Moving Organization Your Life

6 Step Apartment Move-Out Checklist

Many leases come to an end during the summer and especially at the end of the school year. A little planning in the weeks prior to your move-out can help keep you on schedule and ensure you receive as much of your deposit back as possible. This checklist of 6 steps for an apartment move-out is a handy guide to make moving out of an apartment go smoothly.

1. Provide written notice to your landlord of your intent to move
Hopefully, you are aware of the notice you must give your landlord prior to termination of your lease. The notification period varies depending on the lease terms and can be as much as 90-day advance notice. Check your lease. If your landlord or property manager is on site, hand-deliver it and ask them to sign a copy for you to confirm receipt. Another good option is to mail it with a return receipt requested for your records.

2. Book a moving company or reserve a moving truck
This is important to do ahead of time so you are not scrambling at the last minute. If you are moving during this time of year, you have to contend with the mass exodus or arrival of students moving after they graduate or just to a new home before the next school year. Having your reservation booked weeks in advance will be an immense relief. If there will be a lag between moving out of your current apartment and moving into your new apartment, reserve a storage unit to keep your belongings until you are ready for them.

3. Submit your change of address
Providing a couple weeks advance notice of your new address will eliminate, or at the very least lessen, any lag in service. Make sure your mail makes it to your new home by visiting your local post office, or go online, to submit a change of address. Don't wait until after the move to notify banks, credit card companies, and your landlord of your new address. You will also want to touch base with the utility companies to transfer service to your new address if it is a local move.

4. Pack
A few weeks before the move, begin packing non-essential items. Our Busy College Student’s Guide to Smarter Moving offers timesaving tips and tricks for packing. Starting the packing process early provides time to really go through items and decide if you want them to move with you. Donate or throw away any items that are not needed or wanted. Keep the cleaning supplies out because you will need them, especially if you hope to get your deposit back.

5. Clean
Maybe the last thing anyone wants to do before moving on to their next home is clean, which is why landlords dangle the carrot of getting the deposit back. If there is no damage to the apartment and it just needs a good cleaning, there is a good chance you will get all your deposit back. Put on some good music, hunker down, and get through it. Do as much ahead of time as possible. Here is a list of things to definitely touch on:

  • Remove nails and screws from walls and fill holes with putty.
  • Wipe down light switches, doors, and walls of any dirt or smudges, especially in high traffic areas.
  • Vacuum, mop, and dust all rooms and living areas. Remove any carpet stains that may have been ignored over the months.
  • Bathrooms
    • Remove soap scum from the shower and tub. Bleach the grout to remove any mildew that may have developed.
    • Remove cabinet and drawer liners you may have inserted and clean out any hair or debris that has accumulated.
    • Clean the toilet and wipe down the sink, mirror, and countertop.
    • Sweep and mop the floor last.
  • Kitchen
    • Clean out all cabinets and drawers of liners, crumbs, and debris.
    • Remove shelves and drawers from the refrigerator to clean them and scrub away spills or crumbs inside the refrigerator.
    • Scrub the oven and stove. Remove the drip pans, burners, and shelves to remove grease spattering, crumbs, and baked on mess.
    • Wipe down cabinets doors, the refrigerator door, and countertops.
    • Clean and disinfect the sink and shine the faucet.

6. Say Goodbye
Lastly, say goodbye and lock it up. Deliver the key to your landlord after you do a walk through inspection with him or her. Just to be on the safe side take photos of the move-out condition of the apartment. Be sure to inquire as to when you can expect to receive your deposit back, and then set a reminder in your calendar on your phone to follow up.

What tips do you suggest to help renters when moving out of an apartment?


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The Storage Queens

We know a thing or two about moving. Together, we share the best tips in organizing, storage, navigating your city, and more!

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  • These are just 6 simple steps but I can assure you that they will definitely come in handy when you are moving out. It is just human to have a tendency to forget or overlook certain things during a really busy phase. Hence, listing out the basic necessities prior to a move is really important. This is true regardless of whether you are shifting houses or an office moving. They both require proper preparations.

  • I agree that you should always reserve a storage facility beforehand. There is nothing worse than arriving at your new town and realizing that you don’t have enough space for all of your things in your new home. After that you’ll have to scramble to find a storage unit close by. It is always better to be prepared.

  • A personal storage in storage facility is a must when moving. These facilities have thermal regulation and fire alarms, so you can feel calm that your belongings are in a safe place. Other must-do is hiring professional movers – they have insurances, so you will be compensated in case anything gets broken or damaged in any way during the moving process.

  • A personal
    storage in storage facility is a must when moving. These facilities have
    thermal regulation and fire alarms, so you can feel calm that your belongings
    are in a safe place. Other must-do is hiring professional movers – they have
    insurances, so you will be compensated in case anything gets broken or
    damaged in any way during the moving process.

  • This list is a great way to get started if you’re planning on moving soon! Moving can be pretty stressful, especially since there’s so much to get done. I would add that one of the first things you should do is gather all the moving supplies you’re going to need, like boxes and tape. It’s not very fun to run out of boxes when you’re right in the middle of packing!

  • I really like the points you made in your second tip. A lot of people seem to forget about how much help it could be to have a moving company come. If you can’t get that help though, at least renting a moving truck will help out immensely. Hopefully people are able to get the help they need with these kinds of things. I was really interested in your first step as well. I’ve never really thought about how important it could be to use written notice of your intent to move. I’ve always just thought that telling them verbally was good enough. I’ll definitely try to keep that in mind next time I move.

  • For me, I feel like I do a lot better at moving when I throw away the unnecessary. I am just hoping that I get everything moved out in time. I am suppose to be out in the next few days and I just barely started packing. http://www.chriswatkinstransport.com.au/

  • I really liked your advice to clean. If you want your security deposit back, you best bet is to clean the home. Landlords take into consideration whether or not the home is dirty. Plus, the new tenants will undoubtedly appreciate the clean apartment. http://movers201.com/commercial

  • I really appreciate that saying goodbye is actually part of the moving process.  As a person that has moved a couple of times in my life, goodbye is the hardest part.  This is all really helpful for me right now because I am actually moving in three weeks.


  • Thank you so much for the checklist on how to move out. I really like the tips to start packing early. If you don’t, it is most likely that you will be in a big rush and forget something. One tip that I have is to get a storage unit to store all your stuff in. Sometimes you can’t move into your new place as soon as you move so you need a place to store your stuff. 

  • Thank you for the list of steps on moving out of my apartment. I am going to be moving to a new apartment near my school so that it will be easier to go to school. I really appreciate the tip to pack early so I can go through my stuff to see what I really need. Then I can store the other stuff. Does anyone know of a storage place that I could rent a unit in? 

  • The tip that stuck out to me was when it mentioned submitting a change of address.   I have been in the situation before where mail doesn’t seem to arrive because the address is wrong.    There are probably a number of things that one can do to prepare for a move, although the steps might vary depending on the situation. http://www.eaglemoverstx.com/movers-cypress.html

  • These really are some simple, but powerful steps to ensure that you are able to get the most out of your move. I personally had no idea that there was a need for a written notice to ensure that you landlord is able to know that you’re moving. Hopefully this will be something that ends up ensuring that those who are in need of moving will be able to do it is a smooth and easy fashion. The final thing that really stood out was that you mentioned to also make sure to clean. That seems like something that very much is respectful to do seeing as this was your home, and will be someones home after you. Thank you for sharing. 


  • Having a timeline in mind when planning a move can be really helpful. It is such a hectic time and there are so many details to worry about, so it is easy to forget things. Using a check list like this one will ensure you don’t forget important things like reserving a moving company or a storage unit if you need one. http://walshmovingandstorage.com/services/storage/

  • I have been getting ready to move to a new city and wanted to make sure that I covered everything before moving. Your tip to book a packing service is an excellent way to avoid scrambling at the last minute. I’ll definitely take your advice and book a company now. http://www.bekins.com/household-moves/packing-services/