Thursday, November 13, 2008

Vacating Instructions

We just received instructions for cleaning our apartment when we move out. There are a few from the list that have me worried...


"Upon termination and vacation, restore the premises to their initial condition, except for reasonable wear and tear." For the record, I think everything about the time Abi tried to color her wall red was reasonable -- she was just learning how to color at the time. And the door I damaged when I tried to pry it open after she locked me outside in my underwear -- I think we can all agree that any effort to pry open a door when you are locked outside in your underwear is "reasonable". Surely we won't have to pay for that.

-Remove ALL personal contents from unit (including cupboards and closets) As we work on this task, I am noticing that many of our "personal contents" are being removed straight to the least it is removed from the unit, right?

-Wash windows inside and outside. I can do inside. Outside...umm, we're moving in December. We can see through our windows. I hope that will be good enough.

-Clean all blinds; launder and iron ALL curtains and replace. I'm one step ahead on that one - I took down the blinds and curtains when we got here. They are zip tied and ironed in a a closet because I hate cleaning blinds.

-Strip, wash and re-wax all vinyl floors (including under range and refrigerator). I had to google "strip and wax floors". For the record, much of what came out of that search was not appropriate for children. I did learn that the liklihood of me ever stripping and waxing a floor was somewhere near 0%.

Everything else I think I can handle -- cleaning the oven, the light fixtures, the walls, carpets and cupboards are not above my cleaning repertoire. However, I believe none of those things have been done more than once during our three years in this place! I think we should probably move every 3 years for the rest of our lives. That way the oven will get cleaned, the cupboards and walls wiped down, and the closets emptied at least once every three years. When we buy a house and settle down someday, I am going to ask my landlord to send us this list every year!


Kayla said...

I founds a way to clean my oven using baking soda instead of nasty oven cleaner. Just cover the bottom with about a 1/4 of soda and squirt it with water until it is wet through, but not soaked. Let sit for 24 hours repeating the water step every two or three hours as you remember (before bed I just got it really wet, I didn't get up in the night). In the morning just wipe the soda and grime out into the garbage. I have NEVER seen my oven so clean. I haven't tackled the sides yet, but there has to be a way to use soda there too.

Melanie said...

I love you green Kayla!So it really worked? I read about it online, that and some ammonia method that sounded really stinky. This is going to make me sound like a goob, but did you take out the element in the bottom of the oven when you did the baking soda thing? Also, the wire shelves...did you do baking soda with those? Any other tips you would give a vacating tennant to win the heart of their landlord?

Kayla said...

It totally worked! I was very pleasantly surprised. It required no vigorous scrubbing. I took out the racks and just washed them in the sink. Dishsoap was enough. They weren't that dirty, and they weren't my main priority. I am the bigger goob when it comes to the heating element. I didn't know it moved until all was said and done. I wish I had taken it out, as I missed some spots because of it. Next time!

As far as landlord pleasing, I have to say I agree with cleaning under the appliances. For the walls, at least get the big uglies off. More than likely they are going to hire someone to come in and clean and paint them anyway. I wouldn't make you clean the outside of your windows. :)

Kayla said...

p.s. Magic erasers take crayon right off of any surface!

Melanie said...

Okay -- you are a cleaning goddess! Totally did the oven thing last night, and it looks awesome. Just out of curiosity, if I pull out the stove to clean before we leave, should I leave it out so they can see the cleanness, or push everything back to its original home? Sorry you are not feeling well :(

Kayla said...

I am so glad you had oven success. Did you do the sides? If so, how did you go about it? I would probably push the oven back into place.

When are you leaving Pullman again? You should be about done with work, right?

Melanie said...

I got the baking soda wet in the bottom of the oven, and then used a rag to sort of "paste" the sides. Then I turned the oven on really high, and then turned it off over night. (I don't know what effect that had). Anyway, it seemed really shiny when I was done. And, I used this pumice stone thing I got at Wal-Mart for some of the really gross stuff.

YES, I'll be done on the 26th, can you believe it? Then I'll begin my new career as professional packer/cleaner/SAHM. I have no experience. I don't know how I got hired honestly. :)