there’s an extra fee you’ll need to pay because they had issues while attempting your move. They may even have someone purposely park a large vehicle in front of your new location. They’ll then tell you if you don’t want to wait for the vehicle owner to get back and move it you’ll have to pay an extra fee.

The lowest of the low will keep making excuses about why your goods are being held before they stop responding to your calls and emails altogether. And you might not get your belongings back at all. Minimize this risk by getting full company information before any move takes place, including:

  • Full legal business name for the company
  • A physical company address
  • A verifiable office phone number (call the number yourself first to make sure a real person answers)

Should you have any doubts about a moving company you are considering, take a moment to check reviews online from review sites you know you can trust. Also, check with the Better Business Bureau to see if they’re accredited or if any complaints have been filed. Finally, pay attention to your intuition. If something doesn’t feel right about your initial interaction with someone from a moving company, trust your instincts and look elsewhere.


Tips to Make A Successful Long Distance Move

One of the main difference between a local move and a long-distance move is the length of time it takes moving reps to move your stuff. This means you’re going to be without all your household possessions for several days and probably closer to weeks. That’s the reason so much advance planning needs to take place in order to pull off a successful moving experience. With more unknowns and more logistics involved with a cross country move, what can you do to make interstate moving less stressful? Glad you asked, we’re going to cover 7 things you can start doing right now to get prepared!


1. Hire a Reputable Moving Service

These days, there are countless ways to move belongings long distance. The primary choice is hiring a moving company to load, transport, and unload items for you. There are also self-service moving, rental trucks, storage/crate containers, air cargo moving, uber-type moving services, and bus cargo transport. You can even move by train (it’s crazy expensive)! Regardless of the choice, ensure the company hired has a physical location, license, great references, affordable prices with no hidden fees, and (mostly) positive feedback. We suggest checking for interstate licensing information online. All household goods carriers are required to maintain valid registration through the U.S. Department of Transportation. The folks at Great Guys Moving ( suggests checking status of license and insurance online through the FMCSA platform.

2, Get In-Home Estimates

Reputable moving services offer in-home estimates, so Moving Companies Long Distance recommends avoiding ones that don’t. Estimates are effective when moving representatives survey the home thoroughly. They can see each room’s belongings and determine a transport timetable. Estimates include but not limited to transportation, moving insurance, hourly rates, and staircases/elevator moves. Get the estimate, moving date in writing and read the contract before signing.

3. Know the Moving Date

Since many people travel long distance continuously, you must schedule a date or delivery window around the company’s availability. This is due to customers’ varying destinations and the moving company’s customer pairing schedule centered around route and destination. Book a date in advance to reserve your spot. When booking, however, most people move in summer. Fall, winter, and spring moves are less expensive.

4. Prepare the New Home or Apartment for Move-In Day

If the new home or apartment requires cleaning the floors or painting the walls, do this now. It’s easier to accomplish this while the area is vacant. If there are specific move-in dates, adhere to those. Those move-in dates may require move-in rules as well, so pay attention to the property manager’s date and times for clearance. Check parking space in the new destination and stairs/elevator in case movers have to move upstairs.

5. Update the Address

Inform the post office about your address change. Change the address on bank accounts, insurance providers, cell phone providers, internet providers, healthcare/dental/vision providers, workplace, and passports.

6. Label Boxes

It’s common for your boxes to end up on the same truck as another person. While movers should place dividers between shipments to avoid a mix-up, label each box with your name in case mix-up occurs. Additionally, include room location to make unloading and organizing easier. An example is “Susan – kitchen.”

7. Keep Essential Items with You

Financial documents, passports, birth certificates, social security card, and driver’s license are examples of sensitive documents companies should never have in their possession. Necessities such as groceries, hygiene products, oral care products, sleeping products, medicine, toiletries, jewelry, small electronics, and some shoes/clothing/underwear should be in your possession as well. Pack essential items inside the vehicle or a carry-on suitcase.

Because long-distance moving professionals are accountable for your possessions longer than local moves, nailing these tips the first time is crucial. Following these suggestions will make moving long distance less unpleasant.



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